Log In Join Us

Native Escapes tours

1 review

T: 07918775329

  • Summary
  • Day planner
  • Sample Lodges
  • Photos
  • More tours

Photograph towering sand dunes at sunrise, kayak or catamaran amongst seals and dolphins, and experience Namibia's wildlife on a superb 12 day safari,

12 Day Guided Trip to Namibia - See Namibia's Highlights

Safari tour package: A set-date, set-itinerary, group safari
Prices: $4233 - $4860
Includes internal flights: No
Length of safari: 12 days
Best months: June - October
Countries visited: Namibia Namibia
Parks visited: Etosha, Namib-Naukluft
Activity level: Moderate - Game walks, Cultural visits
Safari type:
  • Night drive
  • Cultural
  • Boating
This Namibia Safari affords you the chance to experience this magnificent and memorable country in a very personal way. Your professional and experienced safari guide will enhance your enjoyment of this unique country by making it a fascinating and stress-free journey of discovery amidst very dramatic scenery. The knowledge, experience, and character of the guides are critical to a successful safari which is why we ensure that they are both personable and very professional. Your guide will have an intimate knowledge of each area and camp/lodge that you visit, allowing them to share the local insights and highlights whilst adding continuity and depth to your safari. It goes without saying that they all know exactly what a "True African Safari" is all about. Not only are these guides highly qualified: each has a specific area of expertise. Together they possess the breadth and depth of knowledge to allow them to answer questions and satisfy the particular interests of each of our guests. The presence and company of your guide will turn your safari into an experience of a lifetime!

Day 1

Transfer from Windhoek Airport to a local B&B.  Depending on arrival time, this afternoon, you may choose to take a guided tour of the City.  The city mixes modern architecture and latest fashions alongside old colonial German buildings and Herero women in their traditional Victorian dress.

Overnight: Galton House  

Day 2

You depart around 08.30am from Windhoek in your safari vehicle with your guide and 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 arrive at Sossus Dune Lodge in the mid-afternoon and you will stay here for two nights whilst you explore the remarkable sights of the Namib Desert with your guide. If there is still time today, your guide will take you to visit Sesriem Canyon, a nearby geological attraction, or explore Elim Dune. However, if you prefer, you can just relax and soak in the scenic and tranquil surroundings at Sossus Dune Lodge.

Sesriem Canyon has evolved through centuries of erosion by the Tsauchab River which has incised a narrow gorge about 1.5 km long and 30 meters deep into the surrounding conglomerates, exposing the varying layers of sedimentation deposited over millions of years. The shaded cool depths of the canyon allow pools of water to gather during the rainy season and remain for much of the year round. These pools were a vital source of water for early settlers who drew water for their livestock by knotting six (ses) lengths of rawhide thongs (riems) together, hence the canyon and surrounding area became known as Sesriem. (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner included).  Journey time approx. 5-6 hours.

Day 3

 
This morning you will need to rise early for a magical excursion with your guide in the Namib Naukluft National Park, normally setting off before sunrise to capture the dunes whilst the light is soft and shadows accentuate the towering shapes and curves. This area boasts some of the highest free-standing sand dunes in the world and your guide will give you an insight on the formation of the Namib Desert and its myriad of fascinating creatures and plants that have adapted to survive these harsh environs. Once you have explored Sossusvlei, Deadvlei and surrounding dune fields to your heart’s content you can enjoy a relaxed picnic brunch in the shade of a camel thorn tree. You then return to Sossus Dune Lodge in the early afternoon in time for a late lunch, with the option to visit Sesriem Canyon afterwards if you haven’t already done so the day before. The rest of the afternoon is at your leisure (from experience, this is usually welcomed after an exhilarating morning in the dunes).

Sand-locked pans to the west show where the river previously flowed to before dunes shifted its endpoint to where it currently gathers at Sossusvlei.  Roughly once a decade rainfall over the catchment area is sufficient to bring the river down in flood and fill the pan. On such occasions the mirror images of dunes and camel thorn trees around the pan are reflected in the water. Sossusvlei is the biggest of four pans in the vicinity. Another, famous for its gnarled and ghostly camel thorn trees, is Deadvlei which can be reached on foot over 1 km of sand. Deadvlei’s striking camel thorn trees, dead for want of water, still stand erect as they once grew. They survived until about 900 years ago when the sand sea finally blocked the river from occasionally flooding the pan.

