Something different - self drive

Introduction

The self-drive tour visits Okonjima, home of the AfriCat Foundation, a private concession bordering the western side of Etosha National Park and up to the Kunene River and Epupa Falls.  Swinging south to Palmwag spend a morning rhino tracking then travel via the Skeleton Coast National Park to the coastal town of Swakopmund.  No visit would be complete without experiencing the Namib Desert and the dunes of Sossusvlei, before heading home, a night in the Kalahari region of Namibia with an afternoon sundowner drive. 

Departure dates

  • Please Note:

    This self drive can depart on any day of the week.

Price

Tour Summary

  • Duration:

    14 Days / 13 Nights

  • Destinations:

    Windhoek - Okonjima Nature Reserve - Etosha West - Epupa Falls - Palmwag - Skeleton Coast - Swakopmund - Sesriem - Mariental

  • Vehicle Used:

    2 guests double cabin 4x4
    4 guests double cabin 4x4
    Please contact us for pricing on alternative vehicle such as Land Cruiser

Map

something different

Overview

Accommodation
Destination
Basis
Room Type
Olive Grove Guesthouse
Windhoek
Bed and Breakfast
1x Standard room
Okonjima Plains Camp
Okonjima Nature Reserve
Dinner, Bed, Breakfast
1x Plains Camp View Rooms
Hobatere Lodge
Etosha West
Dinner, Bed, Breakfast
1x Rondawel
Epupa Falls Lodge
Epupa Falls
HB
1x Twin Chalet
Palmwag Lodge Gondwana Collection Namibia
Palmwag
Dinner, Bed, Breakfast
1x Twin Chalet
Terrace Bay
Skeleton Coast
Bed and Breakfast
1x Double
Strand Hotel Swakopmund
Swakopmund
Bed and Breakfast
1x Standard Room
Sossus Dune Lodge
Sesriem
Bed and Breakfast
1x Double
Bagatelle Kalahari Game Ranch
Mariental
Dinner, Bed, Breakfast
1x Savannah Chalet
  • Accommodation as indicated in the itinerary. 
  • Vehicle – double cabin 4×4 
  • Transfers from/to airport 
  • VAT + Tourism Levy 
  • Activities as specified in program 
  • Fuel 
  • Meals other than specified 
  • Additional activities not specified in program  
  • Park /Entrance Fees (NAD80.00 per person & NAD10.00 per vehicle per day) & sightseeing fees (average NAD100.00 per person per day) – prices subject to change. 
  • All beverages (bottled water, juices, soft drinks & alcoholic drinks, snacks etc) 
  • International & regional flights and Airport Taxes (if applicable) 
  • Travel Insurance 
  • All expenses of a personal nature 

Itinerary

Day 1: Olive Grove Guesthouse, Windhoek

olive grove 39
olive grove 40

Situated in Central Namibia, the cosmopolitan city of Windhoek serves as the capital of the country. It is home to an international airport and a plethora of restaurants, shops, entertainment venues and accommodation options. The city is clean, safe and well-organised, with a colonial legacy that is reflected in its many German eateries and shops, and the widespread use of the German language. Windhoek has an interesting mix of historical architecture and modern buildings, many of which are worth a look, including the Alte Feste an old fort, the 1896 Christuskirche Christ Church, and the more contemporary Supreme Court. 

Overnight: Olive Grove Guesthouse  

Olive Grove is a small upmarket accommodation establishment situated close to the city centre in a quiet, peaceful area. The guesthouse takes homely atmosphere to a different level. 

The newly renovated, open-plan kitchen allows guests to see how meals are prepared, while they enjoy a drink in the lounge. The menu was also reinvented and is now fully a la carte, quite unique for a guesthouse. Home-style food is rounded off with great presentation, pushing up the level of the guesthouse dining experience.  

Whilst each of the ten rooms and one suite cater for every need of the most discerning traveller, the emphasis remains one of simplicity and elegance. 

