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Namibia

Namibia, A Land of Contrasts

It is not difficult to understand why Namibia is attracting the discerning traveller. It is a relaxed and comfortable place to visit. The people are friendly. The climate is pleasant. And it is a country of spectacular and varied scenery and simply stunning wildlife. You can expect to see lion, leopard and cheetah, jackal and hyena, rhino, elephant, zebra, giraffe, wildebeest, eland, springbok, oryx, impala and more, plus numerous birds and endemic plants.

If you seek a comfortable, quality holiday featuring many of Namibia's highlights please consider our personally escorted 17-day tour. As with all our tours we have selected great accommodations and included just about everything you will need including flights, hotels, meals, excursions, entrance fees and all tips. Following six sold-out Namibia trips in recent years we are offering two "repeat performances" in 2014, one starting on 30th April and one on 11th June, and we are also now taking advance registrations for an April 2015 tour. Our Namibia tours are unmissable!

Photo credits: Cheetah viewing © AfriCat/Okonjima. Namib Naukluft dunes © Namibian Wildlife Resorts. Cheetah © AfriCat/Okonjima. Deadvlei © Namibian Wildlife Resorts. Elephants in Etosha National Park © Namibia Tourism.

Our Inside Track

Many visitors to Namibia join a standard tour booked in the UK but actually operated by a Namibian company. These tours tend to feature whistle-stop itineraries, multi-language commentaries, tourist class accommodation and limited content with lots of optional extras. That's not our style. We prefer to do our own research and contract suppliers direct, so Richard Furlong visited Namibia to inspect accommodations and meet local guides and experts.

Following this first hand experience we've designed a quality itinerary covering plenty of ground but at a leisurely pace, staying two or more nights in all but one location. With Furlongs you'll also enjoy better accommodations and meals, and benefit from excursions and sightseeing included in your tour price. Park entry fees and gratuities are also covered. We plan meticulously and organise discreetly, which means you enjoy your holiday free of any day-to-say niggles. Proprietors, Richard and Dawn Furlong will personally escort the tour and an experienced Namibian guide will accompany us throughout.

While Namibia is promoted as an all-year-round destination, there are certain times of the year more comfortable than others in our opinion. Many tourists visit from July through to October but during this period accommodations can be over-stretched and wildlife viewing congested. The unbiased advice from local guides is to visit between April and June. By this time the heavy rains are normally well finished and daytime temperatures average a pleasant 25C. Humidity is generally low. The landscape colours are particularly attractive in these months, there's plenty of opportunity to view big game, and there's fewer tourists about.

2014 Tour Dates

Wednesday 30th April to Friday 16th May 2014
Wednesday 11th to Friday 27th June 2014

Both tours sold out, sorry.

2015 Tour Dates

Provisional dates to be confirmed:-
Wednesday 8th to Friday 24th April 2015

2015 tour sold out, sorry. We are trying to arrange another one!

Itinerary - 17 days

Day 1 - Depart UK
We fly with South African Airways, departing London Heathrow early evening. Dinner is served in flight. (D)

Day 2 - Arrive Namibia
We land in Johannesburg and transit to our Namibia flight. Our main ­luggage is checked through so we don’t clear ­customs or ­immigration. On arrival in Namibia’s capital, Windhoek, we are met by our local guide and we transfer by ­private coach to our deluxe hotel, the WINDHOEK COUNTRY CLUB RESORT. This full service hotel is located on the ­outskirts of town and ­boasts well appointed bedrooms, a restaurant, bar, gardens and swimming pool. (B,D)

Day 3 - Windhoek to Sossusvlei
We drive southwest through an upland region of rolling hills ­dissected by deep river valleys. Passing the table-top Gamsberg Mountains we ­traverse from the interior to the Namib Desert. On route we’ll spot for wildebeest, kudu, oryx and impala. It’s a great drive and a perfect introduction to Namibia’s ­stunning scenery. Close to the Namib Naukluft Park we arrive at SOSSUSVLEI LODGE for a 2-night stay. (B,D)

Day 4 - Namib Naukluft Park
Taking advantage of our prime location we enter the Namib Naukluft Park at sunrise. The colours on the sand dunes in the early morning are breathtaking. You may walk across the dunes and visit a dry pan area known as Deadvlei. Later, we visit Sesriem, a 30 metre deep canyon carved by the Tsauchab River. This afternoon enjoy some free time before a ­delicious BBQ dinner. (B,D)

