Africa Geographic Logo

safari experts, since 1991

Namibia safari - Sossusvlei to Etosha - private guide

NAMIBIA

Free safari planning

Our safari consultants speak English, Spanish, Catalan and Afrikaans
Hi, hoi, hola, hallo
UNIQUE HANDCRAFTED SAFARIS

Safari experiences that you will not find with any other travel company. We know Africa best and will get you to the right place & time to enjoy the greatest shows on Earth!

This is a 13-day private guided safari that takes you to the best of Namibia: Sossusvlei - Walvis Bay - Twyfelfontein (Damaraland) - Etosha South - Etosha National Park - Onguma Game Reserve - Windhoek.

You will have plenty of time to explore this vast country, meet local people and watch many species of wildlife and birds. See below the photo gallery for a day-by-day itinerary.

Further reading: Etosha National ParkWestern NamibiaThe Himba people

13-day private guided safari - the best of Namibia

Overview

Length: 13 days / 12 nights
Group Size: 2 upwards, to suit you
Location: Namibia - Sossusvlei - Walvis Bay - Twyfelfontein (Damaraland) - Etosha South - Etosha National Park - Onguma Game Reserve - Windhoek
Departure Dates: To suit you

Highlights:

  • the iconic dunes of Sossusvlei, including Dune 45, Hiddenvlei, and Deadvlei;

  • kayaking among seals at Pelican Point and quad biking in Swakopmund;

  • Damaraland's geological formations and Twyfelfontein's rock engravings; and

  • thrilling wildlife encounters in Etosha National Park.

from N$ 117,750 (Namibian Dollars) per person sharing (13 days)

Prices and dates

2024 RATES

Low Season (January – June 2024)

Per person sharing

N$ 117,750

High Season (July - December 2024)

Per person sharing

N$ 123,250

Please enquire about our SINGLE and GROUP rates:

Included

• Accommodation as per itinerary

• Airport Transfers

• Breakfast and Dinner (Except for dinner in Walvis Bay and Windhoek)

• All activities mentioned as included in the itinerary

• Private vehicle

• Fuel

• Private Nature Travel guide

• Park entry and conservation fees

• Drinking water in the vehicle

Excluded

• Flights

• Dinner in Walvis Bay and Windhoek

• Lunch

• Drinks

• Extra optional activities not specified on the itinerary

• Gratuities

• Items of a personal nature

• Visa Fees

• Comprehensive Insurance

Itinerary

Welcome to Namibia! Your guide will meet you at the arrivals hall of Hosea Kutako International Airport in Windhoek. After loading your luggage into the vehicle, we make our way by road to Sossusvlei, where we will spend two nights. This journey will take approximately 4 to 5 hours, and we will make regular stops along the way to take photographs of the beautiful landscape. By mid-morning, we will stop for a coffee break at a perfect lookout point and enjoy the vast open spaces of Namibia.

If time allows, we will stop for the "famous Apple Pie" in Solitaire, a true Namibian tradition that cannot be missed. We will arrive at our lodge in time to watch the beautiful sunset and enjoy some drinks while we discuss the plans for tomorrow's early start. We will join Sossusvlei Lodge on a nature drive. We enjoy dinner at Sossusvlei Lodge after our afternoon drive.

Situated in the largest conservation area in Africa (the Namib-Naukluft National Park), Sossusvlei is possibly Namibia’s most spectacular and best-known attraction.

As there is no accommodation at Sossusvlei, we stay at Sesriem, 65 kilometres away, where camps and lodges serve as a base to explore the dunes. Sesriem Canyon, a deep chasm carved through the rocks by water, is a striking natural feature of the area best explored on foot. Stony walls rise sharply on both sides of the canyon while birds roost in its crags and lizards dart along the ledges. The canyon’s name was coined when early settlers used it as a water source, using six lengths of leather (‘ses riem' – six thongs) tied together to lower buckets into the water at the base of the canyon.

