Namibia

Namibia is an increasingly popular destination, especially for those who like to venture into the wilds where few others go. It provides a very different safari experience from the big game safaris of East Africa. The vast expanses of untouched wilderness covered with endless blue skies, give a sense of awe and peace to all who visit. The 800 miles of Atlantic coastline and the starkly beautiful red sand dunes provide a contrast that is unique.  Enjoy birding, biking, hiking, hot air ballooning, sand dune surfing, fishing and boating. According to astronomers, the 80 million year-old Namib Desert offers some of the best stargazing on the planet.

Namibia gets its name from the Namib Desert, the oldest desert on the planet. This sparsely populated country is twice the size of California with a handful of cities separated by pristine wilderness. Because of the enormous distances, fly-in safaris make the best use of your time while providing breathtaking views of the landscapes.  There are more cheetah in Namibia than in any other country in Africa and you can see endemic species like the desert elephant and endangered species like the African wild dog.

Namibia became an independent, democratic country in 1990.  Its constitution was the first in the world to include protection of the environment and sustainable utilization of wildlife. The country has rich mineral wealth, a well-developed infrastructure and a growing tourism market. The people reflect a blend of cultures and traditions from the various ethnic groups including the San, Ovambo, Herero, Himba, Khoi-Khoi, and a small European population. English is the official language in Namibia.

Namibia Botswana Zimbabwe Mozambique South Africa Angola Zambia Skeleton CoastNational Park DorobNational Park Namib NaukluftNational Park SperrgebietNational Park Ai-Ais/RichtersveltTransfrontier Park KgalagadiTransfrontierNational Park WaterbergPlateau Park KaudomGame Reserve BwabwataNational Park EtoshaNational Park Ondangwa Namutoni Tsumeb Tsodilo Hills Grootfontein Outjo DAMARALAND Otjiwarongo Cape Cross Seal Reserve Swakopmund Okahandja Windhoek Rehoboth Lüderitz Mariental Gobabis Walvis Bay Etosha Pan Fish River Orange River Atlantic Ocean Sossusvlei Caprivi Strip
Namibia Highlights

Itineraries

Namibia is best explored by light aircraft transfers which allow you to see the amazing diversity of this country.  Specialty experiences like ballooning over the dunes, kayaking with dolphins off the coast, visiting the Cheetah Conservation Center and the tribal peoples of Namibia are generally included in our custom-tailored itineraries.

Desert Dunes Safari

Itinerary

Days 1-2          Kulala Wilderness Reserve

You will be met by your private guide on arrival in Windhoek.  The journey begins with a drive through the Khomas Hochland mountains and down into the dune-filled Sossusvlei region.

As the perfect gateway to the impressive sights of Sossusvlei, Kulala Desert Lodge offers magnificent views of dunes, mountains and vast open plains.  The camp comprises 23 en-suite thatched and canvas ‘kulalas’ each with a veranda.  On balmy nights, sleep under the clear night skies on your rooftop and awaken to the rising sun. By day, enjoy your activities or spot desert-adapted wildlife from our lounge and dining area overlooking a waterhole. To escape the mid-day heat a cooling plunge pool provides the ideal sanctuary.

2 Nights at Kulala Desert Lodge

Days 3 - 4         Swakopmund

Depart camp early and drive through the snaking roads of the Kuiseb Canyon and out onto the expansive gravel plains, eventually arriving in Walvis Bay before moving north into the quaint town of Swakopmund, a drive of about 5 – 6 hours.  Namibia’s oldest hotel, the Hansa has retained its 100-year-old charm. Located in the center of town, you have access to most of the local amenities and several good restaurants.   