Day 5 - Namib Naukluft Desert
Following the Namib Desert north we reach the Atlantic coast at Walvis Bay. Half an hour further on we arrive in Swakopmund, a town characterised by a wealth of well-preserved German ­colonial buildings. German is still widely spoken here and typical German cakes and confectionery can be enjoyed in the town’s cafes. Well-known ­historic ­buildings include the old Railway Station and Magistrate’s Court. We stay at the HANSA HOTEL for two nights. (B,D)

Day 6 - Walvis Bay / Swakopmund
Walvis Bay is the centre of Namibia’s ­fishing industry and its major port. The ­nearby ­wetlands are internationally renowned for large concentrations of waders, flamingos and shore birds, and the large natural ­harbour welcomes ­dolphins, seals, pelicans, turtles and sun fish. Included this morning is a ­guided harbour wildlife cruise aboard a ­privately chartered catamaran. This afternoon, free time in Swakopmund. Time to shop?! (B,D)

Day 7 - Swakopmund to Damaraland
Heading north we pass the ­dramatic Erongo ­Mountains and head for ­Damaraland. This region is named for the Damara herders who inhabit the area. Here we stay two-nights at ­DAMARA MOPANE LODGE. (B,D)

Day 8 - Vingerklip
The Damaraland region is famous for its ­magnificent scenery and you may join an optional tour (at no extra cost) to see one of the most dramatic rock ­formations, a 35 metre pillar of rock called Vingerklip or ‘finger of stone’. (B,D)

Day 9 - Damaraland to Etosha
A short drive to Etosha National Park, as we enter via the Anderson Gate for a two-night stay at OKAUKUEJO RESORT. Staying inside the park offers a real bonus because you may view wildlife at the resort waterhole long after the park gates are closed to day visitors. (B,D)

Day 10 - Okaukuejo, Etosha
Included game drives with our ­experienced guide and private coach, plus options to join ­alternative or ­additional game drives if you wish. Time to sit and enjoy the magnificent Okaukuejo waterhole too. (B,D)

Day 11 - Etosha National Park
Departing Okaukuejo we continue exploring Etosha National Park. We plan to visit the Etosha Pan and we’ll be watching for game en-route. The ­potential is good, with big cats, rhino, ­elephant, giraffe, zebra, eland, kudu, and wildebeest all possible. After a lunch break we drive to NAMUTONI RESORT for our two-night stay. (B,D)

Day 12  - Namutoni, Etosha
Namutoni is situated inside the park at the east end, near Fischer’s Pan which often holds water for much of the year. Enjoy our ­included game drive with our private coach and guide, plus options to join ­alternative or additional game drives if you wish. (B,D)

Day 13 - Central Highlands
South via Tsumeb and Otavi, we ­pass the Central Namibian Mountains and the Waterberg Plateau before arriving at OKONJIMA for our 3 night stay. (B,D)

Day 14 - Okonjima / Africat
Privately owned by the Hanssen family, Okonjima is home to AFRICAT, a charitable organisation set up to conserve and protect threatened cheetah, leopard and other wild cats. Today we’ll observe some of the ­programme at work and learn more about these beautiful animals. (B,L,D)

Day 15 - Okonjima / Africat
Activities during our stay include game-viewing in purpose built vehicles, cheetah tracking on foot, a bushmen trail and a visit to a nocturnal hide. There are also bird watching and nature trails. (B,L,D)

Day 16 - Depart Okonjima
After a hearty breakfast we depart Okonjima and drive south to Windhoek for our ­mid-afternoon flight via Johannesburg onward to the UK. (B,D)

Day 17 - Arrive UK
Flying overnight, we arrive in Heathrow early this morning. (B)  

Our hand-picked, tried and tested lodges and resorts ...

The Windhoek Country Club Resort is a luxury, full service hotel on the outskirts of Windhoek. Bedrooms are spacious and well appointed, and public space includes a restaurant, gardens and swimming pool.

