Self-Drive Adventure Through Namibia with Explore Africa Travel
- by Ari Travels
Namibia, with its expansive landscapes and surreal terrains, beckons every ardent traveler to explore its untouched beauty. A road trip through this African gem gives you the freedom to truly immerse yourself in what Namibia can offer. If you've dreamt of embarking on a unique travel destination then this is your guide. From the mesmerizing dunes of Sossusvlei the coastal charm of Swakopmund and the wildlife haven of Etosha National Park, Namibia offers it all. This trip was so off the beaten path which is why I loved it so much. If you have any additional questions about planning your trip to Namibia, reach out to me here. There is no better way to explore Namibia via road trip than with the reliable services of Explore Africa Travel – the go-to car rental company for a perfect Namibian journey.
Everything you Need to Know About Renting a Car in Namibia
They accept a US drivers license
- You will need both your physcial license and your passport
There are two drivers max
- If you want to add a third driver, you must pay extra
- I would suggest getting the third tier insurance incase of a flat tire or other damages occur
Allow enough driving time
- Google maps will most likely be off for driving time, plan ahead and add about 2 hours on to the time it states
- Allow one full day for driving per destination. Factor this into your road trip accordingly
Cell phone connection
- There will be limited conenction on the road, download Google Maps ahead of time and also consider getting a GPS
Driving at night
- DO NOT drive at night. There are often crimes, plus animals can run in front of your vehicle
- Many roads here are just gravel, learn how to drive on it before coming. Also know how to change a tire. The amazing staff at Explore Africa Travel will teach you everything you need to know, but its good to come prepared
Type of travel
- Most people choose to camp in Namibia, but you can also stay in regular accommodations too. Within this blog post, I will be linking the best budget (campsites or hostels) and luxury (lodge or hotel) options. When renting your car with Explore Africa Travel, they will equipped your vehicle with everything you need to have a successful camping trip! All you have to bring is yourself and your clothes.
Namiba Self-Drive Road Trip 14 Day Itinerary
Note: You COULD do this road trip in about 10 days if you cram everything in between 1-2 full days per location
Sossusvlei – An Ode to the Desert (3 nights)
Pick up your rental car at the Explore Africa Travel office in Windhoeck. Kickstart your journey in the heart of the Namib Desert at Sossusvlei. With some of the tallest dunes in the world, this salt and clay pan is a photographer's dream come true. Picture this: golden sand rising high against a backdrop of deep blue skies, casting shadows and playing tricks with light. It's the kind of place that takes your breath away. But getting there requires a vehicle that can handle the unique challenges of desert terrain. With Explore Africa Travel, you're guaranteed top-tier vehicles tailored for the Namibian landscape. They make your safety and comfort a priority, ensuring that the drive is as memorable as the destination.
- Dead Vlei (get here right when they open- Gate opens at 7:30 am and from the gate it's about an hour drive. once you arrive, if you have a 4x4 (which you will with Explore Africa Travel) you can drive to the entrance otherwise you have to take a shuttle.
- Big Daddy Dune
- Dune 40
- Dune 45
Where to Stay (Tip: make sure to stay close to the gate or inside the park)
Luxury: Sossusvlei Lodge
Budget: Sossus Oasis (camping)
Swakopmund – Where Desert Meets the Ocean (3 nights)
From the depths of the desert, make your way to the cool coastal town of Swakopmund. This former colonial town is a blend of German architecture, African culture, and an adventurer’s paradise. Interested in some sandboarding or quad biking? The dunes surrounding Swakopmund provide adventurous opportunities. And after the thrill, you can unwind with a serene walk along the Atlantic shores or sample local cuisine at the town's buzzing restaurants.
Traveling between such contrasting landscapes can be daunting, but not when you're backed by Explore Africa Travel. Their experienced team provides insightful tips for every leg of the journey, ensuring you don't miss any hidden gems along the way. Plus, their 24/7 support guarantees that you're never alone on your adventure.
- Surf lessons
Where to Stay
Luxury: Strand Hotel
Budget: Salty Jackal Surf Camp (one of the best hostels I have ever stayed in)
Spitzkoppe - Camping Adventure (1 night)
Prepare to leave for Spitzkoppe from Swakopmund in the morning to allow enough time to explore the area.
Among the vast plains of the Namib Desert, the Spitzkoppe emerges as a beacon, beckoning campers to its iconic granite peaks. Often referred to as the "Matterhorn of Namibia," a camping trip to this ancient sentinel promises more than just breathtaking landscapes; it's a celestial retreat. As dusk envelopes the desert, the sky above Spitzkoppe transforms into a shimmering tapestry of stars, so vivid that you can trace entire constellations with the naked eye. Make sure to bring your professional camera or use an iPhone14 Max pro with a tripod to capture the best photos. With the ethereal Milky Way stretching overhead, its truly a great camping experience for stargazers and adventurers.
- The famous arch (make sure to stay for sunset)
- Hike around the national park
Where to stay (I highly suggest camping for this portion of the trip)
Etosha National Park – Namibia's Wildlife Jewel (2 nights)
You cannot visit Africa without seeing the famous Big 5. Spanning over 22,000 square kilometers, Etosha National Park is home to many African wildlife. The most popular way to visit Etosha National Park is doing a self-drive safari. Explore Africa Travel vehicles got you covered. They offer vehicles equipped for game drives, ensuring you get the best wildlife viewing experience without compromising on comfort. From the majestic elephants and prowling lions to the nimble springboks and zebras, the diversity here is astounding. The vast Etosha Pan, a salt pan visible even from space, is the park's iconic feature. The best part about this park is that it is dry as its in the desert, so animals flock to watering holes, making spotting them easier than most of the other national parks in Africa.
Where to Stay
Luxury: Ongava Lodge
Budget: Etosha Campsite (about 1 hr 20 min drive to national park)
Why Choose Explore Africa Travel for your Namibia Road Trip?
- Tailored Choices: Their fleet is diverse, accommodating every kind of traveler, from luxury seekers to rugged explorers.
- Safety First: All vehicles undergo rigorous checks, ensuring your journey is smooth and worry-free.
- Local Expertise: The team at Explore Africa Travel is a treasure trove of local knowledge. They'll guide you, recommend off-the-beaten-path spots, and even share tips to enhance your road trip experience.
- 24/7 Support: On the rare occasion that you face a hiccup, their support team is just a call away, ready to assist and ensure your adventure stays on track.
In conclusion, Namibia is a land of vast contrasts and staggering beauty. To truly experience its essence, a road trip is a must for those looking for a unique adventure. With Explore Africa Travel as your car rental choice in Namibia, not only do you get the best vehicles, but also the assurance of a team that's as passionate about your adventure as you are. Don't hesitate to reach out to me for additional questions and trip planning to Namibia.