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The Great Namibia Wildlife Safari

10 days with Natural Habitat Adventures   Rating: Deluxe

Itinerary
Click for Dates and Prices
Day 1: Windhoek, Namibia
Our Namibia wildlife safari begins on arrival in Windhoek. Namibia's capital is a modern, walkable city with an eclectic urban skyline featuring both contemporary and colonial architecture, from German castles and cathedral spires to glass skyscrapers. There's time to relax this afternoon at our boutique hotel in a tranquil neighborhood before a welcome dinner with our Expedition Leader.

Days 2 & 3: Kulala Private Reserve—Sossusvlei Dunes
Fly by light aircraft to Little Kulala, a luxurious retreat within the private 90,000-acre Kulala Wilderness Reserve on the edge of Namibia’s great sand sea. The word namib in the Nama language means “vast,” an apt name for this ancient arid expanse—the world’s oldest desert. Wildlife drives at sunrise take us into Sossusvlei, a salt and clay pan surrounded by shape-shifting sand dunes. Framed by intense blue skies, the world’s tallest dunes glow deep carnelian at dawn, changing minute by minute as the sun climbs, to rose, burnt orange and ochre. Inside are diamonds, tucked into the sand mountains by currents, waves and wind. Remarkably, these dunes are home to a host of desert species, including oryx, ostrich, springbok, spotted and brown hyena, aardwolf and bat-eared fox. The rare dune lark’s entire habitat is confined to this area. Discover the desert’s subtle magic on short walks and safari drives. From Little Kulala’s profoundly secluded vantage point, experience some of Africa’s most arresting vistas, including vermilion sunsets and unparalleled stargazing.

Please note: Some departures will spend a third night at Little Kulala Camp in Sossusvlei, and one less night at Desert Rhino Camp in the Palmwag Concession. Check with an Adventure Specialist for details.

Days 4–6: Palmwag Concession—Rhino Tracking
Fly north to the private million-acre Palmwag Concession. Our destination, Desert Rhino Camp, lies at the heart of this vast reserve in Damaraland, one of Africa's last great wildernesses. Few safari locales offer the level of isolation found here. The raw landscape is defined by ancient riverbeds, open plains, stacked granite rocks and deep gorges. Within these stark environs, freshwater springs support healthy numbers of wildlife, including Africa's largest population of free-roaming black rhinos. We'll track this endangered icon in the company of rhino experts from Save the Rhino Trust and researchers based at the camp. To search for rhinos on foot is a rare and exhilarating experience. Taking care to stay downwind, silent and hiding behind scrub bushes, we hold our breath in anticipation of spying this ancient desert dweller. On 4x4 drives, look also for desert-adapted elephant, endemic Hartmann’s mountain zebra, giraffe, oryx, gemsbok, springbok,greater kudu and possibly even predators. Birds are abundant, with a number of southern African endemics. 

Days 7–9: Etosha National Park—Ongava Private Reserve
We take to the skies once again, bound for the Ongava Game Reserve bordering Etosha National Park. Within this private concession, wildlife thrives while visitors are few. Our focus is the Etosha Salt Pan, the remnant of a huge lake that existed here two million years ago. Bare and dry today, the depression offers Namibia’s best wildlife viewing, with elephant, black and white rhino, lion, leopard, cheetah, giraffe, zebra, wildebeest, hartebeest, springbok, oryx, kudu and the diminutive dik-dik drawn to the many life-sustaining waterholes. Birdlife is prolific, and we may see ostrich and raptors. From camp, take guided walks (safety permitting) and night drives on the reserve, traveling into the adjacent national park by day, then retreating to solitude each evening.
 
Day 10: Windhoek / Depart
Our Namibia safari concludes as we fly from Ongava back to Windhoek to connect with departing flights.

Map
All This Included
Namibia is soul-stirring. Here on the southwest edge of Africa, orange sand dunes rise a thousand feet high against a cobalt sky. Inside are diamonds, tucked into the mountains of sand by currents, waves and wind. The coastal desert is washed by the relentless ocean, while inland the sun bakes the plains into a cracked puzzle of dried mud, pocked with enough grass and thornbush to sustain desert rhinoceros and other rare species. Raptors on high survey arid canyons that slice through vast plateaus. There is water here, too, though its presence is subtle. It is the source of life in the stark Etosha salt pan, whose waterholes attract great numbers of game pursued by feline predators. Springbok, oryx, kudu and dik-dik run to elude them in a great and ancient desert dance.

