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Etosha Luxury Safari Tours
Etosha is a great destination for a luxury safari. It is one of the best places to see wildlife in Africa, and among experts it regularly ranks in the top five places for a safari. While it may be accessible to all, it’s at the luxury end of the market where travelers get the richest experience of everything that the ecosystem has to offer. Etosha’s popularity makes it crowded, but you’d never know that in many of the secluded luxury camps and lodges. They have access to private, wildlife-rich areas that others can’t reach. The long sightlines, the varied habitats and the deceptively vast saltpans truly make Etosha a once-in-a-lifetime place.
7-Day Namibia Fly-in & Private Guided Safari
$7,463 to $8,975 pp (USD)
Namibia: Private tourLuxuryLodge
You Visit: Windhoek (Start), Sossusvlei (Sand Dunes), Damaraland, Etosha NP, Windhoek (End)
Ker & Downey Africa
5.0/5 – 107 Reviews
7-Day Namib Desert, Coastal and Etosha Explorer
$1,753 to $1,886 pp (USD)
Namibia: Private tourLuxuryLodge & Hotel
You Visit: Windhoek (Start), Sossusvlei (Sand Dunes), Swakopmund (City), Etosha NP, Windhoek (End)
4.5/5 – 59 Reviews
4-Day Etosha National Park Safari Experience
$950 to $1,300 pp (USD)
Namibia: Shared tour (max 6 people per vehicle)LuxuryLodge & Guest House
You Visit: Windhoek (Start), Etosha NP, Windhoek (End)
The Mzansi Experience
4.6/5 – 27 Reviews
12-Day Namibia, Chobe & Victoria Falls
$4,332 to $5,194 pp (USD)
Botswana, Namibia & Zimbabwe: Self-driveLuxuryLodge
You Visit: Windhoek (Start), Okonjima NR, Eastern Etosha, Etosha NP, Zambezi Region, Chobe NP, Victoria Falls, Victoria Falls Airport (End)
5.0/5 – 127 Reviews
Tour Operators Offering Custom ToursDidn't find the tour you were looking for? Get a free quote for a custom tour from the tour operators below. They can arrange private tours to any destination in Namibia.
6 Questions About Etosha Luxury Safaris
Anthony is a renowned Africa expert and author of many Lonely Planet guidebooks, including the most recent guide to Botswana & Namibia.
6 Questions About Etosha Luxury Safaris
Why should I choose Etosha for a luxury safari?
“Etosha is perfect for a luxury safari because it offers Namibia’s best combination of wildlife viewing with an excellent selection of luxury camps. Those on an Etosha luxury safari have an advantage over everyone else. In many cases, Etosha’s camps and lodges have access to private concessions just beyond the national park’s boundaries. Wildlife wanders freely into these concessions, but the same can’t be said for people (aside from a select few staying in the luxury camps with privileged access). And Etosha has few rivals when it comes to wildlife. Where else can you see rhinos in the moonlight by a waterhole? Or elephants caked in dust and salt, and drinking at the water’s edge while lions feed nearby on a kill? Or sunsets sinking into a horizon that never seems to end? Experiencing these highlights and then returning to your luxury lodge or tented camp at day’s end comes close to the near-perfect safari experience. Etosha should be on every traveler’s safari bucket list – it’s that good. But Etosha can also form the centerpiece of a broader Namibia trip or tour, combining its northern Namibia location with such quality luxury add-ons as Damaraland, the Skeleton Coast and elsewhere.”1
What is included in an Etosha luxury safari?
“Most Etosha luxury safari tours include everything you’ll need to enjoy a fabulous safari. The accommodation is a given, and three meals a day will also be included in most packages. Here at the upper end of the market, it’s less about an impersonal buffet than a carefully chosen, three-or-more-course culinary experience backed by South African or other wines. Game drives or walking safaris are almost always included. You’ll pay extra (and you’ll have to let them know in advance) if you want the safari vehicle and guide to be yours and yours alone for the duration of your stay. Tips (gratuities) to camp, lodge or safari staff are, of course, extra. Also extra are activities such as spa treatments, although some places may offer a complimentary massage upon arrival. National park fees should be covered, but the conservation fees for the private concessions may or may not be included – ask at the time of booking.”2
How long do I need for an Etosha luxury safari?
“Etosha is a vast and varied ecosystem, and you should allocate the best part of a week to exploring its many charms. If you’re here for a week or longer, you may wish to stay in different lodges or camps so that you can explore different areas of the park. Assuming you’re on holiday, you might want to lie in one morning, or spend an afternoon by the pool. Doing so without feeling guilty or as if you’re missing out on something is much easier if you’ve built in enough time for multiple game drives, and still have time left over for relaxation. Another reason for allowing enough time is to allow you to revisit favorite wildlife-viewing areas. Or to pass an entire afternoon staking out a waterhole, watching and waiting as an endless cast of creatures comes down to drink. Etosha can also suffer from sandstorms, but they’re extremely unlikely to last longer than a day or two. Allocating a little extra time can ensure that the unexpected doesn’t ruin your trip.”3
How does a typical day on an Etosha luxury safari unfold?
