Image: Wildebeest
Robert Caputo  /  Aurora/Getty Images
Wildebeest graze in the grasslands at sunset. WIth Premier Tours' Camping Safari package, you'll discover southwest Africa's sizzling deserts, wildlife-filled savannas and lively villages. The deal includes 11 nights' camping and hotel accommodations, ground transportation, and guided tours, from $1,445 per person.
updated 10/3/2007 10:32:27 AM ET 2007-10-03T14:32:27

The Real Deal: Eleven nights' camping and hotel accommodations, ground transportation, and guided tours, from $1,445 per person—including taxes.

When: For travel through Dec. 18, 2007; add $61 for Dec. 19, 2007-Oct. 31, 2008.

The fine print: The tour departs from Windhoek every other Tuesday. Nine nights' camping, two nights' hotel accommodations, taxes, daily breakfast, most lunches and dinners, all ground transportation, and the services of an English-speaking tour guide are part of the package. Camping equipment, permits, and park fees are also included in the price. Alcohol, soft drinks, and tips are extra. Based on double or single occupancy. U.S. passport holders will obtain a visa upon arrival at the airport in Namibia for free (as long as they're staying less than 90 days). Read these guidelines before you book any Real Deal.

Book by: Based on availability; no deadline.

Contact: Premier Tours, 800-545-1910,

Why it's a deal: The price breaks down to about $120 per day, which includes accommodations, food, all transportation, guided tours, camping equipment, and park admission. Plus, Premier Tours offers a hassle-free way to explore the country—ensuring that you won't miss any major attractions or hidden treasures.

Trip details: Much of Namibia remains unspoiled, and the country is known for its wide horizons, contrasting landscapes, and the lowest population density in Africa. (Namibia gained a major burst of fame when Brangelina chose to camp out there for the birth of their child, Shiloh.)

Premier Tours' Camping Safari package is made for no-frills adventure seekers. The group sets out from the capital of Windhoek and travels south, stopping in the town of Rehoboth in central Namibia, before reaching the Namib Desert. A four-by-four desert vehicle will be the sole means of transportation throughout the journey. You'll take day and night walks as well as game drives to explore the surrounding flora and fauna. The Drifters Desert Camp next to the protected Namib Rand Nature Reserve is your base for two nights.

Next on the itinerary is the Sesriem Canyon, followed by Namib Naukluft Park's Sossusvlei dunes, the world's tallest sand dunes. Once you're pleasantly worn out from climbing the dunes, some of which have up to five crests and rise over 980 feet into the air, you'll set up camp close by. Have your camera at the ready for sunset's gorgeous photo ops.

Then you'll cross through the park, stopping by a moon-like landscape and the ancient two-leaf Welwitschia plants before reaching the coast. You'll get a chance to explore Swakopmund, a beach town where you'll spend two nights at the Drifters Swakopmund Inn. One dinner is covered while the other will take place at a local nightspot and will be at your own expense. Optional activities while in Swakopmund include quad biking, sand boarding and skydiving.

During the next two days, you'll pass through Kaokoveld—a remote area south of the Kunene River—then drive north to the border of Angola. One of the highlights of this part of the trip is an opportunity to interact with the nomadic Himba people, whose traditional customs remain intact in this secluded region. Settle in for a two-night camp stay at a community project by the Epupa Falls on the banks of the Cuene River.

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The last two days of the trip are devoted to camping at Etosha National Park. Aside from searching for the park's famous big game, you'll also spend an evening observing wild animals at a floodlit waterhole.

On the morning of your last day, you'll travel back to Windhoek, arriving in the capital by the late afternoon.

Like most places with semidesert terrains, Namibia's days are hot and its nights cool. Your trip will roughly coincide with the summer season, which lasts from November through February. Unfortunately, this is also the time of year when Namibia is more prone to heavy thunderstorms. The daily temperature average is between 68 and 93 degrees Fahrenheit, but it's not unusual for highs to reach a scorching 104 degrees. Be ready by checking the weather forecast before you go.

For more on tips on what to see and do, visit the Namibia Tourism Board online.

While Namibia is a peaceful country, consult the U.S. State Department's Consular Information Sheet for the latest travel updates and warnings in the region. You can check the exchange rate and the local time at

Getting there: You can purchase airfare through Premier Tours' Air Consolidation Department. Round-trip flights to Windhoek start from $1,145 from D.C. or New York City (South African Airways). Fares can go up to $1,550 depending on the season.

Booking independently? The lowest fares we found to Windhoek on a recent Sidestep search are for travel in early to mid-December, starting from $1,443 from New York, $1,483 from D.C., $1,583 from Chicago, and $1,630 from Los Angeles on multiple carriers.

This story was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.

Copyright © 2012 Newsweek Budget Travel, Inc.


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