Overnight: Desert Camp

Desert Camp lies just 5 km from the entrance gate to Sossusvlei and Sesriem Canyon in Namib Nauklauft Park. Nestled under centuries-old camel thorn trees, Desert Camp offers unsurpassed views over the desert landscapes and surrounding mountains - An absolute must for the nature lover and photographer!

The 28 affordable self-catering accommodation units have an en-suite bathroom, a shaded veranda with a fitted kitchenette, barbeque, power points and an adjacent parking area. Each air-conditioned room features twin beds and a fold-out sleeper couch to accommodate 2 small children (under 12) free of charge when sharing with 2 full paying adults. Utility boxes with most utensils needed are available at reception, and fresh food supplies can be ordered daily.

Facilities at the main building include a fully stocked and serviced bar with big screen television, a sparkling swimming pool and 2 communal bomas with cooking and wash-up facilities which are perfect for groups travelling together.

Meals can be enjoyed at the nearby Sossusvlei Lodge restaurant, and their Adventure Centre offers a range of exciting desert activities to explore the area.

A fully stocked shop, fuel and an internet café are available at the Sossus Oasis Service Station.

Sossusvlei Lodge Restaurant

Guests at Desert Camp who wish to not cook for themselves can make use of the nearby Sossusvlei Lodge Restaurant, which is about 5 minutes travel down the road towards the Namib Naukluft Park's entrance.

The al fresco terrace offers magnificent views over Elim Dune and of the floodlit waterhole, where you can watch the passing parade of oryx, springbok, jackal, ground squirrel and hyena whilst enjoying exquisite food and wine.

Start your day with a scrumptious buffet breakfast with an extensive selection of all the favourite delectable breakfast foods and treats. For lunch, the chef will spoil you with the mouth-watering meal of the day, accompanied by a variety of salads and side dishes. An a 'la carte menu is available at the Sossusvlei Lodge Bar from 14h30 to 16h00. The popular buffet dinner will leave you spoiled for choice between salads, side dishes, grilled meats and stir-fries - all prepared fresh and in front of every guest! For the perfect ending, there is a range of decadent dessert sensations and a variety of cheeses and biscuits.

Basis: Dinner, Bed and Breakfast

We will be up before the sun rises to get ready for our Sossusvlei visit. We will enjoy a quick cup of coffee/tea and then wait for the entrance gates of the park to open at sunrise. We will drive for about 30 minutes while appreciating the beauty of the rising sun over the amazing red dunes. The dunes in this area are some of the highest in the world, reaching almost 400 meters, and provide the opportunity to capture wonderful images in the beautiful morning and evening light.

For the adventurous, you have the option of climbing the dunes, sliding down them or enjoying a brisk walk to Dead Vlei. You will have plenty of time to enjoy the many highlights of Sossusvlei.

·       Dune 45, the most photographed dune on earth (situated 45 km past Sesriem on the road to Sossusvlei)

·       Hiddenvlei, perfect if you are looking for solitude in the desert

·       The magnificently tall Big Daddy dune

·       Deadvlei, a paradise for photographers, as it is punctuated by blackened, dead acacia trees, in vivid contrast to the shiny white of the salty floor of the pan and the intense orange of the dunes

We will take a break halfway and enjoy a picnic breakfast while enjoying the surrounding landscape. After a full morning's activity, we will return to our lodge to relax and have dinner.

Basis: Dinner, Bed and Breakfast

After a relaxed breakfast at Desert Camp, we will depart for the coastal town of Walvis Bay, via the vast Namib-Naukluft Park. It is a beautiful drive of about 4 hours, and if time allows, we will stop for the famous Apple Pie in the small desert oasis town of Solitaire, a true Namibian tradition that should not be missed.