Basis 

Bed and Breakfast 

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Windhoek Airport to City

  • Distance:

    48 km

  • Journey:

    Your guide will meet you at Hosea Kutako International Airport and transfer you to the City, check in to your guest house. 

Day 2: Okonjima Plains Camp, Okonjima Nature Reserve

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Okonjima 007 dave oko1

Midway between the spectacular Etosha National Park and the capital city of Windhoek, lies the well-known Okonjima Nature Reserve. The 22 000 ha nature reserve is home to AfriCAT, a carnivore sanctuary, which gives the captive cats a second chance to be released back into the wild and become completely independent hunters in a protected area right in the middle of commercial cattle farmland. Visitors can enjoy a stay at a variety of excellent accommodation options including everything from luxury villas to secluded camping. Enjoy thrilling cat tracking guided safaris, leopard-spotting, off-road night drives and learn about local San culture along the Bushmen trail. 

Overnight: Okonjima Plains Camp  

Plains Camp honours the Hanssen’s family cattle-farming heritage with its three-tier accommodation facility of 10 spacious View Rooms, 14 spacious Standard Rooms and six affordable Garden Rooms.  It is family-friendly and wheelchair accessible. 

The Plains Camp is 700m from the airstrip within the secluded wilderness area of Okonjima Nature Reserve and has majestic sunset views. Its design honours the Hanssen’s family cattle-farming history with its three-tier accommodation facility of 10 large View Rooms, 14 spacious Standard Rooms and six affordable Garden Rooms. It is family-friendly and wheelchair accessible. 

Okonjima was a cattle farm since the early 1920s that was bought by Brahman breeders Val (VJ) and Rose Hanssen in 1970. By the time Namibia gained its independence in early 1990, they needed to address increasing livestock losses and growing interest in Namibia as a tourist destination. Three years later their herds of Brahman and Jersey cattle were sold and Okonjima’s attention turned to recovering the grass plains and transforming it into a nature reserve, with a primary focus on carnivore conservation through The AfriCat Foundation. Today it’s a luxurious African safari destination in the heart of Namibia that’s ideal for wildlife photography and famed for its cheetah, brown hyena and leopard sightings. 

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Windhoek to Okonjima Game Reserve

  • Distance:

    225 km

  • Journey:

    Leaving Windhoek we travel via the town of Okahandja, founded around 1800 by two local groups, the Herero and the Nama it is known as the Garden town of Namibia. South of Otjiwarongo lies Okonjima, home to the AfriCat Foundation, as our first night on tour this is a great place to become attuned to camping along with the sights and sounds of the bush.  Afternoon track cheetahs and leopards through the 20 000ha Okonjima Nature Reserve with a guide, this Reserve is home to and runs extensive research projects on rare and endangered species, big and small.

Activities 

Basis 

DBB – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:    Breakfast and dinner 

Day 3: Okonjima Plains Camp, Okonjima Nature Reserve

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Okonjima Plains Camp 03main1

Game drives and guided bush walks offer visitors an intimate, up-close perspective of Namibia’s wildlife and, especially, its most protected species. 

Activities 

Okonjima Nature Reserve 

Midway between the spectacular Etosha National Park and the capital city of Windhoek, lies the well-known Okonjima Nature Reserve. The 22 000 ha nature reserve is home to AfriCAT, a carnivore sanctuary, which gives the captive cats a second chance to be released back into the wild and become completely independent hunters in a protected area right in the middle of commercial cattle farmland. Visitors can enjoy a stay at a variety of excellent accommodation options including everything from luxury villas to secluded camping. Enjoy thrilling cat tracking guided safaris, leopard-spotting, off-road night drives and learn about local San culture along the Bushmen trail. 

