Desert Trails riding holiday in Namibia - Far and Ride
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Desert Trails, Namibia





Reviews



An amazing experience. A trail full of incredible beauty and full of adventure. Finishing with an incredible sense of achievement. Overall it was adventurous, wonderful, physically challenging, beautiful and re-building. My favourite memory was the vastness of the desert, watching the loose horses running free in the long grass, seeing the sunset and sleeping under the stars with my horse Leo.

Alexandra W.
The riding is unforgettable; the pace is mixed interspersed with some memorable long gallops

Adrian F., Read review
I had the most fabulous time galloping around the desert - I still grin like an idiot thinking about it and I look forward to doing something horsey with you again in the future.

William J.
The ride was simply amazing!

Sophy R.
 

Horses



Type of horses:

Arabs, Trakehner, Haflinger, ranch horses and all types of cross-breeds.

Nature of horses:

Reliable, sturdy mounts, swift and sure-footed, used to tough terrain.

Height of horses:

14.3 - 16 hh

Weight limit:

85kg / 187lbs (when dressed in riding gear!) - heavier riders (up to 93kg dressed in riding gear) can be accommodated but will need to pay a surcharge. Please note that you may be weighed!

Tack type:

Skirted saddles (endurance type), well-fitted to horse and comfortable for rider. Each saddle is fitted with two specially made water bottle holders (bottles supplied). You are welcome to take your own western-style sheepskin cover/seat saver if you like.

 

Weather



 

Ride Description

Exploring the Namibian desert on horseback is one of the most exciting riding experiences in the world. From galloping across vast open plains to cantering up and down the sand dunes, all under a spotless blue sky, adventurous riders will love the riding opportunities available to them as they journey across the oldest desert in the world. Spending the nights next to a dwindling campfire, admiring the stars and enjoying the company of your horse, is a memory to last a lifetime.

These trails are accompanied by experienced guides and are suitable for the competent, fit rider who is prepared for a challenging adventure. The terrain is often tough, ranging from rocky hills and riverbeds to gravel plains, undulating sand dunes or wide, open expanses suitable for a long gallop. Riding is between 20 - 50km per day on average, sometimes up to eight hours in the saddle, with pace depending on the terrain and temperatures. Groups can be large (up to 15 riders with 2 or 3 guides) as Namibia offers such open countryside. Riders should have strong personalities and a good sense of humour to make the most of these trails!

Most of the horses are crossbreeds from a variety of breeds that came into Namibia during the past century; these breeds included Trakener, Hanoverian, Shagya Arabs, Boerperd or Cape Horses, more recently Arabians and even the odd Haflinger. They have also lately included some purebred Nooitgedacht horses which are known for their hardiness and kind temperament. They are small to medium-sized (approximately 14.3 - 16hh) and are tough and sure-footed, able to cope with the tough terrain and long riding hours. They can survive in the harsh dry and mountainous environments where they were bred and raised. Due to the tough nature of these rides, the best trail horses are those with strong personalities who often are quite opinionated. Riders can enjoy the ride if they trust their horse and cooperate with the horse since he is generally more experienced in negotiating the terrain. Your hosts believe that each rider will find a horse to match his/her personality and will be going home with fond memories of a remarkable experience. They are good-natured and reliable, making the ideal mounts for a desert adventure. Not only will they carry you through these wild landscapes, such as the Skeleton Coast, but from them you may also have the chance to spot elephant, rhino, cheetah or plains game as they move across the desert (depending on your chosen trail). Read all about the different trails below and get in touch to book the ride of your life!

**Please note that these are challenging rides, for experienced riders only. Please read the descriptions carefully before booking as your hosts reserve the right to un-horse you if they feel you are not up to the ride, and they offer no refund. Please also note that weight limits are strictly adhered to and you may be weighed.**

See Programmes.

 

Food & Accommodation

During all trails you will spend the first and last nights in comfortable, twin-bedded rooms at guest farms, lodges or guesthouses. Rooms mostly have en suite facilities.

