12 Day: Great Namibian Journey Safari

    Namibia is a land of stunning landscapes, endless skies, barren deserts, rugged mountains and spectacular wildlife – and the Great Namibian Journey encompasses it all.

    • From: R52,160pp for 11 nights.

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    Highlights: Kulala Wilderness Reserve - Swakopmund - Damaraland - Etosha National Park


    12 Day: Great Namibian Journey Safari Itinerary

    This multi-dimensional safari explores the dunes of Sossusvlei and the Namib, takes in amazing marine life just off Swakopmund, the rock-strewn landscape of Damaraland and the game-filled savannahs of Etosha.

    Windhoek International Airport. - You will be met by your Safari guide and begin your journey by driving through the Khomas Hochland mountains and down into the iconic Sossusvlei region, a driving time of approximately 5 - 6 hours (330 kilometres / 205 miles). En route, we enjoy a lunch.

    Day 1 – 2: Kulala Desert Lodge, Kulala Wilderness Reserve
    Explore the iconic red dunes of Sossusvlei and our 37 000 hectare private reserve where you will be awed by the desertadapted wildlife surviving in one of the world’s oldest and most arid deserts.

    Day 3 - 4 Hansa Hotel, Swakopmund We fly by light aircraft transfer to Swakopmund Airport; this will be a scenic flight (weather permitting). Discover the town of Swakopmund and bed down in an iconic hotel that forms part of city’s architectural culture Boat Cruise On day 4, we explore the ice-blue Atlantic coast on a boat cruise (weather permitting) rounded off with a private seafood lunch.

    Day 5 - 6: Damaraland Camp, Damaraland
    We continue our journey by road for approximately 5 hours(280 kilometres / 174 miles) partly up the legendary Skeleton Coast (named for the numerous shipwrecks the treacherous shores have claimed over the years). From here we drive the back roads through the game productive Ugab riverbed, travelling north past the Brandberg Mountain – the second largest monolith on earth – to Damaraland. This all-day excursion with lunch en route ends with our arrival at Damaraland Camp. A land of stark beauty, the area boasts a varied assortment of desert-adapted wildlife and incredible geological formations.

    Day 7 - 8: Desert Rhino Camp, Damaraland
    We drive into the Huab riverbed to search for desert-adapted elephants, before heading north to the mountainous and rocky paradise of the massive Palmwag Concession. The speciality of the area is its growing population of the rare desert-adapted black rhino (the largest concentration in the world outside a national park), which are monitored and protected by the Save the Rhino Trust.

    Days 9 - 11: Ongava Tented Camp, Etosha National Park
    We depart the Palmwag Concession eastward on an extended combination wildlife viewing (first part of the drive) and transfer drive of approximately 6 hours(350km / 218 miles) to Etosha National Park, where we experience the pinnacle of Namibia’s game viewing.We are accommodated in the privacy of an exclusive bush camp situated on an extensive private game reserve, Ongava, just on the outside of Etosha National Park.

    Day 12: Wilderness Air
    We return to Windhoek and bid farewell to our adventure.

    Great Namibian Journey Safari - The Details

    Your journey:
    Namibia is a land of stunning landscapes, endless skies, barren deserts, rugged mountains and spectacular wildlife – and the Great Namibian Journey encompasses it all. This multi-dimensional safari explores the dunes of Sossusvlei and the Namib, takes in amazing marine life just off Swakopmund, the rock-strewn landscape of Damaraland and the game-filled savannahs of Etosha. The activities provide a wide range of differing impressions, from a dolphin cruise with private beach lunch, to hiking in Damaraland and walking in the Namib’s great dunes. The Safari traverses the width of central Namibia by road and air. Most of the road links between areas is by vehicle transfer, which can be lengthy and bumpy (due to Namibia’s roads mainly being gravel). Numerous stops at local highlights, with refreshments, snacks and lunches (where appropriate) will be made to ensure optimal comfort. Flights are by light aircraft, affording sensational views of the arid North West and Etosha region by air.