Basis 

DBB – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:  Dinner & breakfast 

Day 4: Hobatere Lodge, Etosha West

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Hobatere Lodge elephant calf at hobatere

Situated in the western part of Etosha National park, Etosha West is a new addition to this world-famous wildlife sanctuary. Formerly a restricted area the wilder western region accessed through Galton Gate, has previously had limited access, today it is open to all visitors who wish to discover the secluded reaches of this spectacular park. Visitors to Etosha West can look forward to exploring the magnificent scenery of this remote north Namibian landscape characterised by lush undulating terrain and a reddish brown soil, which is a stark contrast to the white dusty clay soil of Etosha East’s flat expansive plains. The area boasts numerous waterholes attracting elephant, rhino, leopard, lion, and a variety of buck. Don’t miss the opportunity to catch a glimpse of the rare Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra and black-faced impala. 

Overnight: Hobatere Lodge 

Hobatere Lodge is strategically located 65 km north of Kamanjab on the western border of the Etosha National Park. The lodge has an airstrip and is situated in a concession area of 8,808 ha which is home to a wide selection of game, including elephant, giraffe, eland, and Hartmann’s zebra. 

The lodge offers the visitor the opportunity to experience game drives in open vehicles and nature walks with experienced and knowledgeable rangers. Early morning and night drives are part of the activities on offer. Many nocturnal animals, such as aardvark, cape fox, bat-eared fox, aardwolf, genet and many more can be encountered on a night drive. Before your exciting night drive, you will be able to enjoy the night sky at our Boma for dinner. Activities also include drives into the Etosha National Park. 

The lodge belongs to the #Khoadi //Hoas Conservancy. One of the primary objectives of the lodge is to increase the benefits to the local community, reducing human wildlife conflict and also conservation of the area. 

The name Hobatere means “Find me”, and once you do, you will enjoy a warm welcome and personalized service. 

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Okonjima Game Reserve - Hobatere Lodge

  • Distance:

    375 km

  • Journey:

    an early start from Okonjima we  travel north through the town of Otjwarongo and on to Kamanjab, heading due north to a private concession situated outside the Etosha National Park boundary.   Depending on arrival time we plan to do an afternoon OR night drive with the lodge. 

Activities 

Hobatere Lodge Game Drives 

Hobatere Lodge is located 80 km north of Kamanjab on the western border of the Etosha National park, situated in a concession area of 32 000 ha. The concession area is home to a wide selection of game including lion, leopard, oryx, eland, cheetah, aardvark, giraffe, Hartmann’s mountain zebra and elephant. The lodge offers early morning and night game drives in open safari vehicles. The activity includes professionally trained rangers and refreshments. 

Basis 

DBB – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:     Breakfast and dinner 

Day 5: Epupa Falls Lodge, Epupa Falls

Epupa Falls Lodge 2015 epupa 12
Epupa Falls Lodge 2015 epupa 14

Situated in the Kaokoland area of Namibia, Epupa Falls is set near the border of Angola. Named by the Herero people after the spray it creates, Epupa means ‘ water falling. The falls consists of a series of little waterfalls created by the Kunene River as it drops 60 metres, creating hundreds of natural pools that provide the Himba people and visitors with a fantastic recreation spot. These incredibly beautiful falls create a spectacular contrast to the arid desert and rugged surrounding mountains. Visitors can look forward to discovering the unspoilt environment, the majestic baobabs and wild fig trees dotting the surrounds. Don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy world-class birdwatching and spot an array of species including the bee-eaters, hornbills, kingfishers, fish eagles, flycatchers, and herons. 

Overnight: Epupa Falls Lodge   

Visitors descending on the Kunene River are welcomed by a lush oasis of Makalani palms and Baobab trees and the Epupa Falls appear quite unexpectedly as a spectacular surprise!. Watching the numerous waterfalls from the Sundowner Hill on a late afternoon, while sipping a glass of wine, one is encouraged to stay for more than only a night. In the evening the singing, clapping and dancing of local people adds to the murmur of the river. During the early morning hours, the fish eagle’s call reminds visitors that they are indeed in Africa. 

