A responsible trip
Issue 3 (November 2008) Are you keen to help Namibia’s indigenous people? Done well, community-based tourism puts your money directly into the pocket of local residents; you stay in locally-owned accommodation, eat at locally-run restaurants and employ a local guide. We asked Christopher Hill, whose company’s website has been named the UK’s Best Responsible Tourism Site, to draw us up a community-focused itinerary.

 

Day 1 Arrival in Windhoek
Stay at Rivendell Guesthouse, dinner at La Marmite. Take a Katutura Township tour with a local guide.

 

Day 2 Aabadi Bush Camp
Stopover at the woodcarvers market in Okahandja where you can buy directly from the carvers themselves. After lunch at Aabadi, a San family will take you hiking, giving a glimpse of their lifestyle. The camp works with ten San people at a time, switching groups regularly to provide an opportunity for as many people as possible to earn an income from the camp. San families with school-going children are also free to enter the camp and set up souvenir stalls.


Day 3-5 Etosha National Park
Camp at Okaukuejo.


Day 6-10 Kaokoland  
Head up north to Opuwo, the capital of Kaokoland. Stop for dinner at the Opuwo Country Lodge and camp at the lodge. For the next four days you help with volunteer projects in the Ovahimba community.


Day 11 Damaraland – Fort Sesfontein
Camp staff can take you in a 4WD vehicle in search of desert elephants in the Huanib River.


Day 12 Damaraland – Aba-huab/Mowani
This part of Namibia is one of the most beautiful: rugged with fascinating geological features.  The afternoon is spent relaxing by the campfire or searching again for desert elephants.


Day 13-14  Swakopmund  
Visit the seal colony at Cape Cross before arriving in Swakopmund for a seafood supper at Lighthouse. Stay at Alternative Space B&B.


Day 15 Sossusvlei
Stop at Walvis Bay to look for flamingos. Take lunch on the road or at Solitaire before arriving at Sossusvlei. In the afternoon visit Elim Dune before returning to Sesriem for the night.


Day 16 Sossusvlei - Agama Rest Camp
Leave camp early and drive to Dune 45 for sunrise. After breakfast, walk through Sossusvlei. Arrive at Agama Rest Camp for a sundowner drink in the late afternoon.


Day 17 Tour ends back at Windhoek


www.handsupholidays.com

• For more ideas on responsible tourism in Namibia turn to our map of community projects on p48.

 

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