    Your guide:
    Explorations are led by highly skilled and qualified professional guides with an incredible passion for the natural regions they work in. Sharing the adventure and guiding you on this journey of discovery combined with their vast knowledge of the natural world, history and culture are their professions and personal hobby. Many of our guides are also skilled photographers and can assist you in taking away amazing wildlife photographs. Your guide will host you for the duration of safari, providing you with a consistent, detailed interpretation that is shaped to your specific interests.

    Did you know?
    • The very different areas of Sossusvlei, Etosha and Damaraland are explored in depth.
    • Accommodation includes a range of lodges in private areas.
    • You will experience exceptionally diverse variety of activities, including day and night, sea to land-based wildlife viewing, flying, driving, and boating.
    • Other unique activities include meeting local Damara people (dependent on their movements), rhino tracking, motorboat trip at Walvis Bay (including extension to Sandwich Harbour, and seafood lunch) and a scenic flight from Sossusvlei to Swakopmund (weather permitting).
    • We travel by land when the journey is enhanced; otherwise travelling is done by air.

    Kulala Desert Lodge – Kulala Wilderness Reserve

    Days 1-2:
    As the perfect gateway to the iconic sights of Sossusvlei, Kulala Desert Lodge is a favourite among Wilderness travellers. Magnificent views of the famous dunes, surrounding mountains and vast open plains will be the setting during your stay. The camp comprises 23 ensuite thatched and canvas ‘kulalas’ and a veranda for you to enjoy the outstanding scenery. On balmy nights, sleep under the clear night skies on your rooftop and awaken to the rising sun. By day, enjoy our activities or spot desert-adapted wildlife from our lounge and dining area overlooking a waterhole. To escape the midday heat a cooling plunge pool provides the ideal sanctuary. Did you know?
    • Kulala Desert Lodge is in the private Kulala Wilderness Reserve, the result of a rehabilitation project by Wilderness that aimed to return this land, previously used for farming, to its former natural aspect.
    • Sossusvlei is situated within the Namib Desert, the oldest desert in the world, characterised by huge dunes and flat valley floors.
    • To showcase such vast and impressive landscape, we offer game drives, walking, quad biking, horse riding and ballooning (last 3 at extra cost).
    • You can witness sparsely distributed desert-adapted wildlife such as ostrich, springbok, oryx, spotted and brown hyaena, and bateared fox.
    • One of the many fascinating bird species, the Dune Lark, has its entire global distribution limited to the area.

    Included: All meals, daily activities, laundry and drinks (excluding premium import brands).

    Hansa Hotel, Swakopmund

    Days 3 - 4:
    Namibia’s oldest hotel, and consistently one of the best, the Hansa has retained its 100-year-old charm while providing present-day service and comfort. Our bedrooms are spacious and tastefully appointed, with a blend of modern luxury and antique décor. Interesting photographs from the past adorn the walls along the carpeted passages. Although we are located in the centre of town giving you access to most of the local amenities, even our street facing bedrooms are surprisingly quiet. A short walk will bring you to the heated Olympic-sized indoor public swimming pool, the museum, lighthouse and Kristall Galerie, as well as several good restaurants if you wish to try an alternative to the Hansa’s tasty fare. Did you know?
    • We have 48 twin/double rooms, 6 family units and 3 luxury suites and an executive suite, each with an en-suite bathroom with separate bath and shower, tea and coffee facilities, bottled mineral water, a 15-channel television, under-floor heating, a safe, bathrobes, a telephone and internet connection.
    • All suites and some rooms have air-conditioning.
    • Breakfast and an a la carte dinner are served in our dining room.
    • You can have lunch al fresco on our terrace overlooking the inner garden.
    • Our rates include accommodation and Continental or English breakfast buffet and newspapers.
    • Discounted parking is available.

