Sunday, 25 October 2015

Namibia: Epupa Falls Lodge news & updates

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Updates from Epupa Falls Lodge

It has been a year of change in the Kunene Region. The drought continued and changed the ways of the Himba in more ways than one. Here at Epupa Falls Lodge & Campsites we settled into a rhythm of serving & chilling while Alzheimer's Dementia Namibia reached new heights both locally and internationally.


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

A look at the 2012 - 2015 Draught
Speaking to the Himba people of the area, it becomes clear that this is the driest years in living memory. The Kunene Region, being a semi-desert, has never known the vast amounts of rain that the Caprivi has come to know.


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Yet, anyone that has been to Epupa before 2011, will tell you that the numerous cattle and goats along the way is a hazard to the careless driver. Not so anymore. Where the Himba people had an estimate of 200,000 cattle in 2010, this amount has dwindled to a mere 50,000 in 2015. Driving the road from Opuwo to Epupa recently, I was fortunate to see a heard of cattle of about 20 and maybe 50 goats along the way.


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Adapting to the 21st Century

Epupa Falls Lodge recently had a case where a client was very upset to hear a cellphone ring in a Himba hut. We were accused of selling an activity that is fake.
The truth of the matter is, that you will have a hard time finding a Himba without a phone. Even in the wilderness. Just like western civilization has come to depend on it, the Himba now use it to find water. It is much quicker to call a fellow family member to hear if a certain borehole still has water, than walking there with what livestock you have left, only to find dust.

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

It is a sad reality, but one that must be taken into consideration. The traditional Himba like we know them, are quickly evolving into a new people. A people that still live by the rules of nature, but are adjusting to make things easier. In fact, to proof a point - there are more pick-ups in the Kunene region than there are donkey carts. Why? Simple isn't it. So why is it so difficult to understand that they too will soon wear Nike and prefer I-phone to Nokia?


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

What about bird and wildlife?
It is not only the Himba people that are influenced by the drought. The bird life that once was a selling point of the region, has almost completely disappeared in the bush. At Epupa, along the river where there still is plenty of water and a remarkable source of food, the birds still frolic and enjoy life. Even wildlife has returned to the green along the river.


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

The Future
Talking to the Himba or just driving along dirt tracks, can be a depressing sight. Where farmers in the rest of Namibia are struggling to keep the conditions of their animals, the Himba are struggling to survive. Should it not rain in the very near future, only time will tell what will happen to the once, nomadic and traditional Himba.


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Slow down, sit back and relax at Epupa Falls Lodge.
Although Epupa Campsites have been in existence for 24 years, Epupa Falls Lodge were only built in 2012. The addition of 5 chalets and a restaurant was inevitable. Staff were recruited and we were off to a good start.


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Keeping up with the Joneses
Epupa Falls Lodge has always tried to be as green as possible while blending in with nature and the surrounding area. Since Epupa does not have electricity, the lodges in the area rely on generators. EFL, on the other hand, has opted for solar energy. In 2015, we went as far as lighting our chalets. Our guests no longer have to rely on flash lights to see at night and they can even charge their equipment in their chalets.


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Credit Card Facilities
In keeping up with trends everywhere, we now also have a speed point and guests can settle their outstanding accounts with credit cards.


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Nightsbridge
Nightsbridge have covered extensive ground over the last few years in Namibia and since we could see that the benefits were certainly more than the negatives, we jumped on the bandwagon. To agents, this generally is no good. But in our case, it might be of good use. Since EFL falls in an area where cellphone reception is a miracle and Telecom only works on Saturdays, agents can now check availability online rather than trying to reach at the lodge.
Where can you do this? Epupa Falls Lodge!


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

As time goes by, the needs of our guests change and so we adapt accordingly. I am sure that every agent that have been in the industry for longer than a decade, can attest to the fact that the requests of tourists have, well, become quite extravagant!

The story of Ndjinaa reaches global audiences at the annual conferences during Alzheimer's Month in September 2015.
Epupa Falls Lodge & Campsites support the Alzheimer's Dementia Namibia project. You will probably ask yourself, of all the project, why ADN? Well, it's fairly simple.
The Story (in short)
Chief Kapika - who is the chief headman of the Epupa area - has a sister by the name of Ndjinaa. And Ndjinaa was the first Himba to be diagnosed with dementia in 2012. Since then, the ADN team together with the owner of Epupa Falls Lodge & Campsites, have identified quite a few Himba with possible dementia.
Want to read more about this project? Head over to our activities page. 
Follow the news of Alzheimer's Dementia Namibia and keep posted!


Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Road Works
Road's Authority decided to build and repair some bridges along C43 from Opuwo to Epupa. Due to the dry conditions, the detours have deteriorated so that only 4x4's can pass through.
A lot of guests seem to be unaware that the C43 between Sesfontein & Opuwo is closed. Please take note of this and plan the itineraries accordingly.

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia

Epupa Falls Lodge Namibia
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