Sossusvlei Lodge is situated on a private 40,000 hectare reserve directly adjacent to the Namib-Naukluft National Park. Accommodation comprises individual bungalows, part brick and part luxury tent. Each has en-suite ­facilities and a terrace overlooking the savannah. Lodge facilities include a restaurant, bar, terrace, floodlit water-hole, small swimming pool and shop. The lodge’s adventure centre offers optional nature drives, sundowners, and scenic flights.

Located in the centre of Swakopmund, the Hansa Hotel dates back to 1905 and forms part of the rich architectural culture of the city. This 4-star full service hotel features comfortable rooms, a charming lounge, small garden, plus an excellent restaurant. Shops and attractions are nearby.

Damara Mopane Lodge is situated in Namibia’s Damaraland region, which is known for its amazing landscapes and rock formations. Mopane Lodge is generously laid out in the midst of diverse gardens of a different kind! Each of the cottages sit in a vegetable and herb garden surrounded by a low wall. The gardens supply fresh ingredients for the restaurant. The main building, its walls adorned by copies of the rock engravings at Twyfelfontein, is surrounded by Mopani trees. There is a large swimming pool for chilling out and a viewing point for relishing sunsets and the star-studded sky.

Okaukuejo & Namutoni Resorts in Etosha
Okaukuejo and Namutoni are located inside Etosha National Park. Both resorts are managed by a government concessionaire and offer ­modern ensuite accommodations which were refurbished in 2007. Both resorts have a floodlit water hole for game viewing plus restaurant facilities, a shop, post office and swimming pool. Residents have exclusive access to water-hole viewing in the early morning and during the evening and night, when the park gates are closed.

Okonjima - Plains Camp
New for 2014, ­Okonjima Plains Camp (formerly known as Main Camp) will ­feature a central lapa with a lounge and restaurant, an open fire-place and a ­swimming pool. There are 12 spacious "standard rooms" which offer views across the bush to the mountains beyond. These were built only a few years ago and they offer very comfortable, all en-suite accommodations. Subject to availability you may upgrade to "new view rooms" which are even more spacious and luxurious, again with en-suite facilities and views across the bush. The new view rooms will be completed by the end of 2013.

Okonjima is home to the Africat Foundation, the world’s leading cheetah and ­leopard rescue and release ­programme. Visitors are able to observe some of the programme at work and learn more about these amazing and beautiful animals. Leopards are frequently seen, giving you opportunity to observe these magnificent predators from a hide, or radio-tracked from purpose built game viewing vehicles. Other Okonjima activities include cheetah or hyena tracking on foot, an informative bushman trail, bird watching and visits to a nocturnal hide.

Photo credits: Entrance to Sossusvlei Lodge © Sossusvlei Lodge, Vingerklip © David/Jenny Jones (Guests in 2009), Okonjima Main Camp lapa © Okonjima.

What's Included?

Holiday costs, shown below, are inclusive of all the ­essentials and much more besides ...

  • International economy class scheduled flights with South African Airways including in-flight meals. 
  • 1-night at Windhoek Country Club.
  • 2-nights at Sossusvlei Lodge.
  • 2-nights at Hansa Hotel Swakopmund.
  • 2-nights at Damara Mopane Lodge in Damaraland.
  • 4-nights in Etosha (Okaukuejo and Namutoni Resorts).
  • 3-nights at Okonjima.
  • Breakfasts and ­dinners daily.
  • Full board at Okonjima.
  • Excursion to the Namib Dunes.
  • Visit to Sesriem Canyon.
  • Walvis Bay Harbour Wildlife Cruise.
  • Damaraland excursion.
  • Etosha Game Drives from Okaukuejo and Namutoni.
  • Okonjima activities: Introduction to the Africat Foundation, leopard viewing, cheetah or hyena tracking, ­bushman walk and nocturnal hide.
  • Daily entry fees for the Namib-Naukluft Park and Etosha National Park.
  • Airport transfers, tour transportation and ­sightseeing by private coach.
  • Local English speaking guide accompanies the tour throughout.
  • Current ­airport and prepaid taxes.
  • All tips.
  • Comprehensive travel tickets.
  • Tour ­personally ­escorted by Richard and Dawn Furlong.

Namibia 2014 tour price - save £500 per person

The standard tour prices are ...
£4,240 per person sharing a twin or double room.
£4,740 per person for single / sole occupancy.

