FASCINATING NAMIBIA

12 Night / 13 Day Guided Lodge Safari

safari-Button

Namibia is certainly one of the most fascinating countries in Southern Africa. When on safari through its unique landscapes, you experience the vastness and solitude of Namibia. In addition to the picturesque Kalahari, Namib Desert, Swakopmund and Etosha National Park, Namibia offers great hospitality, very good value for money and excellent cuisine. It is an interesting and varied travel destination combining the country’s German colonial history with wildlife, spectacular landscapes and friendly people. A guided safari is certainly the perfect alternative to a self-drive tour in Namibia.

Highlights

Day 1-6 | Namibia

  • Windhoek: City tour
  • Kalahari: Red dunes
  • Namib Desert: Dunes of Sossusvlei, Dead Vlei, Sesriem Canyon
  • Swakopmund: Trip to seal colony, German architecture, adventure activities (optional)

Day 7-13 | Namibia

  • Erongo Mountains: Rock art at Spitzkoppe, unique geology, farm drive
  • Damaraland: Twyfelfontein World Heritage Site, Petrified Forest, Grootberg Pass, desert elephant tracking
  • Etosha National Park: Game drives, night game drive (optional)
  • Waterberg Plateau: Hiking, rhino drive (optional)
  • Okahandja: Curio market

Facts

Lodge Safari: Fascinating Namibia
Tourcode: ET13NAMLOD
From: Windhoek
To: Windhoek
Min number to guarantee tour: 2
Max number of participants:
6 per vehicle (window seat guaranteed)
Departure day: every Sunday
Price: from 38,250 NAD
Single Supplement: 5,450 NAD

Itinerary

Day 1 | Windhoek, Namibia

Distance approx. 50 km; driving time approx. 1 h

Upon your arrival at Windhoek International Airport, you will be picked up by a driver and taken to the Casa Piccolo. After check-in you will have some time to freshen up before meeting your guide and leaving on a short city tour through Windhoek. There is plenty to see and explore such as the Christ Church, Tintenpalast (House of Parliament) and Alte Feste (Old Fort). In the evening, you will go for dinner at Joe’s Beerhouse (optional) before returning to the Casa Piccolo where you will spend the night.

Day 2 | Windhoek, Namibia – Kalahari, Namibia

Distance approx. 300 km; driving time approx. 4-5 h

After a quick safari briefing and after your luggage has been stored safely in the vehicle, you will leave Windhoek and travel southwards via Rehoboth in the direction of Mariental. The destination for the day is Bagatelle Kalahari Game Ranch, a farm situated in the imposing red sand dunes of the southern Kalahari. Enjoy the peace of the desert, relax and take in the endless views of the dunes. The next morning, we encourage you to join a ‘Bush Walk’ where you will learn more about the flora and fauna found in the area (optional and not included in the tour price).

Breakfast | Dinner

Day 3 | Kalahari, Namibia – Namib Desert, Namibia

Distance approx. 450 km; driving time approx. 5-6 h

After a leisurely breakfast you head in the direction of Sesriem via Mariental and Maltahöhe. Sesriem is the gateway to see the shifting sand dunes of the Namib Desert at Sossusvlei. In the afternoon you will have time to relax at the Elegant Desert Lodge or to explore the property on foot. There are the options of booking a scenic drive or a quad bike trip. Dinner is a 3-course affair…

Breakfast | Dinner

Day 4 | Namib Desert, Namibia – Rostock Ritz, Namibia

Distance approx. 250 km; driving time approx. 3-4 h

At sunrise the gates of the Namib Naukluft Park open and you make your way into the Sossusvlei area. If you are early and fit enough you can even climb one of the dunes and enjoy the impressive view of the entire landscape. You will drive with the 4×4 vehicle to the Sossusvlei, which is a dry clay pan that only fills with water in years with a lot of rain. Thereafter you will continue to the Sesriem Canyon, formed by the Tsauchab River over millions of years. The destination of the day is Rostock Ritz Desert Lodge. Relax at the lodge, visit the resident meerkat colony or explore the walking trails of Rostock Ritz (optional).

