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Experience Namibia’s Unforgettable Luxury Big Five Safaris

Witnessing the Big Five is an unforgettable experience

Africa Safari Lodges | Photo credit: Roderick Eime

Witnessing the Big Five is an unforgettable experience. The “Big Five” pertains to five different animal species that should be on everyone’s safari bucket list. These animals are the African elephant, Cape buffalo, the black rhinoceros, and the African leopard and lion. A visit to Africa, and specifically the beautiful country Namibia means getting the opportunity to see the Big Five up close and personal. These creatures are basically the face of the African Safari. Not many get to be so lucky and catch a glimpse of one or two of the Big Five; let alone all of them.

There’s no place in the world to have a more luxuriously amazing safari than in Namibia

Don’t let this discourage your chances of crossing these beautiful animals off your list. The best way to up your chances of seeing the Big Five is on a Luxury Big Five Safari. And there’s no place in the world to have a more luxuriously amazing safari than in Namibia.

The trick to choosing a Luxury Big Five Safari is the looking for a 4- or 5-star safari camp or lodge. These high-caliber safaris will emphasis exclusivity, true luxury, and the best guides in the industry that virtually guarantees superior game viewing. Namibia’s Luxury Big Five Safaris can’t seem to get any better.

Nambia Self-Driving Safari, photo credit: Matthias Muller
Nambia Self-Driving Safari, photo credit: Matthias Muller

Namibia’s population is one of the continent’s smallest. But it also has one of the highest literacy rates and most stable democracies. Located in the southwest Namib Desert, Namibia tends to be skipped over by travelers during their African Safari vacation. However, Namibia actually follows many safaris in East Africa, like Tanzania and Kenya. The desert, a dune-filled country is also often an add-on to safaris held in South Africa, Zambia, and Botswana. Don’t let this fool you though, visiting only Namibia on safari is just as special, if not more so, than any other African Safari.

Big Five, Elephant and Leopard
Big Five, Elephant and Leopard

Being the fourth-largest country in Africa, Namibia’s region is as colorful and varietal as it gets. Sunbleach whalebones and centuries-old shipwrecks lie along the Atlantic coast, the vast desert beckons visitors and locals alike, even green albida tree-filled oases dazzle those lucky enough to visit. The Namibia wilderness, with its volcanic mountains and epic sun-drenched sands, sets the perfect stage at one of the biggest game parks on the planet, yet it’s also the least-known.Tourism here is pretty low, meaning each and every visitor can be a part of the exclusively handcrafted experience in Namibia. Safaris here are small, both wonderfully and thoughtfully designed as they are environmentally sensitive.

The selling point of Namibia is the heartwarming hospitality

But in all honesty, the selling point of Namibia is the heartwarming hospitality at many of these locations and enjoying outdoor fine dining in the African bush after a day out on safari. These private parks in Namibia make for a pristine getaway to a Luxury Big Five Safari.

Little Kulala, Namib Desert
Little Kulala, Namib Desert

Little Kulala, Kulala Wilderness Reserve

Over a decade ago, the travel company Wilderness Safaris bought 90,000 acres of the Namib Desert to build the Kulala Wilderness Reserve. One of the newest additions to the Kulala Wilderness Reserve, Little Kulala features 11 different villas to stay in, each with gorgeous and distinctive cement-, glass-, and wood-thatched roofs. These Namibia-glamour living quarters each have their own deck with a plunge pool, a studio with a platform bed, bleached plank floor, and leather shag rugs. Head to your roof at night for stargazing on the rooftop terrace in your own “sky bed.”


Dunes Lodge
Dunes Lodge, source

Dunes Lodge, NamibRand Nature Reserve

NamibRand Nature Reserve is a 444,000-acre private conservation project. Dating back in the 1980s, Namibian environmentalist Albi Bruckner transformed these rolling dunes and tall grass area into a few small lodges known as the Wolwedans Collection. There’s the Dunes Lodge, 10 skillfully crafted and environmentally sensitive wood-and-canvas cottages strung together by walkways, large lanterns, and even potted cacti. An aboveground pool stays shaded from the desert heat by a sailcloth awning, creating an oasis within this already mesmerizingly beautiful desert setting.


Little Ongava, sources: Namibia Tours & Safaris and &Beyond
Little Ongava, sources: Namibia Tours & Safaris and &Beyond

Little Ongava, Ongava Game Reserve

Considered to be one the country’s most luxurious compounds is Little Ongava. This 75,000-acre private enclave makes up northern Namibia’s south-central edge of the 9,000-square-mile Etosha National Park. Perched upon a hillside of giant cacti and pockmarked boulders, only three cottages await. The infinity pools seem to almost make this desert compound too glamorous…almost. The inside of the cottages is heavily and tastefully decorated with African artists’ work. Wooden bowls from Zambia, masks from Burkina Faso, trays from Ethiopia, Congolese wall hangings, and Namibian paintings surround guests as they rest up from a safari trip in the African bush.

Namibia Safari, photo credit: Jeremey T. Hetzel
Namibia Safari, photo credit: Jeremey T. Hetzel

No matter what your preference is while visiting Namibia, a desert resort with furnished tents, cottages where luxury meets exclusivity or a casbah-style fort with jaw-dropping views, Namibian safaris are there for every desire, well-worth the journey. Stunning wilderness, fabulous living quarters, and close-up encounters with the Big Five are all possible in Namibia. First-class service and fine Namibian dining add memorable touches to anyone lucky enough to visit this beautiful African country on a honeymoon, family vacation, a solo trip, or just another exploration.

Big Five, Lion, Rhino and Buffalo
Big Five, Lion, Rhino and Buffalo

Nowadays, with the number of these majestic Big Five animals reaching a dangerous low, catching sight of these endangered creatures has become an immense privilege. Embarking on a Namibian Luxury Big Five Safari is an experience that should be allowed to everyone. Exploring the vast lands of Namibia in an open 4×4 jeep, being within mere feet of an African leopard or elephant at a waterhole, is something truly special that can’t be put into words. Namibia and the Big Five await.

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