It’s so very difficult to select just two of the establishments I visited on my recent educational trip to Namibia to review. In only 3 days I visited over 30 lodges, guesthouses, hotels and camps all ranging in standards, sizes and attractions.
1200 photo’s of toilets, beds, balconies and bars; climbing in and out of showers to get the perfect pictures of the bathrooms I soon came to realise Namibia has a huge variety of accommodations all attracting different types of people for different reasons.
I have two establishments I visited during my stay that definitely have a special place in my heart and I will definitely return myself for a holiday!
Terra Africa Guesthouse in Windhoek is situated in the southern valleys of the city centre and is the first establishment in Namibia to operate as an art gallery as well as an accommodation.
The rooms are all elegantly designed with different themes to suit all tastes.
The room mod-cons include flat screen TV’s, air conditioning, mini bar, hair dryer, as well as the simple touch of sample cosmetics in the bathrooms! This lodge really has focused on the clients comforts. The rooms are surrounded by absolutely stunning gardens with a pristine pool which unfortunately I did not have time to sample but very much needed on a hot day in Windhoek!
All staff I encountered were super friendly and efficient and my breakfast was made to order within moments. The breakfast buffet is suited to all tastes with a typical ‘European’ spread as well as the traditional cooked breakfast options. The guesthouse is adorned with beautiful pieces of art and high quality luxurious materials making all areas comfortable and inviting.
Terra Africa will be one of our new preferred suppliers for some of scheduled tours next year so you too may well experience this humble stunning establishment!!
Some of the other highlights of my Windhoek visit included Hotel Heinitzburg, a divine castle for anyone looking for a luxurious majestic overnight; The Olive Exclusive hotel where every room is strikingly decorated with a completely different ‘African’ theme and Vondelhof guesthouse which is our home from home for some of our scheduled tours.
After visiting a number of hotels in Windhoek I began my journey to Kamanjab and Etosha for just 1 night and stopping at establishments on the way.
While I was in the Kamanjab area I decided to also visit a local Himba village we use on our tours for the ‘cultural experience’. My guide spoke almost fluent English, an ex Himba member, he knew the traditions and history of the Himba’s and helped to educate me in the ways of this nomadic tribe. He translated questions between me and the women of the tribe who were all shocked why I did not have children (at my late age of 29!!) and fascinated by my hair and make-up. Clearly they are as confused by us as we are by them. The children were amazed by my camera and gleefully grabbed to see how they appeared inside the little box we call cameras!
Truly a fascinating and educating experience, I really enjoyed my time with the Himba’s, it was a moving and authentic experience that I will find hard to forget.
One of my favourite inspections during this section of my trip has to be Dolomite camp in the Western restricted area of Etosha National Park. This eco-friendly camp is run by Namibia Wildlife Resorts and is certainly targeted towards clients wishing for a more intimate luxurious game experience inside the park. Dolomite is elevated on top of a small hill overlooking the western section of the park where certain species are in abundance, in particular the Black Rhino, Black-faced Impala and Hartmann Mountain Zebra.
These species can be difficult to find in other areas of the park. The camp has been elegantly decorated with local fixtures and each chalet is built on an elevated deck each with its own spectacular panoramic view. The beauty and serenity of the lodge is overwhelming and the stories of staff animal sightings just add to the excitement of the beautiful bush experience. I will definitely return to Dolomite camp next time I am in Etosha!
My trip was a fleeting blur of accommodations, wildlife sightings, hospitable people and wide-open spaces of Namibia. Although it was an incredibly busy 3 days I felt at ease, a feeling that I have only ever encountered during my visits to this beautiful country. Next time I return I plan to relax, kick back and enjoy the sights, sounds and varied entertainment Namibia has to offer in abundance.
– Liz (Product Manager at Jenman African Safaris)