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Waterberg Camp
Waterberg Camp
Waterberg Camp

Waterberg Camp: Our full report

Waterberg Camp is the new name for the government-run restcamp which used to be called Waterberg Plateau Resort.

It was originally known as the Bernabe de la Bat Restcamp, and in many ways the description of 'rest camp' is much more accurate than either the new term 'camp', or the label of 'resort'.

The camp nestles, as it has always done, along the base of the cliffs of the Waterberg Plateau, inside the Waterberg Plateau National Park. It is the only place to stay in this national park – unless you're booked onto one of the self-guided treks, in which case there are a few camp-sites on top of the plateau.

Until 2007, the Waterberg Camp was, like most of the restcamps in Namibia's other national parks, pretty basic. Designed for South Africans and local visitors, they'd changed very little in the previous 20-30 years.

However, as part of the 100th anniversary of Etosha National Park, most of the camps and resorts run by Namibia's parastatal 'Namibia Wildlife Resorts' (known almost universally as simply 'NWR') have undergone extensive upgrading, and these include Waterberg Camp – which was one of the first to be changed, in early 2007.

The wildlife at Waterberg is as big a draw here as the scenery, as the high cliffs of Waterberg have long been used to protect its population of rare and endangered animals. White rhino, roan and sable antelope all have good populations here, thriving for some years, whilst they were rare or absent from elsewhere in Namibia. There's a colony of fairly rare Cape vultures here, and a really good mix of birdlife – about 200 species are on record.

Visiting on a short 1-2 night visit, you'll be struck by the number of diminutive steenbok who seem to live around the rest-camp – along with the rather less welcome troops of baboons. Although the game drives can sometimes be productive here … I'd advise visitors to come in search of the scenery – and let any wildlife sightings here be a bonus.

The accommodation here is now much more comfortable here. All the rooms at Waterberg Camp now have ceiling fans, new comfortable twin beds with crisp white bedding and very comfortable pillows. Plus bedside lamps, a wardrobe, a dressing table with a big mirror, one or two comfortable chairs, a tea/coffee station and even a mini fridge – which when we last visited in September 2007 was brand new and working well.

Each room had an en suite bathroom – and although these varied in size, all had quite interesting, innovative designs. We found star-shaped shower heads, wrought iron vanity units with ceramic basins, complementary toiletries and new, soft towels. It's all quite modern and very lovely indeed.

Big sliding doors lead from each room to a private porch area, where there is a wrought iron table and chairs; some of the rooms also have barbeque facilities.

The restaurant & bar at Waterberg Camp are still housed in the old, historic Rasthaus, which was originally built in 1908 and used as a police post for several years. The food and service here are much improved – although Waterberg always did have the reputation as one of Namibia's best restcamps. The open-plan restaurant is quite big with pictures from the early days lined up against the back wall. Big chandeliers hang from the ceiling but other then that the interior is quite simple.

The adjacent bar is open during dinner but closes early.

There is a shop, a swimming pool with newly built pool bar and camping sites. The pool bar is open throughout the day, and serves light meals as well as drinks. A few tables and chairs with big umbrellas surrounded by a few trees have been set up just outside the restaurant where you can relax with a drink after dinner or during the day if the pool bar does not appeal.


Activities at Waterberg vary; there's quite a choice. Daily guided 4WD game drives are offered to the plateau. These use normal safari 4WD vehicles, and are led by a park ranger. (Typically these guys have a wealth of knowledge, but they're not always forthcoming in sharing it unless you interact with them and ask lots of questions!)

There are a number of shorter walking trails around the camp that you can explore by yourself, in a morning or afternoon. If you're relatively fit, then we recommend one that goes up to a look-out point on the top of the plateau.


Geographics

Location
Waterberg Plateau National Park, Namibia
Ideal length of stay
2 nights
Accessible by
Self-drive or Fly-and-Transfer

Food & drink

Usual board basis
Bed & Breakfast
Food quality
Breakfast is served at Waterberg Camp between 06:30 and 08:30 and consists of a buffet offering cereals, fruit, yoghurt, breads, cheese, meats and hot options. We found it quite strange that you could not order breakfast after 08:30 – it seemed to be a very early time to stop breakfast!

Tea and coffee is available in the restaurant throughout the day.

That said, if you have missed breakfast, then the pool bar opens from 09:00 to 18:00. It has a short menu from which you can order soft drinks, and snacks like burgers, salads and chips. The pool bar is also the only place for lunch.

Dinner is served between 19:00 and 21:00 and you can choose from the à la carte menu.

Children

Attitude towards children
Children are welcome with their parents
Property’s age restrictions
There is no age restriction at Waterberg Camp
Special activities & services
No special activities for children but the Restcamp have a swimming pool and short walking trails that kids can enjoy under adult supervision.
Equipment
None
Generally recommended for children
Yes
Notes
None

Our travellers’ wildlife sightings from Waterberg Camp

Since mid-2018, many of our travellers who stayed at Waterberg Camp have kindly recorded their wildlife sightings and shared them with us. The results are below. Click an animal to see more, and here to see more on our methodology.

Eland

100% success

Giraffe

100% success

Oryx

100% success

Sable antelope

100% success

Wildebeest

100% success

Zebra

100% success

Roan antelope

50% success

White Rhino

50% success

Aardvark

0% success

Brown Hyena

0% success

Cheetah

0% success

Leopard

0% success

Spotted Hyena

0% success

Communications

Communications
There is mobile reception at the Restcamp. There are no phones in the rooms, but the camp has a public pay phone should you need it. You can also purchase phone cards from the small shop. The Restcamp has email and fax facilities but only at reception; it is not for the use of guests.
TV & radio
There is no TV or radio in the rooms.

Health & safety

Malarial protection recommended
Yes
Medical care
The closest doctor or hospital is in Otjiwarongo – perhaps a 90-minute drive.
Dangerous animals
Moderate Risk
Security measures
There is 24 hour security at the Restcamp but the camp is reasonably safe.
Fire safety

Activities

  • 4WD Safari

    4WD Safari

  • Self-guided walking

    Self-guided walking

Extras

Disabled access
Laundry facilities
There are no facilities for laundry to be done – and no washing powder is provided for you to do your own.
Money
Currency exchange is not possible at the Restcamp
Accepted payment on location
Visa and Mastercard are accepted at the Restcamp, and no commission is charged

Other lodges in Waterberg Plateau National Park

Alternative places to stay in this same area.


Waterberg Wilderness Lodge

Waterberg Wild'ss Lodge

Holiday in Namibia's Waterberg Plateau National Park whilst based at the Waterberg Wilderness Lodge.


81% (30 reviews)
Waterberg Plateau Lodge

Waterberg Plateau Lodge

Although outside the Waterberg Plateau National Park, Waterberg Plateau Lodge has perhaps the most spectacular views of the lodges in this area.


82% (11 reviews)

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