2 Nights at Hansa Hotel

Day 4              Dolphin & Seal Catamaran Cruise

You will explore the ice-blue Atlantic coast and its incredible marine mammals, from the port towns of Walvis Bay and Swakopmund. The cruise takes in the Oyster Platforms, where you’ll learn about the oysters cultivated here – including tasting the delicacies – before moving on to Pelican Point to see the lighthouse, and an area in which three species of dolphins may be encountered, namely the rare endemic Heaviside’s dolphin, dusky and Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. Aside from spotting diverse pelagic (ocean-going) birds, pelicans, flamingos, and Cape fur seals, the massive sunfish, leatherback turtles, southern right and humpback whales can be seen in season.

Day 5               Torra Conservancy

Travel overland for roughly five hours up the legendary Skeleton Coast and on the back roads through the Ugab riverbed, and north past the Brandberg Mountain.  The day ends with your arrival at Damaraland Camp.

Set in the Huab River valley, Damaraland Camp is situated in arguably one of the most pristine wilderness areas in Namibia. Endless vistas across stark plains, ancient valleys and stunning ochre-purple mountains will be the backdrop during your stay.  The ten large adobe-style thatched units are raised off the ground for sensational vistas. Each includes a walk-in dressing room, en-suite facilities and a deck from which to contemplate the desert.  A dip in the swimming pool might be welcome after today’s journey.

1 Night at Damaraland Camp

Days 6 – 7        Palmwag Concession

Begin the day driving into the Huab riverbed to search for desert-adapted elephants, before heading north to the mountainous paradise of the massive Palmwag Concession.  The specialty of this area is its growing population of the rare desert-adapted black rhino (the largest concentration in the world outside a national park), which are monitored and protected by Save the Rhino Trust.

While staying at Desert Rhino Camp you will take part in a thrilling and exclusive conservation success story. Tracking Africa’s unique and endangered desert-adapted black rhino is an unforgettable experience.

2 Nights at Desert Rhino Camp

Days 8 – 10 Palmwag Concession (North)

Today you will drive to Doro Nawas airstrip for your light aircraft transfer to Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp.

Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp is located on the Hoanib River.  Its location thus straddles the Palmwag area and Skeleton Coast National Park, in one of the most remote areas of the Kaokoveld. Exclusivity is taken a step further as the camp comprises only seven twin-bedded tents and one family unit. The camp looks out over stunning yet rugged scenery and offers you all the luxuries and amenities needed for an unforgettable stay.

2 Nights at Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp

Days 11 – 13 Ongava Game Reserve

This morning, you will fly to Doro Nawas airstrip and continue by road to Ongava Game Reserve on the boundary of Etosha National Park.  Etosha remains the highest density wildlife area within Namibia, its fame justly acknowledged.

Ongava Lodge overlooks a productive waterhole and the impressive landscape beyond. Settle into one of the 14 en-suite chalets built within a web of mopane trees with a deck stretching out over the vast plains.

2 Nights at Ongava Lodge

Day 14

We set off south to Windhoek, which is about 260 miles away, arriving by 1 p.m. to connect to your onward journey.   

2019 Departures Price Per Person Single Supplement
May 1 - 31 ZAR 128,046 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
June 1 - 30 ZAR 150,452 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
July 1 - October 31 ZAR 157,225 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
November 1 - 30 ZAR 132,594 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
December 1 - 31 ZAR 128,046 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
2019 Departures
January 19, February 8, March 11, April 1, May 20, June 8, July 8, August 25, September 19, November 10, December 9

Note: Prices shown for this safari are in South African Rand (ZAR)

This set departure itinerary is guaranteed with a minimum of two confirmed travelers and operates with a maximum of seven travelers.  Children must be at least 12 years old on this set departure itinerary.

Prices include all road transportation and charter flights as specified in the itinerary, driver/guide services, park fees, accommodation on a shared basis, all meals (from lunch on Day 1, excluding dinner on Day 4), beverages and drinks (except premium brands) at all properties except Hansa Hotel, laundry (except at Hansa Hotel)

Prices exclude airfare (other than what is specified in the safari itinerary), gratuities, travel insurance, visa fees, entry and departure taxes, all drinks and laundry in Swakopmund, any personal purchases, phone calls, optional activities, & any pre- or post-safari plans.

