Namibia: Dunes & Desert Safari - A Marco Polo Journey (2023)

Venture into a unique desert wilderness of desolate beauty and surprising vitality, discovering Namibia at its most compelling.

Journey Overview

Venture into a unique desert wilderness of desolate beauty and surprising vitality, discovering Namibia at its most compelling. Encounter rare wildlife in Etosha National Park and marvel at otherworldly landscapes, including the iconic dunes of Sossusvlei, on a journey that introduces you to the indigenous Himba tribe and takes you far off the beaten path into the truly remote and breathtaking Kaokoland.

Journey Highlights

  • Stay in African desert lodges set in four genuinely remote locations, accessing them with ease on private chartered flights
  • Track diverse, desert-adapted wildlife in the Ongava Reserve as well as Etosha National Park, Namibia’s premier game-viewing destination
  • Explore the Purros Conservancy, the only place in the world where elephants, black rhinos, lions and other African animals live in a desert environment
  • Experience authentic interactions with residents of a Himba village for in-depth, personal insights into Namibia’s last traditional tribe
  • Walk among the spectacular dunes of Sossusvlei, which you visit via chartered air, enjoying stunning aerial views en route

Journey Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive Windhoek, Namibia

Arrive in Windhoek, Namibia and transfer to your relaxing luxury lodge, set on a private wildlife reserve in the countryside surrounding Windhoek, for check-in. This evening, gather for a welcome dinner.

Zannier Hotels Omaanda | Meals: D

Day 2: Ongava Private Game Reserve | Amazing Game

Board a private aircraft for a flight to the 68,000-acre Ongava Game Reserve. Upon arrival, settle into your camp accommodations before setting out on an afternoon game drive around the private reserve. Watch for any of the hundreds of species of birds in the region as well as an astonishing variety of game, including lions, black and white rhinos, elephants, giraffes and the rare black-faced impala. Return to your comfortable camp set near a waterhole and featuring an underground photographic hide ideal for capturing great images of the wildlife stopping by for a drink.

Anderssons at Ongava | Meals: BLD

Day 3: Ongava Private Game Reserve | Etosha’s Gems

Today, experience a guided morning game drive into the Etosha National Park to view more of the wide variety of game and bird species roaming terrain that includes grasslands and salt pan. Return to your lodge for lunch followed by time to relax by the refreshing infinity edge swimming pool. Then, head out again for an afternoon game drive, perhaps sighting cheetahs, gemsbok or a flock of flamingos before sunset.

Anderssons at Ongava | Meals: BLD

Day 4: Kunene River | Into the Beyond

Fly by private charter to the Marienfluss Valley on the banks of the Kunene River, site of your next desert safari camp. This is the first of two locations you visit over the next few days that reside in far-off Kaokoland, a region so arid, remote and unforgiving, it’s wild even by Nambian standards. Your camp is set along the banks of the Kunene River, the only permanent source of water in this area. This afternoon, glide by boat along the Kunene, taking in the contrasting landscape and watching for local birdlife and crocodiles. Return to camp around sunset to freshen up for dinner.

Okahirongo River Camp | Meals: BLD

Day 5: Kunene River | Meet the Himba

Enjoy a morning at leisure in your luxurious tented camp, with time to take in the austere desert beauty surrounding you. This afternoon, head out to meet members of the last nomadic tribe of Namibia, the Himba. Search for a local settlement of these semi-nomadic people, which may take a while, as they sometimes move location with no notice. Revel in this authentic opportunity to learn about the customs and traditions of this very proud nation, mingling with tribal members sporting ochre-red braided hair and costumes of hides and beads, and gaining insight into their beliefs, way of life and everyday routine. Afterward, enjoy a scenic drive back to the lodge and stop on top of a mountain for a stunning sunset over the picturesque landscape.

Okahirongo River Camp | Meals: BLD

Day 6: Purros Conservancy | Another Side of Kaokoland

After an early breakfast, board a private aircraft for a flight south along the picturesque Marienfluss Valley to your next lodge, located in the Purros Conservancy, which borders the infamous Skeleton Coast. Arrive in the late afternoon, with time to relax at the tranquil lodge prior to gathering for dinner. This region, often described as one of the last truly wild areas in the northwest of Namibia, is unique in all the world for its combination of African animals living together in a desert environment, including elephants, black rhinos, lions and more.

Okahirongo Elephant Lodge | Meals: BLD

Day 7-8 Purros Conservancy | Desert-Adapted Life

Over the next two days, head out on scenic drives through stunning wilderness panoramas far off the beaten track that are simultaneously inspiring and inhospitable. Enjoy time to discover unusual plants and strange rocks formations, and be on the lookout for rare desert elephants and other wildlife such as black rhinos and giraffes. One day here, visit another local Himba community for a final, unforgettable chance to get to know these pastoral people.