The early booking tour prices are ... 
£3,740 per person sharing a twin or double room.
£4,240 per person for single / sole occupancy.

Early booking prices are subject to availability and are capacity controlled. Please enquire for further details.

Namibia 2015 tour price

The 2015 tour price is yet to be finalised but will hopefully be similar to 2014. You may advance register for the 2015 tour by paying a £50 per person deposit. This secures your place but is fully refundable should you decide to change your mind for any reason. Approximately 11 months prior to departure we will confirm the tour details and price and at that stage you decide whether to commit and pay the normal deposit. In the meantime your advance registration has held your place without risk. All monies received are fully ATOL protected. To advance register for Namibia 2015 please call us on 01580 24024001580 240240 or use our secure booking form online.

Accommodation choices 

At three of the destinations there is a choice of accommodation. At Okaukuejo Resort in Etosha National Park the tour price includes a twin, double or ­sole occupancy room. These rooms are ­located near the resort’s main facilities, ­reception and restaurant. Subject to availability you may upgrade to spacious Bush Chalets, ­featuring a ­double bedroom, bathroom, and lounge. Bush Chalets are set in pairs and located between the main buildings and the waterhole. There are also Waterhole Chalets which feature a double bedroom, bathroom and terrace and are located in pairs and closer to the Okaukuejo waterhole, and Premier Waterhole Chalets which feature a double bedroom, bathroom and terrace and are in a prime position. Supplements are payable for these optional room types. The following supplements are not per night, they are the total amount to add to the holiday price.

  • Okaukuejo Bush Chalet: Add £30 per person to the 2014 tour price (for twin, double or single)
  • Okaukuejo Waterhole Chalet: Add £45 per person to the 2014 tour price (for twin, double or single)
  • Okaukuejo Premier Waterhole Chalet: Add £85 per person to the 2014 tour price (for twin or double occupancy only)

At Namutoni Resort in Etosha National Park the tour price includes a twin, double or ­sole occupancy room situated off wooden boardwalks near the old Fort, swimming pool and waterhole area. Subject to availability you may upgrade to spacious Bush Chalets, ­featuring a ­double bedroom, bathroom, and lounge area. Bush Chalets are situated in a private area not far from the waterhole. There are no accommodations immediately adjacent to the waterhole at Namutoni. The supplement for Bush Chalet accommodation is shown below. This supplement is not per night, it is the total amount to add to the holiday price.

  • Namutoni Bush Chalet: Add £30 per person to the 2014 tour price (for twin, double or single)

New for 2014, Okonjima Plains Camp, formerly known as Main Camp, will feature a central lapa with a lounge and restaurant, an open fire-place and a swimming pool. The tour price includes accommodation in spacious and very comfortable "view rooms" that overlook the bush and mountains. Subject to availability you may upgrade to even more spacious, "luxury view rooms" that are being completed by late 2013. All Plains Camp rooms have private facilities. The supplement for the brand new luxury view room accommodation is shown below, again this is the total amount to add, not a per night charge.

  • Okonjima View Rooms: Add £145 per person to the 2014 tour price (for twin or double occupancy only)

Optional activities

Not included in the tour price are items of a personal nature, or certain specialised activities that may interest a limited number of people, for instance sightseeing flights and extra game drives. Some of these optional activities will be bookable in advance and details will be circulated to all guests prior to departure. If you'd like more specific details now, please contact us.

Frequently Asked Questions

This A-to-Z section gives you useful travel information about the Namibia tour including health advice, passport requirements and details about our airport services. If you have any questions not covered here, please don't hesitate to contact Richard or Dawn.

Airport Service

We offer discounted airport parking and airport hotel reservations, and ­complimentary transfers from our office in Kent - see below.

Departure Service

For this tour you may join us at London Heathrow or at our office near Tenterden in Kent. We operate a subsidised private minibus or coach transfer from our office to Heathrow at the beginning of the holiday, and from Heathrow Airport back to our office at the end of the holiday. The round-trip service for Namibia 2013 will cost just £25 per person. You may also park your car at our office for the duration of the holiday (parking is free but at your own risk). Transfer times will be confirmed once the flight schedule is finalised. Please ask for more details.

