This expertly-guided small group trip consisting of a maximum of seven guests takes in the highlights of Namibia. Over the course of this ten day trip you will get to visit the iconic towering dunes at Sossusvlei, the coast and wildlife at Swakopmund and Walvis Bay, the desert-adapted wildlife and unique rock formations of Damaraland, rewarding wildlife viewing in Etosha National Park and an educational tour of the AfriCat Foundation at Okonjima.
Drive southwest through the scenic Khomas Hochland highlands before heading down the Great Escarpment into the Namib Desert below, stopping for a picnic lunch at a scenic location along the way. You will set off before sunrise this morning to see the dunes in the best light. It is hard not to be amazed by the sand dunes, which are amongst some of the highest free-standing ones in the world. Your guide will explain the formation of the Namib Desert (the oldest in the world) and accompany you to Sossusvlei and Dead Vlei.
Travel northwest through awesome and ever-changing desert landscapes of the Namib Naukluft National Park, including the impressive Gaub and Kuiseb canyons. You will meet the coast at the port town of Walvis Bay and then continue north to Swakopmund where you can enjoy the pleasant seaside location and cooler coastal air for your next two nights. There will be time this afternoon to explore the town and wander along the waterfront on foot, before heading off for dinner at a popular restaurant that specialises in locally harvested seafood. In Swakopmund, enjoy one of the plethora of activities on offer including sandboarding, quad biking and scenic flights. You will meet your specialist kayaking guide before continuing to Pelican Point with its impressive lighthouse. During your time out on the water you will be able to see Cape fur seals, Heaviside and bottlenose dolphins, pelicans, flamingos and a number of other sea bird species. Depending on season you may be lucky enough to spot leatherback turtles or whales too.
You pass Namibia’s highest mountain, the Brandberg which peaks at 2,573 m above sea level, and take time to view game and absorb the vastness of the scenery along the way. Damaraland is typified by displays of colour, magnificent table-topped mountains, rock formations and bizarre-looking vegetation. The present-day landscape has been formed by the erosion of wind, water and geological forces which have formed rolling hills, dunes, gravel plains and ancient river terraces. It is the variety and loneliness of the area as well as the scenic splendour which will reward and astound you, giving one an authentic understanding of the word 'wilderness'.
An exciting 4x4 excursion along the ephemeral Aba Huab and Huab River valleys to explore this remarkable region and to search for game, including the elusive desert adapted elephants if they are in the area. Damaraland is home to a variety of desert adapted wildlife and hidden desert treasures. As the elephants are mostly active in the mornings you will normally have the best chance to see them then before returning to camp for lunch. However, if all the safari participants agree, you also have the option to take a picnic lunch and stop to enjoy that in the shade of a large Ana tree by the riverbed, ideally while watching a herd of elephant browsing nearby.
Game drives in the Ongava Game Reserve; effectively a private game reserve, spanning 30,000 hectares along the south-west border of Etosha National Park. The reserve is home to a wide variety of game including lion, leopard, giraffe, rhino, Hartmann’s mountain zebra, gemsbok (oryx), kudu, steenbok and much more. The scenery is attractive with large open plains blending into Mopane tree woodlands and dolomite outcrops.
Guided game drive into the Etosha National Park. Etosha National Park covers 22,270 km², of which approximately 5,000 km² is made up of saline depressions or ‘pans’. The largest of these pans, the Etosha Pan, can be classified as a saline desert in its own right. The Park consists of grassland, woodland and savannah. Game-viewing centres around the numerous springs and waterholes where several different species can often be seen at one time. The Park boasts some 114 mammal and over 340 bird species. Wildlife that one might see includes elephant, lion, giraffe, blue wildebeest, eland, kudu, gemsbok (oryx), zebra, rhino, cheetah, leopard, hyena, honey badger and warthog, as well as the endemic black-faced impala.
Ongava Tented Camp
Within the 30,000 hectare, privately owned, Ongava Reserve, Ongava Tented Camp is located on the southern boundary of Etosha National Park. This small and unfenced camp is nestled into mopane woodland, overlooking a waterhole which attracts a plethora of wildlife.
Situated on the small private reserve on the southern border of the Etosha National Park. The lodge offers luxury accommodation in 14 ensuite stone and thatch bungalows each with a balcony overlooking the Namibian bush below. The main communal area consists of a restaurant which is under thatch, a split level lounge, dining area and a swimming pool.
Very helpful and kept us informed all the way. Wilson, our Ultimate Safari guide was outstanding. All the accommodation was excellent. No complaints at all. Was sorry to come home
Advice given was invaluable at the planning stage and I felt we were in trusted hands. Every detail was taken care of in every aspect of the trip. Everyone involved was welcoming, friendly and highly professional. We felt very secure in their hands and had great confidence in their organisation. I’d like to single out Wilson our travel guide. His knowledge, skills, meticulous planning, empathy for the animals and their habit led us through the most amazing experience and ensured we had a high quality trip with maximum sightings. Blended in with this he was accommodating to our wishes and above all he was friendly, fun although professional at all times. We were in excellent hands.
It was great to know Phoenix was there to handle any queries and I really appreciated her phone-call, immediately pre-trip, to deal with any last minute worries. This was a wonderful experience! Right from the beginning we felt in safe, well-informed hands. Our guide, Wilson, was extremely knowledgeable and enabled us to get to know so many aspects of Namibia, its wildlife, culture and politics.