Camping accommodation is provided during the trail rides and you stay in large, domed tents (based on two people sharing) with camp beds, sleeping bags and swags (canvas bedrolls). The bedding generally consists of lambskin, duvet or quilt and pillow. There are also folding chairs and hot showers. It's quite common for guests to choose to sleep out under the stars, taking their camp bed out of the tent for a truly magical overnight experience. Camp is usually pitched at sunset.

Most of the guests on these rides are happy to share accommodation with fellow riders but single rooms are available for the nights at the beginning or end of the trail, subject to a supplement. Sometimes a single tent can be provided on request but this is not always a possibility.

The package prices include all meals and drinks during the ride (only drinks at the guest farms, restaurants, petrol stations etc. are not included in the rate). During the trail you will generally enjoy meals cooked over the open fire at your camp, usually something typically Namibian such as a 'braai' or 'potjie' (casserole).

Breakfast is often porridge or cereal with some cheeses and cold meats. Lunch is usually picnic style with sandwiches or perhaps a cold salad served from the back-up truck. Dinner, as cooked on the open camp fire, tends to be hearty stews, fish or vegetables with a dessert. Vegetarians can be catered for with prior notice. Tea, coffee and juice are provided, along with other cold drinks, beers, wine etc. in the evening.

 

Activities

Riders are on the move continuously so any additional activities such as bushmen demonstrations or visiting gold mines are an integral part of the trail, some at an additional cost.

There are numerous opportunities for wildlife spotting of all kinds from elephants and giraffes to a variety of unusual birds. The area is full of impressive rock formations and part of the appeal of this ride is being able to watch the ever changing colours of the landscape and the daytime mirages.

Non-riders can accompany the lodge ride - please get in touch for details.

 

Further Details

Languages: English and German

Health requirements: Good health and fitness is important for these tough desert trails. If you have severe allergies, heart or respiratory problems or other physical limitations then please consult your doctor. You must be able to dismount and walk beside your horse when needed.

Age limit: Experienced, healthy child riders are accepted but parents are asked to use their discretion as these are tough rides. Anyone unable to keep up with the group may have to travel in the support vehicle sometimes along with any non riders.

Tuition: No

Included: Rates include some airport transfers (depending on itinerary), accommodation, meals and drinks during the ride, guided riding as per itinerary, equipment and luggage transportation.

Not included: Flights, travel insurance, extra transfers (for any reason, including flight delays), drinks at lodges (first and last nights) or at petrol stations/restaurants, extra activities, tips and souvenirs.

 

Travel Information

Depending on your chosen programme, you will be required to fly into Windhoek or Cape Town airports. Flights for Windhoek can be booked with Air Namibia from London Gatwick flying overnight on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. Return flights from Windhoek to London Gatwick fly overnight on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

South African Airways have daily flights from London Heathrow to Windhoek via Johannesburg.

On all programmes, transfers are included from specified airports and often at specific set times. Flights should be scheduled as follows;

Namib Desert Ride and Damara Elephant Ride
Arrival: Windhoek Airport (arrival before dinner)
Depart: Windhoek Airport (scheduled flight departing after 15:00pm)

Desert Canyons Trail
Arrival: Cape Town International (arrival strictly by 9:30 am)
Departure: Cape Town International Airport (scheduled flights departing after 20:00pm)

Wolwedans to Wild Horses
Arrival: Windhoek Airport (arrival strictly before 12:00pm)
Departure: Windhoek Airport (scheduled flights after 15:00pm, following charter flight from Luderitz arriving at 12:45pm**)
** Please note that this route often experiences delays.

Wolwedans Lodge Ride
Arrival: Wolwedans airstrip or Windhoek airport (Arrival strictly before 12:00pm)
Departure: Wolwedans airstrip or Windhoek airport (scheduled flights after 15:00pm)

Please contact us for help with choosing the right flights, times etc.