    Included: Bed, breakfast and one dinner (excludes dinner on the second night).

    Marine Dune Day Cruise Highlights
    • Capture the breathtaking views of Walvis Bay from the ocean and look for the Atlantic’s magnificent sea creatures.
    • Ride in a 4x4 vehicle in the awe-inspiring Sandwich Harbour area of the Namib Naukluf Park.
    • Enjoy sumptuous oysters of the region while picnicking on a deserted beach or in the desert.

    The day starts 09h00 with a marine cruise for a chance to see the flying pelicans, dolphins and seals that frequent the area, the Walvis Bay Harbour, old boat wrecks, and even whales and turtles in season. At around 11h30, your skipper will drop you off at a deserted beach at the jetty of Pelican Point, where your Sandwich Harbour 4x4 guide will meet you with a Land Rover. There, you will be taken on an excursion to see the Kuiseb River Delta, the saltpans and the wetlands just north of the Sandwich Harbour Lagoon with the possibility of seeing their famed flamingos, If weather and tides allow, the drive goes right to the Sandwich Harbour Lagoon, one of Southern Africa’s richest and unique wetlands. If vehicles cannot make it there due to tides, you will have the time to walk 4 – 5 kilometres.

    Alternatively, you will get a chance to see the Lagoon area from one of the many beautiful lookout spots. You will have plenty of time to take photos when you cross the big dunes in Sandwich Harbour. En-route, a light meal with snacks and salads, as well as oysters – some of the best in the world - and sparkling wine, are dished up. On the return drive, more giant dunes are crossed, including the big roaring dunes. You will arrive in Walvis Bay at approximately 16h30 after a fantastic day out.

    Damaraland Camp – Kunene – Torra Conservancy

    Days 5 - 6:
    Set in the Huab River valley, Damaraland Camp is situated in arguably one of the most pristine wilderness areas in Namibia. Endless vistas across stark plains, ancient valleys and stunning ochre-purple mountains will be the backdrop during your stay. Our staff will invite you into one of ten large adobe-style thatched units raised off the ground for sensational vistas. Each includes a walk-in dressing room, en-suite facilities and a deck from which to contemplate the desert. Entertainment while at camp will be in our spacious living area complete with a swimming pool. An open campfire will keep you warm and you can dine traditionally in our boma under clear night skies. Did you know?
    • Wilderness and the local Damaraland community have an award-winning partnership that led to the creation of the Torra Conservancy.
    • The Torra Conservancy is one of the driest, most desolate yet beautiful regions in all Africa. Its landscape is characterised by dramatic hills interspersed with sweeping valleys and ephemeral riverbeds.
    • Game drives, guided walks and cultural visits will make up your activities here.
    • Despite its aridity, a surprisingly high diversity of wildlife is found here, including the fascinating desert-adapted elephant, giraffe, gemsbok, springbok and occasional cheetah.
    • Birding is excellent with White-tailed Shrike and Benguela Long-billed Lark common finds.

    Included: All meals, daily activities, laundry and drinks (excluding premium import brands).

    Desert Rhino Camp – Kunene – Palmwag Concession

    Days 7 - 8:
    At Desert Rhino Camp you will take part in a thrilling and exclusive conservation success story. Tracking Africa’s unique and endangered desert-adapted black rhino is an unforgettable experience. To set the scene, you will be shown into one of the eight en-suite Meru-style tents elevated off the ground. You can absorb the panoramic views over the rolling, rocky hills beyond from the privacy of your veranda. Full day excursions are on offer; otherwise, between activities, relax in our tented living area. Evening meals are taken around the fire pit. As a wonderland of unusual plant life, fascinating wildlife and sparse wilderness, Desert Rhino is begging to be explored. Did you know?
    • We work closely with Save the Rhino Trust (SRT) which is almost singlehandedly responsible for the preservation of desertadapted rhino in the area. A portion of guest revenue goes to SRT.
    • The impressive flat-topped Etendeka Mountains dominate the scenery. Dry river-courses like the Uniab River cut through the rocky landscape below, dotted with odd-shaped bottle tree, ancient leadwoods and unique welwitschias.
    • Other than tracking rhino, you can fill your days with game drives, walks and cultural visits.
    • Along with the rhino you may see desert-adapted elephant, Hartmann’s mountain zebra, giraffe, gemsbok and kudu as well as cheetah, leopard and spotted hyena.
    • Birdlife is varied with endemics such as Bokmakierie and Ruppell’s Korhaan.

