This tour covers all of the popular highlights but also includes many “off the beaten track” destinations seldom visited by mainstream tourism.
Flexibility, a willingness to participate, an awareness of the elements, and a desire for unlimited adventure, are essential in order to best absorb all that this tour has to offer.
Tour Itinerary 2018
DAY 1: Windhoek
Our adventure in Namibia begins in the Capital city of Windhoek at 14h00 when everyone meets at our hotel for a short tour briefing. We then set off on an afternoon of driving through Windhoek and viewing the attractions of the city, including the local museum and church before setting off to enjoy the warm hospitality and an own expense dinner at the infamous restaurant “Joe’s Beerhouse”, or a similar restaurant. We spend the night in comfort at our hotel and prepare for the next day’s adventure.
Meals: Dinner own expense
– Windhoek city Tour
DAY 2: WINDHOEK – KGALAGADI
This morning, we leave the city behind us and begin our winding journey south into the open plains of the vast Kalahari Desert. Our journey today takes us through remote farming towns seldom visited by travellers, where possible we will stop to engage with the local inhabitants. Our journey will take the majority of the day but there will be plenty of scenic beauty to keep us occupied. We will arrive at our camp in the Kgalagadi in the late afternoon.
Meals: B L D
– Scenic drive through the Kalahari Desert
DAY 3: KGALAGADI TRANSFRONTIER PARK
After a sumptuous breakfast, we embark on our game drive through the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, a National Park spanning both South Africa and Botswana. Well known for its predator population, including cheetah and the massive Black Maned Lion, the Kgalagadi Park offers unique game viewing opportunities and spectacular birdlife. We will spend most of the day traversing the South African side of the park in search of animals. Our guide will take time to give us more information on the animals we encounter in the park and will explain how they survive in the desert conditions.
Tonight we camp amongst the Camel Thorn trees.
Meals: B L D
– Extensive Game viewing experience
DAY 4: KGALAGADI – FISH RIVER CANYON
Rising early, we witness the sunrise over the red dunes before breakfast. Today we travel one of the most scenic Kalahari roads, crossing numerous high dunes which offer spectacular viewpoints. We make our way to Keetmanshoop where we have a short comfort break and then continue onto the Fish River Canyon, regarded as the second largest in the world. We spend some time taking in the views of the canyon by visiting a couple of viewpoints before moving onto our stop for the night, Ai – Ais, the Hot Springs located in the depths of the canyon.
Meals: B L D
– Fish River Canyon
– Ais Ais Hotsprings
DAY 5: FISH RIVER CANYON – AUS
This morning we will enjoy a short walk at the base of the canyon before traveling on remote roads to the southernmost point of our journey – the mighty Orange River. Forming the border with South Africa, the Orange River creates a narrow band of green vegetation that winds its way through the towering rugged mountains of this seemingly burnt landscape.
We will enjoy a lunch stop and possibly even a swim in the river. This afternoon we travel north along the diamond mining area of the Sperrgebiet and make our way to the charming little town of Aus where we spend the next two nights camping.
Meals: B L D
– Morning walk
– Orange River
DAY 6: AUS – LUDERITZ – KOLMANSKOP – AUS
An early start, we make our way across the open desert plains toward the Atlantic Ocean. Our first stop today will be at the Ghost Town of Kolmanskop. Once the site of a prosperous diamond mine, the town is slowly being reclaimed by the shifting sands of the desert. We enjoy an entertaining tour and a walk around the town and through the old buildings that brings the colourful history to life. Then it’s on to Luderitz, a small harbour town on one of the most inhospitable coasts imaginable. We will visit the cross planted here by Dias in 1487 and will spend some time strolling around town, enjoying the unique architecture. This afternoon we travel back into the desert and will stop on route to spend time with a colony of wild desert horses. Lunch today will be own expense.