Airport: Windhoek International

Alternative Airport: Cape Town

 

Programmes


Namib Desert Trail



A horseback journey across the oldest desert in the world, exploring the spectacular contrasts of Central Namibia. Highlights include riding from Khomas Hochland Mountains and escarpment to the Kuiseb Canyon, Tinkas, Tumas and Welwitschia plains, Moon Valley, seasonal Swakop River, coastal dunes and the Atlantic Ocean. 

The trail is not for the faint-hearted and a good sense of humour is recommended. Horse and rider are brought together with patience and respect for one another as they venture out on this challenging experience. This is one of the toughest but most rewarding horse riding trails in the world!

The days are long beginning at sunrise, departure is usually by 8 am with 4-5 hours riding before lunch. Lunch varies between an hour to two and a half hours followed by another 2-3 hours riding in the afternoon

Details

Windhoek to Windhoek: 11 days, 10 nights, 9 days riding (nearly 400 km from the central highlands to the Atlantic Ocean), 2 lodge based nights (first and last) and 8 nights camping

Itinerary:

Day 1: 

You will be met at Windhoek Airport (Hosea Kutako Airport) and transferred to your overnight accommodation where you will have the chance to meet your fellow riders and guides before dinner and a short briefing. 

Day 2:

After an early breakfast you will depart for the Sossuvlei area (approximately a 5 hour transfer) via the Spreetshoogt Pass, which delivers the first enticing glimpse of the seemingly endless Namib Desert below. Upon arrival, you will enjoy a tasty lunch before embarking on an afternoon excursion, climbing towering sand dunes for a spectacularly panoramic view of Sossuvlei. Back at camp, a good meal and drinks will settle you into the flow of the ride. 

Day 3:

The start of your riding adventure begins amid the encircling Naukluft (now'k-looft, German for narrow gorge) - a short ride before lunch allows you to get more acquainted with your horse before you ride into the undulations and isolated hills which are a feature of this area.

Day 4:

Continue riding through the isolated desert. Your riding days will begin at sunrise and generally you will depart by 8 am with 4-5 hours riding before lunch. Lunch break varies from 1-2.5 hours  followed by another 2-3 hours riding in the afternoon. Please note this is a true desert so routes may change due to unpredictable weather and other unforeseen circumstances. Each night on the trail is spent camping.

Day 5 & 6 (the canyons):

While Nambia's westward flowing rivers rarely flow, they all run through deep valleys etched at a time when Namibia was wetter and sea levels were lower.  We cross two River Canyons on our way to the Namib plains: the Gaun (Gow'aab) and the much larger Kuiseb (kwee'seb) which forms a dramatic end to the 400 km long Namib Sand Sea. Following the tracks of mountain zebra which crisscross the steep sides of the canyon, a technical descent requires some walking /scrambling into and out of the Canyon.  The high narrow walls of the canyon preserve an almost year round supply of precious water for the game in this area.

Day 7-10 (Namib plains to the Swakop River):

Good going affords some fast paced riding on the wide grassy plains on the Namib. Occasional dry watercourses, distinguishable by the long lines of acacia trees marking their  courses, much favoured resting place of giraffe, springbok and oryx. As the plains become more arid strange shapes form and disappear in mirages and the dinosaur-like plants such as the gnarled Welwitschia Mirablis tell of a land of great antiquity and also of tremendous solitude.  The Swakop river has eroded a truly ancient geology (600 million years old) exposing a bizarre moon landscape-like geology. Curious black ridges of  dolerite intrusions form whalebacks on the hill surrounding the river basin. And finally to the sea with the last canter along the soft white beach sand of Swakopmund - the end of a truly epic adventure.

Day 11:

After breakfast it's time to say goodbye before returning to Windhoek by a 4 hour transfer, arriving in time for flights departing after 15:00pm, unless you prefer to stay on in Swakopmund for a few extra days. 

Take note: Routes can be changed due to unpredictable weather (sandstorm!) and other unforeseen conditions!

To avoid the travelling time by road to Windhoek it is possible to make special road transfer to Walvis Bay International airport at the end of the ride, and then fly direct from Walvis to Johannesburg.

