Documenting our first lodge

The views are beautiful, the rooms are nice and clean and the staff is taking care of us superbly. The next four days we will be taking photos and videos of the Zebra Safari Lodge, on the border of Kidepo Valley. 

We start with a quick tour on the lodge grounds, followed by a video call with Tim, the owner. He is in Kampala, but with a video call we can still discuss the expectations from both sides and the ideas we have for the photos and the videos. As we have come to realize, internet connection is a little bit of an issue throughout the overlanding experience so far. Fortunately the lodge has Wifi, so we hope the connection is strong and reliable enough to upload and download our photos and videos. 

Over the course of the days we spend at the lodge, we photograph and videograph the rooms, the surroundings, the view of the valley and the staff. The shoots do not take very long. We spend a lot more time editing the photos and videos to create the professional look we are going for. We spend so much time in the restaurant, that the staff come to see us as 'furniture' and 'part of them'. Interactions with the staff are part of why we like doing this work and the view from our 'office' is not the worst either. 

Activity 1 - Karamojong visit

Besides photographing and videographing the lodge, we document several activities. One of those activities is a visit to a Karamojong village. We have had a similar visit to a Maasai village in Kenya, which is definitely not one of our favourite memories of Kenya. The people in the Maasai village started very friendly, showing their homes, how they make fire and gave a dance performance, only to use that friendliness as emotional leverage to pressure us into buying trinkets we did not need nor want. The aggressive style of 'selling' of the Maasai made us a bit anxious of going to the Karamojong village. 

Fortunately, the visit to the Karamojong village was very different. They did show us their homes, how they prepare and store food, and gave a dance performance too, but nothing of that was used as any form of leverage. We felt this was a much more genuine experience of the Karamojong people wanting to show us their lives. We joined the dance and into the dancing group to take some lovely video shots, which made them even more enthusiastic. The afternoon was concluded by a parade of dancing and singing to 'guide' us back to our car. 

Activity 2 - Kidepo Valley National Park

We did not want to go all the way to the border of Kidepo Valley NP and not actually visit the National Park. We spent one day photographing and video-graphing the National Park. We arranged a UWA tourist vehicle, a guide and a driver for one day, as this was cheaper than taking our own car for a drive in the park. Unfortunately, the UWA has made it extremely expensive for cars not registered in Uganda to enter National Parks. Because of this, we have to skip most parks, but we are happy to at least visit the park for one day with the ranger and driver from the UWA. 

The diversity of Kidepo is amazing. We love the park, it's diverse scenery and the beautiful animals. Apart from the zebras (that are very rare in Uganda and can almost only be seen in Kidepo), we spot the Ugandan kob. The Ugandan kob looks like an impala, but we find the kob more beautiful. We have seen many impalas in Kenya, but we had not yet seen a Ugandan kob. Other than these, Kidepo is renowned for having herds of buffalo going into the thousands of individuals. We are lucky enough to find one of these herds and we were soon completely submerged. We stopped the car and whichever way we looked, there were buffaloes. It felt crazy to see so many buffaloes, all staring at you with their grumpy faces. Somehow, buffaloes always seem to be grumpy. We did not see any lions, but to the surprise of the ranger and the guide, we are not interested in lions at all. We have seen more than enough lions in Kenya and we are interested in the animals that cannot be seen in other countries, like the Ugandan kob. That does not mean we don't like to see any big cat at all. Seeing a leopard mom with a cub was one of the highlights of the day. 

This was an amazing game drive day and it was worth the drive up to Kidepo and the work it takes to take and edit the photos and videos of the lodge. Take a look at our YouTube channel for the videos of Zebra Safari Lodge.

Add comment


There are no comments yet.