13 Day Self-Drive Tour, Accommodated
Namibia is one of the most sparsely populated countries in the world and this 13-day self-drive tour will show you the vastness and breathtaking landscapes of this dry land. Climb the dunes of the Namib Desert, see the extraordinary Erongo Mountains, marvel at ancient rock art in the Damaraland, explore the Etosha National Park on game drives and go hiking on the Waterberg Plateau.
Day 1-13 | Namibia
- Windhoek: National Gallery, National Museum, Christ Church
- Namib Desert: Sossusvlei, Deadvlei, Sesriem Canyon
- Swakopmund: quad biking, sand boarding, skydiving, scenic flight, day trip to the seal colony at Cape Cross (all optional)
- Spitzkoppe: unique geology, rock art
- Erongo Mountains: nature drives, walks, bird watching
- Brandberg: ‘White Lady’ rock art
- Damaraland: Petrified Forest, Twyfelfontein World Heritage Site, Organ Pipes, Burnt Mountain
- Etosha National Park: game drives, Etosha Pan
- Grootfontein: Hoba Meteorite, Lake Otjikoto
- Waterberg Plateau: hiking
Self-Drive Tour: Namibia Highlights
Min. number to guarantee tour: N/A
Max number of participants: private tour
Departure day: any day of your choice
Price: from 20,100 NAD
Single Supplement: from 4,300 NAD
Day 1 | Windhoek, Namibia
Distance approx. 50 km; driving time approx. 1 h
After arriving at Windhoek International Airport, you collect your rental car and drive to your prearranged accommodation in town. The rest of the day is at leisure and you can either relax at the guesthouse or explore the city. See the National Gallery (featuring local artists), the National Museum (Namibia’s history) and the well-known Christ Church. Enjoy traditional cuisine at a local restaurant (own account). You will overnight at The Elegant Guesthouse.
Day 2 | Windhoek, Namibia – Namib Desert, Namibia
Distance approx. 350 km; driving time approx. 4-5 h
After breakfast you leave Windhoek and drive through the Khomas Highland in a south-westerly direction towards the Namib Desert. Passing through beautiful landscapes, you finally reach the Elegant Desert Camp, your home for the next two nights, close to Sesriem. Enjoy the picturesque desert landscapes; you can also book a guided nature drive to admire the magical light at sunset. End the day with a delicious dinner.
Breakfast | Dinner
Day 3 | Sossusvlei, Namibia
Distance approx. 200 km; driving time approx. 3-4 hours
Try to start the day as early as possible to see the early morning sun creating beautiful shadows on the enormous dunes of Sossusvlei. Gates to the park open at sunrise. Climb one of the famous dunes such as Dune 45 or Big Daddy for some early morning exercise. It is a breathtaking experience seeing the sea of sand around you. Also visit Deadvlei, a very photogenic spot of ancient dead trees. Thereafter you drive to the Sesriem Canyon where you can also do short hikes (dry season only). After an adventurous day of exploring, you leave the park in the afternoon and return to The Elegant Desert Eco Camp. You can also pre-book a guided day trip and explore the area together with a knowledgeable guide.
Breakfast | Dinner
Day 4-5 | Namib Desert, Namibia – Swakopmund, Namibia
Distance on day 4: approx. 360 km; driving time approx. 5 hours
Today’s journey on gravel roads takes you to the coastal town of Swakopmund where you can find beautiful pieces of colonial architecture. Swakopmund is also a base for adventure activities (all optional) in the area – join a dolphin cruise in Walvis Bay, go dune boarding, skydiving, fishing, take a scenic flight over the desert, go quad biking, take a day trip into the desert or to the seal colony at Cape Cross. You will spend two nights at Cornerstone Guesthouse. There is a variety of restaurants to choose from but be sure not to miss the fresh seafood.
Day 6-7 | Swakopmund, Namibia – Erongo Mountains, Namibia
Distance on day 6: approx. 270 km; driving time approx. 3-4 hours
After a leisurely breakfast, you leave Swakopmund and travel inland. In the distance, you will see the Spitzkoppe, one of Namibia’s most recognisable landmarks. Go for a walk and explore the imposing granite rock formations or take an optional guided tour and view ancient San rock art. Today’s destination will be the Otjohotozu Farm in the Erongo Mountains. Lean back and enjoy the warm farm atmosphere. Alternatively, join a game drive in the morning or afternoon (optional). You will spend two nights at Otjohotozu Guest Farm.
