Wild and Free
All Inclusive Namibia Adventure
Desert Sands to Coastal Waters
DateJuly 9th - 22nd
Trip length14 Days + 7 Day Ext Option
We wanted to create a tour that resonated with those travelers that wanted to truly explore, and we couldn’t think of a more fitting destination for that than Namibia. Just north of South Africa, Namibia borders Africa’s South Atlantic coast. A rugged oasis with red sand dunes and erratic trees, to seemingly impossible plant life, salt mines and watering holes, Namibia’s interesting landscapes are the natural habitat to Africa’s most notable animals, including cheetahs, elephants, giraffes, leopards, black and white rhinos, wild dogs, gemsbok and the King of the Jungle himself, lions. Sand-swept roads will take us to small German towns, vast game reserves, and into the communities of the indigenous Himba, Dhimba and Herero tribes. When you return from Namibia you will have a newfound appreciation for the diversity of life and nature in our world, as well as a deeper passion for the art of photography. In Namibia, it isn’t a question of whether or not you’ll be inspired – it’s a question of whether there’s ever enough time to soak it all in.
Of course, you’ll capture all this beauty while traveling side-by-side with our professional photographers. With their hands-on guidance, vast experience and professional tips, you’ll capture the intricate details, vivid colors and impressive landscapes of each place we visit. When we get to Sossusvlei, just before sunrise, we’ll capture impossibly huge sand dunes as the early morning rays dance over their delicate peaks. We’ll grab our cameras and see delicate rock dassies scurrying through desert terrain, go on game-viewing drives, wait patiently as wild animals gently encroach on nearby watering holes, and run through National Parks with cheetahs, capturing their stealth prowess against the fiery African sky. On a tour this special, we like to save it for small, intimate groups. Read below to find out all of the wonderful experiences we’ll share together, and after you’ve reserved your spot, reach out to us. We’d love to help you book your flights.
A Complete Experience
Discovery Gold Standard
During our trip through Namibia, we’ll visit parts of the world most people never get the chance to, in a way that few people ever get the chance to see it. In between our long days in the sun, we’ll break for indulgent meals of local cuisine, a surprising mix of exotic game meats and German cuisine, all the while photographing rock daisies and quiver trees by day, and the starry night sky above impossible landscapes by night. Few countries are as breathtaking as Namibia. With its inspiring vistas, every place you see in Namibia is as jaw-dropping as the next.
In a mystical part of the world even the most avid travelers yearn to see, we’ve taken all the guesswork out of how and when to capture the magic. We’ll have an unforgettable photography experience from the moment the tour begins; capturing everything from the rock daisies, leopards and rhinos of Erinidi and the sand dunes of Dead Vlei, to German towns like Windhoek and Luderitz, countless sea creatures gliding through Walvis Bay, the quiver trees and cheetahs of Keetmanshoop, and more. In Namibia, the landscapes, people and wildlife are undeniable. It’s an exotic part of the world most travelers yearn to visit, and with our tour, you’ll get to explore (and photograph!) its most astounding corners.
Our tour leaders are there to make your journey unforgettable. And once you meet them, it’s obvious why. They are masters of their craft and during your adventure they will be working along side of you, sharing their knowledge of photography, tips on composition, camera settings and more. You get to learn from the best in some of the most remote and beautiful places our planet has to offer. However, beyond having unrivaled photography skills, it takes so much more to be a Discovery Photo Tour Leader. Simply put, our photographers are good, interesting people. You’ll travel, explore and learn with them, you’ll share meals together, and they’ll show you how to capture amazing pictures. And by the end of the tour, our circle of friends will have grown.
Your Namibia Itinerary
Wild, Beautiful, Untouched
Our Adventure Begins
Depending where you’re flying from, you’ll likely arrive in the afternoon — and after a long day of traveling, our only priority is getting you settled into Namibia. We’ll stay in a beautiful country club right in the heart of Windhoek, a city strewn with old German colonial buildings and modern architecture. If there’s time, we’ll take a quick walking tour around the city center to soak it all in, but the real event will be later that night, at dinner, when we gather for a hearty dinner in our stunning hotel. It’s the perfect way to kick-off what we know will be an inspiring African adventure.
