While camping and overlanding through Southern Africa, our group always made sure to keep the cooler, or eskie to the Australians, full of alcohol. Whether it was wine, beer, or liquor, there was never a shortage. Well, until we came to a Shop Rite in Namibia that, to our dismay, didn’t sell liquor after a certain time on Saturdays, which of course, was the time we were there.
Aside from that, we were always stocked up, and luckily, in Africa, you can pretty much drink anywhere, so drink we did. Whether it was in our truck by day, around the campfire by night, or while we were looking for game on night drives, drinks were always in our hands.
What did we drink…everything. When in Southern Africa, there are a few specialties you must sample before heading home.
South African Wine
We bought our first bottle for our boat ride safari in Chobe National Park, and fell in love. While I’ve had South African wine in America, there’s always a difference when you drink it where it was made. Not only did we drink it by the bottle, or box in many cases, but we also had the chance to visit a winery in South Africa, and we all left with a few bottles.
My favorite of all the beverages Africa has to offer, Amarula is made from the marula fruit, which happens to be a favorite among African elephants. You can drink it on ice or mixed with hot chocolate, but it’s also used to make a Dom Pedro. Unfortunately, I didn’t discover this cocktail until the end of the trip, but it’s made with ice cream, heavy cream, and Amarula blended together, making the most delicious adult milkshake.
This was our shot of choice while in Africa, and you can pretty much get it anywhere. We made our discovery at a bar in Swakopmund, and couldn’t get enough. It’s made with peppermint liquor and Amarula, and it went down too easy after a day of quad biking and sand boarding in the dunes.
There are a lot of different varieties of beer to choose from, and I’d say I probably had a taste of them all: Zambezi, Carling Black Label, St. Louis, Tafel, Lion, and Castle. However, the one I liked the most was Windhoek lager, which is made in Namibia; something about it had me coming back for more. The best place to drink it? Fish River Canyon at sunset.
Savannah Dry Cider
I’m not big on cider, but this one was great when you needed a break from everything else. There’s also Hunter’s, but I preferred Savannah Dry and the adorable packaging it came in.
No matter what your poison of choice is, Southern Africa has something for everyone.