9 days in Namibia are not enough, for sure. But what if you don’t have more time, like us? We decided to go to Namibia despite of short time. We rented a car, passed almost 3 000 km and survived great and unforgettable 9 days in this beautiful country. Inspire yourself:-)
1.Day: Stay near Windhoek
Namibia is a huge country. If you rent a car, roads are not always good and you are driving on the left side. Therefore, moving from one place to another may take longer than you expect. After arriving to the airport, you will wait about an hour or more for passport control. If you rent a car, the whole process takes at least another one or two hours. You will be tired after a long flight and you have to buy water and snacks. So, the best what you can do, is find your first accommodation near Windhoek.
Our tip: We spent the first night in Immanuel Wilderness Lodge, approx. 60 minutes by car from Windhoek airport. It’s a small lodge with good food, ideal just for one night.
2.Day: Woodcraft Market – Crocodile Farm – Etosha National Park
The next day, we were on the way from Immanuel Wilderness Lodge to Okahandja, which is around 45 minutes by car.
Okahandja Woodcraft Market: This craft market is best known tourist attraction. It’s open every day. Woodcarvers from the whole region of North-Eastern Namibia, sell their goods. The market is situated next to the main road at the town’s entrance and exit. Get ready for higher prices.
Otjiwarongo: The next stop was small town Otjiwarongo, where we had a lunch. The best place is Crocodile Ranch with quite good food and crocodiles:-)
Crocodile Ranch Otjiwarongo: Otjiwarongo is home to Namibia’s first crocodile ranch, which produces skins for export. You can do a short tour (50 NAD/1 person), buy some products or have a lunch. Try croc specialities, such as croc wrap, burger or kebab:-). Open hours: MO – FRI (8am – 5pm), SAT (8am – 3pm), SUN (9am – 3pm).
Etosha National Park: We spent a night in Emanya@Etosha Game Lodge This small hotel with a waterhole, where you can see a lot of animals, is around 3 hours by car from Otjiwarongo.
3.Day: Day in Etosha National Park
We entered through Von Lindequist Gate. Try to go really early, because Etosha is a really huge and the speed limit is 60km/h. And if you want to watch animals, you defintely need a lot of time:-) Etosha National Park has 6 camps which are available to the public. The most famous and oldest camps are Okaukuejo in the South (Andersson’s Gate), Halali (which is situated between Okaukeujo and Namutoni), Namutoni and Onkoshi which are located on the North Eastern side of the park (Von Lindguist Gate). In the Western part of the park you have Dolomite camp and the newest camp Olifantsrus, which only has camping facilities. Entrance fees: to be paid at the gate: Adults (foreign) is 80 NAD/1 person/1 day. Vehicles with 10 seats or less are 10 NAD/1 day.
Our tip: Book the night in Etosha Village next to the Anderson Gate, which is approx 4 hours by car from Emanya@Etosha Game Lodge.
4.Day:From Etosha National Park to Etusis Game Reserve
On the way from Etosha Village to Etusis Game Reserve is definitely worth a visit small village Omaruru.
Omaruru: Visit Main Street Café. Quiche, hazelnut cheesecake, white wood furniture, art and a very good coffee also to go:-) It’s next to the road with good parking facilities. Main Street Café is open every day from 8am to 3pm.
Our tip: we spent a night in Etusis Lodge. Etusis Game Reserve covers an area of 21,000 hectars in west-central of Namibia, encompassing part of the Otjipatera Mountain Range. The terrain is varied, including gently undulating savannah, rocky outcrops & mountain. ETUSIS LODGE and horse farm is only a 2.5 hours’ drive from Swakopmund or Windhoek and 35 km from Karibib on the C32.
5.Day: On the way to the coast
From Etusis Game Reserve to the coast is around 4 hours by car. Our first stop was Cape Cross.
Cape Cross: is open daily from 10am to 5pm. Permits are obtainable from the office at Cape Cross. Admission fees are payable, which include a fee per vehicle (10 NAD) and a fee per person (80 NAD). There is drinking water and toilets. Pets and motorcycles are not allowed inside the reserve. The Cape fur seal is the biggest of the nine fur seal species in the world and breeds only on the west coast of southern Africa. Cape Cross is home to a breeding colony of between 200 000 and 250 000 Cape fur seals.
Zeila Shipwreck: The wreck of the fishing vessel Zeila lies just 14 km south of Hentiesbaai. It can be seen where it was stranded, today. It is in relatively good condition and is an excellent perch for sea birds.
