Tailor-Made Holiday

Namibia - Family Self-Drive Adventure

14 days

from £1,595pp (excluding flights)

Combine the best of Namibia’s dramatic landscapes with two of its greatest wildlife reserves, on a family-friendly journey. Track big cats with experts, watch rhinos quench their thirst, admire millennia-old rock carvings, cruise beside bottlenose dolphins and walk across vast dune-dominated landscapes.

  • Track big cats in Okonjima and watch rhinos drink beside the waterholes of Etosha
  • Visit the remarkable petroglyphs of Twyfelfontein – hidden amongst colourful Damaraland
  • Spot Cape fur seals and bottlenose dolphins frolicking off the Skeleton Coast
  • Drive deep into the dunes of the Namib Desert to visit the impressive Sossusvlei

OKONJIMA AND ETOSHA

Begin to the north of Windhoek, at the carnivore-rich Okonjima Nature Reserve. Home to the AfriCat Foundation, this beautiful area of wilderness is used to rehabilitate orphaned big cats. Track the radio-collared cheetahs and leopards that roam the reserve – follow on foot or in a 4x4, led by expert guides.

From here, head further north to the Ongava Reserve, on the southern edge of the vast Etosha National Park. Spend time driving through this dry landscape, dotted with waterholes that attract a wide array of thirsty game. Dominated by the dusty Etosha salt pan, the park spreads east and west, through mopane woodland and windswept grasslands. Explore this wonderful expanse – home to lions, leopards, giraffes, elephants, antelopes, ostriches and endangered black rhinos.

DAMARALAND

From the dry pans of Etosha, head to the colourful, rock-strewn landscape of Damaraland. Here, stay at the secluded Camp Kipwe – built amidst weathered red-basalt boulders. Positioned in an area roamed by rare desert-adapted elephants, this intimate bush lodge is perfectly placed for exploring this captivating region.

Visit the ancient UNESCO-recognised petroglyphs of Twyfelfontein, the colourful slopes of Burnt Mountain and the impressive dolomite columns of the Organ Pipes. Hidden amongst desert landscapes, granite kopjes and dry riverbeds, these intriguing sites decorate a harsh and remote region.

SWAKOPMUND

Continue southwest, as the rust-coloured rocks fade into the yellow sands of the Skeleton Coast. Stay in Germanic Swakopmund, the largest settlement on Namibia’s notoriously exposed Atlantic coastline. Explore this intriguingly Teutonic town, as well as the Welwitschia-strewn sands that surround it. Board a catamaran to discover the marine riches of nearby Walvis Bay – spot fur seals, dolphins, pelicans and flamingos.

SOSSUSVLEI

Finish this journey amongst the iconic dunes of the Namib Desert. These vast waves of colourful sand decorate a truly inhospitable landscape. Visit the picturesque Sossusvlei and the skeletal trees of the parched Dead Vlei. Also explore the dramatic Sesriem Canyon, which cuts its way through this bizarre terrain.

Additional activities abound in this beautiful sandy wasteland. Dawn balloon rides over the wind-sculpted dunes offer vistas of incomparable beauty, whilst quad biking, horse riding and hiking can also be arranged. Stay at Kulala Desert Lodge; relax amidst isolated desert scenery with access to the private Kulala Wilderness Reserve.

WHY WE LIKE IT

Littered with beguiling landscapes and incredibly safe, Namibia is perfect for any self-drive journey. This adventure allows for a four-wheeled exploration of some of the country’s most engaging sites. Staying at family-friendly camps, it offers comfort, seclusion and an array of activities for all ages. Beginning with the impressive wildlife of Okonjima and Etosha, it ends with stunning desert playground that is Sossuvlei.

Price is based on a family of four, with two children under the age of 12, staying in a family room throughout.

For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

Price Excluding Flights £Flight cost from 
£ 1595 £ 1100
  Click here to see what is included/excluded

what is included

  • All accommodation
  • Internal flights
  • International flights as detailed
  • Sightseeing with private guide as per the itinerary
  • Transfers as detailed

what is excluded

  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visas

PLEASE NOTE THE COST SHOWN INCLUDES INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS DEPARTING FROM THE UK, BASED ON AN APPROXIMATE AIR FARE. PLEASE ASK YOUR TRAVEL EXPERT FOR AN ACCURATE INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT QUOTE. INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS DEPARTING FROM THE UK ARE ATOL PROTECTED.

Itinerary at a glance

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Day 1

Fly London to Johannesburg

Day 2

Fly Johannesburg to Windhoek


Namibia's capital and only city, Windhoek, is a vibrant place of many contrasts. Seemingly misplaced German architecture stands side by side with modern sky scrapers, while African drums and wood-carvings from the north displayed on pavements vie with elegant shops offering sophisticated Swakara garments and gemstone jewellery.

A pedestrian-friendly city with a cosmopolitan outlook, Windhoek makes for a wonderful stopover. This is modern Africa at its most fascinating - a melting pot of modernity, colonial echoes and African tradition.


