Namibia Family Road Trip
Windhoek – Sossusvlei – Swakopmund – Damaraland – Etosha National Park - Okonjima
For a family adventure with a difference, Namibia’s combination of dramatic desert wilderness, spectacular coastline and game-packed national parks takes some beating. Excellent road conditions make it easy to get around, yet the country’s sheer scale does entail some longer travel days best suited to older children and teens. Beyond the fantastic wildlife-viewing opportunities, other diverse activities on offer include scaling sand dunes, meeting local bushmen and kayaking among seals at Walvis Bay. Plenty to fire the imagination, in other words.
- Climb the beautiful red sand dunes at Sossusvlei.
- Go sea kayaking and spot dolphin and seal on a wildlife cruise from Walvis Bay.
- Visit Africa’s largest collection of prehistoric rock art at Twyfelfontein.
- Head out in search of lion, elephant and rhino in the vast Etosha National Park.
- Radio-track cheetah and walk with local bushmen at Okonjima.
Explore Namibia’s desert wilderness and teeming wildlife parks on this family self-drive holiday
Arrive into the capital Windhoek, collect your hire car and head to your city hotel for the night.
Today, head south-west across the central plateau and down the escarpment to the Namib Desert where you can explore the iconic red dunes of Sossusvlei – a drive of around 5 hours. Their scale is simply mesmerising, and climbs up the likes of Dune 45 and even taller Big Daddy are a great way to give older children an active taste of the desert. Some climbs are tough but efforts are rewarded by eye-popping views of a vast sandy expanse. The whole area is a photographer’s dream with epic sunrises and crimson sunsets to try and capture.
The 5-hour drive today takes you north through Kuiseb Canyon to the German colonial coastal town of Swakopmund, where distractions include camel rides and shopping at colourful craft markets. Curious displays about precious local melons and old-style apothecary shops mean the peculiar Swakopmund Museum also merits a visit. Detour to Walvis Bay for cruises or kayaking escapades – ideal ways to spy Cape fur seals, Heaviside and bottlenose dolphins, pelicans, flamingos and a wide variety of seabirds.
Journey further north for about 5 hours into the semi-desert wilderness of Damaraland, a rugged and wild northern tract. Take an exciting 4x4 excursion along the seasonal Huab River valley to search for the elusive desert-adapted elephant. Prefer educational activity? The nearby Damara Living Museum reveals the local people’s fascinating cultures, while Twyfelfontein houses the largest collection of prehistoric rock art in Africa. Being so empty, this remote region also delivers superb stargazing opportunities.
Drive north-east for about 4.5 hours to arrive at the enormous Etosha National Park, famous for a dazzlingly white salt pan which shimmers in the heat. During dry season (our summer), abundant game congregate around the various waterholes – including lion, elephant, rhino (both black and white) and the endemic black-faced impala, plus a huge number of bird species. This makes for excellent sightings without the need to spend huge amounts of driving time seeking animals out. Also plentiful are fenced-off, family-friendly lodges, each scoring for child-friendly activities and swimming pools.
Overnight: Etosha National Park
Drive south for around 3.5 hours into the Waterberg region for a final night at Okonjima, home of the AfriCat Foundation – a charitable organisation which works with local farmers to rescue and relocate Namibia’s big cats. Here you can radio-track cheetah and leopard either on game drives or by foot, then enjoy self-guided walking trails and join a local guide for the interactive Bushman Trail.
From here it’s a short drive back to Windhoek in time to drop your car and catch your flight home.
From £11,750 per family, 12 nights, half board (some B&B) including flights and car hire.
Price is based on travel in summer and on 2 adults and 2 children sharing. Includes international flights from the UK, accommodation and car hire.
All of our itineraries are tailor-made to your specific requirements and therefore prices do vary. The above is an indication only. Prices will vary depending on the season of travel and the standard of accommodation used. Please contact us for a quotation and to discuss your holiday requirements in more detail.