Namibia Self-Drive Safari (Classic)
Departs: Daily private departures based on a minimum of 2 passengers
Namibia boasts an excellent road infrastructure and whilst long driving times cannot be avoided, its about enjoying the journey rather than rushing from place to place and many routes include various sights of interest worthy of a stopover. With a choice of Classic or Superior accommodation, this 13 day self-drive itinerary offers great value for money and includes visits to some of Namibia’s most popular sites including Sossusvlei, Damaraland and Etosha National Park.
Day 1 - Windhoek
After landing at Windhoek International Airport, located 40km outside Windhoek, you will be met by a representative of Ultimate Safaris. You will be transferred to Villa Violet, where you will also be provided with everything you will need for your self-drive safari; from your accommodation vouchers to a map marked with your route and a full safari briefing (you vehicle will be delivered to you early tomorrow morning).
Dinner this evening is for your own account out at one of the restaurants in town (the guesthouse can assist with a taxi service).
Please note: There is a foreign exchange desk at Windhoek International Airport if required on arrival. We recommend that you opt for South African Rand rather than Namibian Dollars as both are legal tender in Namibia, however Namibian Dollars are limited to use and exchanging only within Namibia.
Named after the famous explorer Sir Francis Galton, Galton House has a relaxed but efficient style which creates a very welcoming atmosphere. Impressive wildlife photography adorns the walls whilst the rest of the interior is a combination of modern minimalistic and understated chic.
The communal areas consist of a large lounge, indoor and outdoor dining areas, a swimming pool, an early arrival/late departure day room (including toilet, shower, changing and re-packing facility) as well as understated garden areas. There is also a delightful al-fresco dining area by the pool where freshly prepared and very tasty meals are served (including lunch and dinner). A number of shops, restaurants and supermarkets are within easy walking distance.
Day 2 - Sossusvlei
After an early breakfast this morning your rental vehicle (Toyota Hilux Double Cab 4×4 – Manual Gearbox – or similar) will be delivered to you at the guesthouse. You will receive a full vehicle briefing – please ensure that you have your driver’s license, credit card, and passport on hand to complete the vehicle hire documents. After this you depart Windhoek in your rental vehicle and drive onwards to arrive at Desert Homestead Lodge, where you will stay for two nights whilst you explore the remarkable sights of the Namib Desert. (BD)
The rest of the afternoon is at leisure at Desert Homestead Lodge to enjoy your scenic desert surroundings and relax by the pool.
Deep in the 7000-ha nature reserve of Desert Homestead Lodge the Outpost opens its gates and offers relaxed hospitality with a natural atmosphere. Enjoy the impressive panoramic view from the 11 houses, the family apartment or the main house with restaurant, lounge and pool area, set on the base of a mountain. Our guests are welcome to take advantage of all activities of the Desert Homestead Lodge. Excursions to Sossusvlei as well as horse-safaris on Sundowner drives.
Day 3 - Sossusvlei
This morning you will need to rise early for a captivating guided Sossusvlei excursion as arranged with Desert Homestead Lodge (at own expense). You may also opt to self-drive into the park in your rental vehicle (Park fees at extra cost). You would enter the park at sunrise and capture the dunes whilst the light is soft and shadows accentuate the towering shapes and curves. (BD)
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 then return to Desert Homestead Lodge in the early afternoon, with the rest of the afternoon at your leisure.
Please note: Namib Naukluft National Park daily entrance fee id payable at Sesriem reception on arrival.
Day 4 - Swakopmund
NOTE: Option to include a sunrise balloon flight or scenic light aircraft flight over the Namib Naukluft National Park before you depart for Swakopmund (at own expense).
The fascinating drive today takes you northwest through awesome and 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, where you have the option to visit the lagoon to see the interesting mix of pelicans, flamingos and other sea-birds, before continuing north to Swakopmund where you can enjoy the pleasant seaside location and cooler coastal air. (B)
This afternoon you have the option to explore the shops, waterfront and craft market as appeals, before heading out for dinner at one of the popular restaurants in town. Dinner this evening is for your own account as there are a number of excellent restaurants to choose from.
Cornerstone Guest House is a small, private and peaceful bed and breakfast within an easy walk to the seafront and the town centre of Swakopmund on Namibia’s fascinating Skeleton Coast.
Occupying a quiet corner of Swakopmund’s old town near The Marine Museum and The Old Brewery, Cornerstone Guest House offers the charm and intimacy of a family-run B&B combined with the modern amenities of a luxury hotel.
Within a few minutes from the guest house you can walk to beaches, cafés, restaurants, lively pubs, Swakopmund’s tourist attractions and a variety of interesting shops and markets in the town.
Day 5 - Swakopmund
Today is at your leisure to spend exploring Swakopmund, Walvis Bay and surrounding areas. You may like to climb the coastal dunes at Langstrand or Dune 7, explore Swakopmund’s shops, cafe’s, museums and waterfront, or partake in any of the adventure activities on offer such as quad-biking and sand-boarding, boat cruises, kayaking, and scenic flights (at own expense). (B)
You may wish to join a morning dolphin and seal catamaran cruise on the Walvis Bay harbour and lagoon this morning, where you will see seals, pelicans, and flamingos amongst other marine life, and hopefully you will also see Heaviside and Bottlenose dolphins. Oysters and South African bubbly are served on board, along with other beverages and snacks (at own expense).
Another option would be to explore the desert area by taking part in the fascinating and informative ‘Living Desert Tour’. This Desert Tour concentrates on exploring the local dune belt between Walvis Bay and Swakopmund, taking special care not to damage the gravel plains and cause any unnecessary damage to the dune eco-system. Also highly recommended is a half or full day excursion into Sandwich Harbour, the most important wetlands and feeding area on the west coast of Southern Africa for many migratory birds (at own expense).
