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11-day Namibia Highlights Safari (Self-drive)

You could spend a lifetime exploring Namibia. Here we've assembled the highlights in an eleven-day journey of fascinating discovery that includes the Sossusvlei in the Namib-Naukluft Park, the Skeleton Coast, Damaraland and Etosha National Park.

Price from USD 1,992 pps
Duration 11 days
Tour Type Self-drive
Highlights Damaraland, Etosha National Park, Sossusvlei, Swakopmund
Includes

Accommodation; Meals (SQ); Vehicle hire; Meet and Greet; Airport Transfers; 24-hour support; Comprehensive tour file with detailed itinerary, map, route descriptions, booking vouchers, contact numbers and useful information

Excludes

International flights; Personal travel insurance; Entry visas; Fuel; Park entry fees; Staff gratuities

The Namib Desert covers the entire Namibian coastline of over 1,500km and sweeps up to 200km inland. At a shade over 20 million years, it is the planet's oldest desert and has an astonishing diversity of landscapes and habitats including the Great Sand Sea of Sossuvlei and the surreal Skeleton Coast north of Swakopmund.

Damaraland's scenic rocky outcrops and sandy riverbeds form a vast undulating landscape that shelters a variety of desert-adapted wildlife including elephant, rhino, lion and some rather hardy plains game.

Etosha National Park is unique. Its waterhole culture forces the plains game to drink during the middle of the day when predators are most lethargic; thus it's not uncommon to have a collage of several different species in the same frame. Lions, elephants and several endemic species of antelope and birds - including 46 raptors - add to the game viewing excitement.

Itinerary Details

You will be met by the car rental company representative on arrival and transferred to their offices in Windhoek to complete all rental procedures. You will then meet with our representative to hand over your travel documents. The remainder of the day can be spent relaxing at your own leisure. For dinner tonight, you can head into town for a bite to eat at one of Windhoek’s well known restaurants

Standard Accommodation
Luxury Accommodation
Windhoek slideshow image 5d5e641e4b0f8

Travel south to the Namib Desert for the next two nights. The drive takes about four hours.

On the way: The drive reveals the transition from Kalahari thornveld to the true desert of the Namib; Lilyveld, a valley 30km north of Maltahöhe, springs into bloom for about a week after good rains; Duiwiseb Castle is an interesting diversion 70km south-west of Maltahöhe.

When you're there: Enter Sossusvlei at sunrise and remember to take plenty of film or memory, sun cream, a hat, walking shoes and water. Explore the world's highest dunes and a sheltered pan with petrified trees that are hundreds of years old; climb the dunes and look out over a sea of sand. Private reserves in the area reveal fascinating flora, fauna and ancient desert landscapes.

Standard Accommodation
Luxury Accommodation

A five-hour drive north takes you through the gradual change from mountains and dunes to rolling grass-covered hills with scattered acacia trees. Swakopmund is a quaint resort town by the sea with an obvious German heritage at odds with its bleak surrounds.

On the way: Look out for the endemic Hartmann's mountain zebra as you leave; stop at Solitaire, about 80km from Sesriem for some home-made bread and an ice cold drink; Kuiseb Canyon has some shady picnic spots; you can see springbok and pure-bred wild ostrich across the vast gravel plains of the Namib; the lunar landscape; look out for the welwitschia plant.

When you're there: Visit the Walvis Bay Lagoon - a RAMSAR wetlands site - where thousands of flamingoes, pelicans and numerous waders feed in the nutrient-rich shallows; restaurants, shops and attractions in Swakopmund; spend an extra day making the most of the cool air and refreshing sea.

Among the many organised activities, we recommend a scenic flight over Skeleton Coast; a comfortable and informative boat cruise of Walvis Bay where you meet dolphins, sea lions, pelicans and terns; and quad biking, which is an exciting way to experience the sand dunes.

Standard Accommodation
Luxury Accommodation
Swakopmund slideshow image 5cb841960d4b7

Destination Damaraland where enormous granite outcrops and dolerite dykes have been carved by ice, wind and rain over aeons. Grassy plains, tree-studded riverbeds and endless open skies add to the grandeur and make this area one of the most scenic in Namibia. The drive to Damaraland takes up to five hours because there is much to see and do along the way.

On the way: Drive along the Skeleton Coast to Cape Cross - the largest breeding cape fur seal colony in the world. The stench of 100,000 seals can be a tad over-powering: take a handkerchief to cover your nose; lunch at Cape Cross Lodge or picnic at some suitably serene and other-worldly spot; stop at the lichen fields and a salt pan that is an excellent birding spot; visit the Twfylefontein rock paintings, the Petrified Forest and the Organ Pipes.

