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Skeleton Coast Adventure Tours

Skeleton Coast – Kunene Mouth – Kaokoland

13 Days

Access to the Skeleton Coast National Park is strictly regulated and the northern part of the park is actually closed to the public because of its extremely sensitive ecosystem. Located in the northwest part of Namibia, it covers 16,000 km2 along the coast until the Kunene River, which is the naturally formed border with Angola. Our Skeleton Coast tours will help you discover this exceptional natural site in the spirit of ecotourism. We have an agreement with a local community based company that has the exclusive right to the area. Therefore we have the special privilege of accessing this highly protected site. We invite you to discover in small groups this territory beyond time and in perfect privacy.
The Skeleton Coast National Park in Namibia is one of the most inhospitable places on earth. Its name is inspired by its deserted beaches, littered with remnants of whales bleached by time, bones of all shapes and sizes from past shipwrecks and its haunting atmosphere. Surprisingly, this extremely arid environment is still home to an array of wildlife such as brown hyena, lions and elephants which we may have the chance to meet face to face. This expedition leads us to the Kunene Delta and Hartmann Valley, a mythical place which you reach after crossing the rolling dunes, separating it from the ocean. Further south, we will travel across the dry riverbeds of Hoarusib and Hoanib where desert adapted elephants mosey around before returning gradually to civilization ... No one can remain indifferent to this unique and core-shaking journey.

4x4 Camping tour, Skeleton Coast, Namibia The desolate and wild Namibia shoreline Himba mother, Kaokoland


  • Exclusive travel in a small group to areas that are closed to the general public
  • Exploration of the Skeleton Coast of Namibia, a mythical land far from the usual tourist trails
  • Visit to the Kunene River mouth
  • Crossing the dunes of the Namib Kunene
  • The endless, picturesque landscapes of the Hartmann Valley
  • Meeting with the Himba, semi-nomadic pastoralists with ancestral customs
  • Sighting of the native wildlife including the famous desert elephants
  • A unique tour through the heart of one of the most pristine parts of Africa
  • All meals and activities included

Expedition Programme

Day 1:


Arrival at Windhoek International Airport. You will be transferred to a guesthouse located in a residential area of the capital city. Dinner, Bed & Breakfast.

Day 2:


Meet and greet with your tour leader at the guesthouse. We drive from Windhoek to Swakopmund, a coastal town with original Germanic architecture wedged between the Namib sand dunes and the Atlantic Ocean. Check in at the hotel and enjoy a free afternoon in town. Dinner at the restaurant.

Day 3:

Swakopmund – Terrace Bay

We head north towards the Skeleton Coast National Park, where the cold Benguela air, coming straight from Antarctica, strikes the coastline. We enter the park at Ugabmund where we continue north to the Uniab delta, a permanent water source which attracts abundant wildlife (it is not uncommon for oryx and springbok to be seen in large numbers). We will overnight at Terrace Bay, a resort at “the end of the world”.

Day 4:

Skeleton Coast towards Cape Fria

We plunge into the Skeleton Coast and discover the first skeletal traces eroded by time. The first relic is the shipwreck of September 1971 and a tractor/bulldozer that were abandoned during the same decade by some diamond prospectors. We will start to see beautiful rolling dunes which indicate that we are close to the mouth of the Hoarusib River, an ephemeral stream. We will carry on heading north and find a place to set up our camp.

Day 5:

Cape Fria

This mineral world is occasionally punctuated by endemic flora which survives its harsh environment through the coastal fog weather pattern. This is relatively common due to the temperature difference between the cooler ocean and the warm air emanating from east. We will make our way through an amazing desolated landscape which resembles a science fiction setting. Approaching Cape Fria we set up camp on the beach near a huge seal colony. We will keep a reasonable distance away so as not to disturb the animals.

Day 6

Cape Fria – Kunene River Mouth

On this special morning we observe more than 100,000 Cape fur seals that are lying on the beach which stretches for kilometers. You will be the lucky spectator of this impressive scene and may also be rewarded by catching sight of the shy, brown hyena. To the North, we will travel through Angra Fria and the remains of the wreck of the Dunedin Star, a cargo liner ship that sank on November 29th, 1942 with more than 100 people on board. After 80 km of unspoiled beaches, we reach the Kunene River Mouth. It is a highlight of the trip where lovers of wide-open spaces will certainly find their needs met! After taking the time to admire this unique landscape, we will head along the dunes bordering the river. We will find a bivouac spot right after admiring the view from the dunes on the delta.

Day 7

Towards the Hartmann Valley

Today, we will cross the dunes that separate the coast of the Hartmann Valley in a little more than 40 km. Driving is part of the journey and there are many photo stops. The feeling of complete isolation is indescribable. The landscapes of the Kunene Valley elapsing between dunes and rocks are simply amazing. We will set up camp before the Hartmann Valley.