Arrivals:
Please arrange to arrive in Windhoek by 7 a.m. or come the day prior and overnight. Late arrivals will be subject to extra cost.

Departures:
Please arrange for a flight that departs from Windhoek after 4 p.m. on Day 14. Earlier departures will be subject to extra cost.

Private Departures:
This itinerary can be custom tailored for groups of four to seven guests for flexible dates and other accommodation choices.

Extensions:
We recommend adding a few nights at Serra Cafema, a luxury retreat on the Kunene River or to the Ongava Game Reserve.

Diverse Namibia

Itinerary

Days 1 & 2: Windhoek to Sossusvlei
You will be met at Windhoek Airport by your guide and start the five-hour drive through the iconic Sossusvlei region. The first two nights are spent at Kulala Adventurer Camp on the private Kulala Wilderness Reserve. The camp, comprising dome tents under the shade, is perfect for taking in the Reserve's expansive vistas and stark beauty and enjoys views into the Namib Naukluft National Park. Dining under the star-filled Namibian skies and watching a blood red sunset punctuated by the cacophony of barking geckos are a few highlights, as is spending unrushed quality time at the towering dunes of Sossusvlei, known for their red coloring in the early morning sunlight. Desert-adapted wildlife such as ostrich, springbok and gemsbok can be seen on the reserve, as well as smaller creatures like bat-eared fox, black-backed jackal and Cape fox. Other activities include day and night scenic drives and walks, and optional early morning ballooning, horse riding or quad-biking (the last three at extra cost). 
2 Nights at Kulala Adventurer Camp

Days 3 & 4: Walvis Bay & Swakopmund
Set out for Walvis Bay and the hauntingly beautiful skeleton coast, into the quaint town of Swakopmund, a distance of 230 miles.  On day 4, we explore the ice-blue Atlantic coast and the incredible marine mammals that inhabit the area. A private "Dolphin and Seal" catamaran cruise from Walvis Bay provides a wonderful opportunity to explore this beautiful bay and coastline. The cruise takes in the Oyster Platforms, where we learn about the oysters cultivated here - including tasting the delicacies - before moving on to Pelican Point to see the lighthouse, and an area in which three species of dolphins may be encountered, namely the rare endemic Heaviside's dolphin, dusky and Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. Aside from spotting diverse pelagic (ocean-going) birdlife, pelicans and flamingo, and Cape fur seals, the massive sunfish, leatherback turtles, southern right and humpback whales can be seen in season.

Then you have time to relax at the Hansa Hotel, an iconic place that forms part of Swakopmund's architectural culture and is said to be one of the oldest buildings in the town. It is ideally situated in the center of Swakopmund within easy walking distance of town and the beach. 
2 Nights at Hansa Hotel

Days 5 & 6: Damaraland
Continue your journey by road to Damaraland, west of the Brandberg Mountain, stopping for lunch at Ugab Save the Rhino Trust Camp. The Save the Rhino Trust (SRT) has been involved with rhino conservation in this area since the early eighties and has been singly responsible for helping these rare animals survive and thrive, so that today this area boasts the largest concentration of black rhino anywhere on the planet outside of a national park.

Once in the area around Damaraland, you are in the heart of the rocky desert, an ancient glacial landscape. Damaraland boasts a varied and breathtaking assortment of desert-adapted species including one of the highest concentrations of desert elephant and black rhino, and a surprisingly high diversity of wildlife including Hartmann's mountain zebra, kudu, giraffe, gemsbok, and springbok, with occasional cheetah sightings.   Activities range from nature walks, mountain biking, viewing the rock engravings at Twyfelfontein (a World Heritage Site) to day and night nature drives, exploring the mountains, hills and ephemeral river beds and springs. Looking south from camp toward the imposing Brandberg Mountains, Damaraland offers its guests endless vistas and one of the best wilderness areas in Namibia. Early morning mists generated by the clash between the icy Atlantic Ocean and the warm desert air of the Skeleton Coast, drift inland along the river sand canyon, providing sustenance to the flora and fauna of the region. 
2 Nights at Damaraland Adventurer Camp

