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Namib Desert Expeditions is a family of mobile safaris which explore the remote Namib Desert in the Southwest region of Namibia.

These awesome private tailor-made expeditions are amongst the most remote, adventurous and exciting safaris of their type in the country. Typically lasting 2 to 6 nights in duration, they explore the fabulous and inaccessible northern parts of the Namib Desert. These areas can only be accessed by special permit and numbers are heavily controlled, so chances are you will have an area of around 12,000 square kilometres all to yourselves.

Days are filled with an endless stream of remarkable experiences, amazing landscapes, desert and coastal wildlife, historic shipwrecks, abandoned diamond mines and active salt works. The kind of adventure which really lifts a Namibia trip to another level.

The expedition comprises at least two overland vehicles, fully equipped with everything needed to get safely through this wild terrain. It is an authentic mobile camping safari, carrying with it everything that will be needed to get by in this utter wilderness.

The trips inherently demand very experienced expert guiding, there are few people who know the desert like the guys who will accompany you. The nature of the experience leads to a wonderful sense of intimacy amongst the crew and guests. There are enough staff to carry out all the work for you, but most guests like to get involved, sharing navigation and other chores during the day, communally preparing meals and sharing stories around the camp-fire. You may even be able to drive one of the vehicles if you wish, although the appropriate insurances will need to be obtained in advance.

These are private expeditions, so just you and the crew. There are no restrictions on group size, although it tends to work out rather pricey for groups of 1, 2 or 3 guests. There is no minimum child age, we have done it ourselves with a six year old and we do feel that was probably on the lower limit.

The most common trip format is the three day version, which enters the Namib dune-sea from the north, close to the small settlement of Gobabeb around 100km southwest of Walvis Bay. This is an area of vast linear dunes, which we follow southwards, with some epic driving over 150 metre dunes, to bivouac absolutely in the middle of nowhere. The second day we drop off the top of the dunes down towards the Burning Shore. Two days are spent exploring the various deserted diamond mining settlements, shipwrecks and other points of interest out of a camp close to Conception Bay. On the last day we head north along Langewand, where the huge dunes plunge directly into the Atlantic Ocean, to reach the freshwater oasis at Sandwich Harbour, then one last rollercoaster ride before hitting the salt works and the road up to Walvis Bay.

The main potential downside is that these expeditions are relatively pricey, especially for smaller groups. The trips are also quite tough, camping facilities are rather simple and there is a heck of a lot of very tough terrain to traverse. Although you should encounter a good deal of wildlife, this area does not contain much in the way of classic African wildlife, for that you will need to combine with other areas.
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Jay Hanson
Jay Hanson, Senior Safari Consultant
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