ETOSHA NATIONAL PARK
Why travel here?
  • The Park covers an area of nearly 22.912 km² and is completely fenced for the protection of the animals.

  • Known as "the place of dry water", Etosha National Park is one of the most significant game reserves in the world and offers a truly unique wildlife experience. 

  • Etosha National Park lies 500 km north of Windhoek. 

  • It has gained this reputation not only for the volumes of wildlife and bird life, but also for its good infrastructure.

  • Over 700km of roads (with regular toilet facilities and viewing platforms) – perfect for self drives and even two-wheel drive vehicles, except in the rainy season  – or hang out at various waterholes and let the animals come to you. 

  • Walking in the Park is prohibited but the pans at the three main camps of Namutoni, Halali and Okaukuejo are floodlit and at night, black rhino and elephant are often seen coming in to drink. 

  • Etosha is one of the last remaining wild sanctuaries of the extremely endangered black rhino. 

  • 114 animal species and 110 species of reptile are found in Etosha. 

  • Four of the Big Five can be seen here: black and white rhino, elephant, lion and leopard. 

  • Etosha's elephants are thought to be the tallest in Africa, and the black-faced impala is endemic to this area. 

  • Other species found here include the bat eared fox, cheetah, the endemic Damara dik-dik, both Burchell's and Hartmann's zebra, blue wildebeest, eland, gemsbok, giraffe, kudu, red hartebeest, springbok and yellow-tailed mongoose. 

  • Nearly 400 bird species have been recorded at Etosha, including eagles, hawks, other raptors, black korhaans, ostrich, blue cranes, flamingos, incredible clouds of quelea and flocks of doves and Namaqua sandgrouse. 

  • The massive Etosha Pan, a large dusty depression of salt and dusty clay, is 130 kilometres long and 50 km wide at the widest point – formed about 2 million years ago, this was originally a lake fed by the Kunene River and it dried up when the river took a new course.

  • With an area of 5,000 square kilometres, the pan covers almost a quarter of the Park, filling only if the rains are heavy and for a brief period.

  • This temporary respite attracts thousands of wading birds, including impressive flocks of flamingos. 

  • There are perennial springs around the edges of the Etosha Pan and, as the only source of water in the winter, these draw large concentrations of wildlife and birds. 

  • The western side of the Park is mainly scrubby savannah and mixed woodland of tamboti and terminalia, while in the east you’ll see wild fig, marula and thorn trees and makalani palms. The Haunted Forest is made up of strangely contorted moringa trees, while the pan is fringed with small shrubs and mopane trees. 

  • Winter in Etosha is also the dry season and runs from May to September. Although the temperatures can be cool at night, this is considered the best time of year to visit since the wildlife is never very far from the waterholes.

  • Summer days, from October to April, can get very hot with temperatures as high as 44°C (over 100 F).

  • When to visit – we advise you to take into account the Namibian and South African school holidays, since at this time the rest camps within the Park are at their most busy. South African school holidays are mainly over the months of December, January, early April and July, so these are good months to avoid, if you can. 

  • Main activities: Game viewing and bird watching.

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More information

The winter in Etosha is also the dry season and runs from May to September. Although the temperatures can be cool at night this is considered the best time of year to visit since the wildlife is never very far away from the waterholes. In summer from October to April the temperatures can get as high as 44 C (over 100 F). When considering exactly when to visit one should also take into account the Namibian and South African school holidays since at this time the rest camps within the Park are at their most busy. SA school holidays mainly cover months of December, January, early April and July so these are good months to avoid. 

 

Game viewing and bird watching are the two major activities available at Etosha National Park. The Park has over 700km of game-watching roads with adequately spaced toilet facilities and viewing platforms. When game viewing one has to decide whether to drive around the pan and the Park looking for the different species, or to sit at a waterhole and wait for the wildlife to come and drink. Walking in the Park is prohibited but the pans at all three main camps of Namutoni, Halali and Okaukuejo are floodlit and at night black rhino and elephant are often seen coming in to drink. 

DIRECTIONS

By road
The Von Lindequist Gate is on the east side of the Park and is 98 kilometres from Tsumeb - the NamutoniRest Camp is near this gate. The entrance to the south of the Park is the Anderson Gate and this is 102 km from Outjo. The nearest National Parks camp on this side is Okaukuejo Rest Camp. 

By air
the nearest commercial airport is at Tsumeb and regular domestic flights service this airport. Smaller charter aircraft can also land here. 

call:    Harare: +263 771 363 211 ;

             Victoria Falls: +263 772 147 631

email: beck@off2africa.travel

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