Deposit and Payment Terms

Advance registrations are £50 per person on a no obligation basis. Once final tour details are circulated we ask for a deposit of £1,000 per person and the balance is due 90 days prior to departure. If you book within 90 days of departure the full holiday cost is payable.

Financial Protection

This flight-inclusive tour is financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you make a booking and pay your first deposit or the full amount, you will be supplied with a Booking Confirmation and an ATOL Certificate*. Please check to ensure that everything you booked is listed on these documents. In the unlikely event of our insolvency, the CAA will ensure that you are not stranded abroad and will arrange to refund any money you have paid to us for an advance booking. For further information visit the ATOL website at www.atol.org.uk. * ATOL Certificates became a legal requirement for bookings made as and from 1st October 2012 and therefore if you booked prior to this date a certificate is not applicable. However, you still enjoy the same financial protection! For further details about ATOL Certificates please visit www.atol.org.uk/ATOLCertificate.

Flights

We’ve included economy class flights with South African Airways from London Heathrow. British Midland domestic connections to and from Heathrow are available at specially negotiated low add-on fares. Business class upgrades with South African Airways and British Midland may also be available, please contact us for further information. Current flight times feature a departure from Heathrow around 7pm on day one of the tour, and a return to Heathrow around 7am on tour day 17. Times are subject to change.

Health

Some of our Namibian destinations are remote so this tour calls for relatively good health. Some of the holiday excursions may involve ­walking trails, sometimes on uneven terrain. None of the included walks are overly long however, and naturally its up to you what you decide to do. If we've scheduled a walk and you'd prefer to sit and read a book, that's perfectly fine. Please consult your GP or local travel clinic for appropriate health information and vaccination advice for Namibia. For further information on vaccination requirements, health outbreaks and general disease protection and prevention you may care to visit the websites of the NaTHNaC (National Travel Health Network and Centre) and NHS Scotland’s Fit for Travel or call NHS Direct on 0845 46 470845 46 47. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office website http://www.fco.gov.uk/knowbeforeyougo also publishes essential travel tips and up-to-date information about travelling abroad. You may 'phone them on 0870 60602900870 6060290.

Insurance

It is a condition of booking that you have comprehensive and adequate travel insurance for this tour. We recommend "Holiday Extras Travel Insurance", but we are happy for you to arrange your own cover so long as it provides suitable cover. For details of the recommended insurance please call Holiday Extras direct on 0870 844 27420870 844 2742 and quote "Furlongs WZ679", or click here.

Meals

Breakfasts will generally be presented buffet style and dinners will be a mix of served meals and buffets. Menus will vary and we'll deliberately highlight local specialities. Naturally we'll be delighted to assist with any special diets you may have, but please note there is an emphasis on game, meat and fish dishes.

Money

The local currency is the Namibian Dollar. This is tied to the South African Rand, which is also legal tender in Namibia. Furlongs Travel offers clients a foreign currency service free of commission and full details will be circulated to guests. Most major credit cards can be used at our hotels and in Namibian cash machines. Debit cards are less widely accepted.

Passports and Visas

Before leaving for Namibia, you should ensure your passport is valid for at least six months upon entry and you must have at least one completely blank page for Namibian Immigration to use. Our flights transit in Johannesburg, South Africa, so we don't need to pass immigration control here. However if you may wish to visit friends or relatives or extend your holiday independently in South Africa, you should be aware that while the South African authorities state officially that only one blank passport page is required for entry, there have been reports that some officials insist on two blank pages. We therefore recommend you have a total of three blank pages if you propose to add a visit to South Africa to our Namibia tour.

British nationals can enter Namibia for a holiday or private visit of up to 90 days without a visa. 

Singles/Twin Shares

Many of the higher quality lodges and accommodations in Namibia have a limited number of rooms so, unfortunately, rooms for sole occupancy are strictly limited for this tour. A holiday single supplement also applies. If you are travelling alone but happy to share please advise us and we’ll try our best to arrange a twin-share for you.

Terms and Conditions

Reservations are ­subject to our ­standard terms and ­conditions

Water

In Namibia's capital Windhoek, and some other areas, tap water is treated and deemed safe to drink, however we'd recommend you drink bottled water at all times.

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For your financial security the air holidays shown are ATOL protected by the Civil Aviation Authority. Our ATOL number is ATOL 3710.