Namibia.It has suddenly dawned on me.

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Apr 14th, 2015, 04:06 AM
  #1
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Namibia.It has suddenly dawned on me.

Its happened before.Its happened again.A couple of days ago I stumbled across a irresistible fare and on the impulse, booked a flight to Windhoek for 11 nights, last week of May'15.

This was Fast and Furious

That done , did some quick searches for info on Namibia on this forum and other sources.Shot off mails to lodges and booked myself a Toyota 4x4.I wanted to camp initially but later abandoned the idea for a more comfortable holiday.Realized, I probably wouldn't have the energy to set up camp,pack/unpack and so on after long hauls.
This is the way my story would go and welcome observations

Day 1 :

Arrive Windhoek late eve check into Kalahari Sands Hotel.

I do have options for other places like Olive Grove Guesthouse and Londiningi Guesthouse.I would prefer these smaller more intimate places as to contemporary largs establishments.

Day 2:

Post breakfast drive to Okonjima Plains Camp,guess 3-4 hrs. Overnight.Game drives in the concession and other activities at the Africat foundation.
Here, I am keen on staying at the Old Trader's Lodge at Erindi instead, I haven't got confirmation here as yet. If I do , I don't intend to flip a coin. Would like yo solicit your valuable advise. Pl weigh the pros and cons for me.

Day 3 & 4.

Post lunch depart for the Mushara Bush Camp , east of the Etosha pan, looks a pretty place so I gave myself 2 nights.A relatively 'new camp' I heard is close to the Von Lindquist Gate on the eastern edge of the Etosha Pan.

Day 5 :

Arrive at the Okaukuejo Camp. Wait listed for the waterhole chalet but got confirmation for Standard room, of which I'n not too happy about. A couple of videos on youtube of this camp reminds me of a circus,a ringside view of the waterhole,with hordes of noisy people milling around.This does not appeal to me, for I prefer the quiet and stillness of an observation post. If its true,any suggestion for an alternate camp in the proximity or should I stay here to ' tick it '. Its all for one day.Your observation.

Day : 6 & 7

Drive in the direction of Damaraland, to be specific , it will be the Doro Nawas Lodge as I've been wait listed at Camp Kipwe. I particularly liked the chalet, at Doro, with the bed out in the ' open to sky ' wooden deck and would imagine, counting the stars and lulling myself to sleep.Take a look at it at the Wildness Safaris Doro Nawas web page.

Day 8 ;

Here is a tricky situation I'm in. This day has to end in Swakopmund and I've booked one night at the Beach Lodge. If I travel west,Skeleton Coast is about 120kms . Spend a couple of hours and start down south. This is what I'm coming to. The bait is Cape Cross, just to spend an hr at the fur seals colony and its 'refreshing breath" , I'm told.Then a long drive to Swakopmund. Crazy, 600+ kms. wouldn't mind it though.
A sober option is a 250km straight drive to Swakopmund from Doro,hit a pub and put my feet up . Ayes and Nays please.

Day 9 & 10 :

After breakfast drive down south to Sesriem,at the Desert Camp for two nights

Day 11 :

Will be on the way to Windhoek overnight at one of the accomodations mentioned above.

Day 12 :Fly back home,promising myself never do such impromptu planing again.

I've deliberately left out activities and other valuable information that I would like to solicit from you a little later, lest I shock myself .

Thx
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Apr 14th, 2015, 10:10 AM
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Your trip sounds fantastic. We went to Namibia spur of the moment for 7 days a few years ago. But I was already going to South Africa, so it was a last minute addition. We missed Etosha as we were already going to Sabi Sand/Kruger.

But I wanted to comment on Damaraland. We stayed at Damaraland Camp and it was a wonderful, wonderful experience. It is a Wilderness Camp that I can highly, highly recommend. The starkness of the desert and the desert elephant is astonishing.

In terms of Cape Cross, I am glad that we stopped at it after leaving Swakopmund. It is a sight to behold and I took lots of pictures. However, I could never imagine staying for a full hour. The "refreshing breath" made it impossible and the sweet smell stays with you as it inhabits the fiber of your clothes!

Stay a shorter time, make it into town, go sand boarding (so much fun) if you like extreme sports and then have a bite/drink.

There are a lot of activities/experiences that are unique to Namibia. Looking forward to hearing what you came up with.

Sorry I could be more helpful. Besides Damaraland and 1 night in Swak, we spent the other 3 nights visiting the Dunes.

Enjoy!
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Apr 17th, 2015, 12:38 AM
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Hi lola.Confirmations and reconfirmations are going back and forth.Almost finalized.I have my check-list and started packing. My passport has gone in for the visa.Shd be ready in 4 working days.

Bush chalet confirmed in Etosha, still working for the water- hole chalet.

Camp Kipwe is confirmed so Doro is out. Did have a look at Damaraland Camp. Looks very pretty.Really looking forward to the two nights in that area

Skipping Skeleton Coast. Will be too long a drive. Instead will do a de-tour to Cape Cross,on the way to swak. The reason is to reach well before sun-down.

Well,Parkinson's law is evident here. 'Work expands/contracts to occupy the time allowed '. Guess, if I has 2 months, I would probably have been in the same, present situation.
About 90% of the planning is done in around 5 days !!Will update on the progress made.
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Apr 18th, 2015, 12:06 PM
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I've never had a problem obtaining a visa upon arrival in Kenya, Tanzania, Zanzibar, South Africa, Botswana and Namibia as I'm just not comfortable with sending my passport anywhere.