Private Game Reserve
After breakfast, we’ll make our way to Erindi, an astounding, protected part of the world where more than 10,000 lions, cheetahs, elephants, white and black rhinos, wild dogs, and if we’re lucky, leopards, freely roam the terrain. Erindi Private Game Reserve is undeniably one of the best private game parks in Namibia, and for good reason. Arriving mid-day, we’ll start with lunch at the onsite restaurant. It just happens to sit right next to one of the reserves major watering holes, where every animal comes and goes to cool off throughout the day, so you’ll want to have your camera ready. There’s no telling what you’ll see — after all, Erindi is home to rare animals we likely won’t find anywhere else on our tour.
Peculiar But Inspiring
After an early morning game drive where we will undoubtedly find countless exotic animals to shoot against the morning glow, we’ll take our time driving southwest to magical Spitzkoppe. This part of the world is best known for its rocky peaks and jutting bornhardts; which, when caught at exactly the right moment, create an unforgettable image of the sun peeking through their strange curvature. After lunch, we'll seek out some amazing compositions of Spitzkoppe's characteristic bald granite peaks at days end, and if we’re lucky, the adorable rock daisies scurrying through them. Then, the next morning, we’ll wake up early and photograph sunrise over Pontok Mountain through the natural bridge. The sights you’ll see are truly fascinating, and words just don’t do them justice.
The Sea is Calling
After a sunrise shoot in Spitzkoppe, we’ll head southwest to the coastal town of Swakopmund — the second largest city in Namibia. During the German colonial area, Swakopmund served as a major harbor, and in wartime, it became the unofficial gateway to southwest Africa. Wander through its streets today, and Swakopmund’s German-style architecture takes you back to those early 20th-century days; including its landmark building, the Woermann House, which dates back to 1905.
As we make our way southeast to the pearl of the Namib Desert, Sossusvlei, we’ll wind through vast desert areas; passing through beautiful Namib-Naukluft National Park, with its huge mountain massifs and gravel plains. In Sossusvlei, our focus will be landscape photography. At its core, Sossusvlei is a huge clay pan. It is surrounded by giant sand dunes – the hills of which are some of the largest in the world, reaching as high as 1,000 feet, and believed to have been formed by tons of sand dumped in the Atlantic Ocean from the Orange River. Shaped by strong winds, the coastal dunes of Sossusvlei are constantly changing. Knowing this, we’ll be there before and after sunrise to capture the contours, edges and curves of the reddened dunes against the day’s changing light.
Over the course of these three days, we’ll walk through the dunes to “Dead Vlei” — a clay pan formed from floods from the Tsauchab River, where the black skeletons of sun-scorched camel thorn trees, some of which are 900 years old, dot the land. We’ll hop on a guided 4WD tour before sunrise (and before the tourists!) and photograph famed Dead Vlei under the early morning sun, the tall rippled sand dunes, casting long shadows of the camel thorn trees across the cracked dry clay pan. Only breaking in the middle of the day for lunch and a well earned rest during the heat of the day, our mornings and afternoons will be filled with adventure, visiting the depths of Sesriem Canyon, and exploring the never ending compositions with the sand dunes. At night, if conditions are right we may have the unique opportunity to photograph Sossusvlei under the open, starry night sky; and if we’re lucky, spot the ostriches, fox, baboons and other Namibian creatures scurrying beneath it.
Today, we’ll head farther southwest to the seaside town of Luderitz, with plenty of stops for photo opportunities, exploration, and lunch. Luderitz is a German town dating back to the late 1800s, and once we arrive, it won’t take long for you to spot the European country’s historic influence. This idyllic seaside town is dotted with German-style architecture, and surrounding its borders are beautiful diamond mines, like Kolmanskop, home to one of the richest diamond deposits in the world.
While here, we’ll have special permits that allow us to arrive early and stay later than everyone else. We’ll hop on a guided tour, explore sun-scorched buildings that have stood the test of time, trek through windswept sands, and photograph colorful sunsets over the Atlantic Ocean, the glittering sands of Kolmanskop’s diamond landscapes, and of course, enchanting Western-style Luderitz.