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Hobatere Lodge - Epupa Falls

  • Distance:

    375 km

  • Journey:

    a short game drive as we exit the concession area and head north to Opuwo and on to the Kunene River and our lodge for the following two nights.  

Activities 

Kunene 

Bordering Angola in northern Namibia, Kunene is a region as well as the name of a river, which is one of just five perennial rivers in Namibia. The Kunene River is an invaluable source of water for the local Himba people, and it has been the mainstay of their existence for hundreds of years. For travellers, the river’s most striking feature is the magnificent Epupa Falls, which cascade over a distance of more than a kilometre downstream, with an impressive vertical drop of around 60 metres. Whitewater rafting and kayaking are both popular pursuits in this areas. Visitors can look forward to an array of exciting activities including: learning about local culture with a trip to a traditional Himba village, hiking, sundowner cruises, canoeing, kayaking, game viewing and excellent bird watching. 

Basis 

DBB – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:      Breakfast and dinner 

Day 6: Epupa Falls Lodge, Epupa Falls

Epupa Falls Lodge MPE W5F9698
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Day Itinerary

This morning we take a drive to a nearby Himba settlement returning to the lodge for lunch.   Mid to late afternoon we learn about the Epupa Falls Valley, search for crocodiles, wildlife and the Fish eagle on the Angolan side of the River whilst watching the sun set over this wonderful area.  

Activities 

Himba Village Visit 

The Himba, one of the last tribes in Namibia still attempting to preserve and live their customs and traditions.  The challenge of how to let a bronze age culture survive in our modern world without people living in museums is not a simple task.  This proud nation, especially the regal women may just be up tp this task.  Their appearance is not accidental, each aspect either having practical reasons or represent age or status. 

The daily life explained on your visit is fascinating, each facet reflected in their striking appearance.  But beware, your visit may not be a one-sided affair, you too could be asked questions, your answers and their reactions will give you a greater understanding of who the Himba are.

Basis 

DBB – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:  Breakfast and dinner 

Day 7: Palmwag Lodge Gondwana Collection Namibia, Palmwag

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Palmwag is a nature reserve idyllically located along a palm-lined tributary of the Uniab River. Water is scarce in this area, so the river’s presence often lures elephants closer to the camps. Palmwag is situated halfway between Swakopmund and Etosha, and is the ideal base from which to see the sights of the Kunene region or embark on one of the many local hiking trails. The reserve is notable for its unusual species of palm tree, the hyphaena pertesiana, and for being home to the largest population of south-western black rhinos in Africa. Animal lovers can also get a peek at leopard, lion, cheetah, mountain zebra, Angolan giraffe, springbok, kudu, and African bush elephant. 

Overnight: Palmwag Lodge Gondwana Collection Namibia 

A call from the far western wilderness beckons you to the home of the desert adapt world. With the largest predator population outside of Etosha National Park, this destination will not disappoint. With rooms and safari tents on offer, your stay will be most memorable. 

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Epupa Falls - Palmwag Lodge

  • Distance:

    412 km

  • Journey:

    we return to the town of Opuwo before heading due south to the settlement of Sesfontein, our lodge is situated south of here.  

Activities 

Sesfontein 

Sesfontein, meaning ‘six fountains’, is home to six natural springs creating a lush oasis rising up from a barren landscape. Set in the Hoanib Valley and surrounded by mountains, Sesfontein is a harshly beautiful town dotted with acacia and mopane trees interspersed with spiky-leafed fan palms. The town serves as a good base from which to launch an exploration of the surrounding Kaokoveld. An old fort, constructed at the end of the 19th century, has been refurbished and converted into a comfortable lodge rich with atmosphere, and makes a great base to explore the southern reaches of the KaokoveldDon’t miss a trip to a local Himba village to learn about local customs and traditions and observe how these communities live in peaceful coexistence with wildlife and the natural surrounds. 