When you're there: Game drives on private reserves in search of the famed desert-adapted elephant, black rhino and giraffe; among other hardy plains herds look out for Hartmann's mountain zebra; spend more time exploring the Twfylefontein rock paintings, the Petrified Forest, Vingerklip and the Organ Pipes; hike up the Brandberg Mountain, Namibia's highest point at 2,573m.

Standard Accommodation
Luxury Accommodation

The drive to Etosha National Park is a scenic few hours through more of Damaraland's singular beauty. The southern gate is much closer to southern Damaraland and will take about three hours.

On the way: The route is almost too short to stop, barring a comfort stop at Outjo and a picture of the Ugab Terrace. Drive east towards Khorixas stopping at the Petrified Forest en-route. From Khorixas head further east along the tar road to Outjo and then north to your lodge which is situated very close to the southern entrance of Etosha, the Anderson Gate. If time permits, enter Etosha for an afternoon game drive. Depending on how often you stop today, you should arrive at your lodge in time for lunch (optional extra). On entering the park, the first stop would be Okaukuejo where you pay your entry fee and I suggest you pop in at the local shop to purchase some drinks and snacks and most importantly, a map of Etosha which will show you all the waterholes along the way

When you're there: Etosha has an estimated 250 lions, 300 rhinos, 2,500 giraffes, 6,000 zebras, 20,000 springbok and 2,000 elephants. This on top of a large number of lesser and common plains herds, and abundant birds makes game viewing in Etosha something special. The surrounding lodges all have private reserves with equally impressive wildlife numbers and they offer private game viewing activities into the park.

Standard Accommodation
Luxury Accommodation

The drive through Etosha National Park to your next lodge on the eastern side of Etosha is a scenic few hours of game driving. The drive can take anything from 2 hours depending on how often you stop for game viewing.

When you're there: Your lodge will offer guided game drives into Etosha and game walks in the private reserve.

Standard Accommodation
Luxury Accommodation
Etosha National Park - East slideshow image 5cb841a368d1b

You have a long drive ahead of you today: up to six hours. The roads are all paved so it's a comfortable ride to arrive in time for your onward flight or a night in Windhoek.

On the way: Okahandja has the largest wood carvers' market in Namibia

Windhoek slideshow image 5d5e641e4b0f8

Prices

Guests Accommodation Season (2019) Amount
2 Standard Low Season USD 2,104 pps
2 Standard High Season USD 2,303 pps
2 Luxury Low Season USD 3,090 pps
2 Luxury High Season USD 3,440 pps
Guests Accommodation Season (2020) Amount
2 Standard Low Season USD 2,473 pps
2 Standard High Season USD 2,725 pps
2 Luxury Low Season USD 3,421 pps
2 Luxury High Season USD 3,838 pps
4 Standard Low Season USD 1,992 pps
4 Standard High Season USD 2,205 pps
4 Luxury Low Season USD 2,940 pps
4 Luxury High Season USD 3,318 pps
  • As a rough guide Low Season throughout the region is from 1 January to 30 June and High Season is from 1 July to 31 December.
  • We give indicative Low and High Season rates on our website and exact prices in your quote when your travel dates are set.
  • These prices are based on two adults sharing accommodation unless otherwise stated.
  • Please treat all pricing as a guide only. Read more about our pricing.
  • Contact us for a personalised quote now.

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About Us

Staff party photo from 2019 showing all staff smiling
  • Wilmari Wilmari
  • Bianca Bianca
  • Ulrike Ulrike
  • Chantelle Chantelle
  • Ashlee Ashlee
  • Bonique Bonique
  • Tessa Tessa
  • Janine Janine
  • Carmen Carmen
  • Anja Anja
  • Kirsti Kirsti
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  • Jessica Jessica

“NTS was AMAZING! Special thanks to Wilmari for the best trip we have ever taken. 100% recommend!”

“This was a "bucket list" trip for us. It could not have been better. HIGHLY recommend you ask for Bianca.”

Ulrike helped us plan our safari for 2 years... patience of a saint and the insight and knowledge of a true local.”

“Ask for Chantelle, a true legend of patience, availability and efficiency. Will highly recommend.”

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Bonique's recommendations were perfectly tailored to our needs with foresight and local knowledge... flawless.”

“The service and help we got from Tessa was fantastic, as a result we had a tremendous trip.”

Janine proposed us a great trip and it was nice to meet with her in Swakop. Definitely recommend!”

“I have no words to express my gratitude to Carmen and the NTS team for their excellent work.”

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Kirsti arranged the best family holiday we have ever had... highly recommended.”

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Leandrie was very patient listening to my needs and catering to my budget... Everything worked perfectly!”

Jessica was AMAZING and so helpful with all of our concerns and questions - we had the most amazing trip.”