Cape Cross Lodge is situated a few meters from the Atlantic Ocean.
Cape Cross Lodge: Our full report
Cape Cross Lodge stands on a windswept beach of Namibia’s Skeleton Coast, very close to Cape Cross Seal Reserve. Comfortable and modern, it’s about an hour-and-a-half's drive north of Swakopmund.
Cape Cross Lodge is built in a mix of Cape Dutch and west coast fishing-village style, within a fully glassed front that frames the beach and the ocean beyond, and lets in plenty of light. Downstairs, individual fireplaces break up the open-plan lounge and dining areas, helping to make it feel cosy and warm – particularly important when the wind can make it bitterly cold outside. Individual dining tables are relatively formal, but comfortable sofas and low tables dotted with coffee-table books soften the mood. At one end, an extensive bar adds a slightly pubby atmosphere, while secreted away downstairs is a private wine cellar with a good selection of wines and spirits, and a conference room with satellite TV. Outside, see-through screens serve to protect guests on the terrace from the elements, allowing you to sit out with a drink or a meal and watch the waves.
Accommodation at Cape Cross consists of 18 bedrooms and two suites. Four of these rooms have interleading doors to create family unites, and six are wheelchair accessible. Cape Cross is usually fairly cool at night, so the rooms do not have air conditioning, fans or mosquito nets, but there are no heaters either, so you may want to request extra blankets, ideally before dinner.
- Each of the 18 spacious bedrooms is decorated in pastel colours and furnished with wicker furniture, twin beds and good-quality fabrics; in some, a bowl of seashells adds to the ocean theme. Rooms on the first floor have private balconies with beautiful sea views and wooden deckchairs and tables, and those on the ground floor share the same view, and they have direct beach access.
Simple but elegant en-suite bathrooms – most with a shower, but no bath – are clean and practical, though some are a little small. All have an electric shaver point, and offer complimentary shampoo, body lotion and soap.
- The two suites are enormous! They are slightly sparsely decorated and somewhat lacking character, but the great sea views make up for this!
Cape Cross Lodge’s raison d’être is largely the adjacent seal colony, 4km away by road, which is often visited as a day trip from Swakopmund. Thus the lodge is open to day visitors, who sometimes come for lunch. It's also a convenient place to stay for the night when travelling between Damaraland and Swakopmund. But despite the obvious practicalities, arguably the greatest appeal is watching seals cavorting in the waves off this bleak stretch of Atlantic coast.
Our viewWith its location between Swakopmund and Damaraland, Cape Cross Lodge makes a pleasant and reasonably efficient stopover – though as Swakopmund is only an hour-and-a-half’s drive south, many people prefer to stay there instead. It’s very much a hotel in style, rather than a place that you would choose to linger, but its proximity to the seal reserve, its setting on the Skeleton Coast and its ease of access make it a convenient option on a northern Namibia itinerary.
Ideal length of stay: One night – it's usually used as a stopover.
Directions: Cape Cross Lodge is 122km north of Swakopmund, and 60km north of Henties Bay; clearly signposted just off the C34.
Accessible by: Self-drive or Fly-and-Transfer
Food & drink
Usual board basis: Half Board
Food quality: Breakfast is served buffet style between 6.30am and 10.00am; expect a variety of cereals, bread, muffins, cold meat, cheese, fruit and yoghurt to be laid out - on a table that looks almost makeshift, draped with fish nets and on wooden kegs.
An a la carte Lunch is served between midday and 3.00pm, and Dinner 6.00–9.00pm. Dinner is usually a set menu, but at busy times you can expect a buffet.
Tea/coffee and cake are available throughout the day, and are included in the price of an overnight stay.
Dining style: Individual Tables
Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Drinks included: Drinks are not included at Cape Cross Lodge
Further dining info: There is no room service available at Cape Cross Lodge.
Attitude towards children: Children of all ages are welcome at Cape Cross Lodge.
Property’s age restrictions: None
Special activities & services: There are no special activities at Cape Cross Lodge for children but they can quite happily play and walk along the beach with parental supervision (the ocean can be rough at times).
Equipment: Cots and highchairs can be provided for children, on request.
Generally recommended for children: Cape Cross Lodge would be fine for children as a stopover – although younger children would run out of things to do on a longer stay here.
Notes: The ocean can be very rough and the currents strong, so children must be supervised on the beach. Swimming is not an option.
Power supply: Generator
Communications: There are no phones in the rooms but the lodge has cellphone reception. There is free WiFi in the main area.
TV & radio: There are no TVs or radios in the rooms but there is a central radio/entertainment centre that plays music throughout the day. There is a TV with satellite channels in the downstairs conference room.
Health & safety
Malarial protection recommended: No
Medical care: The closest hospital or doctor is in Henties Bay, which is about a 30-minute drive. For more comprehensive medical facilities, Swakopmund is about an hour-and-a-half’s drive away.
Dangerous animals: Low Risk
Security measures: There are no guards on site
Fire safety: There are no fire extinguishers in the rooms but there a few in and around the lodge.
Disabled access: In Place
Laundry facilities: Laundry can be done at an extra charge per item and can be returned within 24 hours.
Money: Each room has an electronic combination safe.
Accepted payment on location: They accept payment with South African rand and Namibian dollars as well as Visa, Amex and Mastercard.