Namibia Overland Camping | Safari, Fossils, Rock Art and More!
Welcome to Roughing It With Ruth... um, I can't even remember my own catchphrase! Welcome to Roughing It With Ruth, the channel where everything is a bit rough around the edges! We're in Uppington at the moment and tomorrow we're going to go across the border into Namibia on a massive over landing trip with our friends, Fintan and Nielmari, and you're going to come along on this adventure via the camera. So far, everything's been going pretty smoothly. There have been a few last-minute adjustments, like, having to fix the cover that goes on the rooftop tent, and Fintan and Ralph have been doing a whole lot of wiring, but I think everything is actually done now, so buckle up and enjoy! Sorry if I'm, like, a bit blue-colored: I'm trying to hide from the wind just inside the tent a little bit, and the tent is blue. Yeah, we had a really good time after crossing the border;
drove for quite a while and got into Keetmanshoop. Unfortunately we forgot to buy wood and ice, but we did manage to buy some Namibian sim cards for our phones, and then a very, very kind, very young lady at the cell phone shop helped us set it up, which made me feel about 800 years old. I was, like, one of those grandmas sitting there being, like, "What? What? What?" while she, literally (this is not a joke), she had two cell phones open on the counter in front of her, doing both of them at the same time. But, yeah, now we're at Mesosaurus Fossil Campsite and it's absolutely, stunningly beautiful. It's quite warm and it's quite windy, but it's really pretty. Mesosaurus Fossil Campsite has been absolutely amazing! We were the only people here, so we had the entire place to ourselves. It's a family-run business and the owner,
Giel, he also does tours, which we're going to go on this morning, to go and see the Mesosaurus fossils themselves and a music rock, so I'm really looking forward to that. So the tension in the rock makes the resonance. May I start? Please! You know it? Yeah, Frere Jacques! Maybe you'll know this one also... Oh my word! Wow! Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika So we arrived in Windhoek and we're at the Thule hotel, which is absolutely amazing. I actually feel a little bit, like, not high class enough to be in here! We're going to go and eat at the restaurant for breakfast now and then we're going to go drive all the way to Etosha in the north and I think our first stop in Etosha is Okaukuejo... that's right hey? Yes, and then we'll be doing
camping again, so having a very luxurious break from the camping and then we'll be back at it tomorrow! So we're at the Etosha salt pan right now. It's kind of hard to get the perspective of this massive salt pan: it's, like, standing in the middle of the ocean, except it's not water, it's sand. Okaukuejo, I think, really stands out for me, because without even leaving the camp, you get to see a whole ton of different animals. Today the plan is to drive from Okaukuejo Campsite to Spitzkoppe, where we're also going to be camping. Something that we just discovered now,
is that if you're traveling south from Etosha, you can't take meat with you. There's like a line that you cross going out of the park and if they find meat in your car, they will confiscate it. So maybe just keep that in mind. We did have some boerewors, because we didn't braai the one night,
which got confiscated. We are at Spitzkoppe Tented Camp at the moment, where we're going to be staying for one night. It was a slightly strange situation when we arrived here, because we walked into the reception and they initially seemed to think that we didn't have a booking (although we did have a fully paid booking here) and they wanted to send us off to Spitzkoppe Rest Camp, which is just down the road, but then luckily when we got back to the car we double checked that, and found the actual physical printed copy of the booking, and realized that we were booked here. So we took that back to them and then they showed us to our campsite and everything. So, I mean, that was a little bit of a strange interaction, but it's very nice and peaceful here and the campsite is very, very pretty. We're here at
the Spitzkoppe Community Rest Camp; we drove here from the Spitzkoppe Tented Camp, where we stayed overnight, and we've done like a little guided thing and seen some bushman rock art here, which was extremely worthwhile. If you're in the area, I highly recommend doing that. We've just arrived at our accommodation in Swakopmund, which is actually a really nice lodge called Desert Breeze Lodge. On the way into Swakopmund from Spritzkoppe, we took a slightly different road through this place called the Moon Valley, and I really recommend that if you have a car that's okay with gravel roads, because that was really spectacular scenery. It was like this
crazy rock and sand formation. It does kind of look like you're on an alien planet. We're just taking a little bit of a break from bush camping, just to, kind of, reset a little bit before we go on our next adventure. We're going to be here for two nights in Swakopmund, and then from Swakopmund we are going to Sossusvlei, so a lot of this type of scenery behind me: like real, proper desert. I'm really looking forward to having a little adventure in Swakopmund. Swakopmund is really cool: there's so many nice restaurants here, nice food, nice people. There's the beach that's right here and many, many, many different activities, more than you could possibly even do no matter how long you stay here.
