Namibia Safari Highlights

Our 3-week journey around the country took us north of Windhoek, then west through Etosha National Park to the wild, windswept Atlantic Ocean coastline. We saved the iconic rust-hued dunes of Sossusvlei for last. Here are the highlights of our trip:

Waterberg Wilderness

This small reserve was where we spent two nights, recovering from jetlag and gently easing into the slow rhythm of safari life. We followed rugged hiking trails on and around the stunning Waterberg plateau. We also tracked the reserve's white rhino with a guide on foot - surprisingly, they took over three hours to find! The lodge had to send a driver to pick us up as the heat of the day had set in, and we had covered 20km in the hot sun looking for the elusive beasts. 

The campsite at Waterberg was excellent - read our review here

A dassi or rock hyrax


Getting a lift back to camp

A well-earned dip

Etosha National Park

Perhaps Namibia's second-best known attraction, Etosha is one of the easiest game parks in Africa to spot a wide variety of wildlife. This is because there are so few water sources in the area - all the animals gather in close proximity for a drink, most of them honouring a kind of uneasy truce. If you're not a naturalist or familiar with tracking animals, then I highly recommend staying at a safari lodge within the park so you can go on game drives with knowledgable local guides. You'll see and photograph much more this way! 

We camped outside the park's eastern Namutoni Gate at Tamboti Luxury Campsite, which you can read about here.

Horsing around

Keeping an eye out for predators

Flocking queleas

Drive slow and with care!


Remote Palmwag is in the heart of Damaraland, home of the iconic Himba people. En route to Palmwag,  we stayed at the stunning Hoada campsite, and stopped by for a drink at Grootberg, an eco-lodge with a spectacular position atop a canyon. Palmwag was where we witnessed a lioness stalk and kill a baby giraffe, and where we spent a memorable night at a sleepout listening to predators whoop and roar under the stars.

The fantastic Grootberg pool

Meeting the friendly locals

Sunset over Palmwag

The circle of life


Between Palmwag and Uis are the ancient rock art galleries of Twyfelfontein, the Organ Pipes and the Petrified Forest. Beware though, the roads out here are horrendous! If you can, stay at the impressive Twyfelfontein Country Lodge. Uis is a convenient place to take a break from your bone-rattling journey to the Atlantic coastline, where you'll enjoy spectacular views of the Mount Brandberg massif. We stayed at Brandberg Restcamp, a charming place with a vintage jukebox, a courtyard pool and large, clean rooms. It's owner - Basil Calitz - is a local legend. Bring him a beer from your country so he can add it to his extensive collection! 

Ancient rock carvings at Twyfelfontein

Basil Calitz's impressive beer collection at Brandberg Restcamp

Brandberg Restcamp - a sight for sore bodies after a bone-rattling journey

A roadside gemstone vendor


Once we reached the Atlantic Ocean, we visited the smelliest place in Namibia - the Cape Cross Seal Colony.  Thousands of furry bodies bask here atop guano, fish carcasses and dead relatives, some only recently demised.  Coastal Swakopmund is a great base for a few days if you want to quad bike, sandboard or fly over the Skeleton Coast. There is also an abundance of good food options in town including the Village Bakery, renowned for its coffee, cheese toasties and melktart.  

The seals of Cape Cross

Swakopmund's historic jetty

Quad biking was awesome

Sandboarding was great fun!


We took a scenic flight in a little Cessna over the  ancient Namib Desert and desolate Skeleton Coast, littered with shipwrecks. At Walvis Bay lagoon, we spied on fuchsia skirted flamingo. At Moose Bakery in Solitaire, we sampled the famous apple strudel and were closely inspected by Kalahari squirrels. Then - finally - we arrived at our campsite in Sesreim,  from where we explored Namibia's most famous dunes and the immensely photogenic Deadvlei. 


We ended our road trip on a high note at Wolwedans Private House, an absolute stunner of a luxury camp in the exclusive NamibRand Nature Reserve. Here we had our own butler and guide, exquisite meals, a private plunge pool and sweeping views out over the mountains. Activities included horseback riding, game drives, nature walks and hot air ballooning. Suffice to say, we did not want to leave!

Oryx drinking from our pool

The colours of the NamibRand Nature Reserve were sensational

Horseback riding

An explanation of fairy circles