Desert Horse Inn prides itself on a rich history, the surrounding nature and the local people. At the centre of it all, sustainability. Klein-Aus consists of commercial farms converted into a nature reserve. The 1,700 solar panels provide up to half the electricity used and they have reduced the use of non-recyclable materials all round. Way to go.
This is a place to come enjoy the more rustic side of things while relaxing with your feet up for a sunset or down in the dust for a hike.
The chalets are spread out for privacy, necessary in a place as quiet and still as this. Each of the chalets comes with an en-suite bathroom, a fridge, air-conditioning, mosquito nets and WiFi. Kick your feet up on the veranda, while the kids explore the open plains.
The rooms are simple and rustic, decorated with materials from the area and although basic, you can still enjoy the luxuries of a hot water bottle and blankets for cold nights.
With sustainability as their core philosophy, your shower will be solar heated, so chances are you might need to save your showers for the evening (luckily there is never a shortage of sun during the day). And since it is hot, there is a pool for you to dip into if you want to cool down. The kids will love this too.
While the Inn doesn’t have room service, you can enjoy a breakfast buffet to start your day at the restaurant and after a long day of exploring the plains (or 'working very hard', lounging by the pool) you could wrap it up with a three-course dinner, followed by a nightcap at the Wild Horse bar around the fireplace before you tuck yourself into bed.
This is a great spot to stay over between Sossusvlei and the Fish River Canyon, but if you can stay for longer, the day trips will make for a memorable and historic adventure. Include some time to visit Luderitz and Kolmanskop Ghost Town.
Overall, as you have probably gathered, this is a place to go to if you want to appreciate the landscape, history and desert adapted horses, rather than the in-house luxuries. It is a place that will give you great stories to tell, a comfortable stay and freedom to roam.
Don some comfortable shoes, make sure to go on one of the many trails, you can take it easy or set yourself a challenge. Trails cater to newcomers and the pros. You can enjoy both a guided tour or go on your own mission around the Aus area or the neighbouring farm, Farm Kubub. If you want to speed things up a bit, you can rent a mountain bike, there are routes for all levels of experience. Remember to ask for your area permit.
Some adventures will take you a bit further afield so plan for a day out and about. You can go on a half-day or full-day guided desert tour to explore the Gondwana Sperrgebiet Rand Park, there is even a sundowner option for this one (if you want to fill up your glass and do a ‘sit and relax’ kind of adventure). The full-day tours can even take you to Lüderitz and Kolmanskop, the old mining ghost town, which is about 125km out. The guided tours are done in both English and German, so take your pick.
The true gem, however, are the wild horses. People come from all over to have a glance at the beautiful desert adapted horses that have been roaming around since 1915. You can find them on your walks and guided tours, especially on your way back from Lüderitz at the Garub waterhole.
It’s important to note when you arrive so that you don’t miss any activities you might have set your heart on. Most of the activities only take place once a day or in the early hours. Ghosts and horses are apparently early birds.