Ai-aiba lodge

Ai-Aiba, the Rock Painting Lodge is set amongst a massif of granite rock boulders. The view overlooking the Erongo Mountain Nature Conservancy is simply stunning. This is the place to come and explore an area rich in historic rock paintings, the focal point of their activities. Hikers can also enjoy various guided walking trails. This includes a short trail quite close to the lodge which serves as a good introduction to rock art in general.

The main building at Ai-Aiba Lodge houses the restaurant, Bushman Bar, and TV room. A collection of reference books, gives a valuable insight into much of the local flora and fauna of the area. Guests can relax next to the the palm-fringed swimming pool and gardens. Ai-Aiba is a Khoekhoegowab word meaning 'the person who walks in front to show the way'.

There are 20 luxurious twin & double rooms (additional beds can be added for higher occupancies) are housed in 10 thatch-roofed bungalows. They are tastefully furnished in an' African style,' and each room as an en-suite bathroom, with a private patio affording wonderful, scenic views.

The Ai-Aiba Rock Painting Drive is approximately 2 hours long, with rock-art discovered along the way. AiAiba is an active member of the Erongo Mountain Nature Conservancy, an association of land owners dedicated to the protection and preservation of the unique fauna and flora, as well as the magnificent granite landscape of the Erongo Mountains.

Namibian wildlife on the farm includes kudu, springbok, oryx, Damara dik dik, common duiker, klipspringer, hartmann mountain zebra, giraffe, jackal, leopard, brown hyena, warthog, aardwolf, aardvark, bat eared fox, genet, porcupine, dassies , springhare & a variety of birds some of which are endemic.

The rock art was first recorded by Abbé Breuil, a French archaeologist, anthropologist, ethnologist and geologist, noted for his worldwide studies of cave art, especially in Southern Africa. He undertook three expeditions to South West Africa and Rhodesia (Namibia and Zimbabwe respectively) in the late 1940's and described this period as 'the most thrilling years of my research life and don't we all!)

In 1953 he discovered a painting over 6,000 years old, subsequently named The White Lady, under a rock overhang in the Brandberg Mountain. Breuil, a competent draughtsman, painstakingly reproduced the cave paintings he came upon, and published many books and monographs on the subject.

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Unguided walk: The walk is approximately 45 minutes long and takes you passed the massive granite boulders near the bungalows and also visits 4 rock art sites.

Sundowner drive Ai-Aiba is situated on a 5600 hectare farm. All farming activities have been ceased and the farm has been left to recover to its natural state. This 2 hour drive takes you over only a small part of the farm to one of the highest mountains on the property, offering 360 degree views of the surroundings. View the Okombahe mountain and on a clear day, you can also see the Brandberg, Namibia's highest mountain.

Rock Painting Drive: Morning or afternoon drives to see a selection of the the many rock paintings and beautiful landscapes on the farm. If you are lucky, you will also see some animals like kudu, springbok, eland, zebra and jackal. As there are so many mountains and granite boulders, the area has many leopard. Get back at the lodge approximately 2 hours later.

Traveller Reviews

These are honest reviews, both good and bad, from our travellers who visited this property.

Leaver, Ellen

29 Sep 2015

Stunning landscape. Having the freedom to walk around the lodge was nice after so much time in a vehicle.

Schmidt,jonas

17 Jan 2018

The highlight of the tour. Great lodge, very friendly staff, outstanding service and location. Great food!

Beasley, Christine

12 Apr 2016

Great place. The woman in charge was wonderful, great food and doing the walk with the San Bushmen was fantastic.

Van Der Haar, Frits

26 Nov 2014

Enjoyable. We were the only guests and received royal treatment. The rock paintings are worth an early morning walk.

Hey, Peter

12 May 2014

Martin the manager was extremely helpful in getting a puncture we had fixed and giving us advice on sights to see later in our holiday.

Costello, Keith

23 Aug 2012

A beautiful Lodge with very helpful and attentive staff especially the manager. Advise people not to miss the Living Museum set up by the San people.

Concaro, Filippo

21 Sep 2012

Stunning location, very nice accommodation, we appreciated in particular the guidance through the rock paintings by the lovely habituated meerkat Meggie.

Sanchi, Alessandra

28 Aug 2017

There is nothing major to do in Ai Aiba, but it is a beautiful hotel and has amazing surroundings. It is a great place to stop between Etosha and Swakopmund

Ulmius, Jan

16 Apr 2016

A very nice lodge with excellent food and outstandig guidance on the rock art by Martin. He also helped us with coming into contact with the Ekuta farm so that we could see the rock paintings here.

Murphy, Dennis

1 Aug 2014

This is a lavish place in an out of the way location. Saw some nice pictographs on a short but interesting hiking trail. We chose this lodge because it was about halfway back to Windhoek from Grootburg Lodge.

Benning, Shelley

14 Jan 2016

Stunning location. Maybe my favorite based on pure looks alone. The food was fancier, but not as good, as Zebra or Desert Homestead. They were very strict about details - like - where are your vouchers - I need all the vouchers immediately, etc. 

Cavali,ivor

4 Oct 2014

Well maintained lodge with good service in a superb environment. Unfortunately, they dont provide activities on Sundays. This was not mentioned in your webpage descriptive. What a pity for this incredible location being confined at the lodge place.

Turton, Jessica

26 Dec 2011

Nice lodge and rooms. Local reception staff was very friendly however did not really know anything about tours/dinner prices etc. We found the info in her staff notebook. The manager seemed less than friendly to us compared to the other guests who spoke German!

Directions

Traveling from Windhoek use one of the following routes: From Windhoek, take the B1 to Okahandja, which becomes the B2 as you head towards Swakopmund. Shortly before Karibib take the C33 towards Omaruru. Travel along this road for 63 km, and just before the town of Omaruru, turn left onto the D2315. After 10 km of gravel road enter the Conservancy gate. Another 45 km will bring you to the entrance of AiAiba Lodge. This route is approximately 40 kilometers shorter in total than the previous one, but involves an extra 70 kilometers of gravel road. About 70km after Okahandja take the turnoff C36 towards Wilhelmstal on your right. Travel on this gravel road for about 67km until you reach a junction with the Karibib - Omaruru tar road (C33). Turn right on this road towards Omaruru. About 3km along this road and about 3 km before reaching the town of Omaruru turn left onto the D2315. Travel 10 km of gravel road to enter the Conservancy gate. Another 45km will bring you to the entrance of AiAiba Lodge. Traveling from Swakopmund From Swakopmund, the route is more scenic. Follow the B2 from Swakopmund to Usakos. At Usakos, turn left on the D2306 towards Okombahe. After about 50 km turn right on the D2315 towards Omaruru and continue along this road for about 10 km until you see the signs to turn left at the AiAiba Lodge. Traveling from the North Travel through the town of Omaruru on the C33 towards Karibib. About 3km out of Omaruru, turn right onto theD2315. After 10 km of gravel road enter the Conservancy gate. Another 35km will bring you to the entrance of AiAiba Lodge.

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