Our entire drive today is in the Namib Sand Sea, one of Namibia’s two UNESCO World Heritage Sites. It is the only coastal desert in the world with extensive dune fields influenced by fog. Covering an area of over three million hectares, the site features gravel plains, coastal flats and rocky hills within the sand sea, a coastal lagoon and ephemeral rivers, resulting in a landscape of exceptional beauty. Fog is the primary water source, accounting for a unique environment in which endemic invertebrates, reptiles and mammals adapt to an ever-changing variety of microhabitats and ecological niches.

Walvis Bay, Namibia’s major harbour town, is well-known for the lagoon and its prolific bird life. The Walvis Bay lagoon and salt pans are considered the most important coastal wetland in southern Africa, as over 150,000 migrant birds spend the summer months there. Over 150 bird species have been recorded in this region, along with 11 types of chameleons, lizards and geckos, and 13 species of mammal (including Pygmy Rock Mouse, Littledale's Whistling Rat and Setzer's Hairy-footed Gerbil) that also reside in the area.

We will reach our accommodation in Walvis Bay in time for a stroll around the town or even an optional adventure activity. We will have dinner at one of the many excellent restaurants in town and a good night’s rest; tomorrow is another exciting day!

Resting on Namibia's spectacular coastline just south of Swakopmund, Walvis Bay (Whale Bay) is a thriving town, Namibia’s principal harbour and one of the country’s most popular tourist centres. It is known for its natural lagoon, striking orange dunes and wealth of outdoor activities. Visitors can enjoy fishing, bird-watching, sailing, sandboarding, swimming, surfing and golf. Located just outside town is Dune 7, one of the largest dunes in the world, offering fantastic views from the crest for those with the energy to climb it. Other bucket list items include a trip to the expansive green and pink salt pans dotted with flocks of flamingos and boat trips to see seal colonies, dolphins and friendly pelicans while enjoying champagne and oysters.

Overnight: Lagoon Lodge

Lagoon Lodge, "the yellow house on the lagoon" a long-established landmark in Walvis Bay, offers 8 cosy and elegant individually decorated rooms, all with balcony or veranda and sea views. Walvis Bay is the departure point for many activities, such as dolphin cruises, Sandwich Harbour dune driving tours, quad biking, sea kayaking and sand boarding. Guests can also laze around the swimming pool or enjoy a drink on the roof deck facing the lagoon.

The lodge offers original decor, a warm and friendly atmosphere and delicious breakfasts are served. It is a wonderful place to enjoy a memorable stay on the Namibian Coast. Walvis Bay is a paradise for birders and a prime spot for surfers and kite surfers, and home for many travellers on business trips.

Basis: Bed and Breakfast

We wake up to another Namibian sunrise and enjoy our coffee while getting ready for our adventure this morning. After breakfast, you will be dropped off at the harbour for your Kayak Experience.

Pelican Point Kayaking

This your your opportunity to kayak amongst a seal colony at the tip of the Pelican Point Peninsula, about 35 km outside of Walvis Bay. We regularly encounter dolphins and - in season between July and November - even whales. The tour starts at 7h45 (from 01 September until 30 April) or 8h30 (from 01 May until 31 August) at the Walvis Bay Waterfront. You will be taken in a 4x4 vehicle on a scenic drive along the Walvis Bay Lagoon and the salt mines to Pelican Point. We stop along the way to take pictures of flamingoes, pelicans, large flocks of cormorants and a great variety of other birds and wildlife. After a safety briefing on how to use the equipment and our local conditions, we kayak for about 90 minutes amongst our seal colony on the protected side of the Pelican Point Peninsula. The kayaks are moulded plastic sit-inside double or single kayaks. They are very stable and suitable for inexperienced paddlers. After coffee, tea, rolls and cookies, we head back to Walvis Bay.

In the afternoon, you will join a Historian Quad Bike Edu-Desert Tour:

During this five-hour outing, your guide explains the Namib Desert around the Kuiseb Delta south of Walvis Bay. Apart from the exciting "up-and-down-the-dune" experience, during which guests are informed about the different forms and colours of the dunes, the focus lies on getting to know the history of the Namib Desert, and its human population, the Topnaars.