If you have a full day in Swakopmund I would highly recommend taking the Sandwich Harbour day tour with Turnstone Tours. It was the highlight of my trip travelling at low tide where the dunes meet the Atlantic.

I then went from Swakopmund and did an overnight in Cape Cross before travelling up to Grootberg Lodge (amazing!!) in Damaraland. Personally I could have easily missed Cape Cross and the very short time spent with a bunch of smelly seals. The area is very very isolated and remote and I didn't find it interesting.
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Apr 22nd, 2015, 01:19 AM
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If maximum game viewing is high on the list, then skip the sea lions and stay at least 4 nights in Etosha park. We found over 60 lions over 5 days in this easy to access and getting around park.
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Apr 28th, 2015, 03:59 AM
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Woa...slow down! Namibia is vast, distances between places are huge and many/most of the roads you'll be travelling are dirt roads. This causes 90% of the accidents, because you slowly gain speed and even a wide corner can cause you to lose contact and go into a spin which can roll the vehicle. And a lot of the roads are monotonous;flat or undulating sand and nothing much else - a glorious yet unforgiving landscape. Of course you want to see everything but not at any cost. Etosha deserves 3 nights, in fact, don't stay anywhere for less than 2 nights and don't try the drive from Skeleton Coast to Swakopmund in one go. There are so many places, e.g. Sossusvlei where you just need to absorb the landscape and find your inner peace and not have to jump in the vehicle again and dash off!
You are in for a wonderful time.
Carrie, Fair Trade Safaris non-profit operator
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Apr 28th, 2015, 04:28 AM
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Carrie,I know I sound breathless in my itinerary. Should have added a few more commas and periods

This is the pace I've set and am aware of the perils of speeding.Looking at an average of 75kms/hr.

Windhoek to Otijiwarongo about 290kms app 5hrs.

Overnight

Otijiwarongo to Etosha (East Gate) about 390 kms app 6hrs

2 Nights

Shift base to Okaukuejo app 200km easy game drive speed.

1 Night

Okaukuejo to Twyfelfontein app 350kms app 5hrs 30 mins

2 Nights

Twyfelfontein to Swakopmund app 350 kms about 6hrs

Over night

Swakopmund to Sesriem app 350 kms about 6hrs

2 Nights

Sesriem/ Soussvlei to Windhoek 350kms about 6 hrs

I'm in no tearing hurry.In fact will be on guided game drives once in Etosha and wherever possible.Would love to absorb as much as possible.There are 4 of us travelling together,would also take turns on the wheel.Technically 6 (half) days of 'real' driving
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May 8th, 2015, 02:59 AM
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Late to join the party so just a couple of comments on driving, as I am just back from my second trip to Namibia. My average is more like 50 km/h; while 75 km/h is achievable on tar road(s) (Windhoek to Etosha) it is an illusion on gravel roads, and keeping your max sped just below 80 km/h for hours is impossible, at least for me. Factor in a couple of photo stops, a pit stop, and refuelling, ...
However, just add an hour to your driving times, and you will be OK.
If there will be more time for planning, I would advice you to skip Sesriem/Sossusvlei area, adding one more night to Etosha, and Halali camp is less attractive but also much less touristy than Okakuejo.
Have a safe journey!
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May 8th, 2015, 11:22 PM
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Thx for the advise xelas.Would certainly pace myself. I'm keen on photo ops,so that would certainly slow us down.Like I said I'm in absolutely no hurry.
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Jul 27th, 2016, 04:57 PM
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You mentioned that you found a great fare to Namibia. Where did you find it? I am a novice flier to Africa and am looking for a good fare. I hope you had a great trip down there!
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Jul 27th, 2016, 06:56 PM
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Aggie20, the thread is more than a year old -- so any fare the OP found would hardly be relevant now.

I'd start a new thread of your own.
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Feb 14th, 2018, 10:37 PM
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Now that its possible, thought I'll share the photo-narrative of my Namibia experience.Starting with Etosha....here goes


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Feb 14th, 2018, 10:41 PM
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Feb 14th, 2018, 10:49 PM
  #14
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The endless roads in Namibia


Mushara Lodge Etosha


Mushara
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Feb 14th, 2018, 11:04 PM
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Black Backed Jackal


Fork-tailed Drongo


African Ground Squirrel


Hogging the water-hole
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Feb 14th, 2018, 11:13 PM
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Peeking from Heaven


Impala have the right of way


Lilac breasted Roller


The Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill or the Flying Banana
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Feb 15th, 2018, 03:44 AM
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In in the meanwhile by the waterhole..

The Bachelor group


A lone Oryx


Whos getting to the finishline first
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Feb 15th, 2018, 04:15 AM
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A Burchell’s zebra , their distant cousins,the mountain Zebra are abundant in North-west Namibia.Faint brown line found alongside the black strips.


Burchell’s zebra are found grazing among/along with wildebeests.


Omnipresent Gnu


Kori Bustard,the heaviest flying bird in Africa
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Feb 15th, 2018, 08:18 AM
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Love the photos, esp. the zebras. Glad that's an option now. Thanks for sharing.
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Feb 15th, 2018, 08:28 AM
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Wonderful photos . . . thanks for posting them
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