You will be staying at Olive Grove Guesthouse, Bed & Breakfast

Day 3

Drive from Windhoek to Okonjima Nature Reserve


The journey is just over 200 kilometres and should take around three hours.


Located midway between Windhoek and Etosha National Park, the Okonjima Nature Reserve was established as a protected area in which orphaned cats can be rehabilitated. Entirely fenced and covering a vast area of wild savannah, this important reserve is home to leopard, cheetah, spotted hyena and wild dog.

Founded by AfriCat, Okonjima is part of greater conservation project in which the rehabilitated carnivores roam freely. Radio-tracking, health checks and research gathering are all part of a concerted effort to learn more about these threatened species.


Track Big Cats with AfriCat
Track cheetahs or leopards alongside AfriCat's experts. Set out on foot or in a 4x4, depending on which carnivores are known to be in the area. The big cats within the reserve have all been fitted with radio collars, allowing them to be closely monitored and Researchers record their welfare, condition and hunting successes.

AfriCat's large carnivore rehabilitation programme was initiated in 2000 to return captive cheetahs to their natural environment. Since then, the project has expanded and accelerated, with the ultimate aim of returning more large carnivores to the wild.

In 2010, four wild dogs were released by AfriCat into the reserve. The release has been a success and the pack is now hunting and taking down adult prey.


Optional Nocturnal Hide Excursion
After dinner, have the chance to join the AfriCat team in a nocturnal hide. Spot some of Namibia's night-time game, such as porcupines, honey badgers and caracals.


You will be staying at Okonjima Plains Camp, Half board

Day 4

Set out on another tracking excursion, either on foot or in a 4x4.

Drive from Okonjima to Etosha National Park


A journey of around three to four hours.


Etosha National Park is one of Southern Africa's finest and most important game reserves.

Situated in northern Namibia, Etosha, meaning 'Great White Place', is dominated by a massive shimmering mineral pan, which is flat, rugged and, for much of the year, dry and dusty. All the same, it supports some of the best game viewing in the whole of Southern Africa.


You will be staying at Andersson's Camp, Half board

Day 5

Explore Etosha National Park
Spend time exploring this vast area of wilderness, in search of numerous species of mammals and birds. The dry Etosha salt pan occupies the northern reaches of the park, with the southern landscape covered by dry grasslands and mopane woodland.

Waterholes dot the park, offering excellent vantage points for spotting thirsty game. Endangered black rhinos are found here, as well as lions, leopards, giraffes, elephants, plains game and ostriches.


You will be staying at Andersson's Camp, Half board

Day 6

Spend more time in Etosha, or perhaps book an additional activity in the Ongava Reserve.


You will be staying at Andersson's Camp, Half board

Day 7

Drive from Etosha to Damaraland


The drive from Etosha to Damaraland takes around three hours. However, the beautiful vistas, colourful rock formations and friendly local people provide many distractions en route.


Activities at Camp Kipwe
Take advantage of the activities on offer at Camp Kipwe, which is positioned amidst the impressive Damaraland landscape. Set out on a game drive in search of the region's elusive desert-adapted elephants. These impressive creatures thrive in incredibly harsh conditions. Whilst searching, look out for antelopes, ostriches and other animals.

Also take guided excursions to visit the surrounding attractions. These include the red, black and purple slopes of Burnt Mountain, the rust-coloured dolomite columns of the Organ Pipes and the ancient petroglyphs of Twyfelfontein. The last of these is a world-renowned UNESCO World Heritage Site, home to the largest concentration of ancient rock engravings in Africa. Inhabited for 6,000 years Twyfelfontein is littered with rock carvings and rock paintings.

Situated near the rugged Skeleton Coast, Damaraland is scenically magnificent with vast desert landscapes, granite kopjes, deep gorges and open plains. Colourful rock formations brighten this desolate landscape, contrasting wonderfully with deep-blue Namibian skies.

The region is famed for the ancient petroglyphs of Twyfelfontein, created by the predecessors of the Namibian Bushmen, as well as the nearby petrified forests. Desert-adapted elephants roam Damaraland, surviving in the harshest conditions, whilst populations of wild black rhinos can be found in the Palmwag Reserve and the environs of the remote Ugab River valley.


You will be staying at Camp Kipwe, All inclusive

Day 8

Further Activities at Camp Kipwe
Take more guided excursions to local sites, or self-drive further afield. Visit the nearby petrified forests and explore the dry riverbeds that cut through the harsh Damaraland landscape.


You will be staying at Camp Kipwe, All inclusive

Day 9

Drive from Camp Kipwe to Swakopmund


Leave the rugged hills and harsh landscapes of Damaraland behind for sands of the Skeleton Coast. Drive past the impressive Mount Brandberg, before dropping down to the Atlantic Ocean. The journey will take around four hours.


Swakopmund resembles a small, German coastal resort nestled between the desert and the sea. It boasts a charming combination of German colonial architecture blended with modern hotels, shops, restaurants, museums, craft centres, galleries and cafés.