Meals: B D (Lunch own expense)
– Ghost Town of Kolmanskop
– Wild desert horses
DAY 7: NAMIB DESERT RESERVE
A relaxed start, we enjoy breakfast before we continue travelling north into the dry interior. Today we venture into the heart of the Namib to our privately owned game reserve, taking in its vast plains, red dunes, and towering mountains of stone. Our next two nights will be spent at the GREENFIRE DESERT CAMP, a remote camp nestled against a rock outcrop within a conservancy that forms part of the vast Namib Rand Nature Reserve. The reserve is home to a variety of desert adapted ecology and wildlife and we will enjoy extensive walks as well as day and night game drives during our time here.
Meals: B L D
– Private desert lodge
– Private desert game reserve
DAY 8: DESERT RESERVE
Awake to desert vistas that extend further than the eye can see. This protected wilderness has been conserved and is protected through the proceeds of tourism. All animals here exist in completely natural surroundings and are free to move unrestricted over the full extent of the 22,000 hectare reserve. Our guide will help us understand the unique desert fauna and flora. Today we start off with an informational and educational walk in this beautiful environment, looking for tracks and signs of animal’s behaviour and survival strategies allowing them to exist in these harsh conditions.
There is time to relax during the heat of the day after which we do a desert drive in search of some desert adapted animals by covering a bit more distance with the open safari vehicle.
Meals: B L D
– Open Vehicle Desert Safari
– Game Walk
DAY 9: SOSSUSVLEI DUNES
Setting off early, we continue across the endless desert plains to the Sesriem Canyon and the awesome Sossusvlei dunes – reputedly the highest in the world. After exploring the canyon on foot, we will transfer into the heart of the dunes and will spend time climbing these spectacular mountains of sand before moving on to our campsite in the desert. On this day we take you to climb the dunes and explore the Sesriem Canyon, Sossusvlei and Deadvlei with a 4×4 transfer in and out of these attractions.
Meals: B L D
– Sesriem Canyon
– 4×4 Transfer into these areas
– Dune climbing
DAY 10 – 11: SWAKOPMUND
Crossing through the Namib Naukluft Park, we make our way to the coastal town of Walvis Bay to view the lagoon. Then it’s on to Swakopmund where we spend two nights in the centrally located, comfortable GREENFIRE LODGE SWAKOPMUND. We explore this holiday town and its surrounds thoroughly and enjoy both our evening meals at a local nightspot (own expense). Swakopmund is a must-see for any visitor and offers guests a variety of adventure activities. Clients will have the opportunity to partake in quad biking, sand boarding and skydiving whilst here (own expense). For those that simply want to relax, the town offers a variety of restaurants and shops where one can sit and enjoy the town atmosphere.
Meals: B L; B (Dinner on day 10, lunch and dinner on day 11 all own expense)
– Quad Bikes
– Dune Boarding
– Desert Tours
– Boat Cruises
– Scenic Drive through Namib Naukluft National Park
– Welwitschia desert plants
– Walvis Bay Lagoon
DAY 12: SKELETON COAST – SPITZKOPPE
Today we head up along the barren Skeleton Coast, scene of many a shipwreck, to the seal colony at Cape Cross where thousands of Cape Fur Seals can be seen ashore. We will get within very close proximity to these wild animals.
We continue and travel through the desert to visit the towering granite peaks found at Spitzkoppe. After exploring the outcrops in the afternoon, we set up camp and enjoy the play of the light during sunset from our seat in the mountain. We spend the night at the foot of the mountain.
Meals: B L D
– Cape Cross Seal Colony
DAY 13: TWYFELFONTEIN – PALMWAG
A busy day with numerous stops, we visit the Organ Pipes and the Ancient Rock Engravings at Twyfelfontein before entering Damaraland and crossing the Grootberg mountain pass to spend the night near the oasis of Palmwag. This is one of a few permanent waterholes used by the rare Desert Rhino, elephants, and many other desert adapted species. We hope to see these magnificent animals up close today.
Meals: B L D
– Organ Pipe Rock Formations
– Palmwag oasis
DAY 14 – 15: ETOSHA NAT. PARK
Entering Etosha National Park today, arguably the highlight of the tour, we will spend two nights here within the park in search of the big game this park is so well known for. One evening will be spent at a floodlit waterhole watching the many animals that come down to drink. During these days, we will conduct extensive game drives, visiting all the little waterholes during the heat of the day and staying within the park the entire time. Each night we will stay in one of the rest camps of the park.
