Africa | Namibia | Ultimate Namibia Safari
Discover Namibia on this wild African Safari in search of the "Big Five" animal species
10 Days / 9 Nights
Activity Level Activity levels are subjective depending on your general level of fitness and your experience; however, all of our trips are self-paced.
Explore Namibia’s scenic landscapes and discover its uniquely diverse desert-adapted wildlife in this remarkable ten-day safari adventure. Whether it’s your first adventure in Africa or your fifth, Namibia is a true adventurer’s paradise. From the comfort of your specially-designed safari vehicle, track desert lions, elephants, rhinos, and giraffe across the Namib sand sea with your expert naturalist guide keeping an eye out for Welwitschia mirabilis – Namibia’s fascinating desert plant that can live over 2,000 years. You’ll wonder how so much flora and fauna can thrive amid such a harsh landscape. Discover a different ecosystem as you paddle your sea kayak, yards away from seals, sea lions, and whales off the Skeleton Coast. Wonder at a big game gathering at water holes and moving across the Etosha salt pan on the western edge of the Kalahari Desert in Etosha National Park.
- Discover Namibia’s uniquely diverse desert-adapted wildlife
- Visit the Skeleton Coast to view aquatic animals like seals, sea lions, and whales
- Gaze upon the big game gathering at water holes and moving across the Etosha salt pan on the western edge of the Kalahari Desert in Etosha National Park
- Sleep under the stars of the African skies with limited light pollution
A few more reasons why you've gotta go:
Explore the Etosha National Park as you safari the Kalahari Desert in Africa.
Discover the Skeleton Coast as you paddle your sea kayak, up-close-and-personal with seals, sea lions, and whales.
Visit a remote Himba settlement, Namibia's indigenous people. Population 50,000!
Hosea Kutako International Airport WDH
Hosea Kutako International Airport WDH
Windhoek to Sossusvlei Dunes
This morning you will depart Windhoek in your safari vehicle with your private guide and drive southwest through the scenic Khomas Hochland highlands before heading down the Great Escarpment into the Namib Desert for a picnic lunch. Explore the remarkable sights of the Namib Desert like Sesriem Canyon. Having evolved through centuries of erosion by the Tsauchab River, this canyon exposes the varying layers of sedimentation deposited over the millenia. The cool, shaded depths of the canyon allow pools of water to gather during the rainy season which remain for much of the year. 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. Drive time: Driving from Windhoek to Sossus Dune lodge, including the afternoon visit to Sesriem canyon – 140 KM / 85 miles, 5 -6 hours
About Sossus Dune Lodge
Sossus Dune Lodge is built in an environmentally sensitive manner in an attractive ‘afro–village’ style. Situated within the Namib Naukluft Park, close to the Sesriem Canyon, and providing sweeping vistas of the dunes to the west, guests benefit from being able to reach Sossusvlei before sunrise, or to stay until after sunset. Accommodation units are interlinked by elevated walkways, and consist of 23 well spaced en suite desert chalets. All units offer magnificent open vistas of the surrounding landscapes.
Sossusvlei / Namib Desert
Set off before sunrise to the Namib Naukluft National Park to capture the dunes while the light is soft and shadows accentuate the towering shapes and curves. The most frequently visited section of the park has become known as Sossusvlei, famous for its towering apricot-colored sand dunes in the Tsauchab River valley. The stark white clay pan contrasts against the orange sands and forms the endpoint of the ephemeral Tsauchab River. Sand-locked pans to the west show where the river previously flowed before dunes shifted its endpoint 60,000 years ago to where it currently gathers at Sossusvlei. This area boasts some of the highest free-standing sand dunes in the world, and you will learn about the formation of Namib Desert and its many fascinating creatures and plants that have adapted to survive these harsh environs. Once you have explored Sossusvlei, Deadvlei and the surrounding dune fields enjoy a relaxed picnic brunch in the shade of a camel thorn tree.
Sossusvlei to Swakopmund
Today venture northwest through awesome and ever changing desert landscapes of the Namib Naukluft National Park, including the impressive Gaub and Kuiseb canyons. Your drive gives way to waves at Swakopmund where you can enjoy the pleasant seaside location and cooler coastal air. Swakopmund is a small, German-influenced coastal resort nestled between the desert and the sea. It boasts a charming combination of Bavarian colonial architecture blended with modern hotels, shops, restaurants, museums, craft centers, galleries and cafés. Explore the town, wandering along the waterfront on foot, before dinner at a popular local restaurant which specializes in fresh seafood.