Day 8 | Erongo Mountains, Namibia – Twyfelfontein, Namibia
Distance approx. 300 km; driving time approx. 4-5 h
Today you will head west past the Brandberg Mountain (2,580 metres), the highest mountain in Namibia and site of the ‘White Lady’ rock painting. (If you want to visit the rock painting on a leisurely walk, please calculate at least 3 hours for the detour to the Brandberg.) Your home for the night is the rustic Malansrus Tented Camp, beautifully set on the banks of a sidearm of the dry Aba Huab River. Settle in and take a short break before you visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Twyfelfontein (optional). The numerous rock engravings, which are estimated to be over 2,000 years old, will fascinate you. Nearby are also the Organ Pipes, the Burnt Mountain and the Damara Living Museum where you can get a glimpse of the traditional Damara culture and their ancient traditions. Back at camp, you are welcome to lean back and round off the day at the crackling campfire.
Breakfast | Dinner
Day 9-10 | Twyfelfontein, Namibia – Etosha National Park, Namibia
Distance on day 9: approx. 350 km; driving time approx. 5 hours (excl. game drives)
After breakfast, you can visit the Petrified Forest near Khorixas, a collection of ancient, mineralised tree trunks which are estimated to be more than 200 million years old. Via the small town of Outjo, you then continue to the world-famous Etosha National Park. Etosha (‘huge white area’) is one of the largest game parks in Africa and with its range of animals and landscapes – acacia trees, vast open plains and a massive salt pan – also one of the most interesting. Okaukuejo Resort is a good base for game drives in the western, central and eastern part of the park. During these two days, you will spend most of your time game viewing around the waterholes where elephants, giraffes, different species of antelope and birds come to drink. With a bit of luck, you might even be able to spot lions and rhinos. To see nocturnal animals, a night game drive (optional) with a park ranger is a good option or visiting the floodlit waterhole at night – very thrilling. You will overnight at the Okaukuejo Resort for two nights.
The large resorts in the Etosha National Park are owned by the government. They are maintained and looked after by state employees who are sometimes not as enthusiastic about their work as we wish they were. Accommodation ranges from basic chalets to standard self-catering units. There are, however, more luxurious lodges outside the park from where you will do day trips into the park. Should you be interested in this option, please let us know and we will gladly amend our offer accordingly.
Day 11 | Etosha National Park, Namibia
Driving time depends on choice of route
After breakfast you will continue east, driving along the edge of the flat salt pan that extends into the horizon. You will see herds of impalas, wildebeests, zebras and oryx on the plains. Amongst the acacia trees and shrubs look out for elephants, giraffes and lions resting in the afternoon heat. Stopping at waterholes along the way, you should see a variety of birds and animals coming and going to quench their thirst. By late afternoon you will reach Von Lindequist Gate where you exit the park. Mushara Bush Camp is just a stone’s throw away. Relax on the private deck of your tent-room in the bush or warm up at the campfire of the dining area.
Breakfast | Dinner
Day 12 | Etosha Area, Namibia – Waterberg Plateau, Namibia
Distance approx. 430 km; driving time approx. 5-6 hours
Today’s journey will take you past a deep lake and a meteorite. Just outside Tsumeb you can turn off to visit the bright blue Lake Otjikoto. Next on today’s list is the 60-ton Hoba Meteorite; at roughly 3×3 metres, it is the largest meteorite in the world.
Your last stop is the private Okosongomingo ranch at the foot of the Waterberg Plateau, where you will find the Waterberg Guest Farm.
The Waterberg is a massive red plateau rising 200 metres above the surrounding plains. The variety of microclimates – mountain, valley and plains – accommodates a variety of vegetation ranging from massive fig trees to ferns and acacia trees. In the afternoon or next morning you can explore the farm with or without a guide on several hiking trails. Especially the hike to the top of the so called Small Waterberg is recommendable, as the views of the “big” Waterberg are just breath-taking.
You will overnight in a bush bungalow at the Waterberg Guest Farm.