Breakfast | Dinner

Day 5 | Rostock Ritz, Namibia – Swakopmund, Namibia

Distance approx. 250 km; driving time approx. 3 h

Today’s journey takes you to Swakopmund. This town is still home to many descendants of the late colonists and state officials of the German colonial era. Beautiful old German colonial buildings, cafés where you can enjoy not only the German hospitality, but also famous German cakes are found in the town centre. In the evening you will try one of the many restaurants Swakopmund has to offer (own expense) – do not miss the seafood! You will stay for two nights at Swakopmund Guesthouse, just five minutes’ walk from the Atlantic Ocean.

Breakfast

Day 6 | Swakopmund, Namibia – Cape Cross, Namibia

Distance approx. 250 km; driving time approx. 3 h

After breakfast you have the morning free. Take a stroll through town, book a quad bike tour, a catamaran trip or a desert safari to follow the footsteps of the “Little Five” (all optional). In the afternoon you meet up with your guide and drive to the seal colony at Cape Cross. After a visit to the Diaz Cross you will drive back to Swakopmund where you will enjoy dinner at one of the restaurants (own expense).

Breakfast

Day 7 | Swakopmund, Namibia – Erongo Mountains, Namibia

Distance approx. 250 km; driving time approx. 3 h

Today you leave the Atlantic seaboard and travel inland. You will visit the 700 million years old Spitzkoppe; its granite dome-like peaks (1,730 metres) can be seen from a distance. From here you continue to the Erongo Mountains. Your destination is Onduruquea Guestfarm. Join your hosts on a game drive and get an insight into the everyday Namibian farm live. You will also learn more about Namibia’s fauna and ecosystem. Enjoy a delicious dinner and spend the night at the guestfarm.

Breakfast | Dinner

Day 8 | Erongo Mountains, Namibia – Grootberg Pass, Namibia

Distance approx. 500 km; driving time approx. 6-7 h

A long day is ahead of you, so getting an early start is needed. You travel past the Brandberg Mountain, Namibia’s highest mountain with a height of 2580 metres, to the Petrified Forest. Here you will stop to explore the 260 million year old fossilized tree trunks. Afterwards you visit the famous rock engravings and paintings of Twyfelfontein. You continue your journey to the Grootberg Lodge which is situated at the top of a plateau and offers spectacular views over the Klip River Valley. Dinner and overnight at Grootberg Lodge.

Breakfast | Dinner

Day 9 | Grootberg, Namibia – Elephant Tracking

Distance depending on choice of route

After an early morning breakfast you will leave the lodge with a guide and tracker in search of the rare desert elephants, which are known to be slightly smaller in comparison to the elephants found in Etosha. During the hike you will enjoy the unique landscape of Damaraland and learn more about the local people and their living conditions. With a bit of luck, you might see desert-adapted elephant and even black rhinos. In the afternoon you will return to Grootberg Lodge where you will have dinner and spend another night.

Breakfast | Dinner

Day 10 | Grootberg, Namibia – Etosha National Park, Namibia

Distance approx. 350 km; driving time approx. 4-5 h (excl. game drives)

Today’s journey takes you to the Etosha National Park, which was founded in 1907 and is one of the most famous national parks in Southern Africa. You will spend most of your time game viewing around the waterholes where elephants, rhinos, giraffes and different species of antelope come to drink. With a bit of luck you might even be able to spot lions and leopards. To experience nocturnal animals, join a night game drive with a park ranger (optional) or wait for animals that come to drink at the camp’s floodlit waterhole. Dinner will be for your account at the camp’s restaurant. You will overnight in a chalet at Okaukuejo Camp.

Breakfast

Day 11 | Etosha National Park, Namiba – Mushara Bush Camp, Namibia

Distance depending on choice of route

After sunrise and a hearty breakfast you get ready for more game viewing. You drive along the vast salt pan that covers almost a quarter of the entire park and is Etosha’s most distinctive and dramatic feature. You will be able to spot herds of impalas, gnus, oryx and zebras that traverse the Etosha National Park. In the evening you exit the park at the Van Lindequist Gate and make your way to the Mushara Bush Camp where you will overnight in a permanent luxury tent with en-suite bathroom.