Note: Optional activities today include a sunrise balloon flight over the Namib Naukluft National Park, and a scenic light aircraft flight over Sossusvlei along the Diamond Coast. These excursions must be booked in advance; please inquire for pricing. Drive time: Driving from Sossus Dune Lodge – Swakopmund, – 100KM / 60 miles, 6-7 hours
About The Delight Swakopmund
The Delight Swakopmund is a fresh breeze in the desert. Colorful interiors and lush gardens set this hotel apart from your other safari accommodations. Dine at their restaurant that features a mix of worldly cuisines, or have a drink at their funky bar. All rooms include wi-fi. The hotel is a short walk to in-town activities, shops, and restaurants.
After a scenic drive to Pelican Point lighthouse head out on the water for a kayak safari. 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. You also have the choice to explore by motor boat, if you prefer. Return to Swakopmund for an afternoon at leisure at your guesthouse or out in town.
Note: Activities such as camel rides, scenic flights, quad-biking in the coastal dunes, tandem or solo sky diving and more can all be booked at an extra cost; please inquire for pricing.
Swakopmund to Damaraland
Your safari today takes you north and east into the wonderful and diverse region of Damaraland. You’ll pass Namibia’s highest mountain, the Brandberg which peaks at 2,573 m above sea level, and view game amid the vastness of the dramatic scenery along the way. This region is typified by displays of color, magnificent table topped mountains, rock formations and bizarre-looking vegetation. The 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. The variety and loneliness of the area as well as the scenic splendor is astounding.
The afternoon brings you to the geological sites of the pre-historic Twyfelfontein rock engravings (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), Burnt Mountain (a unique hill that seems to catch fire at sunset) and the Organ Pipes (a geological marvel). Return to camp and sleep under a blanket of stars, made clearer by one of the darkest skies in the world. Drive time: Driving from Swakopmund – Camp Kipwe – 5- 6 hours, 285 KM / 175 miles
About 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 center 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.
Enjoy an exciting 4×4 excursion along the Huab River valleys, searching for game like the elusive desert-adapted elephants. These remarkable creatures can walk as far as 68km between watering holes, further than any other elephant in the world. Damaraland is home to a wide variety of other desert-adapted wildlife and hidden desert treasures. A picnic lunch is possible in the shade of a large Ana tree by the riverbed while watching a herd of elephant browse nearby.
Damaraland to Southern Etosha National Park
Embark on a safari to Etosha National Park via the scenic Grootberg Pass. Along the way your guide will take you to visit a semi-nomadic Himba settlement. They are one of the last truly traditional peoples of Namibia and have not adopted conventional practices. You will learn about some of the customs and traditions of these very proud people, and will be given insight into their beliefs, way of life and everyday routine. After visiting the Himba you’ll head towards tonight’s destination, just south of the Etosha National Park’s Andersson Gate. You’ll enjoy the game viewing under the stars at the camp’s own waterhole. Drive time: Driving from Camp Kipwe – Safarihoek Lodge, including Himba visit – 10 hours, 400 KM / 250 miles
About Safarihoek Lodge
Safarihoek is located on Etosha Heights and is part of a privately owned game reserve which shares borders with Etosha National Park. It consists of 9 farms that were combined to create a stunning wildlife reserve. With an array of animals which include various species of antelope, predators, birds as well as others, Etosha Heights supports local conservation efforts.
Southern to Eastern Etosha National Park
Today is dedicated to a full day of exciting game viewing within the crown jewel of Namibia, Etosha National Park. Visit exceptional waterholes such as Goas and Namutoni Camp in the east. Etosha National Park’s vast expanse contains many saline depressions or ‘pans’. The largest, the Etosha Pan, can be classified as a saline desert. It fills with water only when sufficient rain falls to the north in Angola, inducing floods to flow southward along the Cuvelai drainage system. Stories at dinner tonight will be replete with tales of close encounters with wildlife.