Breakfast | Dinner
Day 13 | Waterberg Plateau, Namibia – Windhoek, Namibia
Distance approx. 300 km; driving time approx. 3-4 hours
TToday you will continue south towards Windhoek. On your way, you may want to stop at the craft market in Okahandja. Here you can haggle and bargain for wood carvings, beaded jewellery, baskets and other crafts. In Windhoek, you will head to the airport to return your rental car or spend another night in the city (optional).
- Self-drive tour according to the itinerary
- 12 nights’ accommodation in guesthouses, chalets, bungalows and lodges (depending on availability, accommodation of a similar standard will be booked)
- Meals as indicated in the itinerary
- Flights (international and domestic)
- Rental car (please contact us for a quote)
- Meals not indicated in the itinerary
- Beverages (alcoholic and soft drinks)
- Possible toll and crossing border fees
- National park fees
- Optional activities
- Visa, tips, personal expenses, travel insurance
Frequently Asked Questions
In general Namibia is not more dangerous than other countries in the world. Most crimes and acts of violence take place in the townships of bigger cities. Public areas around shopping centres, restaurants, banks etc. as well as the countryside are very safe. Nevertheless you should stick to a couple of rules to avoid risky or dangerous situations. This includes staying away from dodgy areas, walking in the dark, carrying a lot of cash or expensive cameras on you, wearing flashy jewellery and leaving bags or valuables in the car. Try not to drive after sunset as wild animals often roam free.
Although Namibia generally has a good infrastructure, the roads are not always in the best condition. Most of the roads are good gravel roads and only the highways and a couple of the main roads are tarred. Therefore please always drive with caution.
Fuel stations can be found alongside all major routes and highways as well as in cities/villages.
There are more than enough different and well-stocked shops available and many fuel stations also have a little convenience shop.
Left. In Southern Africa vehicles are right-hand drives hence driving is done on the left-hand side of the roads.
Each person who wants to drive a rental vehicle in Namibia must have a valid national driver’s license which needs to be carried along at all times and must be produced when requested (vehicle hand-over, police control).
If your national driver’s license is not in English and does not include a photograph of you, you will additionally need an international driving license. Please take note that the international driving license is only valid in conjunction with your national driver’s license.
Furthermore, you must be in possession of a credit card when picking up the rental vehicle. The main renter must be the credit card holder.
Most roads within the national parks are tarred or good gravel and all are accessible to rental cars. Please however take note that you have to stick to the rules of the national parks at all time. These include: remaining in your vehicle unless you are in a designated area, sticking to the speed limit and not littering.
In the Etosha National Park, guided game drives in open safari vehicles are available and accompanied by a professional ranger.
Along with your travel documents, you will receive detailed directions and contact details for all the pre-booked accommodation.
Some rental car companies provide road maps but as not all of them do, it is advisable to bring a good map with a map scale of at least 1:1,5 million.
Meals are included as indicated in the itinerary.
Breakfast usually consists of a full English breakfast and cereals, toast, cheese, jam, fruits, juices, tea, coffee.
Since most of the days are spent on the road or in the national parks, no lunches have been included.
At places where you can cater for yourself or you have a variety of restaurants to choose from dinner has been excluded. On days when it’s recommendable to dine at your accommodation dinner has been included. In these cases dinner usually consists of a set menu with local meat, vegetables and rice or potato dishes. Alternatively, buffet dinner is served.
You can either exchange your own currency for Namibian Dollar at one of the exchange bureaus at the airport or in town or you can draw cash at the current exchange rate at a local ATM with your credit card or Maestro card (PIN required).
Credit cards are also widely accepted in bigger shops and shopping malls but some smaller shops and all fuel stations do not accept credit cards, so always have some cash on hand.
As Malaria is a concern in some areas of Namibia, we recommend that some precautionary measures are taken. Please speak to your doctor or travel clinic about the different prophylaxes and their effects and side effects. In general, prevention is better than cure and the best prevention is to avoid bites. Apply mosquito repellent and wear long trousers, socks, closed shoes and long-sleeved tops when outdoors in the morning and evening hours.
Furthermore, it is recommended that you have your regular vaccinations updated – tetanus, diphtheria, hepatitis A and B and polio.
Namibian custom officials require proof of yellow fever vaccination if you are arriving from a country with risk of yellow fever.