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FROM US$2,280-US$3,140

Quiver Tree Self-drive Safari

An offbeat Namibian self-drive adventure exploring the epic Fish River Canyon and fascinating Kolmanskop ghost town in the south, before turning north via the classic highlights of Sossusvlei, Swakopmund and Damaraland.

Quiver Tree Self-drive Safari: Summary

Quiver Tree Self-drive in a nutshell

This is a trip for those after a real Namibian adventure. Driving yourselves on a loop around the country’s most spectacular sights and otherworldly desert landscapes, you’ll explore iconic highlights as well as some lesser known spots.

From the capital, head south for a first stop at a lodge surrounded by Kalahari dunes and dry savannah where you can spot wildlife like oryxes, giraffe, zebra and unusual desert specialists such as meerkats and bat eared foxes on drives and walks. Continue south to the vast Fish River Canyon which has carved a snaking path some 500 metres deep into the plateau. The area has some great hiking trails which you often have to yourself and the canyon, Africa’s largest, is particularly photogenic at sunset.

Turning north and west, follow a road flanked by rust-red sands towards the Atlantic coast and the scenic Desert Horse Inn, a great base for day trips to Kolmanskop, once booming diamond mining outpost that’s now an atmospheric ghost town, and colonial port town of Lüderitz from where you can take a boat trip to Halifax Island to see African penguins, flamingos, dolphins and whales.

Keeping the great Namib sand sea to you left, drive to Sesriem, the gateway to the iconic dunes that surround Sossusvlei and Deadvlei’s Daliesque trees, before continuing on to another quirky Germanic relic at Swakopmund, a town hosting an eclectic mix of adventure activities from skydiving to sea kayaking.

Your final stop before completing the loop back in Windhoek is beneath the bald granite peaks of Spitzkoppe Mountain in Damaraland. Relax in the pool, see rock art left here by the San bushmen who have sought refuge here for millennia, follow scenic trails or try your hand at rock climbing.

At a glance

Starts: Windhoek International Airport
1 night Galton House - Windhoek, Namibia Bed & Breakfast
2 nights Kalahari Red Dunes - Southern Namibia, Namibia Half Board
2 nights Canyon Village - Fish River Canyon, Namibia Half Board
2 nights Desert Horse Inn - Luderitz, Namibia Half Board
2 nights Desert Quiver Camp - Namib-Naukluft National Park, Namibia Room Only
2 nights The Delight - Swakopmund & Walvis Bay, Namibia Bed & Breakfast
2 nights Spitzkoppen Lodge - Damaraland, Namibia Half Board
1 night Galton House - Windhoek, Namibia Bed & Breakfast
Ends: Windhoek International Airport

Galton House

Day 1

Galton House, named after the early explorer Sir Francis Galton, is just ten minutes' drive from central Windhoek. A modern yet homely guesthouse, with a backdrop of rolling hills, it was opened in the residential suburb of Eros in 2011. There's a mix of comfortable indoor and outdoor spaces in which to relax and the convenience of an in-house restaurant that caters for all meals.

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Kalahari Red Dunes Lodge

Days 2-4

The unusual Kalahari Red Dunes Lodge stands in its own private game reserve some 70km north of Mariental. A very convenient stopover between Windhoek and the Fish River Canyon, it's made up of attractive individual houses set around a dry lake and surrounded by the classic vegetated dunes of the Namibian Kalahari Desert.

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Canyon Village

Days 4-6

Close to Namibia’s Fish River Canyon, Canyon Village (previously called Canon or Cañon Village) is beautiful located at the base of a number of bare rocky hills, or kopjes, in the middle of a vast rocky landscape. Although the lodge is modern, a traditional feel comes from a series of attractive murals that depict various scenes from when the Nama people used to inhabit the region.

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Desert Horse Inn

Days 6-8

The owner-run Desert Horse Inn stands on the Klein-Aus Vista reserve, which is reminiscent of a 'Western' movie set. It's about 1,400m above sea level, in a totally unspoilt semi-desert area, with wide-open plains against a backdrop of mountains. As well as offering some excellent walking, Klein-Aus Vista works as a base to visit Lüderitz, some 125km to the west.

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Desert Quiver Camp

Days 8-10

Desert Quiver Camp can be spotted from miles away, with it’s simple but comfortable self-catering chalets stretching across the desert plains, just 5km from the Sesriem entrance to the Namib-Naukluft National Park.

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The Delight

Days 10-12

On the north side of Swakopmund, The Delight is a relatively large modern hotel. More formally known as The Delight Swakopmund, it's opposite the old railway station, which is now the extensive Swakopmund Hotel and Entertainment Centre, and within a short walk of the main shopping area, and a handful of restaurants and bars.

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Spitzkoppen Lodge

Days 12-14

Set in its own small reserve, Spitzkoppen Lodge sits beneath the craggy mountain that dominates this remote area. Widely known as Spitzkoppe Lodge, it opened in November 2016, offering access to a remote and less often visited part of Namibia, between Usakos and Swakopmund, that was previously accessible only to campers or on day trips.

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Galton House

Day 14

Galton House, named after the early explorer Sir Francis Galton, is just ten minutes' drive from central Windhoek. A modern yet homely guesthouse, with a backdrop of rolling hills, it was opened in the residential suburb of Eros in 2011. There's a mix of comfortable indoor and outdoor spaces in which to relax and the convenience of an in-house restaurant that caters for all meals.