Overnight Sossus Dune Lodge – breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 4

Note: there is an option to include a sunrise balloon flight or scenic light aircraft flight over the Namib Naukluft National Park before you depart for Swakopmund. (at supplementary cost).  The light aircraft flight gives you a birds eye view of the dunes, sea, abandoned mining camps, shipwrecks, sandwich harbor and salt pans, before landing at Swakopmund airport later in the day where you will be met by your guide.


The fascinating drive today takes you northwest through the 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 wander around town and along the waterfront on foot if appeals, before heading off for dinner at a popular restaurant which specialises in fresh seafood.

Swakopmund: Swakopmund resembles a small, German coastal resort nestled between the desert and the sea. It boasts a charming combination of German colonial architecture blended with modern hotels, shops, restaurants, museums, craft centres, galleries and cafés. Swakopmund had its beginnings as a landing station in 1892 when the German Imperial Navy erected beacons on the site. Settlers followed and made attempts to create a harbour town by constructing a concrete Mole and then an iron jetty - which attempts were ultimately unsuccessful. The advent of World War one halted developments, and the town sank into decline until half a century later when infrastructure improved and an asphalt road opened between Windhoek and Swakopmund. This made reaching the previously isolated town quicker and easier and it prospered once again to become Namibia’s premier resort town. Although the sea is normally cold for swimming there are pleasant beaches and the cooler climate is refreshing after time spent in the desert.
 (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner included)  Overnight: Centrally Located Guesthouse.  Journey time: 5.5-6 hours.

NOTE: As an alternative to the drive from Sossus Dune Lodge to Swakopmund you may like to take a scenic light aircraft flight over Sossusvlei and along the Diamond Coast (optional extra at additional cost), allowing you a bird’s eye view over the dune sea, abandoned mining camps, shipwrecks, Sandwich Harbour and salt pans before you land at Swakopmund Airport. Your guide will drive to meet up with you in Swakopmund later in the day.

Day 5

After an early breakfast your guide will drive you along the scenic coastal road back south to Walvis Bay for a memorable kayaking adventure within the outer lagoon. After meeting your kayaking guide you will be taken on a short scenic drive to Pelican Point to see its lighthouse and windswept beauty, stopping briefly at the salt works to view the variety of birdlife on your way to the launch point.   The kayaking is an ideal way of seeing Cape fur seals, Heaviside and bottlenose dolphins, pelicans, flamingos and a wide variety of other sea birds. If you are lucky, there is also a chance of seeing whales, leatherback turtles and sunfish. During the course of the day the guide will stop and inform you about the environment and light refreshments will be served on the beach before heading back to Walvis Bay.

Alternatively, you also have the choice to partake in a memorable motorized boat seal and dolphin excursion within the outer lagoon and harbour should the kayaking not appeal. Here you should also see Cape fur seals, heaviside and bottlenose dolphins, pelicans, flamingos and a wide variety of other sea birds. Again, if luck is on your side, there is also a chance of seeing whales, leatherback turtles and sunfish. During the course of the excursion snacks will be served along with local sparkling wine and fresh oysters, before you will return to the jetty at roughly midday. 

You then have the opportunity to explore the waterfront area of Walvis Bay further before returning to Swakopmund for an afternoon at leisure at your guesthouse or out in town. Activities such as camel rides, scenic flights, sandboarding and more can all be booked at an extra cost.
(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner included) Overnight: Centrally Loctaed Guesthouse

Day 6

Continuing on your safari today, the road takes you north and east into the wonderful and diverse region of Damaraland. 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'.   If time allows this afternoon your guide will take you to visit the nearby attractions and geological sites of the pre-historic Twyfelfontein rock engravings (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) - if not there is plenty of time to see them tomorrow.

