Experience NAMIBIA’s BIG 5 from 15 of its LUXE LODGES
Ever been curious to see a rippling mirage desert, a gigantic thousand year-old plant living in a landscape that resembles the moon or a ghost town flooded in a sea of sand?
Whether you want to sleep in a shipwreck, count the stars of the Southern Cross from the comfort of your four-poster bed in the middle of one of the world’s oldest deserts or gaze over endless planes while being treated to an epic aromatherapy massage, we’ve got you covered!
Namibia, the undisputed gem of Africa is a place where the sun is bright, the people warm and the landscape otherworldly. It’s also home to not just the Big Five and Little Five (and if you don’t know who they are – acquaint yourself without further ado!) but also some of the most luxurious lodges on the planet. Five star interiors, gourmet meals and service with enormous smiles.
If that kind of thing appeals, what are you waiting for?
Within the Gondwana Namib Park, close to a town aptly named Solitaire (where, incidentally, the best apple pie is served from a gas station restroom) lies this extraterrestrial desert hideaway – perched on the rocks, with panoramic views into tomorrow. Solitude, piercingly blue skies, the magnificent Naukluft mountains and pure luxury within your own arid retreat are also on offer. There are five-star meals under the Southern Cross, sundowners and scenic drives, hot air balloon excursions and views, views, views. The desert is indeed whispering. Are you heeding the call?
2. SHIPWRECK LODGE
Where the cold Benguela Current meets the scorching Namib Desert, close to the miniscule hamlet of Moewe Bay and nestled between the (often dry) Hoarusib and Hoanib Rivers on Namibia’s notoriously treacherous Skeleton Coast is where you’ll find this little cluster of super luxurious cabins orbiting around their state-of-the-art mothership restaurant. From the comfort of your own little ‘shipwreck’ you’ll explore the desert fauna and flora of this impossibly remote piece of the earth. With the wild waves of the untamed Atlantic as your backdrop you’ll explore and comb the beach for whale bones (and other skeletons). Be sure to tip your hat to the desert lions, sea lions and jackal – this is their territory. At night under a cosy faux fur you’ll sit on your deck and count the stars, sipping your Jaegermeister and devise clever little plans to never return to the real world.
A collection of camps, … correction (as the good people at Wolwedans quite rightly claim), a ‘collection of dreams’ lies within the breathtakingly beautiful NamibRand Nature Reserve bordering the Namib Naukluft Park near the world famous Dead Vlei at Sossusvlei, Southwestern Namibia. With the emphasis on sustainable eco-tourism each dreamy camp – with names like Dunes Lodge, Mountain View Suite, Dune Camp, Boulders Safari Lodge, Private Camp and Desert Lodge conjure up everything that’s exotic about Africa. And believe me, as ravishing as these images may be, they just can’t do justice to the real macoy – a landscape dotted with mysterious fairy circles, gigantic boulders and red sand dunes – experienced from the sumptuous luxury of your sofa. Wolwedans’ motto, ‘simply out of this world’ is not far- fetched at all considering these red dunes are indeed the playground of fairies and giants.
Video Credit Wolwedans
4. SERRA CAFEMA
Situated in the remote Hartmann Valley in Namibia’s Northwesterly region, on the banks of the mighty Kunene River (this region being home to the mystical Himba people of Namibia) Serra Cafema’s eight intimate chalets sit on an elevated deck. This of course makes it effortless to fall asleep listening to the rushing water down below, especially once you’ve had a few Rock Shandies (a must-try Namibian speciality) or some Amarula liqueur (made from the fruit of the indigenous marula tree). From here you can get acquaint the fascinating semi-nomadic Himba people, go boating, relax by the pool, walk where few have walked before, join a sunset or sunrise drive or head inland and explore the moon-like landscape of the desert. Alternatively you can simply lie in your hammock with a book and unwind. (I know what I’m likely to do.).
5. &BEYOND SOSSUSVLEI DESERT LODGE
If pampering at every level is what you’re after, look no further. Ten serene, private villas with spectacular vistas allow you to enjoy uninterrupted beauty and scenery while you’re relaxing. The pool, fed from an underwater spring, lets you cool down before you dress for supper by lantern (and moon) light. After a beautiful meal and copious quantities of exquisite wine you can opt to relax on your private verandah or lie down on your bed and enjoy exceptional star gazing from the skylight above. By day you can choose to be adventurous – excursions, game drives, a hot air balloon ride … or simply stay closer to ‘home’ and soak up all the pampering on offer.
10 MORE SPECTACULAR LODGES
- HOANIB VALLEY CAMP
- HOANIB SKELETON COAST
- MOWANI MOUNTAIN CAMP
- LITTLE KULULA
- LITTLE ONGAVA
- ONGUMA THE FORT
- DESERT BREEZE
- DAMARALAND CAMP