Klein-Aus Vista: Desert Horse Inn and Eagle's Nest Lodge
P.O.Box 25, Aus, Namibia
More about Namib-Naukluft Park
Sossusvlei from space
From Tsauchab level
What is ahead
Travel Tips for Namib-Naukluft Park
Tipping is a subject that definately worth knowing about especially coming from countries in Europe and North America where we usually tip quite high.
It is customary to tip porters, waiters, waitresses, taxi drivers, room attendants and golf caddies, provided the service is satisfactory. It is usual to tip petrol attendants about N$1 when they offer to clean car windows or to check the water, oil and tire pressure.
Usually for waiters/waitresses and taxi drivers 10% of the bill, and tips for porters are generally around N$2.
If you are on an organised safari you guide/driver will usually tip the porters when they load and unload your bags, however, when they take your bags to your room a tip of N$1 per bag is usually enough. It doesn't seem like much to us but it is to them. The contrast in wages is considerable and if you tip too much that can offend too as they will think you are being a bit flash. Do not tip until the job is done ie if you hire a local guide do not tip them each day, save it for the end otherwise they will expect the same every day.
We had our guide from the safari company for 9 days. We decided that for all the driving and organising she did we all put in 50 euro per couple of course she was white and would therefore earn a better wage. I actually thought this was maybe a little short but I had to think of the other 3 couples and their budgets. One of the other couples didn't want to tip at all the cheap pr***s and they were not poor either, but this is typical of the older generation of Germans. The other German couple were actually very nice and they organised an envelope although I was the one who had to present it to our guide and make a bit of a thank you speech!
Obviously in that situation you tip what you feel is acceptable.
When we had finished our packed breakfast it was time to climb the dune. They tell you to protect yourself from the sun, which is a good idea. We were there fairly early in the morning so the sun was not at it's hottest but make sure you have some good sun scrren a hat and sunglasses. I wasn't sure what to do about footwear so I had my docs on. Some people climbed in sandals and even bare feet.
One thing I hate is sand in my shoes and of course it wasn't the climbing up that filled my boots but the coming down the dune!
It's all good clean fun though! The quietness and fresh air! Of course the views are something else!
When in Africa it goes without saying! The "Sundowner" is definately a part of everyday life when on safari.
I think I was the only Brit when we ventured in two 4x4's for our evening game drive. The others were German, but when it came to "Sundowner" time our guide set up a table with snacks and we had juice and beer whilst he poured the "Sundowner" cocktail, which wasn't a saurkraut schnappes mit lederhosen! No my friends, it was the good old British Gin and Tonic with ice and lemon! Huurrah!
Plenty of film
Soft bags are better than sturdy suitcases and keep the weight down. Light clothing, if you hike, good shoes or boots something warm for the cold evenings. A waterproof can be a good idea especially for Swakupmund. A hat to keep the sun off your head and naturally sunnies! Sunscreen is very important also is mosquito repellent Bring plenty of film and spare batteries for your camera or flash. You can buy them here but expensive. If you are camping then I'm sure you already know what to bring. A flashlight/ torch is quite a useful item to have with you.
Discover Hiden Vlei
Okay, this place is already off the beaten bath, so how to get off even further? Well Hidden Vlei is comparable to the more famous Dead Vlei, and even though it is a little easier to get to, there tends to be no one visiting.
This place is a dead end to the Tsauchab River and is covered in white cracked earth and a few dead trees.
It is located 2kms from Sossuvlei and is easily excessible on foot. You don't need a 4x4 like you do to get to Dead Vlei.
Take plenty of water as it is very hot under the sun. Morning and late afternoon are the best to see the rich colors of the sand during the low light.
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