Specialist Wildlife of Namibia

Get off the beaten track and encounter the weird and wonderful world of Namibian wildlife…

Book or Enquire

14 days for £4,000 pp sharing

Other dates available on request

  • Includes accommodation, activities, meals, and all transfers to Windhoek Hosea Kutako international airport
  • Deposit £950 pp. Single supplement £450 pp
  • Maximum group size 8 people
  • Excludes international flights


Download our 2013/14 Tours Guide for information on booking your flights and FAQs about our tours

Your dining area at Desert Rhino Camp, Damaraland

Namibia’s diverse and extreme habitats offer not only the classic African safari experience, but also the chance to encounter exceptional rare and endemic species.

This tour takes you to remote areas in search of the more unusual wildlife encounters. This tour focuses on specialist animals, including desert adapted mammals, reptiles and birds unique to this country, and a number of protected species.

You’ll travel through some of Africa’s most breath-taking and dramatic scenery, including deserts; coastline; mountains; and savannahs. You’ll stay in some of the very best luxury camps and lodges where you’ll see the conservation work your trip helps to support, such as predator rehabilitation projects and the preservation of the Black Rhinoceros populations.

This tour is unlike other African safaris in that it showcases the wide ranging diversity of Namibia’s fauna and flora, and offers you the chance to experience habitats and landscapes that are unlike any other in Africa.

  • Sleep out under the stars in one of the world’s last remaining wildernesses
  • Stay in the only camp inside the world’s 4th largest National Park at Sossusvlei
  • Track Desert Adapted Elephants in Damaraland
  • Seek out the endangered Black Rhinos in the Palmwag Concession
  • Sea kayak with seals and dolphins on the Skeleton Coast
  • Observe the specialist desert adapted mammals, birds and reptiles of the Namib-Naukluft National Park
  • Witness the world renowned AfriCat Foundation at work and track Leopard and Cheetah on foot and by vehicle
  • Study cave etchings at the UNESCO World Heritage Site at Twyfelfontein
  • Visit an authentic and remote Himba settlement

Days 1 to 4
Your Namibian adventure starts in Windhoek. After some relaxation time, we drive southwest through the scenic Khomas Hochland Highlands before heading down the Great Escarpment into the Namib Desert below. The next few days are spent exploring the desert on foot from lodges and wilderness camps located inside the Namib-Naukluft National Park. The specialist desert species that you may encounter include the Bat-eared Fox, Gemsbok, Kudu, Ostrich, Horned Adder, and Namaqua Chameleon. An optional scenic flight can be arranged across the Diamond Coast and the endless dunes of the Namib Desert to take you back to Swakopmund.

Days 5 to 6
On arrival in Swakopmund you will be transported to your Guesthouse in time for lunch and then have time to relax and explore the town. Swakopmund resembles a small, German coastal resort nestled between the desert and the sea. It boasts a charming combination of German colonial architecture blended with good hotels, shops, restaurants, museums, craft centres, galleries and cafés. In the evening, your guide will transfer you to the start of your guided night walk in the Swakop River Valley which focuses on the nocturnal reptiles and insects of the Namib Desert. After the walk you will be treated to a BBQ dinner at a local farmhouse. The following day, your guide will drive you along the scenic coastal road to Walvis Bay for an exciting Kayak adventure within the outer lagoon. The kayaking is an ideal way of seeing Cape fur seals, Heaviside and Bottlenose Dolphins, Pelicans, Flamingos and a wide variety of other sea birds. If you are lucky, there is also a chance of seeing whales, Leatherback Turtles, sunfish and the endemic Damara Tern.

Days 7 to 10
From Swakopmund, we take the long road north east into the wonderful and diverse region of Damaraland. Damaraland is typified by displays of colour, magnificent table topped mountains, rock formations and bizarre-looking vegetation. It is home to some remarkable wildlife and you will spend the next few days tracking desert-adapted animals, such as the Black Rhino and Desert-adapted Elephant. We stay at some of the best wildlife lodges in Namibia, which offer stunning landscapes, exciting wildlife encounters, and excellent service. Whilst in Damaraland, we will visit a remote Himba village and see the prehistoric rock art at Twyfelfontein. If conditions are favourable, we may also search for the elusive desert Lions along the Huab river bed.

