- Meet the Kalahari Desert's Indigenous San people
- Spot unique flora and fauna on a game drive in the Kalahari
- Hike the three-day Tok Tokkie Trail through NamibRand Nature Reserve
- Enjoy sundowners and camp in the desert under a star-studded sky
|Day 1||Arrive in Windhoek, Self-Drive to the Kalahari & Bushman Walk||Kalahari Desert|
|Day 2||Game & Nature Drive in the Kalahari Desert||Kalahari Desert|
|Day 3||Hike the Tok Tokkie Trail & Sundowner Drive||NamibRand Nature Reserve|
|Day 4||Hike the Tok Tokkie Trail||NamibRand Nature Reserve|
|Day 5||Complete the Tok Tokkie Trail & Drive to Windhoek, Depart|
Day 1: Arrive in Windhoek, Self-Drive to the Kalahari Desert, & Bushman Walk
Welcome to Windhoek, Namibia's thriving capital. You'll be greeted at the airport by a representative from the car rental company, who'll help you complete all the procedures for your self-drive adventure. There's time to pop into the city for supplies before you depart south to the rippling red sand dunes of the Kalahari Desert. This vast wilderness covers 350,000 square miles (900,000 sq km) and is filled with plants and wildlife remarkably adapted to this environment.
Explore these sweeping desert plains with the Kalahari's Indigenous bushmen, the San people, who have a distinctive clicking language. These semi-nomadic hunter-gatherers have roamed the Kalahari for thousands of years, learning to survive in this arid environment. They'll show you how they forage for edible plants and hunt with bows and arrows. With the help of your guide and illustrations, you'll be able to communicate with the San people and learn about their unique lifestyle.
Day 2: Game & Nature Drive in the Kalahari Desert
Spend today on a nature-themed game drive through the wild Kalahari Desert, which is home to 55 mammals, 58 reptiles, and 185 bird species. Your expert guide will teach you about the desert flora and fauna, which flourishes due to the area's higher-than-normal rainfall levels. As you drive through the world's largest sand plain, you're likely to spot everything from lions and ostriches to meerkats and springboks.
Your guide will stop along the way to identify tiny desert insects and point out various plant varieties, including cactus, camelthorn, and acacia trees. At the end of the drive, watch the sunset over the shifting dunes of the Kalahari before returning to your lodge.
The Kalahari takes on a whole new life at night, which you can experience on an optional nocturnal drive. Your guide will look for rare species like aardvarks, striped polecats, pangolins, and brown hyenas during the tour. As you drive, listen to the sounds of the desert and take in spectacular views of constellations in the star-studded sky.
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
Day 3: Hike the Tok Tokkie Trail & Sundowner Drive
Today you'll begin the Tok Tokkie Trail. This three-day guided hike leads through NamibRand Nature Reserve, a protected, 770-square-mile (2,000 square km) stretch of the Namib Desert. The reserve is home to over 150 bird species and desert-adapted animals such as kudu, jackals, and aardwolves. Meet your team for refreshments and prepare a daypack for the afternoon's walk; the rest of your luggage will be transferred by car to the overnight camp.
The trek begins with a visit to the Namib Desert Environmental Education Trust (NaDEET), a non-profit, donor-sponsored trust which aims to develop environmentally-responsible citizens of Namibia through education programs. Drive from there to the starting point of the Tok Tokkie Trail. You'll make your way over a slope strewn with mysterious fairy circles and across small vegetated dunes to your first overnight camp.
Relax after your walk with a sundowner drive in the beautiful NamibRand Nature Reserve. Watch the sunset transform the colors of the desert while sipping a drink, watching out for all kinds of animals, from zebra to oryx and gazelle. As you camp out tonight, you'll get your first taste of NamibRand's pristine night sky. The area is one of the world's only Dark Sky Reserves, with clear, unpolluted skies perfect for stargazing. Watch out for planets, constellations, and the shimmering Milky Way.
Day 4: Hike the Tok Tokkie Trail
Set off in the cool early morning for today's hike, which meanders through the dunes and plains of Namib, the oldest living desert in the world. Your guide will interpret evidence of nocturnal animal activity in the sand and help you spot secretive creatures such as the golden mole and flightless wasp. They'll explain how desert flora and fauna have adapted to this harsh environment. Look out for creatures such as springbok, bat-eared foxes, and endemic birds like the dune lark.
The trail leads over a mountain saddle and descends gently to a dry riverbed. Eventually, you'll reach a shady camp where you can enjoy the treats prepared by your chefs and fill up your water bottles. Rest during the heat of the day before continuing to your overnight camp, where you can savor a sundowner and photograph views of the endless dunes, mountains, and fairy circles. After a delicious dinner, listen out for barking geckos and hooting owls as you head to bed.
Day 5: Hike the Tok Tokkie Trail & Drive to Windhoek, Depart
Wake just before sunrise to trek the final section of the Tok Tokkie Trail. Fuel up with coffee and breakfast, then set off through the soft, rolling dune fields dotted with camelthorn trees, which provide welcome shady rest spots.
The trek ends at the Tok Tokkie farmhouse, where you'll have time to rest before hopping in your rental car. Drive back to Windhoek to drop off your vehicle—your Namibia adventure ends here.