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  1. #1
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    Wink (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Hi,

    Been planning a mystery trip for myself and the fiance to Namibia in November 2021 this year. Having never gone anywhere higher than Fish River Canyon, I'm looking for some thoughts on the accommodation, nr nights, distances and perhaps nearest spots to find gearbox oil for the Landy (). We enjoy camping and I have done some research on nice campsites, but would be good to hear everyone's experience. The one that I didnt find a lot of information on is Diaz Point Sheltered Camping (Ludritz).

    The plan is to look push from Cape Town and then make our way up to Etosha over 10 days (also uploaded):

    Date Day Start Finish Kilometers Accommodation Type Nr Nights Coordinates
    2021-11-02 1 Cape Town Garies 450 Agama Tented Camp Lodge 1 -30.4936, 17.9269
    2021-11-03 2 Garies Canyon 447 Canyon Roadhouse Lodge 1 -27.5241, 17.8147
    2021-11-04 4 Canyon Luderitz 385 Diaz Point Sheltered Camping Camping 2 -26.6352, 15.0911
    2021-11-06 6 Luderitz NamibRand-Naturreservat 370 Sossus Oasis Campsite Camping 2 -24.4878, 15.7880
    2021-11-08 7 NamibRand-Naturreservat Swakopmund 348 Desert Breeze Lodge 1 -22.6799, 14.5524
    2021-11-09 9 Swakopmund Spitzkoppe 448 Spitzkoppe-tentekamp Camping 2 -21.8356, 15.1774
    2021-11-11 10 Spitzkoppe Damaraland 350 Palmwag Camping2go 1 -19.1402, 13.8207
    2021-11-12 11 Damaraland Etosha 213 Olifantsrus Campsite Camping 1 -18.9804, 14.8647
    2021-11-13 12 Etosha Etosha 130 Okaukuejo Camp Camping 1 -19.1788, 15.9188
    2021-11-14 13 Etosha Etosha 130 Namutoni Camping 1 -18.8058, 16.9396
    2021-11-15 14 Etosha Etosha 70 Halali Lodge 1 -19.1785, 15.9165
    2021-11-16 15 Etosha Etosha 90 Etosha Safari Camp Camping2Go 1 -19.4110, 15.9277
    2021-11-17 16 Etosha Windhoek 450 Kivo Lodge Lodge 1 -22.1766, 17.5674
    2021-11-18 17 Windhoek Mariental 300 Bagatelle Kalahari Game Ranch Camping 1 -24.3007, 18.0150
    2021-11-19 18 Mariental Keetmanshoop 300 Quivertree Forest Lodge Camping 1 -26.4886, 18.2396
    2021-11-20 18 Keetmanshoop TBC


    From Keetmanshoop I was thinking to wing it a bit on the way back, lets see how that goes.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by Stofdonkie-4x4; 2021/08/23 at 12:49 PM.

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    Default (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Quote Originally Posted by Stofdonkie-4x4 View Post
    Hi,

    Been planning a mystery trip for myself and the fiance to Namibia in November 2021 this year. Having never gone anywhere higher than Fish River Canyon, I'm looking for some thoughts on the accommodation, nr nights, distances and perhaps nearest spots to find gearbox oil for the Landy (). We enjoy camping and I have done some research on nice campsites, but would be good to hear everyone's experience. The one that I didnt find a lot of information on is Diaz Point Sheltered Camping (Ludritz).

    The plan is to look push from Cape Town and then make our way up to Etosha over 10 days (also uploaded):