    Included: All meals, daily activities, laundry and drinks (excluding premium import brands).

    Ongava Tented Camp – Etosha – Ongava Game Reserve

    Days 9 - 11
    Tucked away in the foothills of a dolomite hill, Ongava Tented Camp is one of Namibia’s best-kept secrets. You will be captivated by the bustling waterhole in front of camp as wildlife file through to quench their much needed thirst. Your accommodation will be one of the eight delightfully rustic en-suite Meru-style tents, built on a raised wooden deck which stretches out over the wilderness. The stone, canvas and thatched main area, with its relaxed swimming pool completes this intimate camp. Bordering the iconic Etosha National Park and set within its own wilderness haven, you can expect unrivalled game viewing complimented by the tranquillity of a private reserve. Did you know?
    • Ongava Game Reserve was formed in 1991, when its shareholders converted four unproductive cattle ranches into a highly productive reserve, now home to large concentrations of wildlife.
    • Etosha National Park takes its name from the world-famous Etosha Pan, one of the largest saltpans in the region. Around the pan, the topography ranges from broad swathes of mopane and tall tree canopies of woodland to open plains and dolomite hills.
    • Game drives in both reserves will display a wide complement of wildlife including black-faced impala. Their predators, in particular lion, are never far away.
    • Ongava is home to one of the largest black and white rhino populations in Namibia thanks to a successful reintroduction programme.
    • Bird life is prolific with 340 species recorded.

    Included: All meals, daily activities, laundry and drinks (excluding premium import brands).

    Additional Safari Notes

    Private safari options:
    Tailored Explorations are available on flexible dates, accommodation and itineraries, for groups of up to eight guests. These are also ideal for families or for small groups from four guests.

    Exclusive experience:
    Most areas in which we travel are private concessions, whilst at the lodges and hotels en route, as well as Wilderness Air light aircraft transfers we have the chance to meet other guests.

    International air connection onto the safari:
    If arrival is planned for the day of the safari’s departure, please ensure that this is with the earliest possible international flight arrival, before 10h00. Arrival on a later flight may necessitate additional road or air transfers (as the main group’s departure for the first camp/lodge will already have taken place), subject to extra cost. Please note that if the guest overnights in Windhoek on the night before the safari begins, they will be collected by the guide in the Explorations’ vehicle from the hotel they stayed at. If they arrive by flight on the day the safari commences, they will be collected from the airport.

    International air connections leaving the safari:
    Please ensure that your departure flight is booked for after 16h00 from Windhoek. For earlier international departure flights, there is a scheduled light aircraft transfer arriving Windhoek at approximately 12h20 and can be arranged at no extra cost subject to availability, please advise your consultant at the time of booking on which is preferred. NB: Guests will miss the last morning activity if they are scheduled to leave Ongava on the morning air transfer.

    To maximise guests’ travel time, a variety of travel modes that bring out the best of each area is used: flying in light aircraft charters and overland transfers provide both a bird’s-eye view and an in-depth experience of the contrasting landscapes of Namibia.

    Bilingual safari dates:
    This service aims to facilitate a greater level of experience for guests that do not speak English fluently. These safaris will be led by a guide; however there may be a translator to assist the guide. Please note on all bilingual safari dates that the guide or translator’s home language is English / Afrikaans. This additional free service does not guarantee the level of fluency and depending on group dynamics a varying amount of the foreign language will be spoken.