Hentiesbaai: have a lunch in Go Fishy. Small and nice place with fresh seafood:-)
Swakopmund: known as Swakop is the country’s biggest coastal town and a resort for Namibians on holiday. The city’s German origins are quite pronounced in beautiful old German colonial buildings throughout the city, making an even starker contrast for this town sitting at the edge of the Namib Desert. Swakopmund is like a German North Sea town with an African flair. As with other Namibian cities, there is no public transport. But the city is small enough to get around easily on foot.
Our tip: stay in Sam’s Giardino Guest House. It’s a small guest house, 15 minutes by foot from the city centre.
6.Day:From the coast to Solitaire
Road from Swakopmund to Solitaire is the only one and quite complicated. It can happen that if it rains, the road becomes non-driving, so try to find out the weather.
Dune 7: the 7 highest dune of the world and the highest dune in Namibia, measuring 383 meters. The best time to visit is before 10am.
Solitaire: have a lunch in Moose McGregor’s Desert Bakery. This remote settlement, at the edge of the Namib-Naukluft National Park, has been a welcome stopover for more than 60 years. You will find cold drinks, ice cream, baked goods, coffee and lunch. You can fill up on petrol, have tyres repaired, and stretch your legs during the long drive from Sessriem to Swakopmund. It’s the only petrol stop between Sossusvlei and Swakopmund!
Our tip: stay for the night in Moon Mountain Lodge.
7.Day – 8.Day: Sesriem Canyon and Sossusvlei
Sesriem Canyon: Sesriem Canyon is located approximately 4.5km from the entrance gate of the Namib-Naukluft National Park. The Tsauchab River has shaped the Canyon over millions of years and it is one of the few places in the area that holds water all year round. There are parking facilities so you can park vehicle and take a walk through the canyon. The canyon is narrow at places, however it is worth exploring due to the stunning rock formations that will captivate your attention.
Dune 45: Dune 45 is named for its proximity to Sesrium Gate. It is situated 45km from the gate, along a paved road and is easily reached using a 2×4 vehicle. Its fascinating shape and accessibility makes it the most photographed dune in the world. The dunes of the Namib Desert were created by sand carried by the wind from the coast of Namibia. The sand here is 5 million years old and is red in colour due to its iron oxide conten. As the lighting changes with the time of day, so does the appearance of the dunes’ characteristic colour, allowing for interesting photographs at any time. The Dune is 85 meters high.
Deadvlei: Close to Sossusvlei, Deadvlei is a clay pan characterized by dark, dead camel thorn trees contrasted against the white pan floor. The pan was formed when the Tsauchab River flooded and the abundance of water allowed camel thorn trees to grow. However, the climate changed and the sand dunes encroached on the pan, blocking the river from reaching the area. The trees are estimated to be approximately 900 years old, however they have not decomposed due to the dry climate. Deadvlei is at least 1km walk from the parking lot so be sure to take drinking water with you!
Our tip: Stay for the night in Burgsdorf Guest Farm. It’s the ideal place to have a relaxing farm stay or an excellent choice for a stop over if you are on your way from or to Sossusvlei, Duwesib Castle, Luderitz or one of the many enchanting sites the Namib desert has to offer. The historical old farm house is built out of natural stone, in German colonial style. Burgsdorf has a rich history dating back to 1899. The name of the Farm Burgsdorf comes from the ‘Hauptmann’ Von Burgsdorff who was the commander of the Gibeon district.
9.Day: Back to Windhoek
Windhoek is not worth a visit. You can stay rather somewhere around the city, or near the airport. You can try Hohewarte Guest Farm. Previously a colonial police station and post office, this accommodation with its historical twist makes for a perfect choice for starting and ending a Namibian holiday. The farm is located only 20 minutes from Hosea Kutako International Airport and is situated in the idyllic landscape dominated by African bush savannah, dry rivers, hills and mountains.
Namibia in 9 days. Is it possible?
- Yes, it is. But you don’t have enough time for everything.
- Namibia is a beautiful country and we definitely want return there again. For more than 9 days.
- If you rent a car, choose 4×4 with insurance. We had car from Okavango Car Hire, they had the best price and car was a very nice and clean.
- This is our road trip in 9 days. Inspire yourself. Do you have any questions? Don’t hesitate to contact us for more informations or itinerary of your travel.