Basis 

DBB – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:      Breakfast and dinner 

Day 8: Palmwag Lodge Gondwana Collection Namibia, Palmwag

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palmwag Lodge dsc 8621

Day Itinerary

After lunch we depart on a approximate 4-hour long drive into the Palmwag Concession area. Explore the amazing wildlife including rhino, desert elephants and the largest predator population outside the Etosha National Park. Refreshments and light snacks are included. 

Activities 

Palmwag Rhino Tracking 

Palmwag Lodge, in a joint venture with the Torra Conservancy, Anabeb Conservancy, and Sesfontein Conservancy offers rhino tracking in the Palmwag Concession and in the Torra Conservancy. The communities and conservancies directly benefit from these excursions since part of the income generated through rhino tracking is paid to the conservancies. 

Rhino tracking excursions are guided by a qualified guide from Palmwag Lodge and a qualified tracker from the Rhino Rangers or Save the Rhino Trust.  Full-day and half-day tracking excursions are available and both options include breakfast. Lunch is included in the full-day tracking package. 

Basis 

DBB – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:  Breakfast and dinner 

Day 9: Terrace Bay, Skeleton Coast

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skeletonskeleton Coast 1

Stretching from the Swakop River to southern Angola, the Skeleton Coast is known as the ‘Land God Made in Anger’ and is remoteness at its best. Thousands of miles of sandy desert dotted with shipwrecks meet with the cold waters of the Atlantic and somehow an amazing array of wildlife and flora manages to survive in this harsh but beautiful environment. Ocean fog creeps over the shoreline caused by the warm dry air of the Namib Desert colliding with the cold Benguela current. This otherworldly area is home to a diversity of wildlife including seabird colonies, Cape fur seals, zebra, gemsbok, desert-adapted elephant, lion and much more. Surfing enthusiasts are drawn to these powerful waves and photographers flock from around the globe to snap a shot of this eerie shipwreck graveyard and for the unrivalled maritime photographic opportunities. This coast is desolate but breathtakingly beautiful. 

Overnight: Terrace Bay   

Surrounded by undulating sand dunes in the northern Namib Desert, Terrace Bay is a desolate stretch of desert that rests along the Atlantic coastline, in the world-famous Skeleton Coast. Renowned as a popular famous fishing hotspot, eager anglers can enjoy shore-based surf angling in a quiet retreat on the beautiful beach before journeying to the nearby Skeleton Coast National Park. The park is the eerie graveyard of a number of ships that perished in the area due to the thick fog, unpredictable currents and stormy winds and tumultuous sea. Animals that thrive in this tumultuous landscape include elephants, rhinos, desert lions, brown hyenas, jackals, giraffes, seals, oryx, kudus and zebras. Other natural highlights include the ephemeral Omaruru River, the Ugab River, the Huab River, the Koigab River, and the Uniab River. 

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Palmwag Lodge - Terrace Bay

  • Distance:

    195 km

  • Journey:

    a leisurely departure from Palmwag  - we enter the Skeleton National Park via the Springbokwasser gate and travel to Torra Bay and Terrace Bay where we overnight.   We'll take some time to wander the beach area and opportunities for sunset over the Atlantic (weather permitting). 

Activities 

Skeleton Coast 

Stretching from the Swakop River to southern Angola, the Skeleton Coast is known as the ‘Land God Made in Anger’ and is remoteness at its best. Thousands of miles of sandy desert dotted with shipwrecks meet with the cold waters of the Atlantic and somehow an amazing array of wildlife and flora manages to survive in this harsh but beautiful environment. Ocean fog creeps over the shoreline caused by the warm dry air of the Namib Desert colliding with the cold Benguela current. This otherworldly area is home to a diversity of wildlife including seabird colonies, Cape fur seals, zebra, gemsbok, desert-adapted elephant, lion and much more. Surfing enthusiasts are drawn to these powerful waves and photographers flock from around the globe to snap a shot of this eerie shipwreck graveyard and for the unrivalled maritime photographic opportunities. This coast is desolate but breathtakingly beautiful. 