Day 8

Hartmann Valley – Kaokoland

This morning we negotiate the last dunes that lead us through the Hartmann Valley. We discover an endless landscape which blends ochre sand and granite rocks. We will meet the Himba tribe, semi-nomadic pastoralists with ancestral customs. Women smear their body and hair with a mixture of ochre and grease, giving them a very attractive reddish glow. We strive to keep a low, reserved profile around these people, as we move away from our civilisation. We then follow a trail down south into an environment of ever-growing dunes (barchans), frequented by herds of oryx and springboks. During the late afternoon, we trek through the spectacular desert landscapes in the valley of Khumib. Our overnight camp will be in the desert.

Day 9

Hoarusib – Purros

We head south, towards the Hoarusib River. We will go through the great riverbed (if accessible) frequented by desert-adapted wildlife such as elephants. We arrive at Purros later in the afternoon and we will move to a very nice, comfortable camping site run by the local community.

Day 10

Southern Kaokoland – Hoanib Valley

After an expansive, bare plain, we arrive at the Hoanib River. Nestled between two cliffs, the river offers beautiful scenery where huge trees shelter desert elephants. It is here that we will have the opportunity to see the holes the elephants dig to reach drinkable water. Giraffe, oryx, springbok and ostriches are all part of the valley landscape and the desert lions can sometimes be heard roaring during the night. We will set up camp in a setting of unprecedented beauty.

The desert elephants of Namibia have adapted to extreme conditions. They play a very important role in this fragile ecosystem. They go to dry riverbeds in search of food and water and dig holes in the sand on which a large number of other species depend on. Almost forced into extinction in the 70s due to poaching, they now number about 100.

Day 11

Damaraland – Palmwag Lodge

We continue our search of wildlife and arrive sometime in the afternoon at Palmwag Lodge, an oasis on the edge of the Uniab River. We will reboot in comfortable cabins and enjoy a few hours relaxing until sunset. Dinner this night will be at the restaurant.

Day 12


We take the Windhoek direction, travelling through stunning landscapes. The Grootberg is one of them. Lunch on the way. We arrive in Windhoek and overnight in rooms. Dinner will be in one of the town's restaurants.

Day 13


Transfer to the airport in time for your flight.


Route map for Skeleton coast tour

Depending on the weather and operational conditions, your guide may change the itinerary for your safety and that of the group. We inform you that this expedition takes place in the wilderness, isolated from everything and is difficult to access. Tracks and conditions can be tiring. This is an adventure trip where any hazards are possible and can only be completed by participants in good physical condition. Spirit of adventure and flexibility are essential! In case of emergencies, we have a satellite phone.


This tour covers about 2000 kilometers and 1400 km on difficult grounds (sand, beach, dunes and 4X4 trails) aboard minimum two 4X4 Toyota Land-Cruiser, all equipped with 12 v fridge, 12 v cigar lighter plug to charge cameras, video cameras (please provide you own adaptor cables).


This 13 days / 12 nights journey is composed of:

  • 2 night at hotel / guesthouse, day 1 & 2
  • 1 night at NWR chalets at Terrace Bay, day 3
  • 2 nights in comfortable standard lodges, day 11 & 12
  • 6 nights camping in the wilderness, days 4 to 8 and 10
  • 1 night camping in a campsite with toilets and showers, days 9

For camping tours Namibia, we supply: spacious tents that are easy to set (sleep two) with a comfortable mattress and a sleeping bag. Tables, chairs...

Meals & beverages

This journey is on full board basis (except Windhoek on the day of departure).

Breakfast and dinner are taken at restaurant while staying at lodges and hotels. Lunch en route or at restaurant according to availability.

Your guide will serve you well-cooked fresh meals during camping.

Continental breakfast
Lunch supplied with salads, cold meat, cheese, bread and fruits ...
Excellent meals prepared and cooked over the fire for dinner.

We supply drinkable water, tea and coffee while camping. Table and extra drinks (as well as mineral water) are at your own cost.


Price on request.

Please contact us for special requests at

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Price includes:

  • Welcome and transfer from and to the airport
  • Transport on board of 4X4 vehicles and petrol (Max 4 passengers per vehicle)
  • A professional tour leader
  • Full board accommodation
  • All excursions and visits as mentioned in the program
  • All Namibia park entrances and concession fees
  • VAT 15% and Bed Levy 2%
  • Satellite connection (prices of communication not included)
  • We support Desert Lion Conservation. NAD 100 pp. are transfered to the association via Tourism Supporting Conservation

The price does not include:

  • International Air flight ticket
  • Beverages except drinkable water, coffee & tea while camping
  • Optional activities
  • Tips and personal expenses
  • Cancellation insurance, repatriation and lost luggage costs

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