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NWR Camps: Fish River + Namib + Etosha + Waterberg
and car hire
This inexpensive self drive holiday explores the whole of Namibia, staying wherever possible at rest camps run by Namibia Wildlfe Resorts, the national parks authority. Each camp has a superb location offering outstanding opportunities for game viewing, photography, botany, birding and astronomy with the clear night skies having virtually no light pollution.
• Fish River Canyon
• Ai Ais
• Terrace Bay
• Skeleton Coast
• Etosha National Park
, collect your hire car and drive to your hotel in
Check in and relax under warm blue Namibian skies.
This morning drive southwards for 5-hours along the edges of the vast
, the largest sand mass on earth. With its endless plains interspersed with Acacia trees and shrubs, this harsh environment is home to the
people as well as an amazing variety of wildlife.
View the unique fauna and flora of the Kalahari that have survived in this desert environment for thousands of years, before checking into your
guesthouse for dinner and overnight.
Today drive 5-hours south to the great
Fish River Canyon
, the second largest on earth. As you travel through the rocky plains see unique Quiver Trees nestled amongst huge dolerite boulders, some stacked in such a mysterious way that it seems impossible that they were formed by natural forces.
Fish River Canyon
the dramatic geological formations of the Nama Karoo Desert take on stupendous proportions. The vegetation is characterized by dwarf shrubs & scattered grasslands and the slopes of the plateau mountains and vast plains are home to Hartmann’s mountain zebra, springbok, gemsbok, kudu & ostrich.
After visiting the canyon, continue to the hot springs at
and check into your Namibia Wildlife Resorts rest camp (park fees for own account).
At leisure to relax and enjoy the hot springs and dramatic scenery of the
Today drive 4-hours to
, a winter rainfall area where bizarre looking shrubs store moisture in their leaves and stems to tide them over the dry summer months.
After winter rains, this desert unfolds in a carpet of flowers and an explosion of colours. It is one of the 20 most important biomes in the plant world and counts as the most species diverse desert in the world. Explore the sweeping desert plains before checking into your hotel in Aus.
Today drive from
to see the
Wild Desert Horses
at Garub, a watering point where they can be observed as they come to drink.
Continue 2-hours to the ghost town of
, which has been absorbed by the desert sands, and the small diamond town of
on the Atlantic Coast before returning to
in the late afternoon.
Continue northwards today through ever-changing landscapes into the great
, a 7-hour drive through dramatically beautiful desert scenery. The terrain becomes more arid as you travel towards
, whose great mountains of sand are a monument to the extreme forces of nature.
Gondwana Namib Park
Namib Naukluft Park
before checking into your Namibia Wildlife lodge. The petrified dunes of the dry riverbed of the Dieprivier are a special attraction, as they are remnants of the fossilised dunes of the ancient Namib, now overlaid with the sands of the younger Namib.
Today we recommend an optional tour to
. An early start is imperative as this is the coolest part of the day and the best for photography, as you travel by 4x4 vehicle into this famous clay pan surrounded by some of the highest sand dunes in the world – an endless sea of reddish sand stretching all the way to the distant horizon.
Its monumental star shaped sand dunes, some up to 1,000 ft (325m) when measured from the base, were formed by strong multi-directional winds. The warm tints of sand ranging from apricot to orange, red and maroon, contrast vividly with the stark white surface of the clay pans at their base. This provides photographers with a spectacular display of images to capture.
Climbing one of these dunes affords the energetic traveller an unforgettable experience of endless vistas across a sea of dunes. Time will also be taken to explore the impressive conglomerate gorges of the
, with its rock pools fed by the Tsauchab River. The erosion of many centuries has resulted in a narrow gorge, which in the rainy season sometimes fills the rock pools. The name Sesriem is derived from the six “rieme” (leather thongs) that early pioneers used to draw water from these pools.
At leisure to enjoy the stark beauty of the
Enjoy one of the optional activities offered in the region, such as horse riding or a pre-dawn
Hot Air Balloon Ride
over the majestic sand dunes. Alternatively simply relax and enjoy the spectacular desert landscape surrounding your lodge, with amazing star gazing in the evening.
Today drive overland for 4-hours to
, through the starkly beautiful Gaub and Kuiseb Canyons of the
, an unusual landscape formed by the valleys of the Swakop River and view ancient Welwitschia Mirabilis plants found on its vast gravel plains, before arriving in the charming seaside town of
with its old lighthouse and easy access to the sand dunes and activities of the Namib.
is situated on the Atlantic Coast where the cold Benguela Current sweeps up from Antarctica, releasing no moisture into the prevailingly onshore winds – hence the very low rainfall and desert conditions. Fog is common along the coast in the early mornings and late afternoons and this is what gives life to the desert-adapted flora and fauna of the region. The cold current is also highly oxygenated, causing it to teem with marine life.