Additional attractions: Many guests extend their Namibia experience from this point with an add-on itinerary of the many exciting activities available from Swakopmund. Local attractions include the highest dunes in the world - the spectacular Sossusvlei. Go dune sand boarding, desert sky diving, dolphin cruising or surf fishing. If it's big game viewing you're after, take a short charter flight to world famous Etosha Pan and experience African luxury in a unique treetop camp or a desert fort.



Accommodation: 8 nights camping, 2 nights in a lodge (first and last night).
Minimum group size: 5
Maximum group size: 15
Ability description: This is the most extreme of the trails on offer here and is considered one of the toughest riding trails around. You should be an experienced trail rider with good physical fitness. You must feel completely at ease riding at all paces and over uneven terrain. It is important to be secure and balanced in the saddle, capable of riding up to 50kms a day and often at speed. Guests are responsible for grooming, checking over and tacking up their own horse.
Type of ride: Trail
Total riding time: Long hours in the saddle, 6 - 8 hours per day generally and cover 20-50km.
Departure dates: 2017:
9-19 April (FULL),
13-23 August,
24 Sept - 4 Oct.
 
Pricing: 2017:

Price per person sharing £4000
Single supplement: £180

Included: All riding, accommodation (shared) and meals, drinks (except in lodges, restaurants and petrol stations etc.), ground transfers on arrival from Windhoek airport to the guesthouse and from the Windhoek B&B to ride start point, transfer to central Windhoek and Windhoek International airport on departure day.

Excluded: flights, travel insurance, additional transfers (for any reason, including flight delays), single supplement, personal drinks and refreshments at all lodges, restaurants, petrol stations etc., accommodation not listed on the itinerary, additional activities, tips and souvenirs, extra horses for riders over the 85kg weight limit (weight includes riding gear), safari staff gratuities (approx £10) per guest per day).

Extra horse charge: £700 (for riders over 85 kg but under 93kg, dressed for riding).



Damara Elephant Ride



Almost inaccessible, the Damaraland is a truly spectacular part of Namibia with a range of fascinating landscapes and sights to be experienced. The vast open spaces are almost incomprehensible whereas the ancient craters and prehistoric remnants are interesting to explore. A surprising range of colours merge to create this primeval environment and visiting the forbidding Skeleton Coast is a memory not to be forgotten. During the ride you may encounter elephant, rhino, cheetah and plains game or be caught by rivers in flood, all of which add to this exhilarating adventure. 

Highlights include a visit to the Twyfelfontein rock engravings and cultural village, desert-adapted elephant and rhino, dramatic landscapes, areas of real wilderness, the 'Save the Rhino' project and seeing the Cape Cross seal colony. 

Details

Windhoek - Windhoek. 11 days, 10 nights, 7½ riding days, ½ day sightseeing famous rock engravings at Twyfelfontein (World Heritage Site), visit to cultural village and the seal colony at Cape Cross.

Itinerary:

Day 1:

You will be met on arrival at Windhoek International airport (Hosea Kutako airport) and transferred to a specified B&B in Windhoek. You will meet the rest of the riding group here for a dinner and a representative from the trails will brief you about the ride.

Day 2:

An early breakfast before your journey really begins - a 7 hour transfer to a camp near Twyfelfontein (Doubtful Spring) with lunch en route. Here you will meet the horses and the team. 

Day 3:

This morning's ride is a chance to get used to your assigned horse. You will explore the Abu-Huab area with its sandy plains, ideal and inviting for great canters. There are also some interesting rock formations to be seen. In the afternoon you will visit the Twyfelfontein rock engravings and a cultural village before enjoying sundowners at a local view point. 

Days 4 - 7: Huab and Ugab River systems

With the rising sun on your back, you will spend the next four days on your westward journey to the distant Atlantic. Amongst these ephemeral river systems the cycle of rainfall dictates the seasonal movements of game - whilst not concentrated or in large numbers you may encounter elephant, rhino, oryx, springbok and other desert-adapted wildlife. The huge glacial valleys and impressive mountains which have been eroded, fractured and folded by cataclysmic eruptions present a well preserved snapshot of this ancient land.