Days 7, 8 & 9: Ongava Game Reserve
A five hour drive to Ongava Game Reserve, on the boundary of Etosha National Park, grants the experience of big game viewing and this iconic salt pan. Etosha remains the highest density wildlife area within Namibia, its fame justly acknowledged. The salt pan (largest salt pan in the world) is speculated to be a remnant of an ancient glacial lake - today being maintained by scouring winds across its surface and sporadic ephemeral flooding. On day nine you embark on a full day game drive into Etosha, exploring the southern roads of Etosha Pan from Okakeujo through to Halali, meandering our way from waterhole to spring and enjoying the endless vistas and mirages of the pan itself.

On the southern boundary of Etosha National Park and forming a buffer to the Park lies Ongava Game Reserve. It is a haven to large concentrations of wildlife: notably lion, cheetah, black rhino, white rhino, springbok, gemsbok, wildebeest, Burchell's zebra, Hartmann's mountain zebra, waterbuck, red hartebeest, giraffe, eland and the largest population of the endemic black-faced impala outside of Etosha. Meru-style, en-suite tents sit on raised wooden decks.  There is a swimming pool in the main guest area.
3 Nights at Ongava Tented Camp 

Day 10:  Windhoek
Today you drive back to Windhoek, arriving at approximately 1PM.

2019 Departures Price Per Person Single Supplement
January 1 - May 31 & December 1 - 31 ZAR 58,968 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
June 1 - 30 ZAR 62,641 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
July 1 - October 31 ZAR 68,659 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
November 1 - 30 ZAR 64,977 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
December 1 - 30 ZAR 58,968 per person sharing ZAR 4,900
2019 Departures
January 20, February 1 & 10, March 6, 21, & 28, April 2, 15, & 18, May 8, 11, & 23, June 4, 16, & 19, July 1, 7, & 22, August 3, 6, 18, & 30, September 21, October 5, 20, 26, & 31, November 5 & 27, December 7, 20, & 24

Note: Prices shown for this safari are in South African Rand

Prices include all road transportation as specified, driver/guide services, park fees, accommodation on a shared basis, all meals from lunch on Day 1 (excluding dinner on the second night in Swakopmund) beverages and drinks at Kulala Adventurer Camp, Damaraland Adventurer Camp and Ongava Tented Camp, and scheduled activities.

Prices exclude flights, gratuities, compulsory travel insurance, visas, all relevant entry and departure Government taxes, all drinks while in Swakopmund, all personal purchases, laundry, optional extra activities, any pre- and post-safari plans, and any new Government taxes, levies, fuel or industry increases which are beyond our control.

Set Departure – This set departure itinerary is guaranteed with a minimum of two confirmed travelers and operates with a maximum of seven travelers.  Children must be at least 12 years old on set departure itineraries.

Arrivals:
Please arrange to arrive in Windhoek by 7 a.m. or come the day prior and overnight. Late arrivals will be subject to extra cost.

Departures:
Please arrange for a flight that departs from Windhoek after 3:30 p.m. on Day 10. Earlier departures will be subject to extra cost.

Private Departures:
This itinerary can be custom tailored for groups of four to eight guests for flexible dates and other accommodation choices.

Camps:
Both Kulala Adventurer Camp and Damaraland Adventurer Camp are semi-permanent camps and feature dome tents which accommodate a maximum of two persons. Tents are on elevated wooden platforms with a small veranda. Beds have mattresses with linens, duvets and pillows. Bathrooms are en-suite with a zipper entrance in the rear of the tent leading to flush toilet, basin and shower with hot and cold running water.

Namibia Accommodations

Most of the camps and lodges in Namibia are located in large, private reserve areas giving guests an exclusive wilderness experience. Many of our preferred places have won awards for luxury, environmental sustainability features, and for their joint ventures with the local community.