About Onguma Tree Top Camp
Onguma Tree Top Camp is a unique and beautiful camp, situated on the private Onguma Game Reserve, bordering on the eastern side of Etosha National Park. A small and intimate camp specially designed for travelers who would truly like to experience the bush in all its raw splendor. 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 four 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 so guests can watch while the chef conjures up wonderful dishes on an open fire. All rooms have an en-suite bathroom as well as a wonderful private outside shower.
Etosha National Park / Onguma Game Reserve
Your guide will lead the way on another memorable game drive within the eastern section of Etosha National Park. Lunch at camp and take a rest, before spending your final afternoon on a game drive on the private Onguma Game Reserve. Day’s end brings a spectacular sunset overlooking Fischer’s Pan. You’ll return to camp after sunset with enough time to freshen up and enjoy your final ‘safari dinner’ overlooking the wildlife visiting the camp’s waterhole. Drive time: Driving from Safarihoek – Onguma Tree Tops, driving through the park – approx. 9 hours, 186 KM / 115 miles
Onguma Game Reserve to Windhoek
You’ll leave the bush behind as you head out from Onguma Tree Top 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. On an informative game drive and tour of the center you will learn about the function and vision of the AfriCat Foundation and will also get to meet some of the Foundation’s special carnivore ambassadors. After the excursion, arrive back in Windhoek in the late afternoon, just as the sun is setting. Say farewell to your Namibian safari adventure! Drive time: Driving from Onguma Tree Tops – Windhoek, via the AfriCat visit – 9 hours, 520 KM / 320 miles
Arrival & Departure
Your trip begins with your arrival at Hosea Kutako International Airport where you will be met by an Austin Adventures representative. They will transfer you to Sossus Dune Lodge accommodation for check-in. On Day 10, you will be transferred to Hosea Kutako International Airport for your flight home, approximately three hours prior to your flight departure time.
- Etosha National Park safaris
- Kayak with seals and dolphins
- Sesriem Canyon visit
- Big cat sanctuary
- Stay inside the Namib Naukluft Park
- Visit remote Himba settlement
Discover a different ecosystem as you paddle your sea kayak, yards away from seals, sea lions and whales off the Skeleton Coast. Wonder at big game gathering at water holes and moving across the Etosha salt pan on the western edge of the Kalahari Desert in Etosha National Park.
The hallmark of an Austin Adventures vacation is our exceptional dining. All meals: breakfasts, lunches, snacks, dinners, refreshments and receptions – except one dinner on your own – are included as indicated by itinerary. (B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner). Alcoholic beverages and related gratuities are not included in the trip price.
After receiving your reservation and deposit, we’ll send you a pre-trip planner with general information about the area you’ll be visiting, a packing list, exercise guidelines, a guest information questionnaire and a liability release agreement for you to sign and return within 10 days.
Included in Trip Price
- All guided tours and excursions
- Transportation in a luxury air-conditioned safari vehicle
- All meals as indicated [B-breakfast, L-lunch, D-dinner]
- Services of a registered and experienced naturalist English-speaking safari guide
- Entrance fees and excursions as described in the above itinerary
- Mineral water on board the safari vehicle
Not Included in Trip Price
- International airfare
- Return airport transfers from Windhoek International Airport – Windhoek – Windhoek International Airport
- Pre-and post-safari accommodations, if desired, in Windhoek
- Any entrance fees and excursions not included in the above itinerary
- Any beverages, with the exception of mineral water on the safari vehicle
- Laundry services
- Tips and gratuities
- Airport departure taxes
- Personal expenses for extra services, optional activities, or changes in your itinerary for reasons beyond our control
- Travel insurance for trip cancellation, medical services, or evacuation
- Any other items not mentioned above
Activity levels are subjective depending on your general level of fitness and your experience; however, all of our trips are self-paced.1 Easy (1)
Activity levels are subjective depending on your general level of fitness and your experience; however, all of our trips are self-paced.2 Moderately Easy (2)
Want to know how to fully experience the depth of beauty and culture in a place? Ask Carol Austin. A Montana native who treasures the land and people in her own backyard—be it Yellowstone, the Beartooths, or the family around her dinner table—Carol knows how to embrace any destination she explores, a feat at 40+ countries and counting. And with more than 20 years in the travel industry, she’s really good at helping guests plan—and fully enjoy—their adventure vacation, too. She co-founded Austin Adventures with her husband, Dan Austin.