    Date Day Start Finish Kilometers Accommodation Type Nr Nights Coordinates
    2021-11-02 1 Cape Town Garies 450 Agama Tented Camp Lodge 1 -30.4936, 17.9269
    2021-11-03 2 Garies Canyon 447 Canyon Roadhouse Lodge 1 -27.5241, 17.8147
    2021-11-04 4 Canyon Luderitz 385 Diaz Point Sheltered Camping Camping 2 -26.6352, 15.0911
    2021-11-06 6 Luderitz NamibRand-Naturreservat 370 Sossus Oasis Campsite Camping 2 -24.4878, 15.7880
    2021-11-08 7 NamibRand-Naturreservat Swakopmund 348 Desert Breeze Lodge 1 -22.6799, 14.5524
    2021-11-09 9 Swakopmund Spitzkoppe 448 Spitzkoppe-tentekamp Camping 2 -21.8356, 15.1774
    2021-11-11 10 Spitzkoppe Damaraland 350 Palmwag Camping2go 1 -19.1402, 13.8207
    2021-11-12 11 Damaraland Etosha 213 Olifantsrus Campsite Camping 1 -18.9804, 14.8647
    2021-11-13 12 Etosha Etosha 130 Okaukuejo Camp Camping 1 -19.1788, 15.9188
    2021-11-14 13 Etosha Etosha 130 Namutoni Camping 1 -18.8058, 16.9396
    2021-11-15 14 Etosha Etosha 70 Halali Lodge 1 -19.1785, 15.9165
    2021-11-16 15 Etosha Etosha 90 Etosha Safari Camp Camping2Go 1 -19.4110, 15.9277
    2021-11-17 16 Etosha Windhoek 450 Kivo Lodge Lodge 1 -22.1766, 17.5674
    2021-11-18 17 Windhoek Mariental 300 Bagatelle Kalahari Game Ranch Camping 1 -24.3007, 18.0150
    2021-11-19 18 Mariental Keetmanshoop 300 Quivertree Forest Lodge Camping 1 -26.4886, 18.2396



    From Keetmanshoop I was thinking to wing it a bit on the way back, lets see how that goes.
    Have you booked any of these places yet? If not, you can easily make the border from CT, leaving you with more time later in the week.

    Luderitz, shark island is closed. You don’t want to camp at Diaz point in that wind…. Spoil yourself and take a bnb while in luderitz.
    Last edited by vnielsen; 2021/08/23 at 12:40 PM.

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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Thanks for the heads up about Shark Island! Are there any BIG attractions I am missing in the trip? Haven't booked. Did reach out to Etosha this morning to check for availability. They had some nice specials that ends October 2021 which is a real shame.

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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Quote Originally Posted by vnielsen View Post
    Luderitz, shark island is closed. You don’t want to camp at Diaz point in that wind…. (Agree, some nice camp sites and clean bathrooms, a bit old, but clean. But the wind, sjoe, makes pleasant camping nearly impossible, unless you hit a real luck and there's no wind.)

    Spoil yourself and take a bnb while in luderitz. (Yes. We have stayed twice at the self catering Krabbenhoft & Lampe - National Monument & Accommodation. Rich in history and almost takes you back to that era. It might not be everybody to everybody's liking, so there are plenty more places.)

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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Quote Originally Posted by Stofdonkie-4x4 View Post
    Thanks for the heads up about Shark Island! Are there any BIG attractions I am missing in the trip? Haven't booked. Did reach out to Etosha this morning to check for availability. They had some nice specials that ends October 2021 which is a real shame.
    I assume when in Luderiz you intend visiting places like Kolmanskop Ghost Town, it's and absolute must see and place to explore.

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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    We are planning our first trip for next year so it would be great to have some feedback after your trip. Hints, tips and recommendations
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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Hi, I have posted this many times before, so please ignore it if you've read it already - it's a piece I wrote for the Cape Times (when it was still a readable newspaper) and is a sort of potted beginner's guide to almost exactly the trip you are planning.
    Note that in Luderitz we stayed in a hotel (I had a free gift voucher) and it is the one place in Namibia where I avoid camping:

    By TONY WEAVER
    Cape Times EsCape Times February 2011
    NOTE: Almost all the places, lodgings and activities listed here are on the internet, and most bookings can be done via the web. Google is your friend.
    NAMIBIA can be a bewildering country for the first timer - it is vast (two thirds the size of South Africa), sparsely populated (two people per square kilometre, as opposed to nearly 40 in South Africa) and the landscape can be harsh and forbidding. The Namib Desert, as the hardebaarde say, is not for sissies.
    I lived there for two years, and despite the fact that there was a war on at the time (this was in the mid 1980s) they were two of the best years of my life. My company car (thanks Rand Daily Mail and Cape Times) was a Toyota HiLux 4x4, and in those halcyon days, I had free rein to travel at will in search of interesting feature articles. Ever since, Namibia has been one of my top travel destinations in Africa.
    So you want to go there, but have no idea how to start planning a trip. The first thing to remember is that the distances are vast, and while the country’s gravel road infrastructure is excellent, don’t bargain on doing more than 300 to 350km in a day - tar roads are few and far between. And while most of the gravel roads can be negotiated – relatively slowly - in an ordinary saloon car, a high clearance vehicle or 4x4 is a big advantage. I wouldn’t take my Kia Picanto to Namibia.
    Don’t bargain on speeds of much more than 80km/h if you are in a 4x4 or high clearance vehicle, and in a saloon car, speeds of around 60km/h are more realistic. Anything over 80km/h is foolish, and very dangerous - while the gravel surfaces are generally excellent, there are plenty of patches of unexpected soft sand, and rolled vehicles are a common occurrence. The generally accepted wisdom if travelling in a four wheel drive vehicle is to keep high range 4x4 engaged, drop your tyre pressures to around 180, and don’t overload your roof rack.
    Carrying your own camping gear is a distinct advantage, as Namibia is not cheap, with many of the tourism establishments being geared towards the foreign, especially German, market. And frankly, there is nothing nicer than being out under the stars, sitting around a fire in the Namib Desert - this is big sky country, and the general standards of the camp sites, both private and government, is excellent.
    Carry plenty of water, spare food in case of emergency, a full tool kit, a tyre repair kit (and know how to use it) and a second spare tyre casing if your vehicle has even a slightly exotic tyre size, or has low profile tyres fitted. The Namib stones are notorious rubber chewers.
    And get a good map, don’t just rely on your GPS: make sure your map has all the road numbers on it - Namibia’s road authority numbers all their roads, and when you’re asking directions, you’ll be told “take the D707 to the intersection of the C13” etc. Excellent maps that are available in South Africa include the Tracks4Africa map and the Reise Verlag map. The MapStudio Namibia road atlas is reasonable. You can also buy the Roads Authority map at any filling station in Namibia.
    So where to go as a first timer? Unless you are a hardcore offroader, I would advise against planning too ambitious a trip, or venturing into areas like Damaraland, the Kaokoveld, the Khaudum Game Reserve, and the Nyae Nyae Conservancy (what used to be called Bushmanland) unless you have at least two well equipped 4x4s in your party. The north eastern corner of Namibia, comprising the Caprivi Strip and the Kavango, is true bushveld, with plenty of big game, and should be kept for a second or third visit.
    With two weeks in hand, I would restrict myself to Namibia’s “Garden Route”, that wonderful stretch of Namib Desert between the South African border and Swakopmund. With three weeks in hand, I would add in the Etosha National Park, one of the great game parks of Africa.
    My favourite route (all of which can be done, carefully, in a saloon car, but preferably a 4x4) is to enter Namibia at Noordoewer/Vioolsdrift, and immediately hang a left onto the Rosh Pinah road that snakes its way all along the Orange River, with magnificent vistas over the river into the Richtersveld, and of the desert.
    There are several accommodation options at the border, with my preferred favourite being the chalets at Felix Unite’s wonderful base camp just a few kilometres inside Namibia, overlooking the Orange. If you have the time, a three day canoe trip down the river is quite possibly the best fun you can have with minimal clothes on.
    Aus is the real jumping off point into the true Namib, and the camp sites and chalets at Klein Aus Vista take a lot of beating. This is also the best place from which to take a short trip to see the legendary desert horses of the Namib, and, if you don’t want to stay in Luderitz itself, to visit this most weird and wacky little fishing town, a must do on my list of Namibian sights.
    Number one attraction for most visitors to Luderitz is the eerie mining ghost town of Kolmanskop, which could have come straight out of a Werner Herzog movie. Supposedly named after a transport rider, Johnny Kolman, or Coleman, who had to be rescued from the nearby koppie after his oxen disappeared in a sand storm, Kolmanskop owes its genesis to the discovery of a diamond here in 1908 by a labourer employed by August Stauch.
    It was finally abandoned to the advancing desert in 1950, but not before a weird and unlikely town sprang up, complete with several mansion-like buildings in the Bavarian style, a town hall, bowling alley, lemonade and soda water factory (with an ice block plant) and a casino.
    Luderitz itself is a fascinating town to wander around, but be aware that the wind can really howl here, and it can be bitterly cold, even in midsummer. A drive out to Dias Point and then down the peninsula to Grosse Bucht takes you through an incredible desert landscape, with wild seas and great vistas back over the town and harbour.
    Watch out for the fearsome sand storms that sweep through, especially on the B4 tar access road - they can do serious damage to your paintwork and windscreens.