So, yeah, we'll have to come back and visit Swakopmund again, I think. Today we are heading out from Swakopmund and we're going towards Sossusvlei, and we're going to be camping at the Sossus Oasis Campsite. We'll probably end up buying a bit of food in Swakopmund, because there apparently aren't really shops on the road between Swakopmund and Sossusvlei. Okay, so yesterday we drove from Swakopmund to the Sossusvlei Oasis Campsite, where we're staying now, and then we woke up very early and we're now sitting in the queue at the Sossusvlei / Sesriem gate to get in to see the sand dunes and Sossusvlei and Dooie Vlei and all of that stuff. We were just at the Dooie Vlei and there were quite a lot of people there, even though it was pretty early in the morning... or maybe because it was really early in the morning, because at least then it's not so hot, but then we drove a little bit further on to actual Sossusvlei, and it's like, us and one other car here, way across the sort of picnicky area.
So if you do come to see the Dooie Vlei and Sossusvlei, I recommend actually going to Sossusvlei, because it looks like most people don't carry on down the road to the actual Sossusvlei, maybe. Jis, check how it slides around, eh? Yeah, you can feel it when you're driving. Yeah. The Sossus Oasis Campsite is actually really nice. We have had both nights that we stayed here, really, really strong winds, so if you are staying in, like, a freestanding tent, maybe just preemptively peg out all of your guy lines to try and keep the tent solid. I would definitely come and stay in this campsite again. I did enjoy it. Yesterday, I think, was the most mentally tough day in Namibia for me. We drove
from Sossus Oasis Campsite to Luderitz, and along the way we got a puncture in the tire, which wasn't actually such a big deal. I mean, when you drive on gravel roads so much, it is just going to happen at some point. And we changed to the spare tire, no problem. The major issue was that the whole reason that we went to Luderitz in the first place, was to see Kolmanskop, which is, like, a ghost town. It used to be a mining town and it's now being, sort of, reclaimed by the desert, and it's a tourist attraction which we were all very excited to see. Unfortunately, we arrived there on New Year's Eve, quite late in the day, so we couldn't go that day and the one day of the year when Kolmanskop seems to be actually closed, is New Year's Day. And we're only here for one night, so unfortunately, we're going to have
to save Kolmanskop for another Namibia trip. But then we came to Desert Horse Campsite. Desert Horse Campsite is amazing and the terrain is just stunningly, stunningly beautiful. Sort of this, like, desert plains mixed with little rock koppies everywhere and they also have little hiking and mountain biking trails around here, which is great. We all, sort of, said afterwards that we would have stayed here for much longer if we could have. Unfortunately our time in Namibia is coming to an end. We're going to be driving to the border
crossing today from Mesosaurus Fossil Campsite. So we, sort of, came full circle yesterday. We drove from Desert Horse Campsite to Mesosaurus Fossil Campsite. There are so many things that we still haven't done in Namibia, so we definitely want to come back and do another overlanding trip. On the way back home, we're going to be visiting Augrabies Falls in South Africa, which should also be quite fun. So the holiday is not quite over yet, but the Namibian leg of it is,
unfortunately, done and we're all pretty sad to be leaving Namibia because it has been amazing here. This trip would absolutely not have been possible without Fintan and Nielmari and them allowing us to travel with them, and use all of their awesome overlanding equipment. So thank you so much, Fintan and Nielmari! This was a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and it was made possible by you guys!