This could have been a real disaster. I gave 3 people a ride here from Windhoek and had absolutely no supplies except 2 litres of 8 year old Scottish Whiskey. And bottles of water. They have a small shop here with VERY limited supplies and no restaurant at the Sesriem Campsite. I bought the few tins of luncheon meat that they had and some beans we never ate. Luckily my fellow travellers had things like bread, tomatoes, salad, cheese, you name it. Even peanut butter! At the end of 8+ hours of driving across some of the worse ‘roads’ in the world – it was an absolutely 3 star culinary delight. One of the best meals I have ever enjoyed in my life.
I still ended up with 2 tins of pilchards no one wanted. I left them at another site for whoever was brave enough to eat them!
The Namib-Naukluft Park is one of the unique places I ever visited so far. With the Namib desert, the dunes and canyons to the mountains area of Naukluft. I admit, I knew very little about this place before visiting, and now I just fell in love with it and I can’t wait to go and visit again.
The Namib-Naukluft Park
Iwas equipped with a 35-55mm and 80-300mm. I also had skylight filters on both although I think a good option would be a polarizer filter. The filters are not only good for cutting out UV rays and improving the colours but they also protect your lens. The dust gets everywhere!
A cleaning kit is essential! I was cleaning my camera every day but still dust gets in!
Keeping your camera ina plastic bag when not in use is not a bad idea either.
I took spare batteries, which turned out to be a god send as mine died just after Ganab.
You don't have many opportunities to buy these unless you are going through a large town, but the prices are a bit more than at home.
Film is another essential. I took 20 rolls varying from 100-200 and 400. I found that when in the desert 100 worked well the faster film I saved for the safari.
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!
Fondest memory: The quietness and fresh air! Of course the views are something else!
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.
This place just goes to prove that deserts are not flat and monotonous, they are beautiful and varied terrains with so much interesting details hidden if you just bother to look. Definitely the best things here are the dune desert area in Sussusvlei and the haunting Deadvlei - some of the most lovely landscapes I have ever seen.
Fondest memory: Definitely the sunrise over the dunes. The atmosphere and the feeling of peace and unison with nature is something that I cannot describe in words, or in photos. You just have to experience it :-)
Fondest memory: After a great day enjoying the dunes of the Namib Desert it is great to relax at the scenic Sesreim camp ground. If you are fortunate to get a site that is on the West side of the camp ground you will be well away from other campers and out closer to the dunes. Enjoy a cold beverage bought 20 minutes earlier from the small camp ground store and make a fire under the thorn tree and watch the sun set casting long shadows over the deepening red color sand. The short golden grasses in contrast to the sand and deep blue sky will be a memory never forgotten. You are in the middle of nowhere and it feel nice.