Okahirongo Elephant Lodge | Meals: BLD

Day 9: Sossusvlei | Above a Haunted Landscape

This morning, fly by private charter to Sossusvlei, taking in the ever-changing desert landscapes of the Namib Desert en route and enjoying a bird’s-eye view over the dune sea, a landscape dotted with abandoned mining camps, shipwrecks and salt pans. After a refuelling stop, continue your journey with cameras at the ready, flying over the ‘Eduard Bohlen,’ a German cargo ship that ran aground in 1909 while it was on its way to Table Bay. Years after the ship ran aground, the desert began to encroach on the ocean and the freighter that was once stranded in the water slowly became stranded in the desert, an iconic prisoner of Namibia’s Skeleton Coast. Upon arrival, continue overland to your luxurious camp featuring ten spacious tents. Nestled on the southern edge of the Namib Desert, on a private reserve amid panoramic landscapes, it offers the perfect wilderness retreat.

Zannier Hotels Sonop | Meals: BLD

Day 10: Sossusvlei | Climbing “Big Daddy”

Today, discover renowned Sossusvlei, a place of stark yet undeniable beauty. The salt-and-clay pan is surrounded by towering dunes that, together with the sky, comprise the palette of burnt oranges and vivid blues so distinctive to the region. Fly by private charter to Sossusvlei, taking in scenic aerial views en route. Upon landing, enjoy time to absorb your stunning new surroundings. After an opportunity to climb “Big Daddy” — the tallest of the dunes — reboard your aircraft for a return flight and an afternoon at leisure at your lodge.

Zannier Hotels Sonop | Meals: BLD

Day 11: Sossusvlei | Guided Desert Explorations

Rise early for a full day exploring your camp’s fascinating private reserve as you like: on horseback, by foot on guided hikes or by e-bike on a guided trail ride over awe-inspiring terrain. Observe the area’s unique desert-adapted plants and wildlife, and learn about the efforts to conserve its distinctive ecology.

Zannier Hotels Sonop | Meals: BLD

Day 12: Depart Windhoek

Return by light aircraft to Windhoek, where you connect with your departing flight.

Meals: B

Journey Details

Internal air included: Windhoek/Ongava/Kunene River/Purros Conservancy/Swakopmund/ Sossusvlei/Windhoek
Minimum age is 13 years.
Each guest on this journey will receive an A&K Safari Duffel.
First group event: welcome dinner at 7:00 p.m. on Day 1.
Last group event: airport arrival at 11:00 a.m. on Day 12.
Departures are guaranteed to operate with a minimum of 2 guests.

Program Note: Travel in this remote region entails active elements such as walking over steep, uneven terrain.

Please note: Proof of COVID-19 full vaccination is required for this program.

Included with every Marco Polo Journey

  • English-Speaking Resident Tour Director and Local Guides
  • Hand-Selected Luxury Accommodations (Where Available)
  • Airport Meet and Greet with Private Transfers
  • Travelling Bell Boy Luggage Handling
  • Breakfast in Bed on Select Days
  • Full Breakfast Daily; Select Lunches and Dinners
  • Traveller’s Valet Laundry Service
  • Internet Access (Where Available)
  • Entrance Fees, Taxes and All Gratuities Except Resident Tour Director
  • 24/7 A&K On-Call Support
  • Guaranteed Departures with Just Two Guests
Show Full Itinerary
Preferred Accommodation

Preferred Accommodation

This journey features the following Preferred Accommodations:

Anderssons at Ongava, Etosha National Park

Namibia: Dunes & Desert Safari - A Marco Polo Journey (2023)

Focussing on a light environmental footprint and an exceptional experience, Anderssons at Ongava has seven contemporary luxury guest unit... Read more

Okahirongo Elephant Lodge

Namibia: Dunes & Desert Safari - A Marco Polo Journey (2023)

This unique lodge in the Purros Conservancy is one of Namibia’s most remote with a striking design reflective of the local architectural ... Read more

Dates & Prices

Journey Dates & Prices

Prices are per person, based on double occupancy

May 6, 2023 - May 17, 2023
Price AU$26,325pp Single Supplement AU$7,460 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire
Jul 13, 2023 - Jul 24, 2023
Price AU$30,410pp Single Supplement AU$9,710 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire
Aug 4, 2023 - Aug 15, 2023
Price AU$30,410pp Single Supplement AU$9,710 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire
Sep 11, 2023 - Sep 22, 2023
Price AU$30,410pp Single Supplement AU$9,710 Internal Air (From) Included Availability Call for Availability Enquire

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