Twyfelfontein: Strewn over a hillside amongst flat-topped mountains of red sandstone, Twyfelfontein’s boulders and slabs of red sandstone hold some 2,500 prehistoric engravings that depict wildlife, animal spoor and abstract motifs. It is perhaps the largest and finest collection of petroglyphs in Africa. The engravings show animals such as elephant, giraffe, kudu, lion, rhinoceros, springbok, zebra and ostrich that once used to drink from a fountain at the bottom of the hill. In some cases footprints were engraved instead of hooves or paws. The abstract motifs feature mainly circles. Stone tools and other artifacts found at Twyfelfontein suggest that hunter-gatherers occupied the site over a period of perhaps 7,000 years. These days a local guide accompanies visitors to showcase the rock art. The engravings lie along two circular routes, one an hour’s climb and the other 40 minutes longer. Twyfelfontein is one of Namibia’s key National Monuments and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Camp Kipwe: Camp Kipwe lies in the heart of Damaraland, ideally located a short drive from the local attractions in the area. The Camp is nestled amongst an outcrop of giant granite boulders, a stone’s throw away from the ephemeral Aba Huab riverbed where desert adapted elephants often traverse. Each comfortable thatched bungalow is simply but tastefully furnished with en-suite open-air bathroom. In the centre of the camp lies a large alfresco dining area, bar, lounge and reception with an inviting fireplace nearby to relax beside in the evenings. A refreshing swimming pool and sunset lookout with lovely views also complement the Camp.  (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner included)  Overnight: Camp Kipwe. Drive time approx. 4 hours.

 

Day 7
After an early breakfast you will be treated to 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.

Your guide will arrange to fit in a visit to Twyfelfontein and other nearby attractions at a suitable time if you haven’t already done so the previous day. On return to camp there should be time to take a walk into the local area with your guide if desired, or simply relax and enjoy some well-deserved leisure time.

Desert Adapted Elephant: In habitats with sufficient vegetation and water an adult elephant consumes as much as 300 kg of roughage and 230 litres of water every day of its life. Consider what a herd of them would eat and drink in a week or a month or a year. Finding an African elephant in a desert?

Well, yes and not only elephant, but other large mammals as well, such as black rhinoceros and giraffe. Their ranges extend from river catchments in northern Kaokoveld as far south as the northern Namib. Apart from the Kunene River, seven river courses northwards from the Ugab provide them with possible routes across the desert, right to the Skeleton Coast. The biggest are the Hoarusib, the Hoanib, the Huab and the Ugab Rivers. Desert adapted elephant in Kaokoland and the Namib walk further for water and fodder than any other elephant in Africa.

The distances between waterholes and feeding grounds can be as great as 68 km. The typical home range of a family herd is larger than 2,000 km², or eight times as big as ranges in central Africa where rainfall is much higher. They walk and feed at night and rest during the day. To meet their nutritional and bulk requirements they browse on no fewer than 74 of the 103 plant species that grow in their range. Not a separate species or even a subspecies, they are an ecotype unique to Namibia in Africa south of the equator, behaviourally adapted to hyper-arid conditions. Elephant in Mali on the southwestern fringe of the Sahara Desert are the only others known to survive in similar conditions.  (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner included)  Overnight: Camp Kipwe

 

Day 8
Today you set off on your journey to the Etosha National Park, travelling via the regional centre of Khorixas and the settlement at Kamanjab. Soon after the latter, your guide will take you to visit a Himba ‘Living Museum’ where you will be able to meet some of the local community who will be happy to demonstrate elements of their traditional lifestyle. The Himba are one of the last truly traditional peoples of Namibia and they are normally nomadic, but those that have settled here are now firmly established and unlikely to move on. They have little time for conventional practices but welcome visitors who want to learn about the customs and traditions of this very proud nation, and they are very willing to offer insight into their beliefs, way of life and everyday routine.

Once you have seen all you want, and you have enjoyed your picnic lunch which may be served here or elsewhere along the way, you will head north east to tonight's destination at the Etosha Mountain Lodge, which is situated on the south western border of Etosha National Park. After your arrival you will have some time at leisure which can be spent appreciating the unique surroundings of the lodge and enjoying the game viewing at the camp's floodlit waterhole. You can also take advantage of a different game viewing vantage point by visiting the camp’s underground and elevated hides.