Quiver Trees and Milky Way
Sleep in or spend the morning photographing more of Luderitz — today, it’s completely up to you! Together, we’ll head east to Keetmanshoop, arriving just in time for a late lunch. After settling into our home for the next two days, Quivertree Forest Rest Camp, which will serve as our base camp over the following two nights as we explore amazing quivertree forests immediate to the camp and a short drive away. We will also have the opportunity explore and photograph the Giant's Playground, where large dolerite boulders have seemingly been placed one on top of another, forming interesting combinations and shapes. Always considering natural light, we’ll time our arrival perfectly to capture the quiver trees under the glow of the afternoon sun and its setting rays, and hold a workshop on astrophotography to prepare us for the astounding photographs we will be able to take long after sunset. From rock dassies and quiver trees, to sparkling night skies with star trails and a crystal-clear view of the Milky Way, we’ll have so much to see… and we’ll yearn for more time to see it.
Our Last Day
Return to Windoek
This is our last morning in Keetmanshoop, and for some of you, it’s your last morning of our entire adventure. That said, let’s take advantage of our time by getting up early and capturing one last sunrise shoot. After a delicious breakfast in our hotel, we’ll spend our morning photographing our rest camp’s resident cheetahs, a species that’s as friendly as they are adorable, and capture two of them playing in the great outdoors. Once we’re done, it will be time to return to Windhoek. After lunch, we’ll say our sad goodbyes to those in our group, our new friends, with late afternoon or evening flights home. As for the rest of us? It’s time for one final, good night’s sleep before we depart the next morning. Where you go next, however, is completely up to you; so hop on your flight home, or continue our inspiring journey with an extension tour through more of Namibia.
On to Opuwo
Tribal Life Portraits
For those who have chosen to join us on our extension tour, this day will be one for the books. After driving north, we’ll discover a new part of Namibia: Opuwo. Here, our focus (and our photography!) will be all about the semi-nomadic tribes of Himba, Dhimba and Herero people, who, in a constantly changing world, have maintained their traditional, antiquated lifestyle.
Led by a local guide, we’ll watch the members of these tribes engage in their local customs. Every morning, Himba women wearing traditional garb – which is typically nothing more than their own handmade cloths and neck ornaments – wake up and cover themselves in butter fat, red ochre and local herbs. These natural products give their bodies that smooth, reddish appearance, are woven through their braids, and protect them from the burning African sun; and we’ll be there to photograph all of it. We’ll watch as these women adorn their bodies with heavy metal rings, and jewelry made of copper, ostrich shells and woven reeds.
Capturing Rituals of Fire
Dhimba & Herero Customs
During our stay in Opuwo, we’ll be sure to immerse ourselves in the Dhimba tribe as well. A community of no more than 6,000 inhabitants in Namibia, and Herero, a tribe of farmers who measure their wealth in cattle. We’ll watch as they wake up, feed their children and rear their animals. As they do, it’s important to note their garb; Herero men and women alike wear clothing derived from a Victorian woman’s dress, like enormous crinoline worn over several petticoats and their horn-shaped, cattle-inspired hats.
During our time there, we’ll work with the locals to photograph this tribe – and all of the tribes – in the huts they call home, capturing their holy rituals, like the Herero’s “holy fire” that symbolizes life, fertility and prosperity, and much, much more.
Teeming with Wildlife
After a few days with Namibia’s indigenous people, we’ll wake up early and drive south to Etosha National Park. This will be an amazing day, as this is one of Southern Africa’s finest and most important game reserves. A National Park since 1907, wander through Etosha, and you’ll find approximately 114 species of mammals, 340 birds, 110 reptiles and 16 amphibians. While there, we will stay at a few rest camps; starting at Dolomite Camp, in the Restricted Zone, where unlike most travelers, we’ll find rare and endangered Black Rhinoceros and Black-Faced Impala roaming through the wilderness. We’ll wander from watering hole to watering hole, watching as exotic species come in to rest and refuel under the warm African sun.
On to the Basin
Great White Place
As we move through the reserve, we’ll gradually approach the Etosha Pan. Etosha actually means “Great White Place,” which is fitting, considering a quarter of the area is an expansive mineral pan that forms part of the Kalahari Basin, the floor of which dates back 60 million years. We’ll gradually make our way to another rest camp, Okaukuejo, which is nearly 10.5 miles deep into the park. This pocket of the world is famous for its salt mines and floodlit waterhole, where at any given minute, you might find and photograph countless different wild species relaxing in harmony. In fact, this National Park is regarded as one of the best worldwide for wildlife. Together, we’ll discover a host of animals you probably never thought you’d get the chance to see up close – like zebra, elephants, rhinos, wildebeests, and some of the largest elephants in the world. Better yet, you won’t be able to predict any of it.