Check into your hotel and relax on the shores of the
At leisure to relax at the beach resort of
As this is Namibia’s playground, a wide variety of activities are on offer, including a
to see seals, dolphins and whales in season, a Namib Desert tour, and quad biking or paragliding in the sand dunes. Alternatively simply relax at a quaint coffee shop or walk along the sandy beaches.
This morning drive 5-hours across the barren
, renowned for its many shipwrecks and inhospitable coastline. It is here one finds a small lichen reserve, where a relatively large variety of these interesting and slow growing organisms are protected. Also stop to see the thriving population of seals at
Cross Seal Reserve
and the many gannets and other sea birds in this area.
Continue to timeless
and take time to explore the semi-desert flora and fauna of this region and its fascinating rock formations, as you travel through vast uninhabited open spaces.
Also visit geological features in the area such as the Organ Pipes and the Petrified Forest where millions of years ago giant tree trunks were deposited and subsequently turned to stone. In the late afternoon check into your lodge near
At leisure to explore
, meaning "Doubtful Spring" and declared a World Heritage site to preserve the many ancient rock paintings and engravings left by the early San Bushmen.
The slopes of the area are strewn with boulders dotted with thousands of their rock art and paintings – making it a virtual open-air museum.
Afternoon at leisure around the swimming pool, or join an optional game drive along the river beds in search of rare
Today drive 5-hours through Damaraland to
Etosha National Park
, one of the largest and greatest game parks in Africa.
Etosha owes its unique landscape to a vast shallow depression – the
. During the dry season it becomes an expanse of white cracked mud, shimmering with mirages and spiralling dust devils, with its open pans offering magnificent game viewing. Etosha is home to over a hundred different species of mammals, including cheetah, leopard, lion, elephant, rhino, giraffe, zebra and wildebeest.
Check into your rest camp near the western entrance to the park (park fees payable locally on entrance).
Enjoy unparalled game viewing today, as you drive from the western sector of
Etosha National Park
to the southern sector, stopping at watering holes along the way, as this is the best way to view game in Etosha.
Check into your next rest camp situated near the southern entrance to Etosha.
Today spend the whole day exploring
Etosha National Park
, as you drive to your next rest camp in this great game sanctuary.
Enjoy spectacular game viewing on the open pans, where game is more easily visible, as well as wonderful viewing at the rest camp waterholes.
Today drive 3-hours from
to the beautiful
, home of some of the rarest animal species found in Namibia.
This massive red sandstone plateau was the site of an historic battle in 1904, when a force of 1,600 German colonial soldiers almost annihilated over 40,000 Herero men, women and children in a devastating battle.
Today it is managed as a breeding area for endangered species such as black and white rhino, sable antelope and roan antelope. The nature reserve is also home to more than 20 different types of bats, over 13 frog species and over 200 different bird species, including the only breeding colony of rare Cape Vultures. Check into your Namibia Wildlife Resorts rest camp on this serene plateau that towers over the surrounding plains (park fees for own account).
At leisure to explore the magnificent
, which was once home to dinosaurs and the ancient
people, whose rock paintings can still be seen on the plateau.
Whilst the plateau is arid on top, there is a lot of surface water and strong permanent springs at the foot of the mountain resulting in a lush green vegetation.
Wildlife on the plateau includes black and white rhino, buffalo, eland, gemsbok, giraffe, kudu, roan antelope, sable antelope, impala, klipspringer, steenbok, black-backed jackal, caracal, cheetah, hyena and leopard. It is also possible to visit the
Cheetah Conservation Fund
, who are working to preserve this majestic but highly endangered species.
Today drive 1-hour to Okonjima, the home of the
dedicated to the preservation of Namibia’s large carnivores, but especially leopard and cheetah. Namibia accounts for 25% of the world’s population of the endangered cheetah, which can be radio-tracked on foot in the rehabilitation area where they roam freely and catch their own prey. Leopards are also frequently seen from the viewing hide or can be radio-tracked from the game viewing vehicle.
Check in to your lodge and settle in, before enjoying a game activity in the reserve.
Drive 3-hours through central Namibia to drop off your hire car at
for your flight home.
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