A must for visitors to Ghanzi is a stay at Buitsivango, run by Andrea Hardbattle and her son, Jason Kennaugh. You’ll need a four wheel drive to get there but Jason can pick you up if you arrange it in advance. Andrea’s brother, John was one of the founders of the First People of the Kalahari movement and Andrea carries on the tradition. She funds a pre-school within Nharo village, located on the farm land. The Botswana government provide boarding school education for the San children; Andrea provides the nursery education to help the children get used to the idea of formal education. The children are also encouraged to be proud of their native culture and pot on a dance show for us. Andrea is also sponsoring two young men to become apprentice healers, there’s more on that in the THINGS TO DO section.
You can stay in the village and participate in daily life by accompanying the women on their foraging expeditions, searching for foods and medicines. There’s a waterhole just outside the village wall where you can watch the wildlife at dawn and dusk. We saw a splendid range of very colourful birds, which never migrate to the northern climes, showing off their radiant plumage throughout the village. 3pm is best time to take a bucket shower as the water has benefited from the heat of the day. The winter evenings are chilly and frost often settles during the early morning hours, there are plenty of blankets in the huts but bring a decent sleeping bag. The cold doesn’t seem to bother the Nharo themselves, as they only use their huts for storage and sleep outside, next to the remains of their fire. A truly remarkable and hardy people, we hope their culture can continue through the twenty-first century.