Our Journey is Done
This morning, we’ll wake up early and head back to Windhoek, because after what has now been an amazing 20 days together, it’s time to head back to reality. While it’s hard to say goodbye to beautiful Namibia, and the new friends we’ve found in one another, we know our adventure doesn’t have to really end here. After you visit a magical place like Namibia, you never forget about it. And thankfully, we’ll be going home with stunning photography to keep this experience alive in our minds, and our hearts, for years on end.
Get To Know
DateJuly 9th - 22nd
Trip length14 Days + 7 Day Ext Option
Max group size12
Food & Drink
You can’t go to Namibia without trying its wild, hearty cuisine. For the most part, food in Namibia reflects its natural surroundings, so when you’re there, expect everything from beef, lamb and venison, to exotic game meats like ostrich, springbok, gemsbok, crocodile and other wild creatures. Namibia is a part of the world that takes pride in Mother Nature, and in some way or another, all food is connected to the earth. Take outdoor cooking, for example. Here, it’s not just a method of preparation, it’s a part of Namibian culture; and traditional dishes, like Braaivleis BBQ-style game meat and the spicy, stew-like potjiekos, are typically cooked over an open flame. Wander into Namibia’s more metropolitan areas, to towns like Swakopmund, Luderitz and Windhoek, and you might be surprised to find a strong German influence. Here it’s not uncommon to find delicacies — like Schwarzwälder, Kirschtorte and Apfelstrudel, crisp bread rolls called “Brötchen” filled with cheese, eggs, meat or salad, or Landjäger, a smoked German port and beef sausage — in colorful German-style shops. In Namibia, the food is unassuming, but it’s all part of the unique experience we have to truly discover Africa.
Having led photo tours in Namibia for years, our photographers and organizers know the best places to stay, and as your tour guides, they want nothing more than to share them with you. When we get to Namibia’s protected areas, like Erindi or Etosha, we’ll stay in elegant rest camps and lodges right in the heart of game parks. Here, we’ll fall asleep in a luxurious setting, to the peaceful sounds of Namibia’s quiet natural landscape, while indigenous animals (like Black Rhinos, elephants, wildebeests and cheetahs) roam past. As we venture near the coast, encroaching German towns like Luderitz and Windhoek, we’ll sleep to the sounds of waves crashing in the South Atlantic Ocean, in charming boutique hotels, and wake up to gentle coastal breezes rustling the trees under the fiery African sun. In Sossusvlei — the Namib Desert’s own red-clay pan, with salt mines, sand dunes reaching nearly 1,000 feet, and even the famed Dead Vlei — we’ll stay at Sossus Dune Lodge, an “afro-style,” eco-friendly lodge made of wood, canvas and thatch. Sitting right in the park, Sossus Dune Lodge combines stunning accommodations with undeniably beautiful views.
Overview of shooting locations
Photography skill level
Recommended photography equipment
As we make our way across Namibia we will be presented with so many incredible photo opportunities. We recommend a DSLR camera with a wide angle lens 14-21mm), standard zoom lens (24-70mm) and a portrait lens if you are joining our extension tour (85-135mm) and for the wildlife shoots, this is the time to pull out the big guns so a long lens is vital (300-600mm+). A sturdy tripod as well as a polarizer and ND filter kit is also recommended. Feel free to contact us with any gear questions, we’d be glad to help.
Join us In Namibia
Tour price: Choose your room type below and add to cart to complete your deposit and reserve your spot to join us on this unforgettable tour .
Malcolm Fackender is an award-winning Australian travel and commercial photographer specializing in small group photographic tours. With more than 30 years in the photography industry, Malcolm initially focused primarily on nature photography, however has broadened his photographic interests over the years to encompass many other genres, including travel, people and landscape photography.
Di Fruscia is a World Visionary Fine Art Nature & Landscape Photographer. His work has won many awards, has been published and displayed thru a multitude of Medias (books, calendars, magazines, travel guides etc.) and by many prestigious companies such as, National Geographic, Time Magazine and Wall Street Journal, just to name a few. Constantly searching for those rare magical moments when the Perfect Light embraces nature in all its glory, you can rest assured – that this is only the beginning of a long and dedicated quest to capture the breathtaking beauty of nature."