Basis 

Bed and Breakfast  

Included 

Meals:     Breakfast  

Day 10: Strand Hotel Swakopmund, Swakopmund

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Strand 1 hab4698 1

Set along Namibia’s spectacularly scenic coast, the seaside town of Swakopmund is known for its wide-open avenues, colonial architecture, and its surrounding otherworldly desert terrain. Founded in 1892 as the main harbour for German South West Africa, Swakopmund is often described as being more German than Germany. Now a seaside resort town, Swakopmund is the capital of the Skeleton Coast tourism area and has plenty to keep visitors happy. The quirky mix of German and Namibian influences, adventure options, laid-back atmosphere and cool sea breeze make it a very popular Namibian destination. Visitors can look forward to a number of exciting activities including: quad biking, horse riding, paragliding, fishing, sightseeing and fascinating desert tours. 

Overnight: Strand Hotel Swakopmund  

With its extensive, unique and creatively entertaining Restaurants, Bars, Deli, Lobby-Lounge, Sea Facing Terraces, Beach Kiosk and state of the art Conference & Banqueting Center, all set on the Mole, a historic and iconic site surrounded by Ocean on three sides, the Strand Hotel Swakopmund is a social epicenter and destination in itself for all visitors to and residents of Swakopmund. 

Its architectural inspiration finds its roots deep in Namibian-German history and reflects this in a tasteful contemporary manner. The interiors are residential in nature, and the brief to all designers involved was to create a non-hotel, hotel. One as charming and welcoming as the town it is located in. Simply very warm and comfortable, and as they say in German: “gemütlich” providing a genuine “sense-of-place” atmosphere adding to any Namibian visit. 

Arriving at the Strand is a dramatic experience as one passes through its 13m high and 9m wide Ocean View Atrium which travels right through the Hotel offering sea views at either end. Off this Atrium Lobby is Reception, consisting of three individual desks and an inviting open fireplace which rounds off the residential feel and warm welcome

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Okonjima Nature Reserve - Erindi Nature Reserve

  • Distance:

    160 km

  • Meals:

    Breakfast, lunch and dinner

  • Journey:

    After our visit to the AfriCat Centre we take a leisurely drive to Erindi Nature Reserve arriving in time to settle in and have lunch. 

Recommended

Cape Cross Seal Colony 

This colony of Cape Fur Seals is one of the largest in the world, home to approximately 80 000 to 100 000 of these so-called ‘seals’, which are in fact a species of sea lion. Day trips to the colony are offered and the seals can be viewed from a walkway at a distance of roughly 200 metres. 

Basis 

Bed, Breakfast  

Included 

Meals:       Breakfast 

Day 11: Sossus Dune Lodge, Sesriem

sesriem camps 2
Sesriem

As there is no accommodation at Sossusvlei, visitors to this desert wilderness are likely to end up staying at Sesriem, 65 kilometres away, where camps and lodges serve as a base from which to explore the dunes. Sesriem Canyon, a deep chasm carved through the rocks by water, is a striking natural feature of the area that is best explored on foot. Stony walls rise up sharply on both sides of the canyon, while birds roost in its crags and lizards dart along the ledges. The canyon’s name was coined when early settlers used it as a water source, using six lengths of leather (‘ses riem – six thongs) tied together to lower buckets into the water at the base of canyon.) 

Overnight: Sossus Dune Lodge   

Namibia Wildlife Resorts launched the first lodge in the Namib-Naukluft Park, the Sossus Dune Lodge, in June 2007. Built in an environmentally sensitive manner, primarily from wood, canvas and thatch, in an attractive ‘afro-village’ style, Sossus Dune Lodge offers guests an evocative and life changing experience. Situated within the park, guests benefit from being able to reach Sossusvlei before sunrise, and stay until after sunset, and on their return after an exhilarating day, relax in the tranquillity and splendor of the Namib Desert, under the spectacular African sky. Sossus Dune Lodge offers professional guided tours, fully unleashing the beauty and biological diversity of the desert environment to visitors, and offers the best beds in the desert. 

