When you arrive at the international airport in Windhoek, you will be met and transferred to your comfortable guest house. Relax after your flight, or maybe explore this interesting city.
To Okonjima Plains Camp
This morning you will be collected early and head to the airport to meet the rest of your group. From here you are driven north to Okonjima, a journey of around three hours. Okonjima is the HQ of the AfriCat Foundation, committed to the conservation of wild cats in Namibia, especially cheetah and leopard, and you should have time to see some of these beautiful creatures for yourself. Tonight you have dinner and stay at Okonjima Plains Camp.
To Mokuti Etosha Lodge
Your northerly journey continues, via the towns of Otjiwarongo, Otavi and Tsumeb to Mokuti Etosha Lodge, on the eastern side of Etosha National Park. This afternoon you head into the park for a first game drive, an exciting experience and taster of the days to come on safari.
Zebra, giraffe, kudu, oryx and impala are frequently seen, and attract lion, leopard and cheetah. The skill and expert knowledge of your guide soon become apparent, and will play a large part in your overall enjoyment of this holiday.
Etosha is known for its plentiful wildlife and waterholes, where a wide range of animals can be seen. Watching them as they drink and interact with one another is fascinating, and you should be able to capture some excellent photographs.
Safaris usually take place twice a day, in early morning and late afternoon, when animals are most active. By the end of today you will be getting into the safari spirit and learning for yourself how addictive this experience can become!
To Etosha Safari Lodge
Today you travel west to Etosha Safari Lodge near the park's central entrance, where you stay for two nights. The lodge has comfy bungalow accommodation, all air conditioned and with en-suite bathrooms and a private veranda.
Facilities include a restaurant with covered and open dining areas, a bar and swimming pool. As a bonus there is free wifi so you can keep in touch with the outside world.
Etosha Safari Lodge is just 14kms from Anderson's Gate on the western border of Etosha, and today you set off on a game drive into the park. Each safari is different and a large part of the appeal lies in its unpredictability. You set out with hopes of what you may see, but often the reality is even better.
Watching herds of springbok and wildebeest is an enthralling sight, and encountering predators is always a thrill. At the end of each drive you return to camp to unwind and swap experiences with fellow travellers.
To Hobatere, Etosha
Your route continues westward to Hobatere Lodge, located in a private concession between Etosha National Park and Damaraland. There's a large lounge where you can relax after the journey, a bar and refreshment counter for drinks and snacks.
Outdoors there's a small swimming pool, deck and a fire pit and a little way away is a waterhole where, with the use of binoculars, you can watch game.
To Khowarib Gorge
You are on the road again, your destination being your first campsite, at Khowarib Gorge, on the border of Damaraland and Kaokoland. This area is inhabited by a handful of Damara and Herero families. The campsite is operated by the Khowarib community, and is located on the riverbank.
There are lovely views of the gorge and river from the camp, and tonight you can enjoy the proximity to nature that camping affords, as you join the group around the campfire, and later, as you fall asleep to sounds of wildlife.
To Hoanib River
Breakfast is a generous meal, designed to set you up for the day ahead. The drive follows the course of the dry Hoanib River, where groves of acacia trees grow which provide nutrition for the region's desert-adapted elephants. You have good chances to observe these animals during your journey, aided, as ever, by your guide. The campsite at Hoanib River is your home for the next two nights.
At Hoanib River
This remote and arid region may appear inhospitable but a number of animals have made it their home. It is not just the elephant that has adapted to the habitat and climate, but also giraffe, springbok and gemsbok, plus predators such as lion and hyena, and your guide can help you spot some of these creatures during today's safari. The landscape with its rugged canyons and rocky hills, is starkly beautiful and lends itself to photography.
To Palmwag Concession
Your route leads into the Palmwag Concession, which extends for 5,000 square kilometres. It is a desert region yet has several fresh water springs, providing vital water for the wildlife including desert-adapted black rhino and elephant, Hartmann's mountain zebra, oryx, springbok, kudu and giraffe. These in turn attract the likes of cheetah, leopard, lion and hyena. Not to be outdone, birds are profuse, with raptor such as Verreaux's eagle, lanner falcon and greater kestrel often seen. The resident population of black rhino makes up about about 70% of the world population of the free ranging species and Save the Rhino Trust operates conservation programmes in the reserve. This is the final night of the camping section of your holiday.
To Palmwag Lodge
Enjoy you last breakfast camping in the bush before boarding the vehicle for the drive to Palmwag Lodge. The lodge overlooks the Uniab River and is beside a natural spring and tall palm trees, giving it the feel of an oasis.
The lodge has a long history of hosting visitors to the area, and today you join that tradition. After your days camping you will appreciate facilities like the swimming pool, lounge, bar and cosy rooms to the full. The viewing decks are sited to allow you to watch birds and elephants by the river, and the restaurant has indoor and outdoor seating.
Via Twyfelfontein To Swakopmund
An undoubted highlight of the trip is Twyfelfontein which you visit today. This site holds around 2,000 ancient San rock paintings and engravings and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Most depict rhinos, with others of elephant, ostrich and giraffe, and some show hunting scenes including humans.
Following a guided tour of this fascinating site you continue to Swakopmund, via the colourful rocks of Burnt Mountain and the bizarre Organ Pipes formation of basalt columns. On arrival in Swakopmund you check into your lodge.
You have a treat in store this morning! You are taken down to the dock where you board a boat for a cruise into the Walvis Bay Lagoon, where bottlenose and Heaviside's dolphins are often seen. You cannot fail to be entranced by the sight of these creatures swimming alongside the boat and jumping out of the water. There are also good chances of spotting pelicans by the shore.
On your return to dry land you have the rest of your day to do as you please. Swakopmund is known as Namibia's playground and you have a wide range of activities to choose from including 4x4 rides in the Namib Desert, sand boarding, ecological tours of the dunes, strolling along the promenade, browsing among the art galleries and enjoying refreshments at the many restaurants and cafes.
You are travelling south today, through the Namib Naukluft Park via the Kuiseb and Gaub passes into the Namib Desert. The scenery is breathtaking and there are stops en-route to take photos and simply admire all that you see. Total driving time is around five hours plus stops. Your destination is Sossusvlei Desert Camp, where you stay in a cosy, air conditioned chalet and can enjoy the seemingly endless desert vistas.
Sossusvlei And Sesriem
Rise early this morning to appreciate the beauty of dawn in the Namib Desert. Soon you are heading off to the vast red-orange sand dunes, some of the highest in the world at almost 400 metres. You also visit Sesriem Canyon, equally majestic in scale, formed over millions of years by the Tsauchab River. Both destinations offer plenty of photo opportunities, so be sure to take your camera. After a long day in the open you'll be happy to return to your room to shower away the dust and prepare for dinner.
Enjoy breakfast at the lodge before packing your bags in readiness for the drive back to Windhoek. Your route takes you through the Remhoogte Pass, from which you can get far reaching views of the Namib Desert, and the historic town of Rehoboth. The journey takes around five to six hours, plus stops en route.
Tonight you stay at Galton House in the wealthy suburb of Eros. There are restaurants nearby but if you prefer you can dine in house.
Having had breakfast you are free to explore Windhoek until it's time to head to the airport to check in for your home bound flight.
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