Dead Vlei is always shown up when searching for the most beautiful and breathtaking places in Namibia. We now moved on to the country with a lot of excitements including Etosha National Park where we were able to drive by ourselves in Safari.
No visa is required for both American and Japanese.
Itinerary – Detail
* M = Morning, A = Afternoon, E = Evening
|Dec 15 A||Arrived at Katima Mulilo, Namibia|
|E||Stayed at Protea Hotel Zambezi River Lodge in Katima Mulilo|
|Dec 16 M||Stayed at Protea Hotel Zambezi River Lodge in Katima Mulilo|
|A||Waited for an Intercape bus to Windhoek, the capital of Namibia
|Dec 17 M||Arrived at Windhoek|
|A||Moved to Ondangwa, the city close to Etosha National Park
|E||Arrived at Protea Hotel Ondangwa|
|Dec 18 M||Stayed at Protea Hotel Ondangwa|
|A||Moved to and arrived at Etosha National Park (King Nehale Lya Mpingana Gate)|
|E||Explored Etosha National Park and stayed at Halali Campsite|
|Dec 19 M||Explored Etosha National Park|
|A||Explored Etosha National Park|
|E||Explored Etosha National Park and stayed at Halali campsite|
|Dec 20 M||Explored Etosha National Park|
|A||Moved to Swakopmund|
|E||Arrived and stayed at Protea Hotel Swakopmund Burning Shore in Swakopmund|
|Dec 21 M||Moved to Namib-Naukluft National Park|
|A||Arrived at Sesriem next to Namib-Naukluft National Park|
|E||Viewed sunset at Dune 45 and stayed at Sesriem campsite|
|Dec 22 M||Viewed sunrise at Dead Vlei|
|A||Moved to Windhoek|
|E||Arrived at Windhoek and stayed at Protea Hotel Windhoek Thuringerhof|
|Dec 23 M||Moved to Windhoek Hosea Kutako International Airport (WDH) and took a flight to Antananarivo, Madagascar|
The costs for 8 day were 17,441.38NAD for two or US$1,252.10 at the exchange rate of US$1 = 13.93NAD. The summary of costs by category is below.
The sightseeing costs consist of park fees at Etosha National Park (340NAD) and Namib-Naukluft National Park (170NAD) as well as a shuttle bus for Dead Vlei (150NAD per person). Park fees of national parks are 80NAD daily (overnight stay) per person and 10NAD daily per vehicle. We stayed 2 nights at Etosha National Park and 1 night at Namib-Naukluft National Park. See here for the details of the costs.
Food costs were relatively lower because we purchased hot meals from supermarkets or cooked at campsites by ourselves for most meals except for a dinner at the restaurant. Without the dinner at restaurant, it is possible to make the cost below US$5 daily.
We stayed 8 nights in Namibia in total (4 nights at hotel, 3 nights at campsite, and 1 night in bus).
For all 4 nights at hotel, the stays were free because we stayed at Protea Hotels under Marriott with points. Protea Hotels require approximately 7,000 points per night, which is about half points for staying at original Marriott brand hotels. It is highly recommended to keep your Marriott points if you have a plan to come to Africa.
For 3 nights at campsite, we stayed at Halali campsite in Etosha National Park for 2 nights and Sesriem campsite in Namib-Naukluft National Park for 1 night. Both campsites require travelers to bring camping tools like a tent and have facilities like shower rooms and toilets as well as a restaurant and bar. Shower rooms and toilets were clean and well-maintained.
- Halali campsite: 275NAD (US$19.75) / night / person
- Sesriem campsite: 200NAD (US$14.36) / night / person
Accommodation including campsites can be reserved here. It is recommended to reserve the campsites in advance because the campsites in national parks can be full y booked easily, especially Sesriem. We had to change our schedule in Namibia because Sesriem campsite was already full.
- Taxi from center of Katima Mulilo to Protea Hotel: 40NAD
- Taxi from Protea Hotel to bus terminal: 40NAD
- Bus from Katima Mulilo to Windhoek: 1,262NAD / person
- Taxi from Windhoek bus terminal to rental car store: 100NAD
- Rental car (Automatic, 7 days): 7,561NAD
- Gas for rental car: 2,646NAD
- Taxi from center of Windhoek to international airport: 200NAD / person
- Tip to a taxi driver to airport: 60NAD
In Namibia, transportation costs were the highest. Since we did not know how to drive a manual car, we rented an automatic car. When we searched for a rental car, an automatic car rental was about 1,000NAD daily, which was about double for a manual car. The rental car price above includes insurance for a windshield and tire burst, which was charged separately.
Gasoline in Namibia was about 12~14NAD per litter. Due to limited gas stations outside of Windhoek, we always filled the gas at the first gas station on our way after half tank got empty.
We reserved an intercape bus in advance as a transportation from Katima Mulilo to Windhoek. However, there were several local buses running the same route for about 300NAD. Because those local buses were pretty empty, you may be able to negotiate the price. If your time for the trip is not very limited, you can take a cheaper bus from the bus terminal in Katima Mulilo without reservation.
We could have saved about 5,000NAD (US$358.94) for two if we have had a manual rental car and took a local bus from Katima Mulilo to Windhoek. If your budget is limited, you might want to avoid an automatic car and Intercape Bus.
No costs as no visa is required for both American and Japanese.
Others consist of a SIM card and camping pot. We purchased a SIM card with 1-hour phone calls for 170NAD in case of any emergency from driving. The camping pot was purchased at a supermarket in Windhoek for 170NAD.
The time in Namibia was much more than our expectations. The extraordinary scenes were non-stopped in Namibia, including driving in a safari by ourselves and sitting at a middle of the oldest desert in the world.
Although the costs of food and accommodation were low, the transportation costs tends to be higher in Namibia because of the limitation of public transportation. The costs of a trip in Namibia highly depend on how much you spend for a rental car and long-distance bus. You can save some budget if you drive a manual car and avoid a major bus company. Regardless of your budget, you must have insurance of a windshield and tire burst for a rental car because most routes in Namibia were unpaved outside of Windhoek. The unpaved roads were really bumpy and a lot of small stones kept hitting the windshield on the unpaved roads. The tires were full of air when we picked up the rental car but we had to pump the air again at Sesriem after driving for 6 days.
We spent more money than our original budget but also all experiences in Namibia were much more than our expectation. We definitely want to go back to Namibia in the near future.