This 9 day self drive intinerary has been cunstom made for honeymooners and includes 2 of the country's main highlights: Etosha National Park & the massive dunes at Sossusvlei. The first 3 days are spent doing some serious game viewing in Namibia's premier wildlife park, Etosha National Park. Here you will spend time searching the numerous waterholes for wildlife. For many the real excitement happens at Okaukuejo where the flood-lit waterhole is right next to the camp, nocturnal visitors include black rhino, elephant, lion, cheetah, giraffe and many species of antelope.
Erongo Wilderness Lodge is nestled amongst the Erongo Mountains. The drive to central Namibia involves ever changing scenery making for an interesting and enjoyable trip. There is desert to the west and a mixed, woodland savannah to the east. A rare confluence of eco-systems are formed in this region which in turn has become home to numerous mammal, plant, bird and reptile species, some endemic to Namibia. As if this isn't enough, your overnight accommodation is nestled amongst, and surrounded by, huge boulders and granite formations, all on the outskirts of an ancient volcano.
Your gravel road-trip from Erongo to Sossusvlei will test both your driving and navigational skills but is a scenic journey. Kulala is situated just south of Sesriem and offers magnificent views of the distant dunes of the Namib Desert. Sossusvlei is the top attraction in the Namib-Naukluft Park. The rather eerie Dead Pan refers to the large dead camelthorn trees on the pan. Before you leave for Sesriem Canyon, pause and gently remind yourself of the unbelievable scenery you have just visited, the like of which you may never see again.
Although it is possible to book this itinerary 'as is', as with all our self drive trips this is entirely customisable. We can add or delete days, change the accommodation used and generally design the tour to suit your individual requirements. If you do not like the idea of driving yourself, a guided safari could be arranged.
Etohsa Park & the dunes of the Namib Desert are the two main attractions on this trip.
Situated on the outskirts of Windhoek, River Crossing is the perfect place to unwind from a long flight and to acclimatise to your surroundings. They offer dinner so if you do not feel strong enough to explore Windhoek on your first night then we recommend arranging this option.
We recommend leaving Windhoek early this morning as you have a 435 kilometer drive to complete before reaching the park. Your route takes you due north of Windhoek via the towns of Okahandja, Otjiwarongo and Outjo. Your accommodation for the next three nights is at Okaukuejo which has a very well established waterhole that attracts a lot of game during the drier months both during the day and night. If you want to maximise your chances of seeing game then ... the next few days will involve some early starts as most wildlife is more active during the cooler hours (early morning and late afternoon) especially during summer months. It is also worth checking out the camp's sighting book that records where and what people have recently encountered.
Today is a 3-4 hour drive so there is no rush and Omaruru, the closest town to the lodge, offers a couple of reasonable lunch options. Erongo Wilderness is a great chance to relax for a few days as although it is recommended to join one of the lodge's guided walks and/or drives, it is also a place to just soak up the tranquillity and beauty of this pristine wilderness. Wildlife in the area include leopard, kudu, oryx, eland, mountain ... zebra, springbok and steenbok. For anyone interested in birding this unique location offers a rich and diverse variety of birdlife including many endemic species.
Today's trip involves a lot of smaller roads and may take 5-6 hours if the road conditions are not great. A fairly early start is therefore recommended as well as a higher clearance vehicle or 4x4. Having said this, it is a scenic journey travelling through more mountainous areas before entering the Namib Naukluft Park and driving through Kuiseb Pass and then on to Solitaire. There is a small cafe at this remote settlement which might offer a late lunch ... option. For Day 7 there is either the choice of joining a guided tour into the dunes or to drive yourselves. What ever you choose, it is an early start, leaving the lodge before sunrise. If doing the trip by yourselves head for the Sesriem entrance gate to the Namib Naukluft Park. This gate only opens at sunrise, so there is no point arriving earlier, but driving the 60km from Sesriem through the dunes towards Sossusvlei while the sun rises is a real pleasure. The first major dune you will encounter goes by the imaginative name of Dune 45 - many people choose to stop and climb this dune but we suggest you continue onwards towards Sossusvlei. Park at the the 2x4 car park (unless you have a 4x4 vehicle this is as far as you can drive). Sossusvlei is a further 4km from here but you are already amongst fairly large dunes. The walk along the dry river bed into Sossusvlei is lovely but for the very unfit or terminally lazy there are 4x4 shuttles from the car park to Sossusvlei. Deadvlei, so named because it is a large pan with sculptural dead trees, is close by and definitely worth a visit. When you have had enough sand - head back to your vehicle (there really is no shame in taking the shuttle back - the sand is likely to be hot, and the walk less pleasant than the one in the cool of the morning). On your way back to the lodge stop at the Sesriem Canyon - follow the signs from the Sesriem Campsite.
If you are looking for a spectacular way to end your trip you should consider joining a balloon flight over Sossusvlei this morning. Otherwise after breakfast, pack up and head back to Windhoek via the Remshoogte Pass.
Although we have excluded the cost of renting a vehicle from the quoted rate we are happy to advise you on the best possible vehicle and arrange a rental for you. For an idea of what is available have a look at our car hire in Namibia section
By using a range of accommodation types and styles this self drive manages to keep costs down while still visiting spectacular areas of the country.
Still staying in top quality accommodation the Tourmaline is a more realistic itinerary for those on a more upper mid-range budget.
A good value for money mid range honeymoon self drive, visiting the best Namibia has to offer.
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