Days 11 to 14
From Damaraland, we travel to the world renowned AfriCat Foundation at Okonjima. Okonjima is a 55,000 ha wildlife reserve which focuses on the research and rehabilitation of Africa’s big cats, especially injured or captured Leopard and Cheetahs. Activities include Leopard tracking by vehicle, a visit to the Cheetah welfare project, a night drive on the Okonjima Reserve, and a visit to the night-hide where nocturnal Porcupine, Caracal, Honey Badger and even Leopard may be seen. Observing the wildlife of Okonjima at close quarters is an unforgettable highlight and a fantastic way to end your tour.

Just some of the wild Namibia you may encounter:


Dune Lark

Damara Tern

Herero Chat

White-tailed Shrike

Monteiro’s Hornbill

Benguela Long-billed Lark

Ruppell’s Korhaan

Black shouldered Kite

Pale Chanting Goshawk

Rock Kestrel

Reptiles, Insects, Marine Life and Flora & Fauna:

Shovel-snouted Lizard

Tok Tokkie Beetle

Leatherback turtle

Bottlenose Dolphin

Peringuey’s Sidewinding Adder

Web-footed Gecko

Horned Adder

Namaqua Chameleon

Dancing White Lady

Palmato Gecko

Tree Scorpion


Desert-adapted Elephant

Black Rhino

Black-backed Jackal





Namib Golden Mole

Hairy-footed Gerbil

Bat-eared Fox

Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra

Spotted and Brown Hyena



Honey Badger



African Wildcat


Southern Giraffe


Burchell’s Zebra


Banded Mongoose


Many of the photos you see on this site were taken by amateur photographers on our tours.

“This was a meticulously planned and executed tour by ETW of the varied vistas, mammals and birds of Namibia. From the novelty of sleeping out in the desert with the stars as your ceiling to the sumptuous camps of Damaraland with a huge variety of wildlife in between. Some not seen by many-Desert Lion and some of the only remaining free roaming Black Rhino, the excitement of standing a scant few meters from a Cheetah family and tracking the beautiful, powerful Leopard. Possibly the chance to encounter one of the rarely seen (even by experienced guides) Pangolin..
Flying over the desert and up the wild Atlantic coast, kayaking with playful seals.. Each and every day was a highlight. 

This is not only a tour for those who have ‘seen it, done it’ but for first timers looking for something a little bit different to the well beaten safari track.”

L Munro. (London)


“Encounter the Wild’s “Specialist Wildlife of Namibia” is a great way to discover and enjoy the beautiful nature, mammals and birds of this wonderful country. The route focuses on tracks off the beaten Safari-path which offered our group very memorable experiences and encounters with animals that are not used to humans and vehicles.

The list of highlights is long: regarding the amazing SCENERY, it ranges from impressive sand dunes to endless coastline and into the stunning Damaraland where we explored dried riverbeds and their wildlife. (My) top ANIMAL SIGHTINGS include (1) our lucky chance to observe a truly wild desert-adapted Lioness, (2) the on-foot-tracking and sighting of Black Rhino, (3) the close and unique encounter with a Pangolin and being able to watch it’s movements walking in the search of ants, (4) a herd of desert-adapted Elephants which we had the chance to photograph and watch for a good long time, studying their inter-group behaviors and (5) a baby Leopard seen from the vehicle as well as a family of Cheetahs on a foot-tracking. A night-walk with torches and UV-light revealed some smaller animals like the Palmato Gecko, the Dancing White Lady Spider and Scorpions. But also the ACTIVITIES were highlights in themselves: in the air (scenic flight from Sossusvlei to Swakopmund), on foot (tracking in the NamibRand Reserve & sleeping under the stars) and on water (kayaking with playful Seals at Walvis Bay). Last but not least I consider the talks and discussions with various PEOPLE we met along the way as another highlight. Most of them have a particular animal which they study, research or engage in their rescue and survival. Hearing their stories, learning about “their” animals and seeing the enthusiasm they put into their work, I found very inspiring.  

It was great to see that my experienced Africa-explorer fellow-travelers enjoyed the tour as much as I did as an Africa-travel-novice. Thanks to ETW & our local guide! Looking forward travelling again.”

Conny T.  (Berlin, Germany)

Encounter the wild are privileged to work with and support the Save the Rhino Trust and the Desert Lion Project.

In the face of increased poaching and big game hunting in South Africa, their work is essential to protect these iconic and vulnerable animals for future generations. Please read our tour brochure for more information on how your participation can make a difference.