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Self-Driving in Nambia & Botswana on your own

Does the fear of driving through Africa doing your own game drive with lions & hippos roaring in the background scare you?  Well maybe a little? Hopefully after reading this article it shouldn’t. We spent 3 weeks driving from Windhoek in Nambia to Maun Botswana on an adventure I believe anyone can do. Is it for the faint of heart. Probably not, but for those that are self-motivated and like to camp, then this post is for you. This is an easy day of driving to get from point A to B without any worries. Here is our 20 Day Itinerary that includes camping/lodging, so you an enjoy the best of both worlds. It was the perfect blend of camping and then staying in exceptional lodging.  I would call this Glam Camping with a twist.  Hope you enjoy!


Map of route through Namibia and Botswana

Day 1 & 2: Arrive at Windhoek Airport- meet with a representative from Car Rental agency. (There are several in the area that rent 4X4’s with tent canopies that sit on the roof). These rent for about $90.00 on up based  on length of trip and type of vehicel. We used Desert Car Hire (, but there are many others such as Namibia 4×4 Rentals ( etc. Search 4×4 rentals Namibia. I would suggest getting a hotel room and relaxing before setting out early the next day or if you get in early enough by 8am then you can make it later in the afternoon to the campground.

Our 4×4 for the next 20 days

Drive to Sossusvlei home of the largest Sand Dunes in the World. Sand Dune number 45 is one of the most photographed Sand Dunes in the world. Enjoy climbing the Sand Dunes and enjoying the Dead Pan “Deadvlei” that is next to the Sand Dunes. Makes for great photo opportunities. You might even see a few Ostriches running about. We stayed at the Sesriem Campsite You might even have a Oryx walk into your campsite

Dune 45 early AM

Lynda & Matthew early AM at Dune 45. Just before the climb

The climb up Dune 45 in Sossusvlei

Dead Pan or Deadvlei in Sossusvlei

Oryx in Sossusvlei

Day 3/4- Skeleton Coast- Depart early AM and drive to Swakopmund. enjoy local food at one of their restaurants. We had Springbok which was incredible. We stayed at Desert Breeze. Very modern and well appointed Hotel with an amazing shower and beautiful views right out the window. 5 star lodging at a 3 star price  Take a Living Desert tour to see all the native reptiles and plants

Shipwrecks of the Skeleton Coast Namibia




Desert Breeze hotel- “5 Star lodging at a 3 star price

Incredible shower at the Desert Breeze Hotel in Swakopmund

Day 5/6- Depart early AM for Damarakand along the coast with a stop at Cape Cross to vie the seal colony. You head inland via henties Bay & Uis to the Twyfelfontein area.  Enjoys the views along the way. You roll into camp in the late afternoon into the Madisa Campsite. Here we camped on top of our 4×4 and enjoyed a quiet and peaceful night with a hot shower to boot. They also have safari tents, but after our visit to the Desert Breeze we were good for another few days. What the point if you can’t enjoy the camping experience sitting by a fire. The next day explore the area and visit the Damara Land Living Museum where you get a tour of the Damara people and the way they live and explore the local area and look for the desert adapted elephants along the way.

Hieroglyphics in Damaraland

Day 7- Off to Etosha (West side) and the game drive begins. Depart North to Palmwag and then east to Kamanjab with a stop to visit the Otikandero Himba Village. Enter at the Galton Gate. Let the self-drive game drive begin. Stay at Olfantsrus Campsite.


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