Recommended 

Elim Dune 

Just five kilometres from the camp at SesriemElim Dune is best viewed at sunset, when the colours deepen, intensifying the contrast between the red dunes and the purple-blue Naukluft Mountains on the opposite horizon. Elim Dune is roughly 100 metres in height and the climb to its zenith takes under an hour. 

Basis 

BB – Bed, Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:      Breakfast 

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Swakopmund to Namib Naukluft Park

  • Distance:

    345 km

  • Journey:

    we leave Swakopmund to the harbour town of Walvis Bay before heading south travelling across the gravel plains of the Namib Desert, endless horizons.  The surrounds of the Kuiseb and Gaub Canyon provide good geological phenomenon, in addition we may see the elusive Mountain Zebra.  After crossing the Tropic of Capricorn head on to the settlement of Solitaire.  Our aim is to arrive at our lodge mid to late afternoon.  Check  in and visit Elim dune – a great place for sundowners with the dunes behind us and the Naukluft Mountains in the distance.

Day 12: Sossus Dune Lodge, Sesriem

Sesriem Dune
Sesreim Canyon 002

Recommended  

Sossusvlei 

Located in the scenic Namib-Naukluft National Park, Sossusvlei is where you will find the iconic red sand dunes of the Namib. The clear blue skies contrast with the giant red dunes to make this one of the most scenic natural wonders of Africa and a photographer’s heaven. This awe-inspiring destination is possibly Namibia’s premier attraction, with its unique dunes rising to almost 400 metres-some of the highest in the world. These iconic dunes come alive in morning and evening light and draw photography enthusiasts from around the globe. Sossusvlei is home to a variety desert wildlife including oryx, springbok, ostrich and a variety of reptiles. Visitors can climb ‘Big Daddy’, one of Sossusvlei’s tallest dunes; explore Deadvlei, a white, salt, claypan dotted with ancient trees; or for the more extravagant, scenic flights and hot air ballooning are on offer, followed by a once-in-a-lifetime champagne breakfast amidst these majestic dunes. 

Dead Vlei 

This ancient clay pan was once an oasis, studded with acacias and fed by a river that suddenly changed course, leaving the earth to dry up along with the trees it previously supported. So dry were the climatic conditions that the trees never decomposed – instead they were entirely leached of moisture so that today, 900 years later, they remain as desiccated, blackened sentinels dotting the pan’s cracked surface. Surrounded by the red-pink dunes of the Namibia Desert, they create a surreal spectacle that is a photographer’s dream. 

Sesriem Canyon 

Sesriem Canyon, a deep chasm carved through the rocks by water, is a striking natural feature of the area that is best explored on foot. Stony walls rise up sharply on both sides of the canyon, while birds roost in its crags and lizards dart along the ledges. The canyon’s name was coined when early settlers used it as a water source, using six lengths of leather (‘ses riem – six thongs) tied together to lower buckets into the water at the base of canyon. 

Basis 

BB – Bed, Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:      Breakfast 

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Sesriem – Sossusvlei - Sesriem

  • Journey:

     We’ll need to be on the move an hour before dawn as we make our way through a dry riverbed and across the gravel plains towards the Namib Dunes.  We’ll stop at Dune 45 before making our way to Sossusvlei with age old sands said to be around five million years old.  Dead Vlei with its white pan and contrasting black scorched trees is also on our visit list.  Whilst this region appears to be lifeless there are a variety of animal species that have adapted to these conditions and if we’re lucky may see Oryx antelope, ostrich, springbok and don’t forget about the birdlife and reptiles that inhabit the area.  Return to our campsite for lunch, late afternoon visit to the Sesriem Canyon where the ephemeral Tsauchab River has shaped the area over millions of years.