Etosha

Etosha National Park is Namibia's premiere game viewing destination. Located in the northern part of the country, it is sometimes called the "land of mirages" because of the huge Etosha Pan which looks like an endless expanse of silvery sand.

Photo: Dana Allen

Ongava Lodge

Ongava Private Game Reserve
The private Ongava Game Reserve shares a common boundary with Etosha National Park. The lodge has 13 air-conditioned en-suite chalets and one family suite.  The main dining area has a view of the camp's waterhole where animals come to drink year-round with a hide where you can get a close-up view. Activities include day and night game drives, guided walks and cooling off in the swimming pool.

Photo: Dana Allen

Little Ongava

Ongava Private Game Reserve
Built on the crest of a hill on the southern boundary of the park, Little Ongava guests have a view onto the plains below.  Each of the three sumptuous units features its own plunge pool, a sala, and an en-suite bathroom with both indoor and outdoor showers and a bathtub with a view. 

Photo: Olwen Evans

Ongava Tented Camp

Ongava Private Game Reserve
This vintage-styled tented camp has eight Meru-style tents, all with en-suite facilities, open air showers and private verandas.  Activities include game drives where lion, black and white rhino, elephant, cheetah, gemsbok, springbok, and hartebeest can be seen. In addition, guided walks and bird watching are offered on the private reserve. 

Photo: Onguma Fort Camp

Onguma Fort Camp

Onguma Game Reserve

The Fort is a luxury African property designed with a touch of Moroccan and Indian influences.  There are 11 suites and one honeymoon suite, each surrounded by wooden decks with views towards Fischer’s Pan and featuring air-conditioning, a bar fridge, Wi-Fi, and both an inside and outside shower.  The Sultan suite is in the main tower.  The Onguma Reserve sits on the eastern border of Etosha National Park and The Fort offers one of the best sunset spots in all of Namibia. 

Sossusvlei

Here in the heart of the Namib Desert, the oldest desert in the world are the famous dunes that have inspired photographers and filmmakers for years. Rising 1,000 feet above the plains these are some of the highest in the world. The light and shadows produced in the early hours of the morning and again near sunset are stunningly beautiful.

Photo: Dana Allen

Kulala Desert Lodge

Kulala Wilderness Reserve
Hidden at the foot of the majestic Sossusvlei dunes, this lodge has a private entrance to the Namib Naukluft National Park making it very convenient for those pre-dawn visits to the dunes.  The thatched and canvas "kulalas" with en-suite bathrooms and verandas, are built on raised platforms to catch the breeze and feature a flat rooftop for sleep-outs under the stars.  The launch for balloon safaris is nearby.  

Photo: Daniel Myberg

Little Kulala Camp

Kulala Wilderness Reserve
Little Kulala, is an award-winning retreat for the discerning traveler.  The 11 climate-controlled, thatched "kulalas" (the word means 'to sleep') merge impeccably into the desert landscape, each with private plunge pool, both indoor and outdoor showers and a rooftop star bed for romantic star gazing.  The waterhole in front of the main guest area draws oryx, springbok, bat eared fox, aardwolf, ostrich and jackals.

Photo: &Beyond

Sossusvlei Desert Lodge

NamibRand Nature Reserve
Set in a 445,000 acre private reserve at the foot of a mountain, the lodge overlooks the starkly beautiful Namib Desert.  The  stone and glass structure of the lodge melts into wraparound verandas becoming one with the land.  Daytime activities include hot air ballooning over the dunes, game drives, guided walks and quad biking. When night falls, the resident astronomer reveals the mysteries of the stars in the state- of-the-art observatory.

Damaraland

This mountainous region of northwest Namibia is inhabited by the Damara people, who are today of mixed heritage. The name Damara is derived from the Nama word "Dama,” meaning "who walked here. Thanks to the implementation of a viable eco-tourism model, wildlife numbers are thriving and the local communities have money in the bank and employment.