Petrified tracks bear witness that some centuries ago, humans must lived in this arid landscape, conquering the desert. Through their ancient knowledge, some Topnaar families are still able to survive by making use of water-retaining plants like the !Nara Melon. During the tour, a Topnaar family is visited, and they explain about living on the edge of the Namib Desert.

Other inhabitants of the Namib have also left their tracks, which are now petrified. The rock-hard loamy soil proves that some decades ago, elephants, rhinos and various other species migrated along the Kuiseb River. With a bit of luck, you can also see animals such as brown hyenas, African wild cats, elephant shrews, oryx, springboks and ostriches. Bushmen, indigenous inhabitants of southern Africa, have left their tracks in form of conserved ostrich egg shells, which they used as water containers.

Basis: Bed and Breakfast

After a very early breakfast and checking out, we make our way to Swakopmund, where you will do a Living Desert Tour. Afterwards, we continue our safari northwards along the Skeleton Coast. This bleak and evocatively named area is one of the most unusual coastal wildernesses on the planet, protecting about a third (500 km) of Namibia’s long coastline. It has a longstanding reputation of being a dangerous sea passage for sailors, and indeed the Portuguese sailors used to call this area the “Sand of Hell”, referring to the fact that even if one did survive a ship running aground, the harsh desert would almost certainly provide one’s final resting place.

After visiting one of the many shipwrecks along the coast for some dramatic photographs, we will turn inland towards spectacular Damaraland. We will drive past the Brandberg (“fire mountain”), Namibia’s highest mountain, with the highest peak at 2,573 meters (8,441 feet) above sea level.

In the distance, we will also see the Spitzkoppe ("sharp head"), one of Namibia's most recognizable landmarks. It was first climbed in 1946 and is now a popular climbing destination with local and foreign mountaineers alike, with plenty of technical climbs available.

This beautiful mountainous region is home to various scientifically important desert-adapted wildlife, such as African elephants, black rhinoceros and lions, which survive and thrive in this near-barren landscape. We hope to see some of them; a special treat indeed!

We will be at our lodge in time for a sundowner drink while we enjoy the view over this rugged but beautiful landscape.

Set in the Kunene Region of northwestern Namibia, Twyfelfontein is a spectacularly scenic area featuring one of the largest and most important concentrations of rock art in Africa. The name ‘Twyfelfontein’ translates to ‘Fountain of Doubt’, which refers to the perennial spring in the impressive Huab Valley flanked by the slopes of a sandstone table mountain. It was this spring that attracted Stone Age hunters over six thousand years ago, and it was during this time that the extensive group of rock engravings and paintings were produced. You will explore the area for over thirty sacred ritual sites of the traditional hunter-gatherer communities.

Overnight: Twyfelfontein Country Lodge

The Lodge is situated in the heart of the Twyfelfontein Uibasen Conservancy and boasts 56 en-suite twin rooms, reception, lounge, curio shop, open dining room, bar and swimming pool. In construction, utmost care was taken to reduce the visual impact on the environment and to blend into the mountainside with the use of thatch roofs, natural stone and paint colours toning in with the surrounding rock formations.

Basis: Dinner, Bed and Breakfast

After an early breakfast, we will depart in search of desert-adapted elephants en route to Etosha National Park, a 4-hour drive to the northeast. The landscape here is truly dramatic, and we will stop for regular photographic opportunities.

En route to Etosha, we will visit the famous Twyfelfontein. It is a massive open-air art gallery of great interest to international rock art connoisseurs and another of Namibia’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The 2,000-plus rock petroglyphs, estimated to be 6,000 years old, represent one of Africa’s largest and most noteworthy concentrations of rock art. Most of these well-preserved engravings represent rhinoceros. The site also includes depictions of elephants, ostriches and giraffes and drawings of human and animal footprints, all done in red ochre. Here we will also look out for the Namib Desert’s weird-looking living fossil plant, the Welwitschia.

