Kaokoland

The Kaokoveld, a vast and empty wilderness occupying the north-western quarter of Namibia, is roughly divided in two by the Hoanib River. The north is known as Kaokoland and the south as Damaraland. Although these administrative divisions fell away after Namibian independence the colloquial demarcations have persisted.

The Kunene is a perennial river that rises in the highlands of Angola and carves its way along the Namibian border through wild and arid mountains before reaching the Atlantic. The rivercourse is an astonishing contrast of sub-tropical growth amid the rocky outcrops and treeless plains of Kaokoland.

The attraction of Kaokoland lies in its wild and uncharted valleys and mountains. Rugged trails take you through impossible terrain that test the engineering of your vehicle and the skills of your driver. Wading through flash floods or bumping over rocks is all in a day's work. It is the most isolated and undeveloped region of this mostly isolated and undeveloped country.

The Himba people - traditional pastoralists who rely on their hardy cattle and goats for survival - have fascinating traditional garb that, until recently involved a daily coating of goat fat and red mud ostensibly as protection from the fierce heat of the sun. Their cultures, lifestyle and dress have been well documented and they live side by side with the wildlife in the region much like the proud Maasai people of Masai Mara in Kenya.

The Kunene is a crocodile-infested river with a profusion of makalani palms, sycamore figs, leadwoods and jackalberry trees. Two of southern Africa's rarist birds are found along its banks: the Cinderella waxbill and the rufous-tailed palm thrush. Adventure-seekers can shoot the rapids in inflatable rafts on guided expeditions.

Epupa Falls, remote and wonderfully difficult to reach, is one of only a few waterfalls in Namibia. Water cascades into a spectacular chute and there are several natural rock pools where you can take a refreshing - and much needed - dip. Ruacana Falls, about 120km east along one of the most rugged tracks in the country, is another excellent birding site although the falls have been reduced to a series of sluices from the hydro-electric dam upstream.

Hartmann's Valley and Marienfluss are two vast wilderness areas in the west of Kaokoland. This is off-roading territory and the valleys support a fragile arid ecosystem. Marienfluss is the more accessible of the two and, being more easterly, it has more vegetation, birds and animals than the desolate Hartmann's.

More In Namibia

About Us

  • DanieDanie
  • EdwardEdward
  • WilmariWilmari
  • BiancaBianca
  • UlrikeUlrike
  • ChantelleChantelle
  • AshleeAshlee
  • BoniqueBonique
  • TessaTessa
  • JanineJanine
  • CarmenCarmen
  • AnjaAnja

“I highly recommend you use Namibia Tours & Safaris if you're planning a visit to this country. Great logistics, great value, really personal service. Very fun to work with!”

“I feel that Edward is honest, extremely helpful, and a true professional. I will recommend this company and Edward's expertise to anyone heading to Africa. A perfect trip!!”

“We had an 18-day private guided tour (Namibia, Botswana and Vic Falls) organised by the NTS team. Our consultant Wilmari was amazing both in preparation to and during our travel. Responsive, personable and diligent she put together an excellent itinerary.”

“Our fly-in safari was a life experience we treasure. The scenery, people and arrangements were all outstanding. Bianca of Namibia Tours & Safaris put together the trip of our dreams. We highly recommend her!”

“Namibia Tours and Safaris and their consultants are the best. Ulrike, our consultant, helped us over a 2 year period to plan our 4x4 Safari details. She had the patience of a saint and the insight and knowledge of a true local.”

“Chantelle did a fantastic job in organizing our self-drive trip through Namibia. Nothing was too much hassle and Chantelle was so helpful and responsive throughout the whole process.”

“Having tried to organise this trip myself I was very appreciative of the knowledge and support given by Ashlee who could not have been more supportive.”

“The organisation and response from the initial contact was fast and flawless thanks to Bonique our tour consultant. Her recommendations were perfectly tailored to our needs with a lot of foresight and local knowledge.”

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

“Janine from NTS proposed us a great trip that suited our needs and wishes finding the right accommodation and great places. We had a wonderful stay and it was nice to meet with her in Swakop. Definitely recommend!”

“I have no words to express my gratitude to Carmen Scott and all the NTS team for their excellent work. Keep it up and all the best!”

“I cannot find any hassle or negative point for the organisation of this trip. Outstanding material, good accommodation, simply perfect. What a great company!”