Walking with the Bushmen of Namibia is one of the most profound cultural experiences Africa has to offer. The Ju/’Hoansi San’s knowledge of the flora and fauna of this remote corner of Namibia is extraordinary and to join them on a hunting foray is to gain an insight into a way of life that is fast disappearing.
- Join local bushman on a hunting expedition in the Nyae Nyae conservancy
- Witness an ancient ritual as a special guest at a bushman healing dance
- Visit Khaudum National Park, home to elephant, wild dog, lion, roan antelope, oryx and wildebeest
- Stay at the exclusive new Xaudum Lodge, a five star property giving access to Namibia’s most wild and remote national park
to whom will this holiday appeal?
This is not a trip for the faint hearted and is best suited to travellers who have been to Africa before and are now looking for something beyond the ordinary. Expect long days spent travelling on rugged tracks and you will need to have a moderate level of fitness in order to keep up with the Bushmen on their hunting foray. Accommodation is mixed, staying at a luxury five-star lodge in Khaudum followed by luxury, supported camping with the Bushmen. While aspects of this holiday may prove challenging the rewards are an authentic, insightful and exciting experience in a part of Namibia, often overlooked.
The oldest tribe in the world
The Bushmen are the world’s oldest tribe and are permitted by the Namibian government to live a traditional hunter-gatherer lifestyle in the Nyae Nyae conservancy, south of Khaudum National Park. This trip gives adventurous travellers the opportunity to spend time with the Bushmen over a period of three days, guided by an English speaking Ju/’Hoansi whom will act as interpreter and translator throughout this fascinating experience.
Bushman hunting experience
You will be invited to join the Bushmen community – men, women and children, as they relax and play games during the afternoon. The next day you will join a hunting party – usually a group of three or four men, dressed in traditional loincloth (shona) and armed with bow and arrows (with poisonous tips). Using age-old tracking skills the Bushmen will go in search of antelope, guinea fowl, spring hare or porcupine. As you follow behind your English speaking guide will explain the way in which the Bushmen interpret spoor along the way.
For one of your evenings in Nyae Nyae (while staying at Little Hunter’s Camp) you will be invited to a Bushman healing dance. This is a rare opportunity to witness a ritual that has been performed unchanged for millennia. The healing dance is attended by all of the village and with the help of intense singing and clapping from the women, the healers (usually older men) go into a trance and lay healing hands on their fellow villagers. This is a genuine and authentic encounter, giving a privileged and intimate insight into the Bushman's beliefs and values.
Khaudum National Park
Staying at the new luxury Xaudum Lodge, you will have access to Namibia’s most remote wilderness, Khaudum National Park. This is not a park for first timers to Africa but more for travellers that appreciate the privilege of taking safaris across untamed landscapes without other safari vehicles in sight. Wildlife here includes lion, wild dog, roan antelope, tsessebe, oryx and wildebeest, all of which can be seen when on game drives. The big draw card though is elephant, of which there are somewhere between 2,000 – 3,000 present in Khaudum. The park comprises of approx. 20 waterholes all of which have well established, raised platforms from which one can view and photograph the wildlife.
cost and dates
The cost shown is based on low season and four people travelling together. Steppes has set aside the following dates for this itinerary however please enquire if you are keen to have the Bushman and Khaudum experience as a couple or at a different time of the year:
26th May - 2nd June
02nd June - 09th June
28th July - 04th August
04th August - 11th August
For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.