Meals: B L D; B L D
Optional Activities: Own expense night drive within the park
– 2 days within the Park
– Extensive Game Viewing Opportunity
DAY 16: ETOSHA– WATERBERG
After a short morning game drive, we exit the park and travel down to the impressive Waterberg Plateau National Park.
This plateau is ecologically diverse and has over 200 different bird species, some rare species of small antelope occur on the lower hills of the mountain. This afternoon, we will hike up the mountain and will enjoy the views of the Kalahari from the summit. We enjoy our last night of tour at the base.
Meals: B L D
– Short Morning Game Drive
– Hike in the Waterberg
DAY 17 WINDHOEK
An early morning, we pack up and begin our journey back to civilization. The drive to Windhoek will take approximately 5 hours and we intend to be back in the capital by 13h00 where the tour will officially come to an end. Lunch will be enjoyed at your own expense. Clients may book a post-tour night through Drifters. For those flying out this afternoon, please allow for check in time and at least an hour for the airport transfer.
– Scenic Drive to Windhoek
The day by day descriptions published are intended as a rough guideline only. Adventure travel by nature is unpredictable, weather patterns, game migrations, road conditions and a multitude of other factors may necessitate itinerary changes that ultimately are for the client’s benefit. It is essential that clients are flexible and open minded in this regard.
Please ensure that you are in possession of valid travel documents for Namibia and South Africa. Some nationalities do require visas for Namibia. On the tour we spend two nights in Kgalagadi Transfrontier park on the SOUTH AFRICAN side, although we go through the Namibian Immigration we do not cross through an South African Immigration office but remain in the park. According to the Transfrontier Park rules clients will not need a visa due to the fact that we do not cross into South Africa via the National Park but we suggest clients confirm with their travel agent or local embassy.
1) Please make sure to get a Double entry Visa for Namibia as during the tour you will “Exit” Namibia during the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park section of the tour and will have to Re-Enter Namibia after the Park experience.
If you have any queries in this regard, please do not hesitate to contact us. Although we will endeavour to assist, we do not accept any liability or obligation for your travel documents.
The contact telephone number for Namibia Tourism in Johannesburg is: + 27 11 784 8024.
Or visit Namibia Tourism on www.namibiatourism.com.na
Make sure that your passport has at least six months’ validity from your planned date of return to your home country.
Make two photocopies of valuable documents such as your passport, tickets, visas and travellers cheques. Keep one copy with you in a separate place to the original and leave another copy with someone at home.
The Namibian Dollar and the South African Rand are the currencies used in Namibia. All major currencies can be exchanged in Namibia. Please ensure that you have enough Rand as there are very few opportunities to exchange foreign currencies. Major credit cards are widely accepted and can be used to pay for restaurant meals etc. Small trading stores will probably not accept credit cards.
Upon arrival in any respective country we operate in, you will be able to find a Bureau de Change OR ATM Facilities at the airport or in the Town/City the tour is departing from. It is advised to bring any major world currency (US Dollar, Euro or British Pounds) in small denominations and not dated older than 2009. It is advised to get a small amount of local currency upon arrival just to get around until your tour starts.
During the tour our guides will inform and show you the best places to exchange any Major World Currency with the best possible exchange rates either before your tour starts or during the course of the tour. Our guides will brief you exactly on where to exchange and roughly how much you will need to exchange after discussing possible optional activities, own expense meals or possible curio stops. Drifters trucks have safe-keeping facilities for extra cash/flight tickets/passport.
The preferred currencies are as follows:
• South Africa – ZAR; Rand
Suggested amounts for each currency:
(Without use of credit card)
• Rand : +- R1 500 – R 1700
(With use of credit card)
• Rand : +- R 1100
It is compulsory that all passengers make arrangements for adequate travel insurance to financially safeguard against unforeseen circumstances. If you need further information please do not hesitate to contact us. Drifters do not accept responsibility for any loss, injury, damage, accident, fatality, delay or inconvenience experienced whilst on tour. You will be required to complete and sign a full indemnity prior to your tour departure.
