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Accommodation: n Hobas Campsite. Close to the main viewpoints and with shady pitches www.nwr.com.na. n Cañon Lodge has well-designed chalets set among kopjes in a private reserve that is adjacent to the conservation area. www.gondwanapark.com D RIVINING TIMTIMTIME: n Four and a half hours Read Mark Stratton’s account of hiking Fish River Canyon in Travel Africa magazine issue 30. www.travelafricamag.com “My guidebook had explained the 86-kilometre walk was suitable for ‘very fit, experienced, and self-sufficient backpackers’ but neglected to add ‘who enjoy vertiginous drops’. The nimbleness of a mountain goat was required, but with a fully-loaded backpack I could only just muster the grace of an inelegant rhino.” Day 7 Windhoek via KeeKeeKeetmanshoop It’s a long day’s drive back to Windhoek, so stop at the Quiver Tree Forest or Giants’ Playground – a bizarre group of black rocks balanced one on top of another – near Keetmanshoop. The quiver ‘trees’ are actually aloe plants. The San people used to hollow out their branches to use as quivers for their arrows, although the plants are now protected. If you have an extra night to spare, 70km past Windhoek is the Herero town of Okahandja which has two outdoor markets packed full of handicrafts and curios. Accommodation: n Okahandja is a great place to stay at a farm and you may even get in an evening’s game viewing. Okatjuru Game Farm boasts black rhino on its land. www.jhein.iway.na. D RIVINING TIMTIMTIME: Fish River Canyon to Keetmanshoop is two hours, Keetmanshoop to Windhoek is five hours. Okahandja is an hour past Windhoek. FROM THE TOPTOP TOTO BOTTOMOTTOMOTTOMOTTOM: Wolwedans Dune Lodge in the NamibRand, Quiver trees, Dead vlei, Springbok, A view of Kolmanskop. NamibRand Travel Namibia 23

Day 1 Windhoek / Okahandja (see itinerary for The South) If you have an extra day available, stop over at the guest farm at Okonjima on your way up to Etosha where Africat Foundation is based. This is a sanctuary for orphaned cheetahs and leopards, and cats that farmers want removed from their land. Okonjima is a two and a half hour drive from Windhoek. www.africat.org Day 2 E tosha via Lake Otjikoto Etosha is often described as one of Africa’s greatest game parks. On the way you can break your journey at Lake Otjikoto, where the Germans ditched cannons at the end of World War 1. You should arrive at Namutoni Camp in plenty of time for an evening’s wildlife viewing at the waterhole. A ccommodation: n Namutoni Rest Camp. There are no private lodges inside Etosha and many people choose to stay at one of the park’s three rest camps, regardless of their budget. Here you can camp or rent a bungalow. During school holidays accommodation here gets busy and it’s best to book in advance www.nwr.com.na. DRIVEDRIVEDRIVEDRIVEDRIVE TIMETIMETIMETIME: n six hours Day 3-4 E tosha The gravel roads through Etosha are excellent. The speed restriction is 60km/h but you will go a lot slower as you watch out for animals. The park is home to 114 different mammals, 110 reptile species and 340 different species of bird. Talk to the wardens and check the game-viewing book at camp reception to find out where the cats and large mammals are hanging 24 Travel Namibiaout. The wildlife watching does not end when the sun goes down as each rest camp is based at a floodlit watering hole where animals come in the evenings to drink. Okaukuejo’s waterhole is famous for regular visits by black rhino. A ccommodation: n Choose between Halali camp (a leisurely two hours from Namutoni) or Okaukuejo Rest Camp (another easy two hours from Halali). n There are a number of private lodges just outside the park. Mokuti Lodge is in its own reserve with no dangerous game so is a good family option. www.namibsunhotels.com.na If you want to move on after two nights in Etosha you can head to Palmwag in Northern Damaraland where it is possible to track rhino with the Save the Rhino Trust. A ccommodation: n www.palmwag.com.na n www.wilderness-safaris.com DRIVEDRIVEDRIVEDRIVEDRIVE TIMETIMETIMETIME: n Okaukuejo Camp to Palmwag is four hours. Palmwag to Twyfelfontein is two hours. Day 5 TwTw y felfontein This UNESCO World Heritage Site has a wealth of things to see in a relatively small area. The highlight is the 6,000-year-old rock art. Nearby is the Petrified Forest which contains around 50 tree fossils that lived some 260 million years ago. You could also visit Burnt Mountain, which is stunning at sunset, and a group of basalt columns called the Organ Pipes. A ccommodation: n Aba-Huab is the budget option for camping. n Twyfelfontein Country Lodge has its own waterfall, rock art and petrol station www.nambialodges.com DRIVEDRIVEDRIVEDRIVEDRIVE TIMETIMETIMETIME: n Okaukuejo Rest Camp to Twyfelfontein is four hours with some sightseeing stops. Day 6 SwSw a kopmund Swakopmund is Namibia’s adrenalin capital. There is a vast range of activities available, from dune surfing to windsurfing, quad biking to horse riding and skydiving to fishing. There are some great excursions to be made in your car too. The four-five hour Welwitschia Tour takes you into a corner of the Namib Naukluft National Park to a welwitschia plant that is thought to be 1,500 years old. Permits for the drive can be bought from the Ministry of Environment and Tourism on Bismarck Street. Alternatively, the Cape Coast Seal Colony is easily accessible from here in a 2WD. It is very pleasant to spend half a day just wondering around this relaxed town visiting the art studios, book shops and munching on apple strudel in one of the many coffee houses. A ccommodation: n Camping here is cold and windy. Try a backpackers’ instead for budget accommodation. Desert Sky is a popular option. www.swakop.com n The town is awash with small pensions and B&Bs. n Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie checked into the Burning Shore Beach Lodge, on Swakopmund’s outskirts, for the birth of their daughter. www.burningshore.info DRIVEDRIVEDRIVEDRIVEDRIVE TIMETIMETIMETIME: n Twyfelfontein to Swakopmund is four hours. The north 7 days Itineraries