Sossusvlei Lodge is located at the gateway to Sossusvlei and the surrounding spectacular dunes.
Sossusvlei Lodge: Our full report
Immediately beside the busy entrance gate into the Namib-Naukluft National Park, at Sesriem, the established Sossusvlei Lodge is relatively large compared with other lodges in the area.
Stop press Sossusvlei Lodge will be undergoing extensive remodelling throughout 2017 and things are reportedly going to be quite different. We look forward to seeing the results.
Guarded by two metal, life-size Bushman sculptures, a towering archway forms the entrance to Sossusvlei Lodge. From here a shaded walkway, lined with plants in large clay pots, leads to a water feature where the Bushman theme continues and figurines mimic a hunt in progress. The lodge itself has been painted in the same rich red tones as the nearby sand dunes, a theme that is evident throughout.
The rich red hues of the main building, which incorporates Sossusvlei Lodge’s restaurant, bar and reception, are broken up by interesting patterns and Bushman art along the walls. At the heart of the building is a large paved patio with views over the desert, and it’s here that breakfast and lunch are usually served. The bar has its own little shaded veranda with a view over a small waterhole that attracts birds, small animals and the occasional oryx – it's a comfortable spot for a sundowner!
Sossusvlei Lodge boasts an inviting large, clear swimming pool, surrounded by paved terracing and well-kept green lawns – though note that the water can be very cold, even on hot days. Large patio umbrellas shade comfortable pool loungers from where you can enjoy an uninterrupted view of the desert. The nearby water tower supports a viewing deck which is reached be a winding staircase. From this height the view of the desert is even more spectacular and the towering dunes can be seen in the distance.
With 51 rooms, including three family units, Sossusvlei Lodge is sizeable by Namibian standards – and is thus popular with tour groups. The main bedroom of each room is a large, walk-in Meru-style tent, whilst the en-suite bathroom is a more solid brick-and-concrete structure. At the front is a private shaded veranda where you can enjoy the views from canvas director's chairs.
A wooden door from the veranda opens into a simple but tastefully decorated room, whose canvas windows can be rolled up to allow a flow of air, while a sewn-in mesh panel keeps out insects. A large print of Bushman art hangs above twin beds with wrought-iron headboards, each made up with white linen and covered with African patterns in the red, orange and brown shades of the surrounding desert. In one corner of the room is a small writing table with two wrought-iron chairs; in the other is a vanity table with a mirror and a stool. Each room also has a luggage rack and a built-in wardrobe with a small safe for any valuables, while the en-suite bathroom has a walk-in shower, a large mirror above the washbasin and a flushing toilet, with basic toiletries provided.
Sossusvlei Lodge has its own adventure centre where you can make bookings for activities. Ideally this should be when you first arrive – especially as many of them require a minimum of four passengers. Options, all at additional cost, include sundowner drives on the surrounding reserve, nature drives, excursions to Sesriem Canyon and Elim Dune or into Sossusvlei and Dead Vlei, quadbiking and scenic flights.
Our viewEven though our most recent visit to Sossusvlei Lodge was short, we found the staff to be friendly and welcoming. We’d expect the lodge to be quite busy during Namibia's peak season (July to October), when many large tour groups will be passing through. However, for more independent travellers who want to remain anonymous, and be left to their own devices, Sossusvlei Lodge's proximity to the gate at Sesriem make it worthy of our recommendation.
Ideal length of stay: 2-3 nights
Directions: Sossusvlei Lodge is barely 200m from the Sesriem Gate into the Namib-Naulkluft National Park. This is normally about five hours' drive from Windhoek.
Accessible by: Self-drive or Fly-and-Transfer
Owner: Taleni Africa
Food & drink
Usual board basis: Half Board
Food quality: Although we didn't have time to try the meals at Sossusvlei Lodge during our last visit, in June 2016, we have on previous occasions been impressed by the breakfast spread. An extensive buffet offers a delicious selection from a choice of yoghurts to various cereals, dried or fresh fruit to pancakes and cold meats to numerous cheeses. Added to this is the option of a hot breakfast including bacon, sausages and eggs. It was one of the largest breakfast layouts that we'd come across in Namibia.
Lunch and dinner are also served as buffets with a large selection of salads and breads complementing the main meals. In the evening a braii is often set up in the main courtyard formin and integral part of dinner. To round off the meal there is always a great selection of cakes and fruits.
Dining style: Individual Tables
Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Cost of meal e.g. lunch: £10-15
Drinks included: No drinks are included. We are told that the tap water is safe to drink.
Further dining info: Limited, on request.
Photography holidays: The desert and dunes surrounding Sossusvlei Lodge are superb landscapes for photography in Namibia. For guests at the lodge, which is right next to the Sesriem gate, it is relatively easy to make two trips into the dunes on one day: one for the early-morning light, and another to catch the late-afternoon sun.See more ideas for Photography holidays in Namibia
Attitude towards children: Sossusvlei Lodge is a child-friendly lodge.
Property’s age restrictions: No age restrictions
Special activities & services: None
Equipment: Cots and high chairs can be provided.
Generally recommended for children: Yes, but see ‘Notes’ below.
Notes: Like many desert locations, the swimming pool here can be exceptionally cold even on days when the air temperature is warm. Parents should always closely supervise their children when using this pool – and never allow any diving into it. The high water tower here is often used for views; for safety reasons we recommend against children going up there at all.
Power supply: Mains Electricity
Power supply notes: There is a back-up generator in case of a mains failure.
Communications: There is a central phone and cellphone reception. WiFi is available in the main area.
TV & radio: There is one large satellite TV in the main guest area.
Water supply: Borehole
Health & safety
Malarial protection recommended: No
Medical care: A first-aid kit is on hand, and some staff have been trained to administer first aid. For serious medical emergencies, guests would be air-lifted to Windhoek. Quadbike warning: quad-biking is sometimes available as an activity from Sossusvlei Lodge. As with any potentially dangerous activity, it’s vital that you take responsibility for ensuring that you have adequate travel insurance prior to getting involved. Be aware that some insurances cover quad-bike activities only for bikes with lower engine ratings: check such clauses particularly carefully before you get on a bike.
Dangerous animals: Moderate Risk
Security measures: Staff are on duty 24 hours both in reception and patrolling the property.
Fire safety: There are fire extinguishers in each tent, which are regularly serviced.
Disabled access: In Place
Laundry facilities: There is a full laundry service here, which is available to guests at an extra charge.
Money: The lodge has money-exchange facilities for foreign currencies. Each of the rooms has a safe. The main area has a cash machine.
Accepted payment on location: Most main international forms of currency and cards are accepted, excluding Diners and AmEx.