    Next up is the “Garden Route”: from the B4, take the C13 from Aus towards Helmeringhausen, and after 54km, turn west onto one of my favourite roads in Africa, the D707, which skirts the Tiras Mountains and the Namibrand nature reserve. Both encompass vast areas of privately owned land under conservation, with a wide range of brilliant accommodation options - the vistas here are quite simply breathtaking, the landscapes surreal.
    Fill up with diesel, petrol and cold drinks at the quirky little oasis of Betta, and then follow the map (choose whichever route takes your fancy - I favour the D826 and C19 or C27 routes) to Sesriem, gateway to the Namib Desert sand sea, and the iconic Sossus Vlei dunes. There are at least 19 different acccommodation options (at last count) within easy driving distance of Sesriem, but if you want to be first at the gates before sunrise, camp at Sesriem itself. Note that the road to Sossus Vlei is now tarred all the way, except for the last 5km, which require 4x4, or jump on one of the Namibia Wildlife Resorts taxis that do shuttle trips into the main pan and dune field.
    If you’re feeling the heat by now, head up the D854 to the Naukluft section of the Namib Naukluft National Park. From the camp site, hike up the apparently dry river bed, past a massive wild ficus (fig) tree filled with rosy faced lovebirds, and suddenly, without warning, you will come to a series of icy cold, very deep, crystal clear pools of spring fed water. Utterly exhilirating after a hot hike. Look out for kudu and zebra on the way down.
    By now, the bustling, cosmopolitan seaside resort of Swakopmund is calling. En route, stop off for cold beers, or spend the night at the quirky Rostock Ritz just before the Kuiseb Pass. In a land of wacky, wonderful people and places, the Ritz is near the top of the list.
    Swakop is a wonderful dorp. Wander around, soaking up the Bavaria-by-the-sea architecture, head off into the dune fields with one of the local operators for a brilliant quad bike ride (strictly limited to a defined area to limit environmental damage) or take a day drive into the Moon Landscape, the Welwitschia fields, or go with an operator to the birding paradise of Sandwich Harbour, south of Walvis Bay.
    Swakop is spoilt for choice when it comes to restaurants, but top of my list would be the legendary Kücki’s Pub (sister to the Rostock Ritz), The Tug and The Jetty, while a top item for sight seeing is the extraordinary Kristall Gallerei, which has one of the most outstanding geological collections I have seen.
    If you’re on a two week deadline, now’s about the time to pack up and head home, but with an extra week in hand, head up the coastal Skeleton Coast road to Cape Cross, where tens of thousands of Cape Fur Seals bask (very noisily, and very pungently) on the rocks. Then pick up the D1918 from Henties Bay to the mystical and magical Spitskoppe, one of the most spiritual places to pitch a tent on the African continent. The community run campsite is very basic, with long drop toilets and not much else. But a sunset here, with barking gekkos sounding off as the day fades, is unforgettable. Top tip here is to arrive a couple of hours before sunset, and spend at least an hour picking out the best campsite - numbers 10 and number one are my favourites.
    From Spitskoppe, head into southern Damarland via Uis, to the rock engravings at Twyfelfontein, camping at the Aba Huab campsite (or lodging at one of several establishments in the area).
    Twyfelfontein is one of the world’s greatest open air art galleries, a vast area of Stone Age petroglyphs, mainly depicting wild animals like rhino, elephant and lion dating back some 6000 years.
    Then it’s off to the Etosha National Park. My favourite campsite is Okaukuejo, which also has a range of chalets, both mid-range and luxury. Top tip here is to spend at least two nights, if not more, and spend the first day and night simply wandering around the camp birding, and hanging out at the water hole. At night, the action gets really busy as a range of animals wander into the floodlights - I have seen a pride of lions kill a springbok right in front of the fence here, and on our most recent visit, we saw 14 different black rhino, and saw an African wild cat kill a dove in mid-flight, an impressive aerial leap.
    Game drives on the various loops out of Okaukuejo are always rewarding – there is no need to fly out of the camp at first light, the way you would in Kruger. Spend the dawn hours around camp at the water hole, and birding, then head out after breakfast, when the game is heading towards the water holes dotted about this vast game reserve.
    Halali is the forgotten camp of Etosha, but is one of my favourites, with an air of the Kruger National Park of the 1960s about it. The water hole (also floodlit) has regular leopard sightings, but is not as productive as Okaukeujo.
    Namutoni has some of the best game viewing loops within an easy hour’s drive out of camp, but I find the camp site a bit claustrophobic, as it has no grand vistas, or immediate attractions.
    And then it is the long road home, with a brief stop at Lake Otjikoto, where the retreating German forces dumped a huge amount of armoury ….
    Namibia comes with a health warning: it is seriously addictive and induces a bad case of euphoria. It is both habit-forming and sense altering. It is one of Africa’s most bewitching destinations.
    Top Tip: The Namibian Tourism Bureau office in Burg Street, next door to Cape Town Tourism’s offices in the Pinnacle, has loads of high quality brochures, books and maps, almost all of them free. The staff are knowledgeable, passionate about their country, and efficient. Also in Cape Town, in Kloofnek Road, is Ulrich Naumann’s Deutsche Buch Handel, one of the best shops in South Africa for maps (you’ll find the Reise Verlag maps there) and natural history guide books (in English as well as German).
    Last edited by Tony Weaver; 2021/09/01 at 01:26 PM.
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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Weaver View Post
    Hi, I have posted this many times before, so please ignore it if you've read it already - it's a piece I wrote for the Cape Times (when it was still a readable newspaper) and is a sort of potted beginner's guide to almost exactly the trip you are planning.
    Note that in Luderitz we stayed in a hotel (I had a free gift voucher) and it is the one place in Namibia where I avoid camping:

    By TONY WEAVER
    Cape Times EsCape Times February 2011
    NOTE: Almost all the places, lodgings and activities listed here are on the internet, and most bookings can be done via the web. Google is your friend.
    NAMIBIA can be a bewildering country for the first timer ....
    Hi Tony,

    Thank you very much for the excerpt! It once again confirmed how most places in Southern Africa seem to creep deep into one's heart, never really leaving, despite years of not visiting again. Your overview provides a perfect "dummies" guide to Namibia and should be a pinned post on the forum of Namibia (only confirming what all other helpful posters have pointed out).

    All accommodation is booked, and in addition, I decided to treat us to a waterhole chalet in Okaukuejo Camp - this seems to be a forum favourite. Now all that is left is to service the Landy, pack provisions and go experience truly one of the last wild places on our continent.

    Trip report to follow early December...

    p.s I see you recommend Reise Verlag maps, but I am quite a fan of the hardcopy T4A range. Any reason to not go with T4A?

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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Quote Originally Posted by Stofdonkie-4x4 View Post

    p.s I see you recommend Reise Verlag maps, but I am quite a fan of the hardcopy T4A range. Any reason to not go with T4A?
    The T4A map of Namibia is excellent. I carry both - Reise Verlag are very good for Zambia and Mozambique as well.
    Last edited by Tony Weaver; 2021/09/01 at 11:32 PM.
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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    On our last trip, we used the T4A app: it has a full offline detailed map which you can zoom into, and its free. A real bargain! And we found it fantastic.

    We were in Damaraland and Kaokoland for a month, used it every day, and can really recommend it. Which of course is not to say that you shouldn't use a paper map too: very nice for general planning.
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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Any advice on cost effective places to stay just outside Okakuejo entrance to Etosha? We wanted to camp but see the temp is 35-37 degrees there in October ?? So lodge or similar. With pool and restaurant preferably.

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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Quote Originally Posted by Thirsty Blue View Post
    Any advice on cost effective places to stay just outside Okakuejo entrance to Etosha? We wanted to camp but see the temp is 35-37 degrees there in October ?? So lodge or similar. With pool and restaurant preferably.
    Open up google maps around that area and you will see the options available.

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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Quote Originally Posted by zoneout View Post
    On our last trip, we used the T4A app: it has a full offline detailed map which you can zoom into, and its free. A real bargain! And we found it fantastic.

    We were in Damaraland and Kaokoland for a month, used it every day, and can really recommend it. Which of course is not to say that you shouldn't use a paper map too: very nice for general planning.

    Zoneout, which app are you referring to and how does it work when your phone is 'out of service area'?
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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    Quote Originally Posted by Thirsty Blue View Post
    Any advice on cost effective places to stay just outside Okakuejo entrance to Etosha? We wanted to camp but see the temp is 35-37 degrees there in October ?? So lodge or similar. With pool and restaurant preferably.
    Get a Gondwana card and book into the camp to go at Etosha Safaris lodge a few km from Etosha. Very nice. Googke Gondwana and you can see what it looks like

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    Default Re: (1st Time) Namibia 18 Day Trip: November 2021

    With your own bathroomClick image for larger version. 

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