Damaraland is also famous for its several important geological rock formations that are not to be missed, including the “organ pipes” arrangement (a distinctive series of dolerite pillars that have been exposed by erosion), the “petrified forest” (believed to be more than 200 million years old) and the much-photographed “burnt mountain” (a flat-topped mountain that derives its name from the piles of blackened limestone at its base). We will visit some of these today while keeping an eye out for the desert-adapted animals of the area.

We will arrive at our lodge on the southwestern side of Etosha late afternoon and settle into our accommodation.

Undoubtedly one of the great parks of Africa, the huge Etosha National Park in north-central Namibia covers more than 22,300 km2 and is synonymous with big game and wide open spaces. Etosha means “great white place”, referring to the massive (130km long and 50km wide) dry pan in the middle of the park, believed to have been formed over 100 million years ago.

We will enjoy dinner at our resort and spend some time at the camp waterhole. Remember to look up before settling into your bed tonight – the African night sky, undisturbed by city lights out here in the bush, is truly amazing.

Overnight: Okaukuejo Resort

Okaukuejo Resort is ideally located 17 km from the southern entrance of the park. Famous for its flood-lit waterhole, where visitors can observe at close quarters a spectacle of wildlife congregating and interacting. The comfortable guest chalets have views overlooking the waterhole. The bush chalets feature double rooms or family chalets. Other facilities include a restaurant, bar, shop, swimming pool, kiosk and camping facilities.

Basis: Dinner, Bed and Breakfast

Today we will enter Etosha National Park to explore the southwestern side of the park on a morning drive in our vehicle after breakfast and return to our lodge for lunch and a break in the heat of the day.

In the drier months of the year, almost all the animals tend to congregate around the waterholes dotted around the massive park. They come to drink water and are inevitably followed by predators; this allows us to sit and wait at some of the waterholes and wait for the action to come to us. This is what sets Etosha apart from other parks in southern or east Africa; unique indeed!

We will return to the lodge after our afternoon game drive to enjoy dinner.

Basis: Dinner, Bed and Breakfast

This morning we make our way to the central part of Etosha National Park, where we will spend 2 nights at Halali.

Situated in northwestern Namibia, Etosha offers a premier game viewing experience. The park’s diverse vegetation ranges from dense bush to open plains, attracting various species. Located in the heart of the park is the Etosha Pan - a shallow depression that covers an area of 5,000 square kilometres. Dry and shimmering for most of the year, the pans fill with water after seasonal rains, making it the perfect habitat for wildlife. In the dry season, the wildlife is attracted to the perennial springs and waterholes that make for excellent game viewing. Visitors can look forward to world-class game viewing, including a variety of large mammals such as lions, elephants, leopards, black rhinos, zebras, and giraffes and a diversity of birdlife such as flamingoes and pelicans.

Overnight: Halali Resort

Strategically located halfway between Okaukuejo and Namutoni, Halali is situated at the base of a dolomite hill amongst shady mopane trees. A flood-lit waterhole viewed from an elevated vantage point provides exceptional wildlife viewing throughout the day and night. Accommodation is provided in family chalets, two and four-bed bush chalets and double rooms, all converted with large sliding doors to the outside to allow visitors to experience and benefit from the peace and tranquillity of the natural surroundings. Other facilities include a restaurant, bar, shop, swimming pool, kiosk and camping facilities.

Basis: Dinner, Bed and Breakfast

We have another full day to enjoy Etosha today and slowly make our way to the eastern side of the park, where we will overnight for the next two evenings.

Etosha not only boasts some fantastic mammals but also has a bird list of more than 350 species, including regional specials like kori bustard, blue crane, violet woodhoopoe, Ruppell’s parrot, pygmy and red-necked falcon, bare-cheeked and southern pied babbler, and Burchell’s and double-banded courser. We will naturally look for these on our drives in the park, as well as around our lodge grounds.