Day 13: Bagatelle Kalahari Game Ranch, Mariental

Bagatelle Kalahari ResDest Namibia Outdoor3
Bagatelle.new 9

Situated in south central Namibia, fringing the Kalahari Desert, the city of Mariental lies along the TransNamib railway and serves as the Hardap Region’s commercial and administrative capital. It provides an important petrol stop before heading west to Sesriem to view the red-orange dunes of SossusvleiMariental is located close to magnificent the Hardap Dam, which is the largest reservoir in Namibia. The Hardap Irrigation Scheme has breathed life into this arid terrain, which is now fertile with farmlands covered in citrus, melons, lucerne, wine and maize, and dotted with ostrich farms. The dam is a popular holiday resort which draws city slickers from Windhoek and offers an array of watersports, scenic walks, and abundant wildlife in a 20000-hectare nature reserve set on its western bank; where visitors can spot rhino, ostrich, antelope, springbok and a variety of bird species. 

Overnight: Bagatelle Kalahari Game Ranch  

The lodge lies on the edge of the Southern Kalahari in the mixed tree and shrub Savannah. 

The ranch is characterized by huge red sands dunes running parallel, and in a northern-westerly to south-easterly direction. This ‘Spirit of Africa’ atmosphere, coupled with service, delivered with graciousness and charm, in an unashamedly luxurious setting, will be the hallmarks of this establishment, providing excellent value and unforgettable memories for the discerning traveller. 

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Namib Naukluft Park - Bagatelle Game Reserve

  • Distance:

    320 km

  • Journey:

    After breakfast our travels take us through the town of Maltahohe to Mariental and our final night stay - Bagatelle Game Ranch.  

Activities 

Mariental 

Situated in south central Namibia, fringing the Kalahari Desert, the city of Mariental lies along the TransNamib railway and serves as the Hardap Region’s commercial and administrative capital. It provides an important petrol stop before heading west to Sesriem to view the red-orange dunes of SossusvleiMariental is located close to magnificent the Hardap Dam, which is the largest reservoir in Namibia. The Hardap Irrigation Scheme has breathed life into this arid terrain, which is now fertile with farmlands covered in citrus, melons, lucerne, wine and maize, and dotted with ostrich farms. The dam is a popular holiday resort which draws city slickers from Windhoek and offers an array of watersports, scenic walks, and abundant wildlife in a 20000-hectare nature reserve set on its western bank; where visitors can spot rhino, ostrich, antelope, springbok and a variety of bird species. 

Bagatelle Kalahari Game Ranch Afternoon Drive 

The Bagatelle Kalahari Game Ranch, situated in Mariental, Namibia, offers guests an afternoon game drive. The activity includes a game drive in the reserve, viewing a variety of game such as giraffe, kudu, zebra, oryx, blue wildebeest and eland. Guests are able to experience breathtaking views of the reserve that has some of the highest dunes in the region, with views over the pan.  

The Kalahari has more than 150 bird species for guests who are bird enthusiasts. The well-known suricate, more commonly known as a meerkat can also to be seen. As the day draws to a close, guests are treated to a sundowner on the dune, complemented by refreshments and a Namibian snack, while enjoying a breathtaking sunset over the Kalahari. 

Basis 

DBB – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast  

Included 

Meals:          Breakfast and dinner 

Day 14: Final leg of your itinerary

Mokuti Etosha Lodge Elephants near Etosha Pan
Hobatere Lodge 2020 banner hbl lions 2april16 3

Basis 

Bed and Breakfast 

Included 

Meals:      Breakfast  

Day Itinerary

  • Route:

    Bagatelle Game Reserve - Windhoek Hosea Kutako International Airport

  • Distance:

    260 km

  • Journey:

    Your outbound flight times will dictate as to whether a morning activity may be done.