Day 8 - 9: The Great Plains

Leaving the river valleys behind you cross the vastness of the open plains with the striking massive of the Brandberg (burning mountain) forming a dramatic backdrop. The endless plains allow for some fast riding as you approach the Messum Caldera - the eroded remains of a massive collapsed volcano.

Day 10:

Your last riding day with a planned arrival at the beach around lunchtime! The Skeleton Coast is an unpredictable shore where the infamous easterly winds either make the water warm enough for a swim... or whip up a sandstorm! The spectacularly formidable Skeleton Coast is is so called due to the wrecked hulls of stranded ships which dot the coastline.

After dismounting for the last time you will be driven to Cape Cross to see the seal colonies and then on to the very comfortable Cape Cross Lodge to overnight. 

Day 11:

Depart for Windhoek and Windhoek International Airport (a 5 - 6 hour transfer). Earliest possible flight departure time is 15:00.

Take note: These routes are specifically vague as your guides will decide on the exact trail depending on the prevailing weather and terrain conditions and on which areas are offering the best riding!

Additional attractions: Many guests extend their Namibia experience from this point with an add-on itinerary. Stay a few extra days in Swakopmund where activities available include: dolphin cruises, scenic flights over the area, sand boarding, sky diving, desert tours, quad biking. Visit Etosha National Park before or after the ride for excellent African game viewing opportunities. Visit Sossosvlei sand dunes after the ride.



Accommodation: 8 nights camping, 2 nights in lodge (first and last nights).
Minimum group size: 5
Maximum group size: 15
Ability description: This is a challenging programme, suitable for experienced riders with good physical fitness. You should feel completely at ease riding at all paces and over uneven terrain. It is important to be secure and balanced in the saddle, capable of riding up to 50kms a day and often at speed. Guests are responsible for grooming, checking over and tacking up their own horse.
Type of ride: Trail
Total riding time: 6 - 8 hours per day
Departure dates: 2017:
30 April-10 May (FULL)
2-12 July
 
Pricing: 2017:
Per person sharing: £4000
Single supplement: £180
Extra Horse £700

Included: All riding, accommodation (shared) with meals and drinks, as well as road transfers on arrival from Windhoek airport to the guesthouse and from the Windhoek B&B to ride start point, transfer to central Windhoek and Windhoek International airport on departure day.

Excluded: flights, travel insurance, single supplement, personal drinks and refreshments at all lodges, restaurants, petrol stations etc., accommodation not listed on the itinerary, additional activities, tips and souvenirs, extra horses for riders over the 85kg weight limit (weight includes riding gear) but under 93kg, safari staff gratuities (approx £10) per guest per day).



Desert Canyons Trail



With a combination of dramatic canyon landscapes, spacious desert plains and the mighty Orange River, this ride offers the opportunity to experience both inaccessible Namibia and real wilderness areas, while riding without limitation. The Fish River Canyon area is world renowned as one of Africa's most magnificent sites; it is also the second largest canyon in the world. Riding begins in the upper Fish River canyon, before Nama Karoo plains invite you for endless canters, only to be stopped by the Orange/Gariep River, which forms the southern border of Namibia. You will discover a diverse wonderland, with some of the most impressive geological features in Africa, as well as a home for some of the country's rich and varied wildlife. Distances covered daily will vary between 20 and 50 kilometres.

This ride crosses over two private parks; Gondwana Park and Aussenkehr Park and together covering an area of about 237,000 ha, dedicated to conservation and tourism. These parks fall within the Nama Karoo Desert biome and are on the fringe of the transitional area between Nama Karoo and Succulent Karoo, the Orange River basin as Aussenkehr being the most arid part of the Nama Karoo biome. Aussenkehr Park is also home to a small Namib Feral Horse population at Garub in the Namib Desert, relocated during the 1992 drought.

