Experience the beauty of Africa, it's fascinating people and amazing wild animals on this adventure-filled 13 Day Namibia, Chobe & Vic Falls Lodge Safari.
Highlights on this affordable Southern African Safari include:
Your safari guide will collect you from your pre-tour accommodation in Windhoek at about 8:00 am on day one of this Budget Lodge Safari. Departing from Windhoek, the charming capital city of Namibia, we travel via the rugged Khomas Hochland region to our first destination - the Namib-Naukluft Park. The Namib-Naukluft Reserve is the biggest game reserve in Namibia and one of the largest wilderness parks in Africa, covering an area of 50 000 sq km's (bigger than Switzerland).
Our drive takes us through scenic landscapes over one of the highest points in Namibia, offering spectacular views over the surrounding valleys. We descend the steep slopes of the Gamsberg, the third highest mountain in Namibia, sometimes referred to as Namibia’s Garden Route. Upon reaching Solitaire we stop for lunch in this small outpost on the fringes of the Namib.
As we approach our first guest farm near the Namib-Naukluft National Park we keep our eyes out for the various game species found here, including springbok, ostrich and oryx. We stay at a guesthouse with twin or single rooms and en-suite facilities. The guesthouse offers lovely views of the desert surroundings, ideal for sundowners at the end of the day.
Today we get an early start, heading to the entrance gates of the Namib's Sossusvlei Dunes area. This striking part of the Namib is famous for its towering sand dunes, considered some of the highest in the world.
We stop along the way to admire and photograph the scenic sunrise over the red-orange Sossusvlei Dunes. Next, we climb up one of the well-known sand dunes, Dune 45, offering superb views up and down the Tsauchab River Canyon, which forms a valley between the tall sand dunes. Breakfast and coffee await you at the bottom of the sand dune in this beautiful desert setting.
A short drive after breakfast brings us to the starting point for our two-hour desert walk into the less-visited Hiddenvlei area of Sossusvlei.
Then we head to the Sesriem Canyon, pausing in Sesriem where you can have lunch (own expense) in the restaurant. We then visit Sesriem Canyon, a gorge about only one kilometre long and 30 metres deep. Formed by the Tsauchab River about two million years ago this deep canyon reveals distinct sedimentary layers and features several shallow pools.
After our walk in the unique Sesriem Canyon, we head back to our guest farm accommodation on the edge of the Namib‐Naukluft Park for our second night under the star-filled African skies of the Namib Desert.
We travel north through the vast Namib Desert, considered the oldest desert in the world by some scientists, making our way to Swakopmund on day three of this accommodated Namibian Safari. Our scenic five-hour drive to Swakopmund takes us via the Kuiseb Canyon, where two German geologists and their dog lived for two years during World War II.
Next we visit Walvis Bay Lagoon, one of the most important wetlands on the west coast of Southern Africa. The lagoon is famous for its large population of flamingos, as well as being home to a variety of other bird species, and the site is listed as an international Ramsar bird sanctuary.
The next two nights on safari are spent in twin rooms with en-suite bathrooms at a hotel or guesthouse in Swakopmund. Enjoy lunch and dinner at local coffee shops and restaurants in Swakopmund (own expense).
Day four is free for you to explore the popular seaside destination of Swakopmund at your leisure or to take part in the various optional activities available in and around Swakopmund.
Adventure activities include sand boarding, desert flights, skydiving, quad biking, dolphin cruises and more. Swakopmund, where European and African influences meet, is located on the Atlantic coast and surrounded by desert. If you prefer sightseeing to adventure activities you can go shopping, relax at side-walk cafes or visit the art galleries, museums or aquarium in Swakopmund.
Today you can have lunch and dinner at one of the cafes or restaurants in Swakopmund (own expense) while you explore this quaint German-influenced town.
Today our Namibia, Chobe & Vic Falls Lodge Safari proceeds to the famous Etosha National Park in northern Namibia, for two days of game viewing. Our first overnight in Etosha Park is spent in comfortable accommodation at either Okaukuejo or Halali rest camps, depending on animal movements.
Both of these Etosha Camps offer tourist facilities, including a restaurant, a basic shop and a swimming pool. The safari camps also feature waterholes that are floodlit, offering 24-hour game viewing. Elephant and black rhinoceros visit the waterholes on a daily basis in the dry winter season, with a variety of other wild animals, such as leopard and lion, also frequenting these watering spots, as well as smaller nocturnal animals.
Etosha National Park, one of Africa's top game reserves, is dominated by a vast salt pan. Etosha Park is named after this dry lakebed, with the name meaning 'great white place of dry water'. Etosha is home to 340 bird species and over 100 mammal species, notably cheetah and black rhino, as well as black-faced impala, tsessebe, roan antelope and gemsbok.
We explore the 22 270 km² Etosha Park on a leisurely game drive, taking in the wide-open expanse of the dry Etosha Pan.
