Cheetah Self-drive Safari

Cheetah self-drive: In full

This round self-drive trip combines 16 days in Namibia and Botswana into a very affordable safari. Your journey of discovery starts and ends in Windhoek and includes Waterberg Plateau, the vast Etosha National Park, the Caprivi Strip's lush Mahango and Bwabwata national parks, and the sparkling waterways of the Okavango Delta Panhandle, before ending with a drive across the expansive landscapes and red sands of the Kalahari Desert.


Day 1

1 night at Olive Grove (bed & breakfast) | Windhoek, Namibia

Olive Grove is a stylish guest house in Windhoek's suburb of Eros.Upon arrival at Windhoek Airport you collect your hire car and drive into Namibia's capital city for an overnight stay. Your guesthouse accommodation is in a pleasant leafy suburb a short drive from the city centre, giving you easy access to explore Windhoek's shops, craft stalls and sights; or you may prefer to relax after your flight amid the peaceful setting at Olive Grove.

Day 2

1 night at Waterberg Camp (bed & breakfast) | Waterberg Plateau National Park, Namibia

Waterberg Camp is situated at the base of the cliff of the Waterberg Plateau.Begin with a hearty breakfast before setting off north through the Central Highlands to reach Waterberg Plateau. This striking geological feature rises out of the surrounding Kalahari plains; its porous sandstone creating a relatively lush haven for a plethora of wildlife and vegetation. You can spot a multitude of birdlife and wander the slopes on walking trails, including a hike to the top of the plateau from where the surrounding plains seem endless. If you would like to explore the protected reserve at the top of the plateau there is also an optional guided game drive offered during your overnight stay at Waterberg Camp.

Days 3-4

2 nights at Okaukuejo Camp (bed & breakfast) | Etosha National Park, Namibia

Okaukuejo Camp is found inside the Etosha National Park.There's time for a morning activity at Waterberg if desired before you travel north to Etosha National Park, Namibia's premier game reserve. Much of the park's landscape is open savannah, making animals relatively easy to spot. The good sand roads, well positioned waterholes and easy to follow signposts mean it's straight forward to drive yourself around the park between sunrise and sunset. Game viewing in the evenings can continue from the comfort of bench seats around the floodlit waterhole at Okaukuejo Camp.

Days 5-6

2 nights at Namutoni Camp (bed & breakfast) | Etosha National Park, Namibia

Namutoni is home to an old fort, from which it gets its name, built in 1899 as an outpost for German troops.Discover more of Etosha National Park as you game drive your way from Okaukuejo to the eastern side of the park. Along the way you'll notice a variety of habitats, from the empty vastness of Etosha Pan and surrounding savannah, to the Mopane and Terminalia woodlands in the centre and eastern reaches of the park. These varying terrains attract different species of wildlife so keep your eyes peeled throughout. In addition to plains game such as zebra, springbok and oryx, Etosha is also known for its strong populations of elephant, lion and rhino. Your base to explore the eastern side of the park is from Namutoni Camp.

Day 7

1 night at Taranga Safari Lodge (bed & breakfast) | Caprivi Strip, Namibia

Taranga Safari Loge is one of the few lodges in the Rundu area.It's a long drive today, though mostly on straight tarmac roads, to reach the lively town of Rundu on the banks of the Kavango River. As you head north-east the countryside becomes increasingly verdant due to higher annual rainfall. Once across the veterinary fence the contrast from commercial farmland to communal pastoralist settlements is obvious. Traditional villages and crop fields of the Kavango people appear alongside the road. Upon reaching Rundu, the gateway to the Caprivi Strip, you'll overnight 35km out of town at the small and relaxing Taranga Safari Lodge.

Days 8-9

2 nights at Nunda River Lodge (half board) | Caprivi Strip, Namibia

Nunda River Lodge is situated in Namibia's Caprivi Strip ...A relatively short drive takes you eastwards to Mahango National Park where the variety of environs " from dry Kalahari bush to riverine forest, open floodplains and floating papyrus beds " results in a particularly wide diversity of bird and animal species. Look out for the rare sable and roan antelope as you venture through this small park in your hire car. Guided activities such as river cruises are also available if appeals. Each evening you'll return to your tented accommodation overlooking the Okavango River at the owner run Nunda River Lodge.

Days 10-11

2 nights at Lianshulu Lodge (full board & activities) | Caprivi Strip, Namibia

Overlooking the Kwando River, the lodge is set in a private concession in Mudumu Nat. Park.Travel for 3½ hours through Bwabwata National Park to Mudumu National Park on the banks of the Kwando River. Spend 2 nights here exploring the park on 4WD game drives. Visit the nearby Lizauli Village before searching for hippos and crocs on a relaxing boat trip from your base at Lianshulu Lodge.

Days 12-13

2 nights at Nxamaseri Lodge (full board & activities) | North-west Kalahari & Panhandle, Botswana

Nxamaseri Lodge is a delightful island getaway in a shallow water Delta environment.Backtrack along the main road back towards Divundu and take the road heading south through Mahango National Park to cross the Mohembo Border into Botswana. Continue south to Nxamaseri Village where you are met and transferred by boat to a secluded island within the Okavango Delta Panhandle. Here you spend two nights discovering the surrounding waterways and main Okavango River channel on boat cruises. This is a great way to see a myriad of bird species, hippos, crocodiles and maybe even otters or a shy sitatunga, as well as try a bit of tiger fishing. Your inviting accommodation is shaded below riverine forest, overlooking palm fringed islands, open floodplains and lily-covered lagoons from Nxamaseri Lodge.

Day 14

1 night at Kalahari Arms Hotel (accommodation only) | Central Kalahari Game Reserve, Botswana

Kalahari Arms Hotel is located in Ghanzi...You may like to enjoy a short morning activity along the Okavango waterways before brunch; after which you'll be transferred back to your hire vehicle. Ahead is a long drive on tarred roads, travelling through rural Botswana and sprawling Kalahari scrubland to reach the small outpost of Ghanzi. Stop here to break your journey back to Namibia with an overnight stay at the Kalahari Arms Hotel.

Day 15

1 night at Kalahari Bush Breaks (half board) | Southern Namibia, Namibia

Welcome to Kalahari Bush Breaks.Continue along the Trans-Kalahari Highway and cross the border into Namibia. It's then a short drive on to your final safari destination within the western reaches of the Kalahari Desert. Spend your afternoon at leisure, walking or join one of the optional guided 4WD excursions into the surrounding savannah. You will find the welcome and atmosphere very relaxed at Kalahari Bush Breaks.

Day 16

Depart with plenty of time for the 3-hour drive back to Windhoek along a straight, tarred road. Arrive at in the capital in good time to drop off your hired car (in town or at the airport) in time to connect with your onward arrangements - after an unforgettable holiday in Namibia and Botswana.

See Prices & details for the precise dates/prices for this trip - and all the fine print.