Please note that due to the terrain, this trail starts more slowly than the other trails in Namibia and is therefore the best trail for less fit or less experienced riders (although you will still be riding 20-50km per day towards the end of the trail).

Details

Fly into and return to Cape Town - road transfer to Fish River Canyon and return: 11 days, 10 nights, 8 1/2 days riding, a visit to the main view point at the famous Fish River Canyon and meet up with group at lunchtime on day 2 of the itinerary. 

Itinerary:

Day 1-2 Cape Town - Holoog:

You will be met at Cape Town International Airport strictly at 9:30am and transferred north towards the Namibian border. You will stay overnight at a guest house or lodge in Springbok on the edge of the Transfrontier National Park. You will enjoy dinner, bed and breakfast. The next day, after you have crossed the border into Namibia itself, you will reach Holoog (meaning hollow eye) Ranger Station in time for a tasty lunch with the safari crew. Rested and well fed, you will now have your first chance to meet the horses and saddle up in the afternoon for a relaxed ride in and around the Gaap River with its fascinating rock formations and diverse plant life. Your overnight accommodation will be at Holoog.

Day 3-5 The Canyons:

Over the next few days you will be exploring the canyons of the fish river following the Gaap River and crossing several small canyons which crisscross this very diverse area, rich in fascinating plant life. These canyons are also home to a great number of game species, including giraffe. Between the canyons, you will be able to enjoy some wide plains as well, so the pace quickens with some lovely long canters. For the second night you will camp at the Canõn Roadhouse; a curious ‘living museum’ of old cars and movie memorabilia. The next overnight will be at the intimate Mountain Camp lodge with its spectacular views out across the canyons and plains. 

Day 6-10 The Plains:

Starting with an early morning transfer to the main viewpoint of the Canyons of the Fish river Valley, you will take a brief stop for lunch at the mountain camp before continuing on the riding trail. The next few days will see you discovering some of the more open landscapes of this canyon system, with plenty of opportunities for long canters and gallops and overnight accommodations in basic camps each night. 

Being both a winter and summer rainfall biome, the Fish River Canyon area is known for its rich plant-life diversity and frequent large herds of seasonal plains game species. This is a great chance to get up close and personal with some of Africa's most memorable and awe-inspiring animals. During one of the days, you will ride to your overnight stop at the hot-springs of Ais-Ais, where the deliciously warm water of the spring will invite you to take a dip – don't forget to bring your swimming costumes! 

Your final day of riding will see you dropping down into the valley of the Orange River - the last frontier to South Africa - where you will enjoy the last overnight stay on the banks of the river. Today you may even encounter the wild horse herd that calls this area home.

Day 11:

After an early breakfast you depart for a 9½ hour commute to Cape Town International Airport, arriving between 17:00 and 18:00. 

Take note: These routes are specifically vague as your guides will decide on the exact trail depending on the prevailing weather and terrain conditions and on which areas are offering the best riding!

Additional attractions: Many guests extend their Namibia experience from this point with an add-on itinerary. Guided canoe safaris on the Orange River, or if it's big game viewing you're after, a charter flight will take you to world famous Etosha Pan, for unmatched big game viewing and a few nights of luxury in a unique treetop camp, or a desert fort. Alternatively, you can continue your holiday in or around Cape Town - perhaps riding in the Winelands or travelling along the Garden Route.



Accommodation: Five nights camping, three nights lodge, two nights tents.
Minimum group size: 4
Maximum group size: 15
Ability description: Strong intermediate riders with good physical fitness. You should feel completely at ease riding at all paces and over uneven terrain. It is important to be secure and balanced in the saddle, capable of riding up to 50kms a day and often at speed. Guests are responsible for grooming, checking over and tacking up their own horse.
Type of ride: Trail
Total riding time: 6 - 8 hours per day
Departure dates: 2017:
23 July-2 August
 
Pricing: 2017:
Per person sharing: £4000
Single supplement: £180

Included: 10 nights accommodation (shared) and meals, drinks (except in lodges, restaurants and petrol stations etc) and all riding during the trail, as well as road transfers from and to Cape Town international airport at the beginning and end of the trail.

