A week is a long time in travel...
The emergence of another Covid variant has caused some countries to enact new restrictions including putting Namibia, the country I was exploring just over 2 weeks ago on some red lists.
While I obviously very much hope that this new variant does not become rampant as a stronger version, I do struggle with the logic of some restrictions and protocols. Namibia has a total of 174 active Covid cases right now, while the USA has over 1.2 million. I'm sure we have all struggled at some point to make any sense of what has occurred in the last 2 years and I continue to focus on the hand we are dealt. As it is right now, barely any changes have occurred to the countries list that US citizens can visit, and that includes most of Africa. Our job at J5Travel is to stay informed, tell you confidently where you will be safe, and what you have to accomplish to remain safe and within the regulations, and all that within the framework of you, our clients, being ready to travel.
Well, I have to show you part 2 of my Namibia trip because it was completely spectacular...
Top 5 - Namibia Part 2
1. Sossusvlei Dunes
If you wake up really early and get to the opening of this National Park for sunrise, you are treated to wonderous contrasts in light as the sun hits the dunes. Then if you have the energy, and our group thought it did, you can attempt to hike Big Daddy, the tallest dune in the Sossusvlei area. This magnificent dune is situated between Sossusvlei and Deadvlei and at 1,000 ft elevation it dwarfs the other dunes. If you knew our group of 6 then you would have placed a strong bet that only one would make it to the top, and yes, Jen was up there in a shot, while everyone else had to bail at half way. Hiking up through shifting sand is pretty hard work, but amusingly descending is very easy and a lot of fun, as the sand helps you balance when you pick up some speed. If you hike down the eastern side of Big Daddy Dune you find yourself in Deadvlei, a white clay pan that astounds with its amazing contrast to the surrounding monstrous red dunes.
If you've ever searched for photos of Namibia, Deadvlei usually features at the top of the list. These photos still are not enough to show the epic scale of this landscape.
2. A Night with the Stars
Our accommodation while in the Sossusvlei area was Camp Sossus. This under-canvas experience with a twist is only offered on an exclusive-use basis and has been designed to have a low environmental impact, blending into its surroundings as much as possible, with the semi-permanent design making use of recycled materials.
Each tent has access to its own star bed located on a roof platform, the perfect venue from which to gaze up at the night sky – a truly magical experience. All 6 of our group took advantage of this and it was simply astounding...
3. Shipwreck Lodge
To discover Shipwreck Lodge, you fly into Mowe Bay in NW Namibia. Mowe Bay has a population of just 12, and then you drive for another hour north to leave all those people behind!
It's an incredible achievement to even build a hotel out here, let alone complete it with such style and chic. With an all-inclusive experience (meals, beverages, and activities), this was a more traditional resort experience but in a breathtaking remote location on the ocean and activities the likes of which are very unique indeed. If you are super lucky you may even see lions on the beach, possibly hunting seals!
While I thrive on and love solo travel, to share experiences with people you love, whether friends or family is everything to me. As I finish up my Namibian commentary, here is my favorite photo of the whole trip (below)!
Photo Credit: Julia Matheson of Travel Julia's Way who is an expert when it comes to utilizing the timer in her camera app and knows how to recreate an epic album cover.
5. Habitas Namibia (above and below)
This property is a conservation project set in over 50,000 hectares of nature and wildlife. The entire team here prides itself on providing unforgettable adventures exploring, learning about and discovering the unique wildlife, nature and culture of Namibia. Sustainability and wellness are prominent themes and the whole place has a calmness about it that is ethereal.
It was only fitting that the last night of our trip was here, and that the sunset delivered yet again!
I love travel and I love travel planning just as much and I am proud to be building a team as passionate about exploring the world as myself. It took me a very long time to align my career with my undeniable passion for exploring, but now I and the team are here for you. Your personal travel tailors - award reservation and luxury custom itinerary experts. We provide a bespoke service, imagining and creating itineraries for independent minded families and groups.
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