“The typical day on an Etosha luxury safari involves supreme levels of comfort, and a real sense of having some of Africa’s most beautiful wilderness areas all to yourself. Camp or lodge staff will treat you like an honored guest. Up and out before dawn is the usual start to the day on safari in Etosha. If you think 5:30 AM is early, it’s nothing compared to the time your camp or lodge attendants rose to prepare your tea, coffee and wake-up call. The morning light in Etosha is simply magical. It draws into sharp focus all manner of creatures that you’ll see on your morning game drive. Most mornings, you’ll be back in camp by around 10 AM for an ample breakfast, whereupon the flurry of early activity subsides. Some luxury safaris include a breakfast out in the bush. Downtime here coincides with the hottest part of the day. On most days this time will be your own, punctuated only by an expansive lunch. When not eating, you’ll spend your time on the deck of your private tent enjoying the view or in the lavish public areas. By mid-afternoon, the camp begins to stir again with afternoon tea. A pre-sunset game drive includes a stop for a sundowner (enjoying the drink of your choice while watching the sun go down). On your way back to the comforts of camp, watch for nocturnal species which your guide or driver will spotlight. Dress for dinner, dine under the stars, then enjoy the campfire company before drifting off to bed. ”4
What type of accommodation can I expect on an Etosha luxury safari?
“Luxury lodges and tented camps are the mainstays of the Etosha luxury safari. The lodges vary greatly in their design and appearance, but luxury is the unifying theme. Imagine yourself in a deluxe hotel where the décor combines a desire for light and space with safari chic and you’ll have an idea of what most places are like. Tented camps are the ultimate in glamping. These are luxury under canvas, with just a small number of evenly spaced safari tents (no less than six, rarely more than 12). The tents rest upon low wooden platforms, their canvas floors routinely disappear beneath stylish rugs, and comfy beds, writing desks and trunks can be found in the interior of the main living room. There should also be a proper bathroom, toilet and shower out the back; the shower may have no roof.”5
What are the typical costs of an Etosha luxury safari?
“In Etosha, as for elsewhere in Namibia, the per-person per-day price rarely exceeds US$650 for those traveling twin-share. However, paying less is always possible if you’re willing to compromise a little on luxury. Solo or individual travelers almost always pay a single supplement (around 75% of the twin-share rate for two people). The actual price of an Etosha luxury safari will depend upon many things. For example, the size of the group, the level of luxury in the accommodation and the time of year when you’ll be traveling. When things are quiet, per-person rates may drop accordingly. Remember also that rates are likely to be all-inclusive and the only additional money you’ll need to spend will be in the lodge or camp gift shop and/or tips to your guide or other staff members.”6
Mike is an award winning wildlife writer, editor of Travel Zambia magazine and author of the Bradt Guide to Southern African Wildlife.
White dust and waterholes
Etosha’s harsh landscape is not to everyone’s taste: the wilderness of dusty, rubble-strewn thorn scrub surrounding the vast, featureless salt pan is impressive rather than beautiful. The wildlife, however, is consistently outstanding...
Lizzie is a reputed guidebook writer and author of the Footprint guides to South Africa, Namibia, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe.
Exceptionally good game-viewing in unusual environments
Etosha means ‘Great White Place’ in the Herero language after the giant, parched and dazzlingly white Etosha Pan. I find this the perfect environment for silhouetting the animals – a lone wildebeest or herd of handsome gemsbok can be...
Just an amazing place teeming with wildlife but you had to make the effort too which added to the fun. Plenty of people but it was so big you never really noticed. Reasonable food, drink and accommodation to be had there too within the park...
Happy to have been. An abundance of animals and viewing spots, barren landscape and bumpy roads.
I visited the Etosha National Park from a campsite outside the main gate. Even before reaching the first Lodge inside the park I had seen two lions. The roads were quite drivable, even in a two wheeled car. There were plenty of watering...
Spectacular and exciting photographic tour site
When I visited Etosha NP in May and June 2017, the weather was beautiful; highs in the mid-70s (F), dry and pleasant, and there had been recent rains which brought the flowers evident in so many of my photographs. The large animals were...
It was not crowd, but some popular places remind you were not out totally out of civilization. The salf plan, salvadora plains and rocky areas are very scenic, but most of the park is very monotonus, specially large patches of mopane. I...