Breakfast | Dinner

Day 12 | Etosha National Park, Namibia – Waterberg, Namibia

Distance approx. 400 km; driving time approx. 5-6 h

After a leisurely breakfast you leave the camp and drive to Otjiwarongo. On your way you will pass the deep Lake Otjikoto, where German soldiers sank their weapons during the First World War. Close to Grootfontein you will see the Hoba meteorite, the largest known intact meteorite in the world. In the afternoon, you will arrive at the private nature reserve Waterberg Wilderness where you will spend the night at Waterberg Plateau Lodge. Take a walk along one of the well-marked trails and explore the surroundings, join a rhino drive (optional) or enjoy the breathtaking view over the endless bush savannah below.

Breakfast | Dinner

Day 13 | Waterberg, Namibia – Windhoek, Namibia

Distance approx. 300 km; driving time approx. 4 h

Today’s journey takes you back to the starting point of your tour, Windhoek. On the way there you can stop in Okahandja to buy some hand-carved souvenirs, baskets and jewellery at the big handcraft market. You will be dropped off at the airport or at a lodge of your choice in Windhoek.

Breakfast

Note | Our guided safaris depart with a minimum of two and a maximum of six guests. A window seat for each guest is guaranteed. In order to design your own tailor-made safari through Namibia, please contact the Namibia-Experience team.

Includes

  • Guided lodge safari as per the itinerary
  • Transport in a 4×4 safari vehicle
  • Professional English-speaking guide
  • 12 nights’ accommodation in guesthouses, chalets, bungalows and lodges as indicated in the itinerary (depending on availability, accommodation of a similar standard will be booked)
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary
  • All national park fees

Excludes

  • Flights (international & domestic)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
  • Beverages (alcohol and soft drinks)
  • Optional activities
  • Visa, tips, personal expenses, travel insurance

Gallery

Lodge Gallery

Elegant Guesthouse

Bagatelle

The Desert Homestead

Rostock Ritz Desert Lodge

Swakopmund Guesthouse

Erongo Wilderness Lodge

Grootberg Mountain Lodge

Okaukeujo Rest Camp

Mushara Bush Camp

Frequently Asked Questions

A lodge safari is a journey along a planned route, through the wide expanses of Namibia on tar and gravel roads. You will get to see impressive landscapes, experience game viewing and gain an insight into the different cultures. In order to experience Namibia in all its facets, long driving distances are inevitable. On a lodge safari, you will stay in guesthouses, lodges or in tented camps. All accommodations offer rooms with en-suite bathrooms as well as a comfortable atmosphere and personal service.

A guided lodge safari is suitable for individuals who first of all want to feel Africa and experience its splendid nature and wildlife while travelling in comfort and ease. The groups consist of a maximum of 6 people. Not only couples and friends, but also solo travellers join our guided lodge safaris. In Africa, the clocks run a little slower and obstacles can arise on the way. In order to fully enjoy exploring Africa and to craft an unforgettable journey, one should be open-minded, flexible and have a good sense of humour.

Your qualified and registered guide is also your driver. Our guides know the fauna, flora, people and roads of Namibia like the back of their hand and have many years of driving experience on gravel roads. Our guides have a passion for Namibia and love nothing more than sharing interesting facts and stories about the country.

Namibian food is a combination of African and European styles. The latter is often German cuisine  – pork dishes, potatoes, breads and pastries. Carnivores are well catered for with lots of game meat, beef and lamb. Seafood is also regularly on the menu. Biltong (cured, dried meat) and droëwors (spicy dried sausage) are typical Namibian snacks and go down well with Namibian-brewed beer – try Windhoek or Tafel.

All lodges serve a full breakfast (breads, eggs, meats and hot drinks), but most include a 3-course dinner as well. In some towns there is the option to have supper at a restaurant (own account) to try the local foods. Namibians love their meats and you will often be able to same local game meats and fresh breads. Some accommodation also have mini-bars (own account) and complimentary coffee/tray trays in the room.

When booking, please notify us of you are have any dietary requirements or allergies.

