North Namibia and Caprivi

17-day self-drive taking you from Swakopmund to Namibia's oft-overlooked northern territories

North Namibia and Caprivi

Explore Namibia’s little-visited northern territories in this 17-day safari. Your self-drive tour begins in Namibia’s vibrant capital, Windhoek, from where you travel west to the coastal enclave of Swakopmund. From Swakopmund, you begin your journey into the remote northern regions, taking in the rugged beauty of Damaraland, the vast Etosha salt pans, and the lush floodplains of Caprivi, before returning via the Waterberg Plateau.

Outline Itinerary

  1. Day 1: Arrive Windhoek

    On arrival at Windhoek Airport you will be met by our driver and transferred to the Rivendell Guesthouse, your hotel in the city centre.

  2. Day 2: Windhoek to Swakopmund (350km / 4-5 hour drive)

    Depart Windhoek this morning and take the western exit road past the University of Namibia, en route to Kupferberg Pass. Continue to follow the C28 to Swakopmund, arriving early afternoon. On arrival, check into the Cornerstone Guesthouse for two nights (B&B basis).

  3. Day 3: Swakopmund

    At leisure to explore the coastal town and old colonial-era outpost of Swakopmund.

  4. Day 4: Swakopmund to Damaraland (450km/6 hour drive)

    Depart Swakopmund this morning and travel north along the C34 to Henties Bay. From here, turn off onto the C35 and carry on until you reach Twyfelfontein, via Uis. Twyfelfontein, famous for its rock carvings, is a great spot to stop for lunch and a break.

  5. Day 5: Damaraland

    A full day to discover the raw beauty of Damaraland. You can choose to explore the Grootberg Plateau either independently or with a guide (at additional cost).

  6. Day 6: Grootberg to Etosha (370km / 4-5 hour drive)

    Leave Grootberg early this morning on the C40 en route to Outjo (via Kamanjab). A short distance from Outjo, turn off onto the C38 and continue to follow the road to Etosha National Park. Enter the park via the main entrance at Anderson Gate and continue to Okaukuejo Restcamp (follow the signs for some 20km). Check into Okaukuejo Rest Camp for two nights (B&B basis).

  7. Day 7: Okaukuejo to Eastern Etosha (170km / full-day game drive)

    Most of today will be spent travelling across the park from east to west – with plenty of time for game-viewing en route.

  8. Day 8: Etosha to Rundu (430km / 5-6 hour drive)

    Depart Mushara this morning on the C38 and follow the signs to Tsumeb. At Tsumeb turn onto the C42 and continue to Grootfontein, before turning north onto the B8 towards Divundu (follow signs for Rundu, but don’t turn off). Turn onto the D3402 and follow the signs for Kaisosi River Lodge, where you stay one night (half-board with breakfast and dinner).

  9. Day 9: Rundu to Divundu (200km / 2-3 hour drive)

    Travel from Rundu on the B8 towards Divundu. 24km before Divundu, you will see the turn off for Shadikongoro. As you approach Shadikongoro, turn off onto the D3402 and after a short drive you will see signs for River Dance Lodge. Check in for two nights (breakfast and dinner).

  10. Day 10: Caprivi

    Today is free for you to relax at the lodge or explore the surrounding region of Caprivi at your own pace.

  11. Day 11: Divundu to Katima Mulilo (350km / 4-5 hour drive)

    From River Dance Lodge return to the B8 Caprivi highway and travel via Kongola to reach Katima Mulilo on the Zambezi River, the Caprivi Strip’s main population centre. Check in at Zambezi Mubala Lodge for 2 nights in a bungalow, inc. dinner, breakfast.

  12. Day 12: Katima Mulilo

    Enjoy any of the varied activities that Mubala has to offer: take a boat onto the river and go angling for tiger fish; set off on an early morning nature walk and birding tour; enjoy a champagne breakfast on the river; or take a day trip to Victoria Falls in Zambia.

  13. Day 13: Katima Mulilo to Rundu (550km / 6-7 hour drive)

    Today you bid farewell to Mubala Lodge and retrace your journey back to Kaisosi River Lodge, an easy drive along the Caprivi highway to Rundu, and then through Bwabwata National Park.

  14. Day 14: Rundu to Waterberg (575km / 6–7 hour drive)

    Depart Kaisosi this morning and drive via Rundu and Grootfontein to Otavi on the B8. At Otavi you change onto the B1 and continue via Otjiwarongo in the direction of Windhoek. Approx. 19km south of Otjiwarongo turn left onto the C22 and toward the upland plateau of Waterberg.

  15. Day 15: Waterberg Plateau

    Explore the Waterberg Plateau at leisure. This is a beautiful region, much of which was once used as cattle land but which has since been returned to the wild, with much of the area converted into a nature reserve. Today, the region is once again home to a good variety of wildlife, big and small.

  16. Day 16: Waterberg to Okahandja (250km / 3-4 hour drive)

    From Waterberg Valley Lodge take the B1 to Okahandja. Follow the road through Okahandja and head in the direction of Windhoek, remaining on the B1.

  17. Day 17: Windhoek (100km / 2-3 hour drive)

    Depart the Elegant Farmhouse this morning and return to Windhoek, a short drive of 2-3 hours. On arrival in town, return your hire car and continue to Windhoek Airport.

Price guide

Price based on two travellers in shared twin/double accommodation and subject to availability at the time of booking.

19 days from £2095pp


19 days from £2095pp

Sossusvlei, Damaraland and Etosha

Everyone had time for us whether it was in a bank or a restaurant and that is very humbling.

Charles and Wendy

Amazing India

We had the MOST AMAZING TRIP! It was full on as we packed so much in but I really loved it.