10-day Namibia Highlights Safari

Namibia Highlights Safari
Namibia Highlights Safari

You could spend a lifetime exploring Namibia. Here we've assembled the highlights in a ten-day journey of fascinating discovery that includes the Kalahari, the Namib, the Skeleton Coast, Damaraland and Etosha National Park.

Price:
From US$1893 pp (Our pricing)
Duration:
10 days
Highlights:
Namibia, Damaraland, Etosha National Park, Kalahari, Sossusvlei, Swakopmund, Windhoek
Includes:
9 nights accommodation; meals and drinks as indicated in the itinerary; 10 days car hire (4x4 Double Cabin); vehicle drop off/delivery fee; vehicle insurance; safari and sight-seeing activities as indicated in the itinerary

Tour Brief

The Kalahari is the largest sand basin in the world. Almost devoid of rock, it covers an area of 900,000sq km. Contrary to popular belief it is not a desert but a semi-arid savannah biome. Oxide-red dunes and grassy plains dotted with gnarled, stunted acacia trees form an evocative landscape that supports a surprising diversity of wildlife.

The Namib Desert covers the entire Namibian coastline of over 1,500km and sweeps up to 200km inland. At a shade over 20 million years, it is the planet's oldest desert and has an astonishing diversity of landscapes and habitats.

Etosha National Park is unique. Its waterhole culture forces the plains game to drink during the middle of the day when predators are most lethargic; thus it's not uncommon to have a collage of several different species in the same frame. Lions, elephants and several endemic species of antelope and birds - including 46 raptors - add to the game viewing excitment.

Detailed Itinerary

  • Day 1 and 2: Sossusvlei

    Travel south to the Namib Desert for the next two nights. The drive takes about four hours.

    On the way: The drive reveals the transition from Kalahari thornveld to the true desert of the Namib; Lilyveld, a valley 30km north of Maltahöhe, springs into bloom for about a week after good rains; Duiwiseb Castle is an interesting diversion 70km south-west of Maltahöhe.

    When you're there: Enter Sossusvlei at sunrise and remember to take plenty of film or memory, sun cream, a hat, walking shoes and water. Explore the world's highest dunes and a sheltered pan with petrified trees that are hundreds of years old; climb the dunes and look out over a sea of sand. Private reserves in the area reveal fascinating flora, fauna and ancient desert landscapes.

    Accommodation:
    Standard: The Desert Homestead and Horse Trails
    Luxury: Kulala Desert Lodge

  • Day 3 and 4: Swakopmund

    A five-hour drive north takes you through the gradual change from mountains and dunes to rolling grass-covered hills with scattered acacia trees. Swakopmund is a quaint resort town by the sea with an obvious German heritage at odds with its bleak surrounds.

    On the way: Look out for the endemic Hartmann's mountain zebra as you leave; stop at Solitaire, about 80km from Sesriem for some home-made bread and an ice cold drink; Kuiseb Canyon has some shady picnic spots; you can see springbok and pure-bred wild ostrich across the vast gravel plains of the Namib; the lunar landscape; look out for the welwitschia plant.

    When you're there: Visit the Walvis Bay Lagoon - a RAMSAR wetlands site - where thousands of flamingoes, pelicans and numerous waders feed in the nutrient-rich shallows; restaurants, shops and attractions in Swakopmund; spend an extra day making the most of the cool air and refreshing sea.

    Among the many organised activities, we recommend a scenic flight over Skeleton Coast; a comfortable and informative boat cruise of Walvis Bay where you meet dolphins, sea lions, pelicans and terns; and quad biking, which is an exciting way to experience the sand dunes.

    Accommodation:
    Standard: Sandfields Guesthouse
    Luxury: Zum Kaiser Hotel

  • Day 5 and 6: Damaraland

    Destination Damaraland where enormous granite outcrops and dolerite dykes have been carved by ice, wind and rain over aeons. Grassy plains, tree-studded riverbeds and endless open skies add to the grandeur and make this area one of the most scenic in Namibia. The drive to Damaraland takes up to five hours because there is much to see and do along the way.

    On the way: Drive along the Skeleton Coast to Cape Cross - the largest breeding cape fur seal colony in the world. The stench of 100,000 seals can be a tad over-powering: take a handkerchief to cover your nose; lunch at Cape Cross Lodge or picnic at some suitably serene and other-worldly spot; stop at the lichen fields and a salt pan that is an excellent birding spot; visit the Twfylefontein rock paintings, the Petrified Forest and the Organ Pipes.

    When you're there: Game drives on private reserves in search of the famed desert-adapted elephant, black rhino and giraffe; among other hardy plains herds look out for Hartmann's mountain zebra; spend more time exploring the Twfylefontein rock paintings, the Petrified Forest, Vingerklip and the Organ Pipes; hike up the Brandberg Mountain, Namibia's highest point at 2,573m.

    Accommodation:
    Standard: Damara Mopane Lodge
    Luxury: Mowani Mountain Camp

  • Day 7: Etosha National Park (South)

    The drive to Etosha National Park is a scenic few hours through more of Damaraland's singular beauty. The southern gate is much closer to southern Damaraland and will take about three hours.