A normal day will start with breakfast at around 08:00 and end with supper at around 20:00. It might happen that you have an early morning activity planned, so breakfast might be slightly later or a packed breakfast will be provided. In general, departure times are quite flexible and can be arranged in consultation with the guide and the rest of the group. As your guide knows his or her way around and is familiar with the driving times and distances, he or she will decide what time to leave. You will either travel to your next destination or explore the surroundings of the lodge on game drives or excursions. You arrive in the afternoon at the overnight accommodation with some time to relax and freshen up before supper. After supper, you might want to chat and enjoy a night cap before you go to bed.

We use specially designed and customised Toyota Land Cruisers with large sliding windows and pop-up roofs for great game viewing and vistas. The passenger compartment comprises six individual and comfortable seats which provide great comfort while travelling. A window seat is guaranteed for each guest.

You will overnight in guesthouses, guest farms, lodges or permanent tented camps. While guesthouses, guest farms and lodges consist of permanent buildings, tented camps provide accommodation in large walk-in tents with en-suite bathrooms, including washbasin, shower and toilet. The standard is 3-star to 4-star. Most accommodations are nestled in beautiful scenery and offer spectacular views.

Travel Arrangements

Passport:

You need a passport, which must be valid for at least 6 months beyond your intended stay in Namibia and have at least three blank pages.

Visa:

Most nationalities travelling to Namibia for holiday purposes do not require a visa for up to 90 days.

Nevertheless, visa requirements are constantly changing in Africa – please contact Namibia’s embassy in your home country. Namibia-Experience cannot be held responsible if you are refused entry and cannot begin your trip. All costs incurred due to a delay in travelling are for the traveller’s account.

If you travel with children via South Africa to Namibia: From 1 June 2015, all passengers under 18 years old, arriving in and departing from South Africa, will be required by law to travel with an unabridged birth certificate.

Other:

You must have a valid return flight ticket or other onward travel documents which allow you to leave the country when your trip ends. Otherwise you must provide proof that you have sufficient funds (i.e. credit card) to purchase a return ticket.

Since you will be staying outside your home country, you are not covered by your personal health insurance. You will be treated as a private patient and must be adequately insured. Also, check whether your personal liability covers damage when travelling outside of your country.

Although the tour price includes most meals, entry fees to national parks and accommodation, you still need to plan for other expenses. Plan for optional activities (game drives, boat trips, cultural visits etc), tipping, souvenirs, extra meals and all drinks.

Tipping in Namibia is a reward for good service and is at the guest’s discretion. Normally you can add 10% to a restaurant bill. For lodge staff, there is generally a communal tip box. If you want to tip your Namibia-Experience guide, we recommend 150 – 220 N$ per group per day.

The currency in Namibia is the Namibian Dollar (N$) and is traded at 1:1 to the South African Rand. South African Rand can also be used as payment in Namibia.

You can draw cash at a local ATM with your credit card or Maestro card (PIN required). Transaction fees depend on your bank and the establishment which you are using it at.

In many lodges and big shops/shopping malls you can pay with credit card. At smaller shops and at most fuel stations you can only pay with cash. Furthermore, we recommend having cash for emergencies and small purchases such as curios and at markets. Also have cash for tipping as some accommodations will not add the tips onto your service bill.

Traveller’s cheques are not recommended. They are rarely accepted because of fraud, high fees and long waiting times at the exchange.

The travel destination and season will determine what to pack. Bear in mind that Namibia is in the southern hemisphere with opposite seasons to the USA and Europe. Namibia’s summer (with intermittent thunder showers) is from December to February and the dry winter months are from June to September.

Bring warm clothes if you travel between April to September, which you will need especially in the evening, at night and in the early morning. Even in summer include long trousers, closed shoes and a long sleeve shirt— these will help against mosquitoes, which are mainly found in the north of Namibia and in the Zambezi Region (Caprivi Strip). It is cooler in the interior than at the coast and much cooler at higher altitude.

Due to limited space in our safari vehicles, please restrict your luggage to no more than 15 kg and one small hand luggage. The best bags to bring with you on safari are definitely soft shell bags. NO SUITCASES PLEASE! Hard shell bags are often too big and bulky.