Excluded: flights, travel insurance, transfers outside of set times (for any reason, including flight delays), single supplement, personal drinks and refreshments at all lodges, restaurants, petrol stations etc., accommodation not listed on the itinerary, additional activities, tips and souvenirs, extra horses for riders over the 85kg weight limit (weight must include riding gear), safari staff gratuities (we recommend approximately £10 per guest, per day).

Extra horse supplement: £700 payable for riders over 85kg but under 93kg, dressed in riding clothes.



Wolwedans to Wild Horses



Pioneering new trails where none existed before, this is a real adventure! From the great dune sea of the central Namib to the very edge of the Sperrgebiet National Park this ride covers some extraordinarily diverse desert terrain.  Immense grassy plains, signature inselbergs (island mountains) and the rugged Mountain Biosphere Reserve of Tiras.  Ending at Klein Aus Vista near the home of the Wild Horses of the Namib.  This adventurous ride includes some of the most breathtaking desertscapes in the world.

Day 1:

You will be met at the Windhoek International Airport and transferred to your overnight accommodation. Meet the rest of your riding group for dinner where a member of the safari staff will brief you about what to expect on your adventure.

Day 2:

After breakfast you will be driven to your lunch spot in the quaint town of Maltahoe, then a descent down the Zaris Pass to the Wolwedans Private Reserve – approximately 2,5 hours. Settle in and explore your surroundings, meet your crew and horses before enjoying sundowners in the soft fading evening light with the spectacular Milky Way arching overhead.

Day 3:

Today you set off into the wide expanse of one of the largest Nature Reserves in Southern Africa. Riding across vast plains of truly unspoiled countryside with exceptional panoramic views where sentinel inselbergs (island mountains) dot the desertscape. Herds of Oryx, Springbok and Zebra are a common sight. Tonight you overnight at Boulders Camp nestled amongst huge granite boulders adding to the spectacular desertscape stretching as far as the eye can see.

Day 4 - 9:

Setting off across open country where good going allows some fast-paced riding. Lunch is enjoyed under a convenient tree or interesting spot with a good view. You reach our overnight camps in time to enjoy sundowners in the pastel light the Namib is known for, sleeping under the magnificent starry sky. Few places on earth afford so little light pollution and an incomparable view of the southern constellation. Our route may vary depending on weather conditions or other circumstances but be assured, every day will be memorable

Day 10:

Today you set off for your excursions to the Wild Horses of the Namib and Kolmanskop, the old German diamond mining town and explore the coastal town of Luderitz. You end with your last memorable dinner together around the camp-fire.

Day 11:

After breakfast and fond farewells the air transfer to Windhoek departs at 10:10am, arriving in the early afternoon (approximately 12:45).  ** Please note that there are often delays in this route, so you should allow plenty of time if you are planning to catch a connecting flight on the same day.

Please note that this is a sample itinerary - routes can change due to unpredictable weather and other unforeseen circumstances.



Minimum group size: 4
Maximum group size: 15
Ability description: Strong intermediate riders and above with good physical fitness. You must feel completely at ease riding at all paces and over uneven terrain. It is important to be secure and balanced in the saddle, capable of riding up to 20-60kms a day and often at speed. Guests are responsible for grooming, checking over and tacking up their own horse.
Type of ride: Trail
Total riding time: Long hours in the saddle, 6 - 8 hours per day generally.
Departure dates: 2017:
21-31 May
3-13 September
 
Pricing: 2017:
Per person sharing: £4000
Single supplement: £180

Included: 10 nights accommodation (shared) and meals, drinks (except in lodges, restaurants and petrol stations etc) and all riding as per the itinerary. Also included are set-time transfers from Wolwedans airstrip (departing strictly at 12:00pm) and return air transfers to Windhoek from Luderitz scheduled to depart at 10:10am, arriving to 12:45pm **(however, please note that delays can often occur with this leg, so please be sure to allow plenty of time if you are booking an onward flight).

