Let’s move the spotlight away from the country of South Africa to make it now shine on two of its neighbors. Two marvelous lands that share some of South Africa’s amazing landscape in addition to their own specific topography, culture and wildlife.
Namibia and Botswana are very special countries offering totally different landscapes, from the oldest desert in the world, the largest natural salt pans to the largest fresh water delta that does not enter the ocean. Travelling through countries on a land tour gives you an experience next to none. The local inhabitants have a wide variety of languages and cultures from the Himba and Herero to the Bushman. Namibia is a land of wide open spaces, known for its contrasting landscapes and the Namib Desert is the oldest in the world, with an awe-inspiring sense of space. Botswana is the premier wildlife destination in Southern Africa and the rustic, remote atmosphere of its wildlife areas offer real adventure. At the northern edge of the Kalahari lies the Okavango Delta known as the ‘Jewel of the Kalahari’, a secret oasis in an otherwise water-starved land. Some of the largest herds in Southern Africa roam free in this unspoiled wilderness, the wildlife is spectacular and varied.
Namibia, beyond Sossusvlei Desert
Probably one of the few places in the world and on the African continent where one can appreciate what is left of a small German colonial period in history. (Perhaps some of you did not think that there was such a thing as a German Colonies, right? Well here is your chance to find out more).
The dry weather in the country makes life conditions quite specific, the lifestyle of the local population needs to be in tune with the desert to accommodate its arid demands. Which is why one can talk about ‘living desert’, as opposed to the Sahara. Indeed, the Namibian desert has a whole hidden wildlife (cheetahs, black rhino to name a few) surviving in this precarious ecosystem. But rest assured, there are ways to reach these hidden animal worlds… especially if one is ready for adventure!
He who wishes to catch the breathtaking sunrise over one of the world’s oldest deserts should be prepared to wake up early, for this experience is unique in its kind. Such is the protocol with hot air balloon rides; guests are usually welcomed at 4-5 AM on the ground to be ready for a smooth lift-off in the air and into the day.
Namibia’s road network is extensive and well kept. Probably why many choose to self-drive towards the east. A good standard 4×4 will do the trick, to bring you ever closer to the wild animals in their natural habitat. Needn’t worry as to where to go and how; many pre-arranged routes will be provided to you whilst making sure that you squeeze the most out of your Namibian drive. But if you’d rather be driven, there is a more exciting option that is easily accessible: FLY. Leave the big jet at Windhoek Airport and hop on one of many of the Cuckoo planes covering the land. They will easily take you to all the right corners without missing any part of the view thanks to the ideal altitude.
A good way to complete your holiday, after having done all the above, is to recharge on the coast; Walvis Bay and Germanic resorts will allow you to unwind thanks to its good shops and restaurants on a beach atmosphere.
Botswana and its extensive water network
Most of the scenery available in Botswana would probably remind you of Taylor Swift’s ‘Wildest Dreams’ video clip, where characters are depicted just like in the olden days when British high society would go on safari: full size white cotton tents, folding chairs and socks up to the knees. No need to be a fan to see the marvelous resemblance of the luxurious lifestyle that awaits. If you would like something more substantial than tent drapes, luxurious romantic lodges will make you appreciate the vivid midnight sky filled with stars (which is something that many cannot see with modern city light pollution).
Camp Okavango and its delta
The river and its delta offer boat/pirogue tours, a way to observe the wildlife from a different angle.
Much further north of the country, you will find Makgadikgadi Pans, right in the middle of the dry savanna plains. The salt pans are accessible both by road and plane.
The salt pan represents the fossilized remains of what was a long time ago, a lake bearing the same name. The spectacular zebra and wildebeest migration can be witnessed in that area along with migratory birds that come join the spectacle with the seasonal rains (these include duck, geese, pelican, ostrich and chestnut-banded plover).
Quite a lot to take in, is it not? That is what we are here for. Our Africa experts are able to design the perfect journey for you, matching your interest, preferred travel dates and budget to execute a truly memorable experience. Get started by clicking here