I heard this is one of the most deserted national parks in the world and was wondering what it's like to visit? Is it a great adventure or not worth the trip?
Hmmm. Tricky one.
It depends. If you are after a Busch Gardens experience, you might be disappointed.
If you like pristine wilderness, which only a few people have enjoyed, then it might be for you.
But you don't have to worry about making the trip and being disappointed. There are so many other aspects of Namibia, that you would be an unusual person not to enjoy some of them.
Have you read the recent post "What makes Namibia Special?"
Skeleton Coast is a very, very unique part of the world. I live in Namibia and have been there a couple of time.
You can't compare the park to your usual Game Park in the rest of Africa as you don't have the vast number of wildlife, but that is not the point of the park. The absolute untouched beauty of the place is what makes it special and also how animals adapt to the living conditions.
There's only one camp that you can drive to in Skeleton Coast Park and that's Terrace Bay.
This camp is mostly used by fishermen for a couple of days, but if you can't afford to do a Skeleton Coast Fly In safari, this is the only place to go. Even for guests that don't fish it is an experience to stay here for a night. I wouldn't recommend more as you can't drive around a lot and one night should be sufficent.
If you howevern have the money to do a 3 -4 nights Fly In Safari, you would be blown away. It's worth every cent and you will only be one of a few thousand that have ever visited the park.
We have travelled the Skeleton Coast this summer in small Cessna with Schoeman Skeleton Coast Safaris. We landed on the most remote airstrips and slept in simple lodges in the most extraordinary locations. We met the Himba people living in the stone age and cruised on the Kunene river along the Angolan border. We saw giraffes, desert elephants and all sorts of other game. We took adventurous drives in rusty old Landrovers over soft sand dunes and steep rocks. We flew at low altitude over red dunes at sundown, visited stone carvings and extraordinary rock formations, abandoned diamond mines etc. etc. It was very expensive but one of the best trips we ever did. Don't expect luxury or gastronomic food but it's worth every Dollar.
UH, had to make the same decision this year and gave it a miss.There is a road running through the park, so it is not that remote (would consider many places in Canada/Alaska more remote)
Asked many people and everyone said to give it a miss. There is a road with on the left hand nothing and on the right hand also nothing. Took the road inland and drove through National West Coast Park (which basically is an extension of Skeleton Coast) and was glad we spend more time on all the other beautiful areas in Namibia.
@Alsho. Very interesting route about your namibian trip but most you describe is not the Skeleton coast.. And when you do it yourself it doesn't have to be expensive ;-)
We made the decision to drive in from Swakopmund. it was a long and empty drive but we really enjoyed the emptyness. We drove in as far as the first wreck had a wander round on the beach there and made our way back.
It worked for us and my husband had always wanted to go, we went despite all the great feedback from here knowing that it was a long drive for not much. So we went with our eyes open and had a fun time but we built the day into our trip and I would not have missed out anything else we did for it.
It is an interesting trip but as janjans says. Not a lot to the left and even less to the right. Turning east to leave via Springbok Gate gets a bit better. Welwitschia plants etc.,
Do it once if you like wild places.
To be precise: The Schoeman lodges are a bit inland of the Skeleton Coast so the weather is less rough there especially in winter (July). However you visit strips of the coast every day travelling by plane and landing on or very close to the shore. You fly over most of the coast in Namibia. Getting from Swakopmund to the Angolan border along the Skeletion Coast is a very, very long drive, if you manage to get the permission.
Agree with the thoughts that to drive yourself through this area shouldn't a be more than one night stay if that, as there's not a lot to see along thr coastal road and you can't drive too far north on your own. The Schoemans trip is amazing, but it doesn't fit everyone's budget and can be a lot of flying if you're not keen on light aircraft. I would really recommend the Schoemans if you want to enjoy the true wilderness aspect of this area, as people have mentioned above, so very few visitors make it to these areas that you are really privileged to experience the solitude, and for me these areas appear not to have changed in millennia, which cannot be said about many regions in the world.
But to do something less accessible and more affordable, how about a scenic flight from Swakopmund, there are really nice ones for an hour and a half which show you one or two wrecks, Sandwich Harbour and Conception Bay. Still pricey but if there are more than 2 of you in the pane the price per person comes down. And then factor in a day driving the coastal road, maybe with an overnight stop at Cape Cross Lodge, before heading inland to Damaraland.
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