Photo: Olwen Evans

Damaraland Camp

Torra Wildlife Conservancy
Owned and largely run by the local community, the camp looks south toward the imposing Brandberg Mountains, offing endless vistas. There are10 elevated adobe-styled, units and a guest area complete with a fireplace, bar, and swimming pool. Here you can find the desert elephant roaming alongside oryx, springbok, ostrich and other hardy desert animals.

Photo: Dana Allen

Doro Nawas Camp

Torra Wildlife Conservancy
A highlight of this area is the fascinating expedition to Twyfelfontein with its renowned San art engravings, and the largest collection of petroglyphs (prehistoric rock art) in Africa.  The camp features 16 hillside units with outdoor showers and verandas for sleep-outs.  Wildlife viewing and nature drives concentrate on the game found in the riverbed including the desert-adapted elephant.

Photo: Mike Myers

Desert Rhino Camp

Palmwag Reserve
This camp sits in a one million-acre private reserve that is home to the largest free-ranging black rhino population in the world.  Few places on the planet can offer this level of privacy and wilderness experience. The camp features eight large, East African-styled tents, each with an en-suite bathroom with hand basin, flush toilet and a classic bucket shower that is filled with hot water whenever requested. 

Skeleton Coast & Kunene River

Skeleton Coast Park is one of our planet's most inhospitable, yet hauntingly beautiful places. It is wild, desolate and uninhabited and has everything from roaring sand dunes and windswept plains, to towering canyons and saltpans. The Kunene River near the northern border of Namibia is home to the Himba people, some of the last true nomadic people of Africa.

Photo: Dana Allen

Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp

Skeleton Coast National Park
For the adventure seeker, this wild and beautiful place is only reachable by air.  The camp was rebuilt in 2014 in a valley at the confluence of two tributaries of the Hoanib River. There are seven twin-bedded tents and one family unit all en-suite with shady outdoor decks.  Activities include viewing of desert-adapted wildlife, exploring sand dunes, shipwreck remains and scenic flights along the dramatic coastline.  

Photo: Dana Allen

Serra Cafema Camp

Kunene River
This is one of the most remote destinations in all of Africa, perched on the banks of the Kunene River. Spend time visiting the Himba, traversing the sand dunes on carefully guided quad-bike excursions, boating and birding on the Kunene River, or walking in the remote mountain and river valleys. There are just eight riverside villas perched on elevated decks blending into the picturesque surroundings.

 

Photo: Natural Selection

Shipwreck Lodge

Hoanib River
This new camp on the Skeleton Coast is set to open in the summer of 2018.  The property offers stunning views of the dunes, the Atlantic and the mountains in the distance.  The ten rooms have been uniquely designed around the enigmatic shipwrecks that line Namibia’s Skeleton Coast.  Activities include game drives amongst the desert-dwelling elephant, lion and kudu, discovering the desert flora, and visiting nearby shipwrecks.

 

Travel Information

When to go to Namibia
You can travel to Namibia year-round depending on how you tolerate heat and cold. Much of Namibia has a subtropical desert climate with wide ranging temperatures between daytime and night. The winter months, May to September, are the dry season when the daytime temperatures average

75F and the nights can get down to freezing in the desert. October and November temperatures get warmer. December to March is when rain falls in the northern part of the country. The desert areas receive little or no rain and the sun shines here almost every single day.

Passport & Visa for Namibia

Your passport must be valid for at least six month after the date of your return from Namibia.  No visas are needed for citizens of the USA.  If you are traveling via South Africa, you must have at least six blank visa pages in your passport. 

For further information:  The Embassy of the Republic of Namibia in Washington, D.C. & U.S. State Department

Medical Information for Namibia
Before traveling to Africa, please consult with your physician. No mandatory vaccinations are required to visit Namibia. You will need a malaria prophylactic if you are traveling to the northern part of the country.  Those who have been in transit through a yellow fever risk country will be required to show proof of vaccination.  

For further information: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Namibia