Summary : This comprehensive Namibia tour reveals the country’s tremendous diversity of scenery, culture, and wildlife. Traverse Etosha National Park with stops at productive waterholes to view abundant wildlife—zebras, wildebeest, Damara dik-dik, white and black rhinos, and a wealth of bird species, which in turn attracts a host of predators, from cheetahs and lions to hyenas and jackals. On this Namibia expedition, track desert-adapted elephants in Damaraland and visit a Himba village with local guides. At Walvis Bay on your Swakopmund tour, board a catamaran cruise to spot seabirds and marine life, accompanied by fresh oysters and local sparkling wine. Your Namibia adventure culminates with a visit to the famed Sossusvlei dunes at sunrise and the ultimate desert camp experience.
Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Photography
$999,999,999 to $0
Board your independent flight to Namibia.
Arrive in Windhoek, Namibia’s capital. Enjoy a welcome reception and dinner at Hotel Heinitzburg.
This morning, drive north toward the sandstone mountains of the Omboroko range to reach Okonjima—famous for its healthy populations of lions, leopards, and cheetahs. Search the reserve by vehicle and on foot with a good chance of spotting these elusive cats, and visit the AfriCat Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of Namibia’s large carnivores. The Omboroko Mountains also support many Namibian avian endemics, notably Hartlaub’s francolin and the shy, but vocal rockrunner, also known as the Damara rockjumper. In the evening, specially designed blinds may yield sightings of lesser-known African mammals such as the caracal, honey badger, and South African porcupine. Dinner and overnight at Okonjima Bush Camp.
After brunch, drive across undulating grasslands to Onguma Plains Camp, located at the eastern border of Etosha National Park and your base of exploration for two nights. Tonight enjoy an evening game drive to search for abundant wildlife. Return to camp in time to enjoy breathtaking views of the sun setting over the African savanna.
Today’s game-viewing centers on numerous springs and waterholes where several different species can often be seen at one time. This area boasts over 100 mammal and almost 350 bird species. Some of your target creatures will include African elephants, southern giraffes, blue wildebeest, the diminutive Damara dik-dik (Southern Africa’s smallest antelope), greater kudu, gemsbok (or southern oryx), endemic black-faced impalas, plains zebra, and common warthogs.
Traverse the full breadth of Etosha National Park today, stopping at waterholes en route to observe the game gathered there. Arrive at Ongava Lodge, situated on the slopes of a rocky outcrop within the private 125-square-mile Ongava Game Reserve, which shares a common border with Etosha. An evening game drive offers the opportunity to spot gemsbok, springbok, both black and white rhinos, greater kudu, and red hartebeest. Birdlife is prolific and includes 10 of Namibia’s 14 endemic bird species with regular sightings of bare-cheeked babblers, violet wood-hoopoe, Carp’s tits, and the brilliantly-colored, crimson-breasted shrike, Namibia’s national bird.
After breakfast bid farewell to the savanna plains of Ongava and drive through increasingly rugged landscapes, with stops for photography and wildlife spotting along the way. Damaraland is one of the country’s most scenic areas; a huge, untamed, wilderness of prehistoric water courses with open plains and grassland, massive granite outcroppings, and deep gorges. Accommodations for the next three nights are at Mowani Mountain Camp, nestled among huge granite boulders and overlooking the ephemeral Aba Huab riverbed.
Spend two full days exploring Damaraland. A number of fresh water springs along Huab River support healthy populations of desert-adapted elephants and a number of lesser-known yet equally fascinating mammals including the rare Hartmann’s mountain zebra, Kaokoland rock hyrax, peculiar dassie rat, and the adorable rock dormouse. Rosy-faced lovebirds, swallow-tailed bee-eaters, and violet-eared waxbills provide a splash of additional color to the environment. This region is home to the Himba tribe, one of the last nomadic people in all of Africa. Visit with the Himba for an opportunity to learn more about their unique lifestyle and traditions. You also have the chance to view Twyfelfontein’s boulders and slabs of red sandstone, itself a living museum boasting some 2,500 prehistoric engravings that depict wildlife and abstract motifs, a legacy of the area’s original San (or bushman) inhabitants.
Take an early morning flight to Walvis Bay, then transfer to the Walvis Bay Yacht Club. Here board a catamaran for a cruise to Pelican Point to observe cormorants, pelicans, and gannets, as well as huge numbers of Cape fur seals. Enjoy a snack of local delicacies onboard. After lunch, board your charter flight to the lovely Sossusvlei Desert Lodge. The lodge is situated within the boundaries of the NamibRand Nature Reserve, home to over 100 bird species and other desert-adapted wildlife. In the evening, bask in the incredible beauty of vividly-hued dune fields, rocky outcrops, and jagged mountains. After dinner at the lodge, be sure to spend some time star-gazing—night skies in the Namib are among the most dazzling in the world.
Depart at dawn to view the sun rise over the dunes; their contrasting shadows, saturated colors, and elegant wind-sculpted patterns are a photographer’s dream. The strange croaking calls of Rueppell’s bustards herald the new day and, with luck, you may even be treated to the classic spectacle of an oryx making its stately progress across the sands. Also keep watch for other desert denizens—springbok, black-backed jackals, and bat-eared foxes. This afternoon, travel further south to the heart of the NamibRand Nature Reserve and check in to the Wolwedans Dune Lodge. Enjoy a ‘sundowner’ drive for fantastic views looking out over the Chateau Plains.
Today experience a variety of game drives amidst the dramatic scenery of the NamibRand Nature Reserve. Early morning and late afternoon excursions allow you to take advantage of the best light.
After breakfast board your flight to Windhoek to connect with your independent homeward flight. Arrive in the USA the next day.
All accommodations and group meals, including selected beverages with lunch and dinner; group transfers; guided excursions as stated in the itinerary; entrance fees for parks, reserves, etc.; all gratuities; domestic air transportation within Namibia; emergency medical coverage (maximum benefit per paying passenger of $25,000)*; evacuation coverage (maximum benefit per paying passenger of $100,000)*.
All air transportation, except where listed above; excess baggage charges; airport arrival and departure taxes; transfers for independent arrivals and departures; passport and/or visa fees; travel insurance; items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar charges, alcoholic beverages, email/Internet/fax/telephone charges.
*Emergency Medical & Evacuation Insurance:
Emergency medical coverage to a maximum benefit per paying passenger of $25,000 is included in the cost of this expedition, as well as evacuation coverage to a maximum benefit per paying passenger of $100,000. Insurance is underwritten by National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, PA. The policy will contain reductions, limitations, exclusions and termination provisions. All coverages may not be available in all states. Please note this coverage does not cover you against trip cancellation or for additional days of travel prior to and/or after the expedition trip dates. ExpeditionTrips strongly advises all clients to purchase travel insurance which includes trip cancellation and interruption coverage for the entire duration of your trip.