Excluded: flights, travel insurance, additional transfers (for any reason, including flight delays), single supplement, personal drinks and refreshments at all lodges, restaurants, petrol stations etc., lunch and dinner on the 2 nights in Swakopmund (lunches may be provided on excursions), accommodation not listed on the itinerary, additional activities, tips and souvenirs, extra horses for riders over the 85kg weight limit (weight must include riding gear), safari staff gratuities (we recommend approximately £10 per guest, per day).

Extra horse supplement: £700 for riders over 85kg but under 93kg, dressed in riding clothes.



Wolwedans Lodge Ride



A luxury lodge based itinerary on the private reserve of Wolwedans. This ride offers an taste of the finest experiences the Namib desert has to offer - towering dunes, vast open landscapes, the sentinel inselbergs (island mountains) as well as a large variety of desert adapted game animals. Encircled by distant purple-hued mountains, the unimpeded vistas you will witness here are enough to take your breath away. At night you will be blessed by the unending Milky Way arching gracefully above, in a sky unpolluted by light. The Wolwedans is one of the largest continuous nature reserves in the whole of southern Africa, with a rich and diverse wildlife that includes some of the most scenic desert landscapes in the world.

The itinerary is completely flexible and you can stay for as long as you like, but below is a possible example:

Arrival Day:

If you are not flying directly to Wolwedans airstrip on the first day, then an additional nights accommodation in Windhoek may be required.

Day One: Windhoek to Wolwedans:

The trip from Windhoek to Wolwedans is approximately 6.5 hours by car - or 1 hour 45 minutes by air. The road route traverses the highlands of Namibia before dramatically dropping from the plateau and being presented by the phenomenal view of the Namib desert below. After settling in to your accommodation and enjoying some late lunch, you will be given the opportunity to meet your guides and horses. Setting out for the first ride of your trip, you will be able to experience your first taste of the regions natural splendour in this pristine wonderland.

Day 2:

A second day exploring the area around Wolwedans before riding south to the far edge of the reserve tomorrow.

Days 3-5 The Great Plains:

In the plains you will enjoy relaxed full day rides, crossing this timeless landscape of golden savannah. Dotted here and there with enchanting fairy circles and magnificent inselbergs (island mountains) and always the constant presence of the Naukluft mountains in the distance. You will discover an extraordinarily rich and living tapestry filled with colour and animation, experience the audible hush of the desert and the strange way sound interacts with this sandy landscape. Finally, you will witness the unparalleled beauty of the inky-blue Namibian night sky.

Day 7: Back at Base:

On your last full day on the Wolwedans reserve, you will be given the option of a morning ride, a scenic drive or a morning spent at leisure in these wonderfully peaceful surroundings. At additional cost, you may even choose to take an early morning balloon flight over the desert or a chartered flight across the dunes and on to the Diamond Coast beyond. The afternoon will then be spent enjoying your final few hours on horseback, riding through the pastel-hued sunset, on the desert dunes.

Day 8: Departure Day

After a relaxed breakfast, you will be transferred back to Windhoek (or Wolwedans airstrip) and should arrive by 15:00 in time for your onward flight.

Take note: These routes are specifically vague as your guides will decide on the exact trail depending on the prevailing weather and terrain conditions and on which areas are offering the best riding!



Accommodation: During the ride you stay in small, tastefully furnished luxury lodges. The camps used and the order of the accommodation can change. If available, you will stay at each location for two consecutive nights.
Minimum group size: 2
Maximum group size: 8
Ability description: Intermediate and above - although this is a relaxed ride, all riders should be fit and able to deal with the challenging desert terrain.
Type of ride: Trail.
Total riding time: 2-4 hours, covering 10-30km per day.
Departure dates: 2017: Tailor-made to suit.
 
Pricing: 2017:

Please contact us for rates. Rides are tailor-made to suit your group and vary depending on the numbers in your group and how many nights you wish to stay for.

There is a minimum stay of three nights.

Mobile safaris in the Tiras mountains are also possible but require a minimum of four riders.