Sossusvlei, Quiver Trees
& Ghost Towns
per person sharing
This 8 day tour is the perfect overview of Southern Namibia. Starting in Windhoek, take a shuttle to Swakopmund on Namibia’s Skeleton Coast where we spend our two nights with plenty of time to take in some adrenaline pumping optional activities. From here, we head south to explore the breath-taking Namib Desert and crossing the Tropic of Capricorn where we of course stop for photos. We then travel through Solitaire, with our next destination being Sesriem, the gateway to Sossusvlei in the Namib Desert, home to some of the world’s highest sand dunes. After 2 nights in the Sesriem area we continue on to Namibia’s deep south where breath taking landscapes abound. We spend 2 nights camping at Klein Aus, an incredible stop nestled amongst the rocks, and from here we visit the ghost town of Kolmanskop and spot the wild horses of the Namib Desert before heading east where we can gaze over the Fish River Canyon. We wrap up our incredible 6 day trip with the last night at the impressive Quiver Tree Forest before returning to Windhoek.
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Day 1: Wednesday Hotel A La Mer, Swakopmund
Pick up from our accommodation this morning is from 6h00 by a local shuttle company to take us to Swakopmund. The journey time is around 5hours to the coast, and drop off is at Hotel A La Mer, your home for the next 2 nights. After settling in, grab some lunch at one of the many downtown cafes (at own expense) and enjoy some free time this afternoon to wander the small town on foot and enjoy the beach. Overnight in twin share rooms with en-suite bathroom with lunch and dinner tonight at our own expense.
Day 2: Thursday Hotel A La Mer, Swakopmund
A full day today to enjoy all the optional activities that the Skeleton Coast has to offer. For the adrenaline junkies, this could be flying down a sand dune head first at 60km/h, or sky diving over the desert, or for those that prefer something a bit calmer, it could be a living desert tour, kayaking with the seals, a dolphin cruise in Walvis Bay, a scenic light over Sossusvlei, the Eduard Bohlen shipwreck and Sandwich Harbour, or a stroll around the town enjoying the curio shops and café that Swakop is renowned for. We will also meet up with our guide and fellow guests coming from Etosha who will join us on our adventure to Sossusvlei and have the option to participate in a
group meal at one of Swakopmund’s excellent restaurants (own expense).
Day 3: Friday Sesriem Oshana Campsite, Sesriem
Today we leave Swakopmund at 11h30 so we have the time to enjoy an optional activity. For the adrenaline junkies this could be flying down a sand dune head first at 60km/h on a sandboard, exploring the dune field on a quad biking tour or discover the “old city” of Swakopmund on a fat bike (e-bike option available). Whatever we choose, we depart Swakopmund no later than 11h30 and drive through the Namib Desert via the Kuiseb Pass, crossing the Tropic of Capricorn, stopping briefly in Solitaire and arriving at our camp late afternoon. We set up our tents, and enjoy the sunset over the Namib Desert while listening to the barking geckos. There is a pool and bar available, dinner is prepared by our guide. An early night is recommended.
Day 4: Saturday Sesriem Oshana Campsite, Sesriem
A pre-dawn departure from camp this morning means we can enjoy the dunes at first light. We drive down an ancient river bed, surrounded by towering dunes and our first stop is at the famous Dune 45 where we have the chance to climb to the top to enjoy the sunrise. On descent we replenish our energy and enjoy breakfast before continuing on into the Sossusvlei area. We explore this unique area on foot, heading into Dead Vlei with its large expanse of bleached cracked clay and skeletal camel thorn trees, contrasting with a backdrop of huge dunes with their ever-changing colours.
We have the opportunity to climb the dune at Sossusvlei before we return to Sesriem for lunch and a swim or siesta during the heat of the day. Mid-afternoon we visit the Sesriem Canyon before your guide drops you at Elim’s Dune for a short and educational sunset walk back to camp through the desert. Dinner tonight is prepared by our guide.
Day 5: Sunday Klein Aus Vista Campsite, Namib Desert
We pack up camp and enjoy breakfast before heading south through some of the most spectacular desert landscapes in Southern Namibia. Our destination today is the small outpost of Klein Aus, nestled in the Gondwana Sperrgebiet Rand Park. We arrive early afternoon and set up camp. For the active there is a short optional unguided
hiking trail. Permits and a map are available at reception. We enjoy a beautiful sunset and dinner prepared by our guide over an open-fire.
Day 6: Monday Klein Aus Vista Campsite, Namib Desert
After an early breakfast we make our way from Klein Aus to the ghost town, of Kolmanskop, situated 15km outside of Luderitz. During a diamond boom in 1910 Kolmanskop quickly became one of the richest towns in Africa boasting the southern hemisphere’s first X-ray machine, a bowling alley and luxury housing. As the diamond boom came to an end and the town’s inhabitants abandoned the area Kolmanskop became a ghost town. After our tour we continue our adventure to the small town of Luderitz, situated on the rocky shores of the Atlantic Ocean and well known for its unique and colourful colonial-style buildings. We stop at Diaz Point, the famous site of the Original Diaz Cross and enjoy a picnic lunch. On return to Aus, we keep our eyes peeled for the wild horses of the Namib Desert that roam between Luderitz and Klein Aus. While the details of how these horses came to live in the desert are still a mystery, the mere fact that they have survived in the harshest of conditions is impressive, and any sighting of them is one to celebrate. We arrive back at camp late afternoon and can relax before enjoying another incredible sunset over the Aus Mountains. Dinner tonight is prepared by our guide.
Day 7: Tuesday Quiver Tree Forest, Keetmanshoop
We enjoy another early start this morning as we pack up camp and head east. Our first official stop is at the well-known Hell`s Bend viewpoint of the Fish River Canyon. Here we have the opportunity to overlook the second largest canyon in the world. The Fish River Canyon was formed millions of years ago by water erosion and the collapse of the valley due to movements in the earth’s crust. After lunch we continue our adventure heading to our last destination; The Quiver Tree Forest. It is located just north-east of Keetmanshoop and here approximately 250 quiver trees can be found. The forest grew spontaneously and the oldest trees are estimated to be around 200-300 years old. The Quiver tree (Kokerboom in Afrikaans) is also Namibia’s national tree, and the forest was declared a national monument in 1995. The last night on our adventure is spent camping under the stars with meals prepared by our guide. This is an excellent location for photographing the stars should you be an avid photographer.
Day 8: Wednesday Windhoek – End of Safari
After a tasty cooked breakfast, we start the day with a chance to really explore the Quiver Tree Forest and Giants Playground, a geological phenomenon of dolerite rocks that appear to have been stacked by giants. From here we begin our journey back to Windhoek passing Brukkaros Mountain, an extinct volcano which is 650m above the
surrounding area. We pass through the small towns of Mariental and Rehoboth before arriving at Chameleon Backpackers in Windhoek late afternoon. There is a shuttle option for those staying elsewhere within the city limits. No flights recommended on this day.