The Himba: The Himba, Tjimba and other Herero people who inhabit Namibia’s remote north-western Kunene Region are loosely referred to as the Kaokovelders. Basically Herero in terms of origin, language and culture, they are semi-nomadic pastoralists who tend to tend from one watering place to another. They seldom leave their home areas and maintain, even in their own, on which other cultures have made little impression. For many centuries they have lived a relatively isolated existence and were not involved to any noteworthy extent in the long struggle for pasturelands between the Nama and the Herero. The largest group of Kaokovelders is the Himba, semi-nomads who live in scattered settlements throughout the Kunene Region.  They are a tall, slender and statuesque people, characterized especially by their proud yet friendly bearing. The women especially are noted for their unusual sculptural beauty, enhanced by intricate hairstyles and traditional adornments.  They rub their bodies with red ochre and fat, a treatment that protects their skins against the harsh desert climate. The homes of the Himba of Kaokoland are simple, cone-shaped structures of saplings, bound together with palm leaves and plastered with mud and dung. The men build the structures, while the women mix the clay and do the plastering. A fire burns in the headman’s hut day and night, to keep away insects and provide light and heating. A family may move from one home to another several times a year to seek grazing for their goats and cattle.   A Himba woman spends as much as three hours a day on her toilette. First she bathes, then she anoints herself with her own individually prepared mixture which not only protects her skin from the harsh desert sun, but also keeps insects away and prevents her body hair from falling out.  She uses another mixture of butter fat, fresh herbs and black coals to rub on her hair, and ‘steams’ her clothes regularly over the permanent fire. Men, women and children adorn themselves with necklaces, bracelets, anklets and belts made from iron and shell beads. With their unusual and striking designs, these items have gained a commercial value and are being produced on a small scale for the urban market. Sculptural headrests in particular are sought-after items.

Etosha Mountain Lodge: Etosha Mountain Lodge is situated in the Kamanjab Region, bordering the South- Western boundary of the Etosha National Park. Etosha Mountain Lodge consists out of 1 suite with and 6 luxury chalets, built with privacy in mind and with a breathtaking view. The main complex, also with wonderful view includes a reception area, lounge, dining room, bar, swimming pool with teak deck and wine cellar (grotto) where you can taste the best wines. A number of game species can be found here including black Rhino and white Rhino, Giraffe, Eland, Mountain Zebra, Kudu, Oryx, Cheetah, Leopard, Springbuck, Blue Wildebeest, Warthog, Duiker, Black-faced Impala and sable antelope. 

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner included)  Overnight: Etosha Mountain Lodge.  Journey time approx. 4.5-5 hours

Day 9
Today is dedicated to a full day of exciting game viewing within the central section of Etosha National Park from your private safari vehicle as you make your way from the southern Andersson’s Gate to Halali (where you may stop for lunch) and then on across via selected waterholes such as Goas, which are normally particularly good for game viewing, to Namutoni Camp in the east. You will have to leave the Park before sunset and head out to stay at the delightful Onguma Tree Top Camp with enough time to relax and freshen up before for dinner. The rest of the evening can be spent game viewing at the camp’s floodlit waterhole where game comes and goes throughout the day and night.

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 Etosha Pan lies in the Owambo Basin, on the north-western edge of the Namibian Kalahari Desert. Until three million years ago it formed part of huge, shallow lake that was reduced to a complex of salt pans when the major river that fed it, the Kunene, changed course and began to flow to the Atlantic instead. If the lake existed today, it would be the third largest in the world. Etosha is the largest of the pans at 4,760 km² in extent. It is nowadays filled with water only when sufficient rain falls to the north in Angola, inducing floods to flow southward along the Cuvelai drainage system. The Park consists of grassland, woodland and savannah. Game-viewing centers 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.

