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“Great times!”

Etosha National Park
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3-Hour Etosha National Park Game Drive
Ranked #2 of 165 things to do in Namibia
Certificate of Excellence
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Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Columbiaville, Michigan, United States
Level 5 Contributor
85 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Great times!”
Reviewed December 8, 2013

We went to Namutoni in the Etosha National Park in June of 2013. We had a wonderful time. We stayed in the Bush Chalets and they were very clean and well kept. We walked to the water hole in the late afternoon and saw a rhino. We also took various day trips and saw many animals. The restaurant food was very good and th staff was very friendly.

Visited June 2013
Thank WorldTravelerP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Norman, Oklahoma
Level 6 Contributor
827 reviews
393 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 598 helpful votes
“A place of possibilities, never know what you will run into”
Reviewed December 6, 2013

Etosha Nationa Park is an amazing place. It is far from any major city as it is located in northern Namibia, but there are good roads to get there. Entrance fee per day per person is very reasonable compared to many other parks in Africa. Once you enter the park the roads are dirt but are in pretty good condition and you can drive in most areas with a regular car, although having a car with higher clearance is really nice to see the game better.

Not much in the way of visitor centers with lots of information about the park or ranger you can talk to and ask questions, but there are some books you can buy about the park. Visitors should have as a minimum the guide to the park which gives you maps and some information about the animals you may see. There two other books we saw about the different waterholes and the game that visits them. One of these guides was very useful helping us decide which waterhole to visit as there are many and you have to plan your routes.

All three camps in the park open their gates at sunrise and close them at sunset and you have to be in before they close the gates as visitors are not allowed to drive in the park after dark.
Many people come in tours but this is a nice place for the independent traveler. Binoculars and good bird/mammal/waterhole guides are essential to get the most out of your independent travels.

Picnic and toilet stops are not very numerous and the ones we saw were not in good shape.
All three camps have shops, bathrooms, restaurants so you can always include one of them as a bathroom stop.
The speed limit is 60 km/hr or about 36 miles per hour so you have to plan your routes to avoid rushing back to your camp.

Because of the distances and the number of day drives you can do, I would recommend a minimum of 4 nights in the park. Okaokouejo is a camp you most visit as it has the waterhole with probably the most animals. This is also the most popular camp and it can get crowded. Halali was a camp we enjoyed even though the waterhole requires a bit of a walk and it did not have as many animals. This camp has a more laid back atmosphere and our impression was that the food at the restaurant, at least for breakfast, was better. Namutoni is the camp on the east side. We did not stay there, but we visited on a day drive. We did not like it as much as the other two camps.

This is a place where it pays to get out early and start your day drive. The nice thing about this park is that you never know what you are going to run into. One day we ran into 3 cheetahs eating a Springbok next to the road under a tree, the next day at the same spot there was not the slight evidence of such thing having taken place. Could not even find the horns. So get our early, drive slowly, look under the bushes (antelope and lions or other animals may be resting in the shade under the trees). Don’t drink too much liquid as bathroom areas where you can get out are few. Sunglasses are important because of the intense brightness in a sunny day.

I should note that if you book a room or chalet it will have breakfast included. Breakfast starts at 6 or 6:30 am depending on the camp.

A nice park, never boring. I would love to return in the wet season to see it when it is green.

Visited November 2013
Thank Sarracenia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seoul, South Korea
Level 6 Contributor
138 reviews
68 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 122 helpful votes
“The Safari You Wanted To See”
Reviewed December 1, 2013

To tell you truth, I wasn't looking forward to it that much. Namibia's known for its desert, so wildlife in this country? I felt it wasn't going to be that good. I felt that way more as I started from southern west part of the country, where most of things around are sands and there isn't really any animals to be spotted. But boy was I wrong. Scenery is spectacular, and though chances of seeing 'big 5' isn't any bigger than other parks, even seeing zebras and giraffes can be a lot of fun due to its beautiful backdrops. What I enjoyed the most was, however, actually what was at the camp site. There's a huge watering hole they made right next to the campsite, so the animals will come to drink water at night. There are benches and little bit of light, and you can just grab some beer and sit on those benches, and just wait for some surprises. Wind breezes are so cool that is pleasant change from torturing heat of the day, and just sitting there with a beer in your hand as wild animals come and go as they please is just something you can't experience anywhere else. I've realized how fascinating this park really is after I've left it. I traveld 50+ days since leaving the park and I've visited different national parks and safaris in Africa. This one stands to be one of the best. If you're in Namibia, do yourself a favor and pay a visit.

Visited February 2013
1 Thank kchae
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Level 6 Contributor
125 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
“Wildlife that is easy to see and huge in numbers”
Reviewed November 30, 2013

Etosha NP is the prime park in Namibia. Easy to get there from Windhoek, the capital. Etosha has a excellent variety of accommodations, good food, nice staff and good game drive all at reasonable cost. You can use credit cards.
I highly recommend having your own car so you can go at your pace, watch at a waterhole as long as you want and avoid the high cost of tours. You can always take a game drive at the park rest stops.

Visited September 2013
Thank KerryandMary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
437 reviews
231 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 573 helpful votes
“More variety than numbers...”
Reviewed November 19, 2013

Background: Our overland tour group included a foray into the Etosha NP as part of our Namibian itinerary.

PROS: Owing to its wide-open spaces and exposed waterholes, wild game is far easier to spot and photograph here. Although variety is more abundant, they tend to have smaller herds of animals (We are not talking about two million wildebeests here.) The Moringa waterhole is the best for elephant spotting -- herds and herds come by all throughout the day. Birding isn't too bad either. Okaukuejo Waterhole is right next to the Okaukeujo Camp. It is floodlit and draws black rhino almost every night as well as numerous elephants, especially between June and December. (This is considered by many to be the best place in Africa to see the endangered and solitary-natured black rhino.) The Okondeka Waterhole is among the best for active lion sightings, and these apex predators can often be found with fresh kills.

CONS: The Etosha NP occupies an extensive acreage and the distance between waterholes is a definite limiting factor. For example, Halali is about 60 km away east from Okakuejo, and another 60 km away to Namutoni. One cannot simply go to one and then proceed to another. This is where careful planning and diligent research have to be done prior to going there.

Caveat: As a rule, an attraction ought to be judged on its own merits. Comparing the Etosha NP to another NP in another country is like comparing apples and oranges. Agree?

Verdict: IMHO, Etosha NP is one of the top 3 must-see attractions in Namibia (along with Sossusvlei and the Fish River Canyon). Hence, if staying only in Namibia, include this in your list. Highly recommended. Grade A.


Visited December 2012
1 Thank Eternal_Nomad_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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