HEALTH PRECAUTIONS & REQUIREMENTS
The only necessary prophylaxis for Southern and East Africa is against Malaria, but on this tour there is no eminent danger as Namibia is regarded mostly as a Malaria free zone however prevention is better than cure, so we do advise to also use insect repellent on exposed areas after sunset. Please consult with your general practitioner regarding this.
All Drifters guides have first aid boxes for use in emergencies, however we recommend that you bring along your own basic supply of medication, headache tablets etc.
Please bring along any personal medication that you might need on your tour as specific medication could be difficult to find or might not be obtainable in most places we visit.
General medication for headaches, colds and fever are easy to get.
Please also inform your guide of any medical conditions. This information will be received professionally and kept confidential.
Please note that Southern African weather conditions vary tremendously from season to season. During summer months temperatures of up to 40°C can be experienced. During the winter months of June, July and August the nights are very cold, temperatures may drop well below 0°C, although the day temperatures will be pleasant at around 20°C. Please take weather conditions into consideration when choosing a sleeping bag for your tour.
For more accurate information, please visit AccuWeather and choose your destination.
CLOTHING & PERSONAL EFFECTS
Herewith a recommended guide of what to bring along:
For walking, hiking and Safaris
Sport Shoes / Sneakers
Smaller day pack
Books (Birds, Mammals, personal reading books, Optional)
For general travelling (to keep yourself entertained on the longer drives)
Personal Reading Books
A deck of cards or something similar
Battery chargers for your personal devices (Ipods, Ipads, E-Readers, Handy’s etc)
Our vehicles are well equipped with charging facilities while driving. A Two-pin charger is perfect.
Clothing and Toiletries
Long Trousers / Tracksuit
Hat or cap
Jersey / Jumper
Socks & Underwear
T-Shirts / Shirts
Mosquito Net (Optional)
Malaria Prophylaxis (please enquire from your general Doctor at home)
Money (Sundry expenses, gratuities)
Torch / Flashlight / Batteries
Sleeping Bag & Small Pillow
Thermo Insulation mat or sheet to place on top of the camp bed to prevent the cold coming from the bottom.
Passport / Visas (if applicable)
Luggage and Packing space on our vehicles
Luggage should be limited to a maximum of 15kg’sEach Drifters Traveler have their own locker on our trucks which is accessible even while driving. Backpacks, Barrel bags or Soft Suitcases are strongly advisable as your standard Hard Suitcases sometimes don’t fit into the lockers. Each locker could be locked with your personal lock.
MEALS AND REFRESHMENTS
Meals are provided as indicated in the brochure/website. We do not provide meals on the first day of your tour. We do however stop en-route; therefore it is always possible to buy something along the way. Soft drinks, bottled water and alcohol are for your own expense; there is ample opportunity during the tour to buy refreshments. The guide will advise when you need to stock up for a couple of days.
A reasonable amount of personal spending money must be brought on our tours. This is to cover own expense meals as indicated in our Drifters Brochure, bottled water, soft drinks, alcohol, sundry goods purchased- such as suntan cream etc., curios, optional extra excursions, airport tax, transfers and tips.
In Africa things work a little different to the rest of the World. Tipping or gratuity, unless otherwise specified, is not included in the price you pay for services delivered. This accounts for restaurant meals, casual help and the services of the guide or guides that you will meet on your tour.
In Southern and East Africa it is classified as a common courtesy to TIP “casual help (guides)”.
This TIP is not something that is forced upon you by any means, but in many industries of tourism it is customary. It works as follows: if you believe your guide has lived up to your expectations and has performed his/her job in a way that you respect and are happy with the services rendered, an amount of R 50 per day or equivalent amount of R50 per day in any major currency per person per day would constitute a fantastic tip. Remember that this is just a guideline and is not by any means compulsory, but seen as common courtesy in Southern and East Africa.