View full itinerary
Galton House

Galton House

Windhoek, Namibia

Kalahari Red Dunes Lodge

Kalahari Red Dunes

Southern Namibia, Namibia

Canyon Village

Canyon Village

Fish River Canyon, Namibia

Desert Horse Inn

Desert Horse Inn

Luderitz, Namibia

Desert Quiver Camp

Desert Quiver Camp

Namib-Naukluft National Park, Namibia

The Delight

The Delight

Swakopmund & Walvis Bay, Namibia

Spitzkoppen Lodge

Spitzkoppen Lodge

Damaraland, Namibia

Galton House

Galton House

Windhoek, Namibia

About image

Highlights

Our thoughts on five of the top experiences of this Quiver Tree Self-drive Safari.

  • Watching the sunset over Fish River Canyon
  • See a desert ghost town & penguins in the same day
  • Spot desert wildlife on walks and drives
  • Scrambling around Spitzkoppe's walking trails
  • A proper desert adventure with incredible scenery

Activities

Some activities which can be included in the Quiver Tree Self-drive Safari: talk to us about those which interest you.

  • 4WD Safari

  • Birdwatching

  • Boat trip

  • Cultural excursion

  • Dune-boarding

  • Fishing

  • Guided walking safari

  • Helicopter

  • Horse-riding

  • Hot air ballooning

  • Kayaking

  • Mountain biking

  • Quad-biking

  • Self-guided walking

About image

Key species to see on the Quiver Tree Self-drive Safari

Based on our travellers' observations, we’ve estimated the likelihood of seeing these species during the Quiver Tree Self-drive Safari. Click on the animals and our wildlife surveys page for more info.


Oryx

100% chance

Zebra

100% chance

Wildebeest

99% chance

Eland

84% chance

Giraffe

82% chance

Meerkat

65% chance

Elephant

11% chance

Lion

0% chance

Leopard

0% chance

Cheetah

0% chance

Aardvark

0% chance

Black Rhino

0% chance

Brown Hyena

0% chance

Pangolin

0% chance

Spotted Hyena

0% chance

Side-trips whilst on this trip

We may be able to build in some of these optional excursions from the Quiver Tree Self-drive Safari. Talk to us: they’re usually best arranged when you book.


Ballooning in the Namib Desert

Ballooning in the Namib Desert

Half day, including breakfast

Ballooning over the world’s oldest desert is an experience you shouldn’t miss. Enjoy spectacular views as the sun rises over the dune-covered plains and rocky mountains of the Namib Desert. You may even spot the occasional oryx or black-backed jackal punctuating the landscape below.

More about Ballooning
94% (69 reviews)
Kayaking with seals

Kayaking with seals

Morning incl. tea, coffee & sandwiches

Get up close and personal with a colony of Cape fur seals on a kayaking excursion from Walvis Bay. Enjoy a gentle morning’s paddle in Walvis Bay Lagoon as seals surround and interact with you and your kayak. If you’re lucky you may even catch a glimpse of some Heaviside’s or bottlenose dolphins.

More about Kayaking with seals
98% (176 reviews)
Coast and Sandwich Harbour

Coast and Sandwich Harbour

Full day

Experience this usually inaccessible part of the Skeleton Coast, where the dunes of the Namib plunge into the Atlantic Ocean. One of our top recommendations, this is an adventurous 4WD trip, guided by experts. You'll explore the Kuiseb Delta and (tides permitting) traverse dunes and the beach to reach Sandwich Harbour, a remote freshwater lagoon with abundant birdlife.

More about Coastal tour
94% (219 reviews)
Dolphin and seal cruise

Dolphin and seal cruise

Half-day inc brunch

A boat cruise around Walvis Bay lagoon is a must for lovers of wildlife and the great outdoors. Seek out the ‘marine big five’ – from Cape fur seals to bottlenose dolphins – and marvel at the range of bird species for whom this haven on the Skeleton Coast is home. Then round off the morning with an oyster brunch.

More about Dolphin & seal cruise
89% (14 reviews)
Desert tour

Desert tour

Variable, depending on the tour

Discover the unexpected on a trip into the desert surrounding the coastal towns of Swakopmund and Walvis Bay. A must for wilderness lovers, this extraordinary landscape encompasses the Welwitschia Plains, sculpted dunes, the magic of the Kuiseb Delta – and much more. There are plenty of options, each with its own unique focus.

More about Desert tour
96% (11 reviews)
Halifax Island boat trip

Halifax Island boat trip

2 hours

Climb aboard the comfortable catamaran Zeepaard in search of the marine life of Namibia’s wild coastline – among them Cape fur seals, Heaviside dolphins, African penguins and perhaps even humpback whales.

More about Halifax Island trip
94% (13 reviews)
Scenic flights in Namibia

Scenic flights in Namibia

Variable, depending on the flight

Namibia is famed for its stark beauty and boundless desert vistas and there is no better way to soak these in than from the air. A scenic flight gives you a unique perspective on this stunning and varied country, and may even provide a bird’s-eye view of areas that are out of reach to those restricted to terra firma.

More about Scenic flights
94% (7 reviews)
Sperrgebiet tour

Sperrgebiet tour

Full day, including lunch

Discover the hidden gems of the Sperrgebiet National Park on this exceptional all-day trip. There may no longer be diamonds for the taking, but in their place you’ll find ghost towns, the rusting relics of the diamond industry, geological formations, and extraordinary desert flora, largely untouched for generations.

More about Sperrgebiet tour
93% (8 reviews)

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