    Flashlights/ torches:
    Please ensure that a compact LED flashlight is brought on safari, with spare batteries. Head lamps are also useful. Wilderness Explorations does not supply flashlights.

    Camera battery charging facilities:
    110/ 220V outlets are available at the permanent lodges/hotels.

    Dietary requirements and special occasions:
    Due to remote locality of these camps, please ensure that full dietary requirements and special occasions are advised at the time of your booking confirmation.

    A selection of our Namibia safari camps:

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    • Hidden at the foot of the majestic Sossusvlei dunes, a private entrance to Namib Naukluft Park makes Kulala Desert Lodge
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      Kulala Desert Lodge

    • Located in the most remote part of the Kaokoveld – a land of mountains, vast plains, and dry riverbeds inhabited by
      Read More

      Hoanib Skeleton Coast

    • Le Mirage Desert Lodge & Spa is located only 21 km from Sesriem the entrance gate to the Namib Naukluft Park
      Read More

      Le Mirage Lodge

    • Desert Rhino Camp offers an original and exclusive wilderness experience and the possibility of seeing some of the largest free-ranging
      Read More

      Desert Rhino Camp

    • There can be few natural wonders as synonymous with Africa’s raw wilderness as the great Chobe River. These waters divide
      Read More

      Zambezi Queen

    • Set amongst shady trees on the banks of the Kunene River, Serra Cafema is one of the most remote camps
      Read More

      Serra Cafema Camp

    • Damaraland Camp is situated in the Huab River Valley in one of the best wilderness areas in Namibia, offering endless
      Read More

      Damaraland Camp

    • Doro Nawas rests on the slopes of a small hill on the edge of the dry Aba-Huab River overlooking ancient
      Read More

      Doro Nawas Camp

    • Divava Okavango Lodge & Spa, in the Bagani area close to Divundu, is Namibia ’s hidden wildlife paradise in the Kavango
      Read More

      Divava Okavango

    • The well-established Ongava Lodge is situated along the southern boundary of Etosha National Park in the privately owned Ongava Game
      Read More

      Ongava Lodge

    • Onguma - The Fort is unlike any other, the only one of its kind in Namibia. It is built to give
      Read More

      Onguma The Fort

    • Ongava Tented Camp is tucked into a hidden valley at the foot of a dolomite hill in Ongava Game Reserve
      Read More

      Ongava Tented Camp

    • Nestled in mopane scrub on white calcrete soils, Andersson’s Camp is situated 4.5km from Etosha’s Andersson Gate. The camp was
      Read More

      Andersson's Camp

    • This acclaimed desert retreat is situated amongst camel thorn trees on the dry Auab riverbed in the Kulala Wilderness Reserve.
      Read More

      Little Kulala

    • Little Ongava is perched on the crest of a hill commanding magnificent vistas of the plains beyond. Arguably Namibia’s most
      Read More

      Little Ongava

    Tailor-made for you

    •  Your Safari is just that. Each safari we create is built around you and your requirements.

    •  Select your preferred style of accommodation and explore at your own pace.

    •  Co-create your perfect trip with the help of our experts.

    Expert Advice

    •  All of our advisers are well travelled and know their areas inside out.

    •  All calls are answered instantly by a destination expert who will help you from start to finish.

    •  Get the most from your time and budget.

    Personal Service

    •  The details make the difference. All our accommodation, drivers and guides have been carefully selected by location and service as well as their contribution to conservation or the community.

    •  Our business depends on recommendations. We go the extra mile to give you a trip to remember.

    Would you like to make a booking?

    We would be delighted to hear from you! Please call any of the numbers below or fill in the contact form with your requirements and we will be in touch.

    From the UK

    Call: 01227 671 154

    From the USA

    New York: (646) 513-4227

    From South Africa

    Cape Town: 021 300 2166