Namibia - home to the world's oldest desert, highest sand dunes, largest underground lake and the largest population of free roaming cheetahs and black rhinos. Namibia is also the second least densely populated country on earth (after Mongolia), with a population of 2.2 million and a size roughly four times that of the UK. So why would anyone want to go to this lonely, desolate corner of Africa? Because put quite simply, it is amazing, and we've come up with four reasons (out of many) that you should go to Namibia right away.
1. The Diversity of Experience
In terms of self-driving holidays, safaris or just sightseeing, Namibia has a truly unique mixture of ways to see its myriad landscapes and biomes, the likes of which you will find nowhere else on earth. Drive through the salt pans of Etosha National Park, surrounded by land teeming with game. Take a flying safari down the Skeleton Coast, soaring over the vast Namib Desert and the roaring Atlantic. Go sand-boarding down the largest sand dunes in the world. For the adventurers among you, embark on a mokoro safari in the Namibian pan-handle, the Caprivi Strip. Or our personal favourite, trek through Damaraland while searching for the elusive desert-adapted black rhino.
2. The Animals
Safaris in Namibia offer the chance to see desert-adapted elephants, one of only two countries in the world to have these special creatures. Game watching in Etosha National Park, particularly in the dry season (June-October), when water is scarce and animals congregate at remaining water holes, is a spectacle every animal lover should witness. It is not uncommon to see 10 or more different species at one water hole. Also, the propensity to see rarer species such as the honey badger, aardvark and even pangolin, in our experience, is higher than any other country in southern Africa.
3. The Lodges
While the safari industry is still relatively nascent in Namibia and availability is sometimes hard to find, the established lodges and camps are set in simply stunning surroundings and have excellent service, food and accommodation. Some of our current favourites include Desert Rhino Camp, Onguma Game Lodge and Okahirongo Elephant Lodge, however, this year is going to see a raft of very special new openings that are going to make the country hit the big(ger) time.
4. A True Original
Namibia is unlike any destination on earth and lacks the sometimes homogenous feel of other southern African safari destinations. Every region, reserve and every lodge has a refreshingly unique vibe and feel to it. The lack of people and the wealth of space gives you an incredibly intimate wilderness experience unlike the more well-known and well-visited areas of Africa.