Furthermore, Etosha is a photographer’s dream, with the contrasts in light, colour and textures particularly dramatic. Many guest lifer shots of African animal and bird species were taken in this park. The sunrises and sunsets are particularly spectacular, so get those cameras and phones ready!

After another fantastic day in the park, we will return to our lodge for dinner and a good night’s rest.

Overnight: Onguma Forest Camp

Onguma Forest Camp is in a 34 000 ha private game reserve adjacent to Etosha National Park, along the dry “Omuramba Owambo” riverbed. All bungalows have a private terrace with seating, shower/toilet, mini safe, "bush-minibar”, ceiling fan and tea/coffee facilities. For the winter season, there are heating fans available. There is a swimming pool and a thatched bar, lounge and dining area that overlooks a small waterhole and free Wifi. The water-level hide will provide hours of game-viewing opportunities for guests.

Basis: Dinner, Bed and Breakfast

Today is our last day in Etosha. We will again do morning and afternoon game drives and return to the lodge for lunch and a siesta in the heat of the day when the animals are less active.

Named a game reserve in 1907 by the governor of then-German South West Africa, Etosha was elevated to the status of a national park in 1967 by an act of parliament of the Republic of South Africa, which administered South West Africa during that time. Since then, it has become one of the main reasons visitors from all over the globe come to Namibia, and annual numbers are over 200,000. Although Etosha is best known today as a spectacular refuge for an abundance of animals, it is also a part of the world that provides critical evidence for the existence and evolution of ancestral animals. The rocks in the hills near Halali camp have revealed fossil life as old as 650 million years!

We will arrive at our accommodation late afternoon, freshen up and enjoy our last dinner together.

Basis: Dinner, Bed and Breakfast

After an early morning game drive in Etosha National Park or a relaxing final breakfast together, we will depart for Windhoek. It is a 5 to 6-hour drive southwards to the capital.

Situated in Central Namibia, the cosmopolitan city of Windhoek serves as the capital of the country. It is home to an international airport and many restaurants, shops, entertainment venues and accommodation options. The city is clean, safe and well-organised, with a colonial legacy reflected in its many German eateries and shops and the widespread use of the German language. Windhoek has an interesting mix of historical architecture and modern buildings, many of which are worth a look at, including the Alte Feste, an old fort, the 1896 Christuskirche Christ Church, and the more contemporary Supreme Court.

Overnight: The Windhoek Luxury Suites

With its lush green gardens and lavish designer rooms, Windhoek Luxury Suites offers luxury and tranquillity in the heart of the Namibian capital.

Styled with luxurious amenities and exquisitely decorated, the comfortable rooms open to a beautifully maintained private garden.

The wood-decked pool area is great for relaxing and soaking up the Namibian sun, while a refreshing dip in the pool is essential for those hot summer months. Barely a stone’s throw away, the Three Sister restaurants will wow you with a range of mouthwatering dishes and some of the best fine dining in Windhoek.

All rooms are air-conditioned, equipped with comfortable bedding, flat-screen TV, and free Wi-Fi, as well as a private bathroom and garden area with a sun terrace.

Basis: Bed and Breakfast

After breakfast and depending on your flight departure time, you will be dropped off at the airport for your departure flight home.

Ready to plan your safari?

Looking for something else?

Click here to be inspired

African safari

Why us

We live here, in Africa, and have been doing this since 1991. Travel in Africa is about knowing when and where to go, and with whom. A few weeks too early / late or a few kilometers off course and you could miss the greatest show on Earth. And wouldn’t that be a pity?

African travel

Trust & Safety

We are members of:
African Travel & Tourism Association (ATTA)
Southern African Tourism Services Association (SATSA)
✔️ Have Integrity ✔️ Are Legitimate
✔️ Are Audited ✔️ Are Insured

We are insured by Sutcliffe & Co (UK)

See what travellers say about us

Responsible safari

Make a difference

Africa Geographic is about TRAVEL and CONSERVATION – for those who want their safaris and donations to make a real difference – in Africa.

Our MANIFESTO explains how you can help us do good.