Day 6 - Damaraland
Today you continue your self-drive journey, passing 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’. (BD)
Huddled in the rocks, with sweeping views across the Aba Huab valley, Camp Kipwe is full of surprises, starting when guests first arrive. It appears as if rocks have tumbled down the hill to reveal this gem of a camp.
The setting is one of intimacy and space. An inviting lounge area, where birds fly in to enjoy the water seeping from the rocks, a refreshing swimming pool nestled in the rocks and a scattering of bungalows complete this eco friendly camp. The surrounding space and endless views of Damaraland cannot be contained. They beckon you to explore – enjoy an early morning game drive in search of elusive desert dwelling elephants, hike in the ancient surroundings of the Aba Huab River or travel back in time at Twyfelfontein, Namibia’s first UNESO World Heritage site.
Day 7 - Damaraland
Today you join on a scheduled morning activity which departs after an early breakfast into the ephemeral Aba Huab River valley to explore this remarkable region and to search for game, especially 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. You will normally then return to camp for lunch and a well-deserved siesta and enjoy an afternoon activity as on offer at Camp Kipwe. (BD)
Day 8 - Etosha National Park
The route today takes you from Camp Kipwe through the farming land of Khorixas and Outjo to the southern side of Etosha National Park. Check into Etosha Safari Lodge and if time allows, you can enter Etosha at the southern Anderssons Gate for an afternoon game drive in the Park. (B)
Etosha Safari Lodge is situated on a hillock overlooking the African bush savannah, approximately 9km from the southern entrance to the Etosha National Park. Each en-suite chalet offers a warm and creative African ambience and has air-conditioning and mosquito netting. Apart from the restaurant and bar, there is a wooden deck ideal for enjoying sundowners high above the Mopani bush, and three inviting swimming pools.
Day 9 - Etosha National Park
Today is available for a full day of game viewing within Etosha National Park. You can head into the Park on leisurely game drives in your hired vehicle, either going out in the morning and the afternoon, returning to Etosha Safari Lodge for lunch (or you may choose to have lunch at one of the Resorts inside the Park), and an early afternoon rest; or you can head east across the Park to spend more time in the area around Halali. Either way, you will need to return to Etosha Safari Lodge by sunset. (B)
* Etosha National Park gates open at sunrise and close at sunset (including the camp gates). The camps have a small shop for basic supplies, a fuel station, and a post office.
* The speed limit whilst driving in Etosha is 60km per hour.
* Do not get out of your vehicle whilst in Etosha unless you are safely within a designated area.
* The daily entrance fee for Etosha National Park (payable at Dolomite, Okaukuejo, Halali or Namutoni reception by cash or credit card) is N$250 per person and N$50 for the vehicle (subject to change). You will fill in a registration form upon entry into Etosha, please keep this form as well as your park fees payment receipt to present at the gate upon departure.
Day 10 - Okonjima
After breakfast and freshening up you will depart for and make your way to Okonjima located at the base of the Omboroko Mountains near Waterberg. You will arrive at Okonjima Bush Camp in time for lunch. Here you can enjoy the welcoming atmosphere, superb accommodation and fantastic activities; starting with a guided afternoon visit to the AfriCat Foundation.. (BLD)
Okonjima was a cattle farm since the early 1920s that was bought by Brahman breeders Val (VJ) and Rose Hanssen in 1970. By the time Namibia gained its independence in early 1990, they needed to address increasing livestock losses and growing interest in Namibia as a tourist destination. Three years later their herds of Brahman and Jersey cattle were sold and Okonjima’s attention turned to recovering the grass plains and transforming it into a nature reserve, with a primary focus on carnivore conservation through The AfriCat Foundation. Today it’s a luxurious African safari destination in the heart of Namibia that’s ideal for wildlife photography and famed for its cheetah, brown hyena and leopard sightings.
Day 11 - Okonjima
A full day of wonderful activities as offered by Okonjima. They include a Leopard drive and an Endangered Species drive. You will rise early and have tea/coffee and a snack before departing on the morning guided activity. Return to camp for a hearty brunch with time to relax and enjoy your peaceful bush surroundings until the afternoon guided activity commences. (BLD)
AfriCat Foundation: Okonjima is home to the AfriCat Foundation, a wildlife sanctuary founded in 1991 that is dedicated to creating conservation awareness, preserving habitat, promoting environmental educational research and supporting animal welfare. Okonjima has an education and research centre and you will have the opportunity to learn about the AfriCat Foundation which is perfectly situated to conduct ecological research focusing on a variety of rare and endangered species. There are interesting guided walking trails on offer, and bird watching is also a popular activity as over 300 bird species have been identified here.
Day 12 - Windhoek
This morning you will make your way back to Windhoek via the towns of Outjo and Okahandja. You arrive in Windhoek in the late afternoon, to spend the last night of your safari at the Galton House. This evening you can enjoy dinner at the guesthouse or at any restaurant out in town (at own expense). (B)
Day 13 - End of Namibia Self Drive Tour
This morning your rental vehicle will be collected at the Galton House, after which an Ultimate Safaris representative will collect you for your transfer to the Windhoek Airport, in time for the 2-hour check-in of your outgoing international flight back home. (B)
Dates and Pricing
- 03 Jun 23 - 31 Oct 23 $7,270 $8,425
- 01 Jan 24 - 31 Mar 24 $6,770 $7,740
Prices shown are per person based on twin share. Seasonal supplements and minimum night requirement may apply. Solo traveller and extra night prices available on request. Luggage restrictions may apply. International flights not included.