From the sand dunes of Sossusvlei to the wildlife of Etosha National Park, this 10-night suggested self-drive itinerary takes you to some of the country’s most iconic sights. While distances can be long, the scenic routes, affordability, and well-graded roads make Namibia ideal for self-driving.
Suggested route & duration
10 nights from Windhoek
• Windhoek: 1 night
• Sossusvlei: 2 nights
• Swakopmund: 2 nights
• Damaraland: 1 night
• Etosha National Park: 3 nights
• Otjiwarongo: 1 night
About this independent tour
Why you'll love this self-drive
• It’s a photographer’s dream: unique scenery, amazing colours, star-filled night skies and hardly any people
• Spot desert elephants and see ancient rock art in Damaraland
• Climb spectacular mile-high sand dunes in Sossusvlei
• Head out on full-day game drives in Etosha National Park
• Upgrade to a fly-in version to reduce time on the road
Suggested itinerary details
Day 1: Windhoek Arrive in Windhoek, Namibia’s capital. Stretch your legs at Zoo Park and visit signature buildings like Christuskirche, the Alte Feste and Tintenpalast. Stay at Olive Grove Guesthouse.
Day 2: Sossusvlei Head south to Namib-Naukluft National Park. Wake early to see the sand dunes at Sossusvlei and visit the gorges of Sesriem Canyon. Stay 2 nights at Sossusvlei Lodge.
Day 4: Swakopmund Drive towards the coastal city of Swakopmund, passing the Skeleton Coast and Walvis Bay on the way. Join a tour to learn about the city’s history and visit the seal colony at Cape Cross. Stay 2 nights at Swakopmund Guesthouse.
Day 6: Damaraland Leave the coast behind as you continue to the beautiful region of Damaraland. Spend some time exploring the area’s iconic landscapes; visit a petrified forest, discover ancient rock art at Twyfelfontein and see the dolerite columns of the Organ Pipes. Stay at Vingerklip Lodge.
Day 7: Etosha Drive to Etosha National Park, a wildlife haven that’s home to a salt pan so large it can be seen from space. Head out to explore the park, stopping at waterholes on the way to view the big game. Stay 2 nights at Etoshsa Village and 1 night at Onguma Tented Camp.
Day 10: Otjiwarongo Continue towards the Okonjima Nature Reserve and spend some time visiting the world-famous AfriCat Foundation. Stay at Okonjima Plains Camp.
UNESCO-listed rock art
Trek to the ancient rock engravings of Twyfelfontein, Namibia's first UNESCO World Heritage site
Etosha National Park
Visit and track the extraordinary inhabitants who call this immense national park home
Join a guided tour in Windhoek to learn more about the city's colonial history
Scale Big Daddy (280m) in Sossusvlei and see the eerie tree skeletons of Deadvlei
Endemic to Namibia, these 'living fossils' are believed to be 1000 – 1500 years old
Tailor your tour
Make it your own
We’ve crafted this itinerary based on our own experiences and our customers’ feedback. It’s fully flexible, so talk to us and we can create your perfect trip.
As an alternative to a self-drive, you can do this itinerary and be driven by your own personal driver. This will give you the opportunity to relax and enjoy the dramatic landscape as it passes by your window.
Where to stay
Olive Grove Guesthouse in Windhoek has easy access to the city’s sights, shops and restaurants. In Namib-Naukluft National Park, the Kulala Desert Lodge sits within 67,000 private acres of the Kulala Wilderness Reserve, and is the closest point of access to the iconic Sossusvlei sand dunes.
This itinerary is flexible so talk to us if you want to add on any local experiences. You could join a catamaran dolphin and seal-spotting cruise in Swakopmund, go on a sunrise hot-air balloon ride at Sossusvlei or take the best seats in the house on a scenic flight over the haunting Skeleton Coast.
With so much to see and do, we think that 1 to 2 nights in each place will really give you the chance to make the most of your time here. If you can stay longer, add on an extra night in Damaraland or spend an extra night in Swakopmund and go sandboarding.
There are so many other great places you can include in this itinerary, so just tell us if you want to stop somewhere else. Namibia is easy to combine with South Africa, so why not finish in the country’s cosmopolitan capital – Cape Town is just a two-hour flight from Windhoek.
Good to know
When to go
• Namibia has a generally hot and dry climate so this itinerary works well all year round
• Visit Etosha National Park from June to November, when the dry weather means animals head for the waterholes
• Namibia’s rainy season is between December and April – we don’t recommend recommend travelling in December and January as the heat can be stifling