Onguma Tree Top Camp: Tree Top is a unique and beautiful camp, situated on the private Onguma Game Reserve, bordering on the eastern side of Etosha National Park. It is a small and intimate camp, especially designed for those travellers who would like to truly experience the bush in all its raw splendour. This camp is built on wooden stilts amongst the tree tops with full views over one of the most beautiful watering holes on the Reserve. The camp consists of 4 thatched wooden chalets and a main complex, making the camp ideal for a small group looking for a private getaway. The main complex is completely open towards the front where the waterhole is situated, but there is also the option of letting down canvas sides if the weather is inclement. Guests can relax in the comfortable lounge or in front of the fire place. The kitchen is open plan so guests can watch whilst the chef conjures up wonderful dishes on an open fire.  The thatched rooms are designed in such a way that the canvas sides can be opened to expose breath-taking view and animals at any time. All rooms have an en-suite bathroom as well as a wonderful private outside shower, and a private deck in front where guests can relax and enjoy exactly the same views as from the main area’s deck.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner included)  Overnight: Onguma Tree Top Camp

Day 10

Another morning dedicated to memorable game drives within the eastern section of Etosha National Park with your guide. You return to camp for lunch and an early afternoon rest, spending your final afternoon on a game drive on the private Onguma Game Reserve, culminating in a sundowner overlooking Fischer’s Pan. You then return after sunset with enough time to freshen up and enjoy your final ‘safari dinner’ overlooking the camp’s floodlit waterhole.

Onguma Game Reserve: Situated on the eastern side of Etosha National Park and bordering Fisher’s Pan, Onguma Game Reserve has more than 20,000 hectare of protected land and wildlife. The nature reserve boasts over thirty different animal species consisting of plains game such as kudu, giraffe, eland, oryx, hartebeest, zebra, impala and many more roam freely, as well as predators such as lion, cheetah and leopard, being common residents of the area. Onguma Game Reserve is now proud to be home to a family of black rhinos! More than 300 bird species can also be viewed at Onguma Game Reserve.

(Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, AM Etosha & PM Onguma Drives included) : Overnight Onguma Tree Top Camp

Day 11

Your early departure will take you south from Onguma Tree Top via Tsumeb, Otavi and Otjiwarongo to reach Okonjima’s AfriCat Day Centre, a wonderful highlight with which to conclude your safari. Okonjima is home to the AfriCat Foundation, a wildlife sanctuary which focuses on the research and rehabilitation of Africa's big cats, especially injured or captured leopard and cheetah. You arrive in time for lunch before embarking on an exciting and informative game drive and tour of the centre. Here you will learn about the function and vision of the AfriCat Foundation and will also get to meet some of the Foundation’s special captive carnivore ambassadors.

PLEASE NOTE: There will be no tracking of wild cats on this visit and should that be required, a 1 or 2 night can be booked – please contact us for information on this.

After the excursion and freshening up, the journey continues further south to arrive back in Windhoek in the late afternoon, just as the sun is setting. Upon your arrival in Windhoek you will be transferred to a local guesthouse for overnight.  (Breakfast and Lunch included). Journey time to Okonjima: approx. 4 hours.  Okonjima to Windhoek: approx. 3 hours.

Day 12

You have the morning in Windhoek before transfer back to Windhoek Airport and your onward flight. (Breakfast included)

 

Listed below are hotels/lodges/resorts that the safari tour operator can accomodate for you.

  • Camp Kipwe
  • Etosha Mountain Lodge
  • Onguma Treetops

Trek to see Mountain Gorillas on the edge of the Great Rift Valley, take forest walks in the Bwindi Impenetrable...

Parks visited include:

Get quote

From

$4737

per person

Get quote

Make memories on this fly-in safari to Kenya, which is packed with activity options to make the most of Kenya's ...

Parks visited include:

Get quote

From

$6472

per person

Get quote

Take on a seat on this great value road safari visiting all the highlights in Northern Tanzania

Parks visited include:

Get quote

From

$2964

per person

Get quote

Bespoke Delta, Chobe & Falls Safari Trip

Parks visited include:

Get quote

From

$4919

per person

Get quote
Shortlisted tour operators: Operators: 1 You can shortlist up to 10 tour operators Up to 10 operators