Here is a rough checklist:

  • Warm jacket, warm pullover
  • Light jacket or rain poncho
  • 2 sweatshirts or light pullovers or long sleeve shirts
  • 1 pair of trousers
  • 1 spare pair of trousers (comfortable and durable)
  • 2 pairs of shorts
  • 4-6 T-shirts
  • Sufficient underwear and socks
  • Swimming things, sun protection (sun screen, hat, sunglasses)
  • Sturdy walking shoes
  • Sandals

Very colourful textiles are not necessarily an advantage if you want to observe wild animals. Military style clothing is also not advisable, as it can be a problem for government officials.
For going out at night you should wear “normal” clothes – no beach sandals, flip-flops or swimming costumes. When visiting villages and markets please do not go topless (men) or barefoot. Women should cover shoulders and knees.

Important:

  • Valid passport (and visa if needed)
  • Cash, credit card – make sure your card can be used in Africa without any limitations
  • Toiletries
  • First aid kit for your individual demands including anti-diarrhoea and anti-malaria tablets

Useful:

  • Binoculars, camera, batteries (also spare batteries), data cards, battery charger, adapter plug
  • Torch or headlamp
  • Insect repellent
  • Water bottle
  • Guidebook, bird book, travel dictionary

It is recommended that you have your regular vaccinations updated – tetanus, diphtheria, hepatitis A and B and polio. Malaria is a concern in some areas and we therefore recommend that some precautionary measures are taken. For more detailed information on prophylaxes and the effects as well as possible side effects, please contact your doctor or travel clinic.

Namibian custom officials require proof of yellow fever vaccination if you are arriving from a country with risk of yellow fever.

Namibia’s climate can be extreme. In summer (November to February) it can be scorching in the interior and Namib Desert with temperatures of up to 50°C. This is also the rainy season and afternoon thunder showers can bring relief. In the northeast of the country, the summers are more humid.

In winter (from May to September) the central plateau can be very cold at night with pleasant day time temperatures. Bring warm clothes for night time and morning game drives.

On the road

No smoking is allowed in the safari vehicle or in rooms at the lodges. While on the road, there will be frequent stops for smoking and bathroom breaks.

For most people it goes without saying that one has to comply with the laws and regulations of the country visited. Guests who do not comply, are responsible themselves for any consequences that might result. If any non-compliance has negative effects on the tour itinerary, continuous travel arrangements would be at one’s own account. Please accept that in such cases, refunds are not possible.

Please also comply with unwritten rules such as patience and courtesy towards government representatives and Namibians in general. Please always ask first before taking pictures of local people and respect their privacy.

When travelling anywhere, basic safety measures apply. Do not carry large sums of cash, be careful of your cameras, cell phones and expensive jewellery and never leave valuables lying open in the safari vehicle. Carry cash and travel documents in a pouch on your body or leave in a lodge safe. Do not walk alone at night and be especially cautious when drawing money at an ATM. When in doubt, ask your guide.

Different safety measures apply when on safari in the bush. Always stay in the vehicle. Our safari vehicles have pop-up roofs to allow for safe photography – never get out of the car to get closer to animals for a better photo. Never feed any animals and do not remove plants, seeds or stones.

Please do not feed the animals or pick any plants or flowers. Wild animals can be dangerous – even if it does not look like it. Please do not approach the animals too closely just for the sake of a good photo and do not be loud as animals respond immediately to noise. Please always stay in the car and only get out at designated picnic spots.

When on a guided game drive or walking safari please remember that your tour guide is a trained professional and knows the area well. For your safety (and that of the animals), follow the guide’s instructions at all times.

Voltage is 220 Volt and most plugs have three round pins, as found across the border in South Africa, or two smaller pins as per most European plugs (Type C). Electricity supply is good and most lodges are connected to the national grid. Our safari vehicles are equipped with 220 Volt electric sockets for battery chargers while driving.

If you have any problems on the tour (usually there are none, and we are certain that it will remain so) these can only be solved if your guide knows about them. Please be so kind as to tell the guide about your problems. A problem aired is a problem solved and is much better than a letter of complaint after the holiday is over. If you experience no immediate results to your problem, please contact the Namibia-Experience Team.