11-Day Namibia Highlights Safari Self-Drive

You could spend a lifetime exploring Namibia. Here we've assembled the highlights in the 11 day Namibia Highlights Safari – a journey of fascinating discovery that includes the Sossusvlei in the Namib- Naukluft Park, the Skeleton Coast, Damaraland and Etosha National Park.

The Namib Desert covers the entire Namibian coastline of over 1,500km and sweeps up to 200km inland. It is the planet's oldest desert and has an astonishing diversity of landscapes and habitats including the Great Sand Sea of Sossusvlei 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’s plains game come 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.

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Itinerary

Day 1 - Windhoek

  • 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

Day 2 & 3 - Namib Desert

  • After breakfast, you can still pop into town for anything you might need and then depart heading south from Windhoek to your lodge for the next 2 nights
  • The route will take you either via the beautiful Spreetshoogte or Remhoogte Pass, both showcasing the natural beauty of Namibia
  • Wake up early for breakfast (Day 3) and then head to the entrance to Sossusvlei, the Sesriem Gate
  • Spend the whole day in the beautiful Sossusvlei area, exploring the highlights: Sossusvlei, Dead Vlei, Dune 45, Big Daddy, Elim Dune and the Sesriem Canyon
  • Return to the lodge for lunch or arrange a lunch pack to enjoy in the dunes and return late afternoon for a well-earned rest

Optional extra activities: Guided Sossusvlei excursion, Hot air balloon safari, Nature drives

Day 4 & 5 - Swakopmund

  • Depart after breakfast and head north to Solitaire, then west crossing the Tropic of Capricorn, through the Gaub and Kuiseb Canyons via the Namib Gravel Plains to the coast
  • Either via Walvis Bay to Swakopmund, or (recommended) detour via Ganab to the Welwitschia Plains and Moon Landscape
  • The Namibian coastline is generally known as The Skeleton Coast due to the barren areas, shipwrecks and, in days gone by, whale skeletons left on the beach
  • 1 full day is set aside for this lovely area where Swakopmund and Walvis Bay offer a wide range of activities such as: Dolphin cruise, Sandwich Harbour excursion (a real Skeleton Coast experience), Dune quad biking, Sand boarding, Sea kayaking, Lots more...
  • Lunches and dinners can be enjoyed at a cafe or restaurant overlooking the sea

Day 6 & 7 - Damaraland

  • Head north along the Skeleton Coast, via Henties Bay to visit the Cape Cross seal colony.
  • Along the way, stop at the Lichen Fields as well as the ship wreck between the colourful small town of Wlotskasbaken and Henties Bay
  • Backtrack to Henties Bay and head inland through wide open plains to Uis, then north to the Twyfelfontein area
  • Visit to Namibia's Open Air Museum, the Twyfelfontein Rock Engravings as well as the interesting Organ Pipes rock formations and Burnt Mountain
  • Take a drive west (4x4 needed) to the Huab River to look for desert adapted elephants as well as other game such as oryx, springbok, ostrich and more (recommended with a lodge guide)
  • Visit the Damara Living Museum for a hint of culture

Day 8 - Etosha National Park (South)

  • After breakfast, drive east towards Khorixas stopping at the Petrified Forest en-rout
  • 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
  • Etosha is one of Africa's great game parks. With 114 species of mammal and 340 species of birds you are sure to see a great variety of wildlife on your safari

Day 9 & 10 - Etosha National Park (East)

  • From one side to the other side of the park is a full day game drive as you head slowly east stopping at numerous waterholes along the way
  • Take a slow drive in the morning and then enjoy a packed lunch (optional extra) overlooking one of the waterholes before continuing on through the park to the eastern side
  • 1 full day is set aside for game viewing, either all day or alternate with morning and afternoon drives.
  • These are self-drive game drives but you can arrange at the lodge to go with their open safari vehicle and guide (optional extra)

Day 11 - Windhoek

  • Head back to Windhoek today, where the vehicle is dropped off and your holiday comes to an end
  • Transfer to the airport to catch your departure flight. (Keep in mind that you need to be at the airport 2 hours prior and the airport is still a 45 minute to 1 hour drive from town)