The flat green surface of this dry lakebed stretches out under the hot African sun, offering spectacular stark scenery and glimpses of ostriches amongst the shimmering mirages. Etosha hosts an abundance of wildlife offering superb game viewing, especially at the waterholes scattered across the park.
We stay in comfortable accommodation at Halali or Namutoni rest camps in Etosha Park enjoying some game viewing at the floodlit watering hole in the evening.
On day seven we have breakfast and make our way out of Etosha, game viewing en route. At our next destination, we enjoy a cultural experience with the San (Bushman) people living near the village of Tsintsabis.
We visit a community-based sustainable tourism initiative specialising in cultural encounters with the San. This afternoon we set off on a guided bush walk with the local San - a fascinating glimpse into the traditional ways of Southern Africa's original inhabitants. The nature walk gives us the chance to see how these ingenious hunter-gatherers have survived in harsh conditions over thousands of years. The San share their indigenous knowledge of the flora as we walk - pointing out which plants are edible, poisonous and used for medicinal purposes. We also learn about the hunting techniques of the San and other survival skills such as making a fire in the bush.
After spending time with the fascinating San people, we drive on to our comfortable lodge or hotel near the town of Tsumeb.
Continuing north today we drive via Rundu in northernmost Namibia, where we have lunch (own expense) and stock up on supplies.
Then we make our way to the Kavango River in the Okavango Delta Panhandle, on the Namibian side. This afternoon there is time to unwind and enjoy a laid-back sundowner beside the river, keeping an eye out for hippos and other creatures.
Stay at an eco-lodge near Divindu and Popa Falls (or similar resort) in the Caprivi Strip region.
This morning after breakfast, we explore the panhandle of the Okavango Delta by mokoro - a traditional style of dug-out canoe. On this hour-long mokoro excursion, we glide along the Kavango River watching birds and wildlife as we go.
Local guides pole the mekoros along the Kavango, standing in the canoes like gondoliers, moving the vessels along slowly with long poles. The head guide provides a detailed safety briefing and fills you in on what to expect on the mokoro trip. Our peaceful mokoro ride into the game park is the ideal way to spot birds and animals and take in the scenery.
After our mellow mokoro experience, we return to the lodge for lunch (own expense) at the restaurant. This afternoon you can take it easy at the lodge or embark on optional activities. Options include a game drive in the Mahango Game Reserve section of the game-rich Bwabwata National Park and a visit to a traditional village nearby. We sleep at the same rustic eco-lodge (or similar resort) in the Caprivi area.
Start the day with breakfast before we hit the road again. Travelling further east along this narrow region of Namibia, the Caprivi Strip, we pause in Katima Mulilo, the main commercial hub in Eastern Caprivi.
Then we cross into neighbouring Botswana, driving south to the safari hub of Kasane. The closest town to Chobe National Park, Kasane serves as a convenient base for game viewing in Botswana's top national park.
The night is spent at lodge accommodation beside the Chobe River near Kasane.
Today we wake up before sunrise, have a quick cup of coffee and set off for Chobe National Park in an open safari vehicle.
Our two-hour game drive takes us in search of wildlife, with common sightings including elephants, buffalos, giraffes and various antelope species such as kudu, sable and impala. We are also sure to see plenty of birds, from carmine bee-eaters to ibises and fish eagles.
After our rewarding game drive, we return to the lodge for a tasty brunch prepared by your guide. Spend the rest of the morning and afternoon relaxing at the lodge, taking a dip in the pool and resting.
Later in the afternoon, we embark on a sunset boat cruise on the scenic Chobe River. The leisurely game viewing cruise is an ideal way to see animals and birds up close, whilst appreciating the beautiful wild scenery. We overnight at the same accommodation with a pool, restaurant and bar.
This morning we ease into the day with a relaxed breakfast at the lodge before continuing our journey. We travel to the nearby border to catch the ferry into Zambia. Here you bid farewell to your guide and complete border formalities, with a private transfer agent accompanying you from Zambian customs to your final lodge in Livingstone.
This afternoon there is time for an optional (extra cost) visit to Victoria Falls waterfall - a must-see natural wonder! Vic Falls is considered the largest sheet of falling water in the world and sends up a magnificent spray that can be seen from miles around.
Stay in en-suite safari tents at a lodge along the Zambezi River on spacious, leafy grounds with a pool.
The last day is free for you to revel in the adventures on offer at Victoria Falls. Get your adrenaline pumping with a daring bungee jump from the Victoria Falls Bridge or a scenic flight over Vic Falls in a helicopter, small plane or microlight! Other thrilling options include white water rafting on the Zambezi River, zip line rides and gorge swings! Alternatively, you can enjoy a cultural tour, game viewing and sightseeing in Livingstone.
Either spend another night (post-safari) in Livingstone at extra cost or catch your onward flight today.
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