My Namibian Experience
Namibia was an absolute surprise! From the vast wilderness and geological attractions millions of years old to Etosha National Park and surrounding private reserves abundant in wildlife, Namibia was unforgettable. My experiences here rate at the top of all travel opportunities I have ever had.
From the first moment here I felt very welcomed in Namibia. I was on my own and the night before my safari I was staying at a little boutique hotel in Windhoek, when my appointed safari guide phoned to see if I would come down to “Joe’s” (I learnt quickly that Joe’s is the mainstay for pre and post safari drinks!). After a couple of meet and greets with the other guests in my group we got off to a great start.
Our first safari destination was Damaraland – an enormous region of expansive and beautifully wild landscapes. After arriving at the little airstrip, we had a 4×4 transfer – with game viewing en route – to our camp quickly realising we are in a very remote region on earth. Two days into the safari and I learned more about the geology and history of the earth’s continents here than ever taught (or took in) at school. How fascinating! Whilst here we participated in tracking rare desert-adapted black rhino on foot with Save the Rhino Trust. This rated as a major highlight of the whole trip!
Departing Desert Rhino Camp, we fly over the incredible Skeleton Coast – renowned for its large number of shipwrecks over the last century – and to the extreme north of the country. We arrive in Serra Cafema, just a sand airstrip with little else but why not? If I thought Damaraland was remote, this is like being on the moon! An hour and a half later we arrive at Serra Cafema Camp, a little oasis situated on the banks of the Kunene River. Our stunning rooms are dark wood, floating curtains, and veranda complete with hammock and views to the river. Sublime!
Our days here are spent visiting remote Himba people, who are still nomadic and very authentic to their traditional way of life. We also have a couple of blitzes up and down massive sand dunes on the quad bikes which is another highlight of the trip!
Our last stop on this trip is the world-famous Etosha National Park. We stayed in Ongava Private Game Reserve at Little Ongava – a six star experience in the wild. With only six spacious suites at the whole property it ensures a very personalized experience and we enjoyed excellent game drives and surprise bush dinners during our stay. The focal point of Etosha is the enormous salt pan whose fringes are edged with productive waterholes that are frequented by a great number of mammals including elephant, lion, giraffe, zebra, gemsbok and others.
Namibia is a hidden gem and a perfect introduction to Africa for those dreaming of going but don’t know where to go first.
By Ange Pirie
Here are some of our favourite Namibia itineraries,