Planning Your Etosha National Park Safari
This overview of Etosha National Park will help you plan and book your own safari without using a travel agent! The entirety of the trip can be planned and booked on your own! Rent a car in Windhoek at Hosea Kutako International Airport, drive yourself up to the park, find & book your own lodging, hire a guide through the lodge you’re staying at and make an adventure of it!
Self Driving to Etosha National Park
I’ve found that the best way to immerse myself in a foreign country is to immediately hop in a rental car (often a manual & on the other side of the road!) and try my hand at navigating the new & unfamiliar landscape.
Turns out Namibia is an optimal place for such an adventure as it’s very safe, the roads are easily traversed and the road from Windhoek Airport to Etosha is approximately 5.5 hours, so it’s nice long haul to get accustomed to the local culture.
About an hour outside of Windhoek, in Okahandja, there is a lovely little craft market with local goods that makes for a nice pitstop once you get out of town. There are a few small restaurants there to get a coffee or lunch and across the road at the market you can find all kinds of trinkets and hand carved pieces that you will cherish upon returning home! Definitely recommend checking that out…
Lodging in Etosha National Park
Etosha National Park seems to have limited lodging and rooms sell out fast! I was booking 6 months in advance and found most places were already sold out. We were fortunate enough to end up having a really nice stay with Etosha Aoba Lodge (in the Honeymoon Suite, no less! As that was all that was left…) but there are lots of other great places to stay if you can snag them!
How to Self Book
I never like using travel agents so one trick that I found is that most lodges use the Nightsbridge booking engine to book online. If you Google the lodge name and Nightsbridge (example: “onguma the fort nightsbridge” will take you here) and you can find their booking page and check availability yourself! That was a game changer!
(Images from lodge websites)