    On the way: The route is almost too short to stop, barring a comfort stop at Outjo and a picture of the Ugab Terrace.

    When you're there: Etosha has an estimated 250 lions, 300 rhinos, 2,500 giraffes, 6,000 zebras, 20,000 springbok and 2,000 elephants. This on top of a large number of lesser and common plains herds, and abundant birds makes game viewing in Etosha something special. The surrounding lodges all have private reserves with equally impressive wildlife numbers and they offer private game viewing activities into the park.

    Accommodation:
    Standard: Etosha Village
    Luxury: Ongava Lodge

  • Day 8 and 9: Etosha National Park (East)

    The drive through Etosha National Park to your next lodge on the eastern side of Etosha is a scenic few hours of game driving. The drive can take anything from 2 hours depending on how often you stop for game viewing.

    When you're there: Your lodge will offer guided game drives into Etosha and game walks in the private reserve.

    Accommodation:
    Standard: Mushara Bush Camp
    Luxury: Mushara Outpost

  • Day 10: Windhoek

    You have a long drive ahead of you today: up to six hours. The roads are all paved so it's a comfortable ride to arrive in time for your onward flight or a night in Windhoek.

    On the way: Okahandja has the largest wood carvers' market in Namibia

  • Self Drive Distance Chart and Travelling Times

Recent Reviews of This Tour

“All went well for me”

I just arrive back in Philadelphia and I would like to provide some feedback on the tour. Overall, there was no problems and all went well for me. I enjoyed my driver/guide (Alfi). He was knowledgeable, a good safe driver, and made a nice appearance. He had good manners and bearing.

The activity schedule for the 11 day tour was well balanced and not over taxing. The selection of lodges were fine. Your selection of the Heinitzburg Hotel and the Kalahari Sands for my lodging prior to and after the tour were good. Both hotels had a fine standard for a category four hotel and favorable pricing. There was no problem with the billing. All was pre paid by your company.

I would recommend your tour company to others.

Paul Woerner, USA Namibia Highlights Safari

“Thank you again for planning a perfect vacation for us”

Dear Wilmari,
Back home and I wanted to take a moment to thank you again for planning a perfect vacation for us. I was especially pleased that for the accommodation with dinner all knew about my allergies and cooked accordingly. The Cheetah experience made my daughter very happy and they were so kind to not even charge me for taking pictures.

Highlight of our trip was the stay in Onguma The Fort and we are determined to return one day.

As pointed out before, the Namib Desert Lodge I cannot recommend to anybody (fined for driving on their property and below average dinner buffet) and also the Olivia Guesthouse was a letdown when it came to the food (lunch and breakfast).

I have posted some pictures on Flickr, maybe you want to have a look and I'm always happy to read comments.

Last but not least: Could you please send us the itinerary you prepared for us and we received at arrival electronically? Some of my friends are interested to book the same trip with you.

Dr Andreas Koester, USA Namibia Highlights Safari

“Many thanks your organisation was perfect”

Edward, Now that I am back in England, I am just emailing to say a big thank you for organising our holiday. All went very well, there were no problems at all and we loved Namibia and will return again with 4 people in the party next time. So, many thanks your organisation was perfect.

Neil Turton, UK Namibia Highlights Safari

“We have done this tour twice!”

That should be comment enough!

Mr Vogel, Germany Namibia Highlights Safari

“A truly enjoyable trip”

I would like to thank you and your staff for helping make this a truly enjoyable trip. The ease of travel and convenience of pre-booked accommodation meant our first visit to Namibia was incredibly stress free and relaxing, we will definitely be back again. The choice of accommodation venues was perfect for our needs and the staff were always pleasant, welcoming and incredibly helpful and the facilities were always good. Thank you once again for a memorable holiday.

Danielle O'Hara, UK Namibia Highlights Safari

“A truly wonderful trip”

Back at home again after a truly wonderful trip to Namibia. Estelle told us upon arrival in Windhoek that we would love Namibia, and we sure did. The weather, the car, the food, the accommodation, the service, the scenery, the animals, everything was just perfect.

I think I mentioned that the trip to Namibia was to be a once-in a lifetime journey, but have to say the experience was so good that we might do this again, as we still have the Caprivi area to explore and maybe Victoria Falls and the Chobe National Park in Botswana. I'd like to thank you once again for planning this great journey for us, and don't be surprised if I'll get in touch with you again in a few years time.

Oili Metsanheimo and family, Finland Namibia Highlights Safari

“Excellent customer service”

Thank you very much for making sure that everything was arranged so well, from the minute we were picked up at Windhoek airport, till we were dropped off again. Thanks the pleasant contact and excellent customer service we have received from you.

Sylvia Zande, UK Namibia Highlights Safari

“We really enjoyed it.”

Very good and interesting trip. Very nice guide, seen a lot of beautiful things. We really enjoyed it.

Caspar and Patrick Juch, The Netherlands Namibia Highlights Safari
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