  • Accommodations in luxury safari camps
  • Services of Nat Hab's professional Expedition Leader(s) and camp staff
  • Premier open-sided 4-wheel drive Land Cruisers or Rovers
  • All meals from dinner on Day 1 through breakfast on final day
  • Some alcoholic beverages
  • Most gratuities
  • Airport transfers on Day 1 and final day
  • All activities and entrance fees
  • All taxes, permits and service fees

Highlights
  • Exclusive Private Wildlife Reserves: Discover the vast private nature reserves of Kulala, Palmwag and Ongava, filled with unusual wildlife found nowhere else in Africa, though never filled with crowds.
  • Track Rare Desert Rhinoceros: Track rhinos on foot from Desert Rhino Camp in the remote Palmwag Concession, and search for other uniquely desert-adapted species amid Namibia’s striking topography.
  • Fly Between Remote Camps: Fly between secluded luxury camps enveloped by silent wilderness, maximizing time for wildlife viewing and close-up exploration of the desert landscape.

Accommodations
Windhoek: Olive Grove Guest House
Kulala Wilderness Reserve: Little Kulala 
Palmwag Concession: Desert Rhino Camp
Etosha National Park: Ongava Tented Camp
Pre and Post Add-ons
Okonjima AfriCat Extension
3 Days / Year-Round, From $1895
Join the AfriCat Foundation for close-up photography and interactions with Namibia's wild felines on this private 55,000-acre wildlife sanctuary dedicated to carnivore rehabilitation.
 
Cape Town Extension
4 Days / Year-Round, From $1595
Discover the natural and multicultural highlights of one of the world's most entrancing cities. Explore the Cape Peninsula, visit Cape Point Nature Reserve, see penguins at Boulders Beach and tour the Winelands.
Notes
  • Group Size: Approximately 7 Travelers. A very important feature of our Namibia safaris is the limited group size, as nature and wildlife encounters are most meaningful with fewer people, and our environmental footprint is lighter, too.
  • Not Included: Travel to and from the start and end point of your trip, some alcoholic beverages, some gratuities, passport and visa fees (if any), optional activities, items of a personal nature (phone calls, laundry and internet, etc.), airline baggage fees, airport and departure taxes (if any), required medical evacuation insurance, optional travel protection insurance.
  • Physical Requirements: Easy to Moderate. During this safari the 4x4 vehicles frequently offer a bumpy ride over rugged terrain. Wildlife drives often involve long hours of sitting and sometimes bouncing around. While we don't consider this strenuous, it can be uncomfortable and pose a particular type of physical demand on the body. All travelers must be able to climb into and out of our raised 4x4 safari trucks. Travelers must also be able to walk to and from the vehicle to our camp accommodations, which sometimes involves walking over uneven ground (including sand) or on boardwalks. Days spent on safari can be long, as mornings typically start before daybreak and evening meals are served after sundown. Safari accommodations and vehicles are not climate controlled and, depending on the seasonality, temperatures can range from quite cold to extremely hot, so it is crucial that travelers come prepared. 
  • Mandatory Insurance: Since the areas you will travel to on this trip are remote and wild (that's why we go there!), we require medical evacuation insurance for this program. If you decline the medical evacuation insurance coverage offered by Natural Habitat Adventures, we require that you send us documentation of the independent coverage you have selected. We recommend that your chosen independent insurance plan includes at least $250,000 in medical evacuation coverage. Please note that we will add the cost of Natural Habitat Adventures' medical evacuation policy (currently $48 per person) to your tour invoice until you provide our office with proof of coverage including your insurance company's name, phone number and your individual policy number. Thank you for understanding that our policy exists exclusively in the interest of our guests' safety.
  • Please plan to arrive Windhoek by 5 pm on Day 1 and you may depart Windhoek anytime after 1:55 pm on the final day.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.

Terms and Conditions
For Natural Habitat Adventures terms and conditions, please click here.

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.