Swakopmund had its beginnings as a landing station in 1892 when the German Imperial Navy erected beacons on the site. Settlers followed and made attempts to create a harbour town by constructing a concrete Mole and then an iron jetty - which attempts were ultimately unsuccessful. The advent of World War one halted developments, and the town sank into decline until half a century later when infrastructure improved and an asphalt road opened between Windhoek and Swakopmund. This made reaching the previously isolated town quicker and easier and it prospered once again to become Namibia's premier resort town.

Although the sea is normally cold for swimming there are pleasant beaches and the cooler climate is refreshing after time spent in the desert.


Activities in Swakopmund
The town is a great base for exploring the surrounding area. Optional activities include camel rides, scenic flights, quad-biking in the dunes and sky diving (all at extra cost). Alternatively, visit the dramatic lunar landscape, dotted with bizarre Welwitschia plants, that begins just a few kilometres outside of Swakopmund.


You will be staying at Cornerstone Guesthouse, Bed & Breakfast

Day 10

Morning Catamaran Trip from Walvis Bay
After an early breakfast, drive along the scenic coastal road to Walvis Bay. Set sail aboard a catamaran in search of seals and dolphins.
Explore the outer lagoon and harbour - home to Cape fur seals, heaviside and bottlenose dolphins, pelicans, flamingos and a wide variety of other sea birds. Whales, leatherback turtles and sunfish are also occasionally spotted.

Lunch is taken on board, before returning ashore shortly afterwards.


Have the afternoon at leisure in Swakopmund.


You will be staying at Cornerstone Guesthouse, Bed & Breakfast

Day 11

Drive from Swakopmund to Sossusvlei


Head inland, bisecting the hilly desert landscape of the Namib-Naukluft National Park. The journey last around five hours on gravel roads.


In the heart of the Namib-Naukluft Park, surrounded by a sea of ever changing dunes lies Sossusvlei - a place of awe inspiring beauty and home to some pretty spectacular scenery. Burnt orange dunes tower into the vast blue sky, some 300 metres above the desert floor. It's hard not to be moved by this desolate wilderness.


Scenic air and hot air balloon flights, sunset game drives, hiking trips, horseback trails and more await; and for those with added sense of adventure, climbing the dunes is an unforgettable experience.


You will be staying at Kulala Desert Lodge, Bed & Breakfast

Day 12

Activities at Kulala Desert Lodge
Explore the spectacular landscape of Sossusvlei. Drive to visit the famous dunes and clay pan, as well as the nearby Dead Vlei - now iconic with its skeletal trees. Also explore the dramatic Sesriem Canyon, which is almost three kilometres long, and drive through the Kulala Wilderness Reserve.

Additional activities can be booked at an extra cost. These include guided nature walks, quad bike excursions, sundowner drives, balloon flights and horse riding.


You will be staying at Kulala Desert Lodge, Bed & Breakfast

Day 13

Drive from Sossusvlei to Windhoek


The journey takes approximately five hours.

Fly Windhoek to Johannesburg

Fly Johannesburg to London overnight

Day 14

Arrive into London Heathrow

Accommodation

Below you can see some of the wonderful places we recommend you stay on your journey.

Cornerstone Guesthouse

Cornerstone Guesthouse

Occupying a quiet corner of Swakopmund's old town near the marine museum and the old brewery, Cornerstone Guesthouse offers the intimacy of a family-run B&B combined with the modern amenities of a luxury hotel....

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Camp Kipwe

Camp Kipwe

Camp Kipwe lies in the heart of Damaraland, ideally located a short drive from the local attractions in the area....

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Andersson's Camp

Andersson's Camp

Located just 4....

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Okonjima Plains Camp

Okonjima Plains Camp

Okonjima Plains Camp is nestled amongst the Ombokoro Mountains - a Herero name meaning, 'place of the baboons'....

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Kulala Desert Lodge

Kulala Desert Lodge

Kulala Desert Lodge's access to a unique private entrance to Namib Naukluft Park means it is closest to Sossusvlei dunes....

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Olive Grove Guesthouse

Olive Grove Guesthouse

Olive Grove is a small boutique guest house located in a leafy residential area of Namibia's capital city Windhoek....

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For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

Destination Experts

Our experts have unrivalled firsthand knowledge of Namibia

Illona Cross, Travel Expert

"Illona was quite simply brilliant. She listened and carefully noted what we thought we wanted, made suggestions and came up with an itinerary which suited us down to the ground."

"Excellent personal service; well-informed local knowledge; dependable outcome; quality of experience."

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Jackie Devereux, Travel Expert

"Every part of our trip was the highlight and it is not possible for us to point out just one thing, event or place."

"However, we received a magnificent surprise of a helicopter ride between camps in Botswana which meant a flight over the delta and an opportunity to see the delta and how it is formed. It was a wonderful surprise organised by Jackie and we were both absolutely overjoyed with the opportunity. I do not believe that there was more that could have been done as we had a magnificent trip."

"Jackie was excellent- she listened and was very knowledgeable."

Read More

For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

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