I need your advice on my planned itinerary for a three weeks self drive round trip through Namibia.
I know it's quite a classical tour, although I skipped the cities for more two-night-stayovers and I added a detour to Opuwo.
Night 1: Mariental (drive from Windhoek)
Night 2: Keetmanshoop
Night 3: Fish River
Night 4: Fish River
Night 5: Klein-Aus
Night 6: Namibrand Nature Reserve
Night 7: Namibrand Nature Reserve
Night 8: Sesriem / Sossusvlei
Night 9: Sesrien / Sossusvlei
Night 10: Swakopmund
Night 11: Swakopmund
Night 12: Spitzkoppe
Night 13: Twyfelfontein
Night 14: Opuwo
Night 15: Opuwo
Night 16: Etosha NP
Night 17: Etosha NP
Night 18: Etosha NP
Night 19: Waterberg Plateau
Night 20: Waterberg Plateau
Time: June 2014, partly camping, partly lodging, it will surely be a 4x4 rental car
1) What do you think of the itinerary, especially regarding the amount of car driving? According to my researches it should be possible day drives, but I am especially not sure about the parts Sossusvlei-Swakopmund, Twyfelfontein-Opuwo and Opuwo-Etosha Okaukuejo. Or should I add another night in the Damaraland area?
2) Would you advise to do the tour the other way round, first Etosha and then heading south?
3) My wife and I are especially interested in landscapes and animals (photography, game viewing, hiking, safari tours), that's why we skip Windhoek and Lüderitz. Shall we skip Swakopmund too or do we really miss something in these towns? I'd rather wake up ten times before sunrise than once visiting a museum or looking for a night club ...
4) I would of course make the reservations for the lodges and the campsites in Etosha. Would you advise to prebook the other camp sites? I'm not sure yet about the tradeoff of going the secure way or keeping up the schedule a bit more flexible ...
5) And a culture issue: is there a Himba friendly way of visiting a Himba village? I would really like to take a few photos, but it feels a bit awkward just to go in a village and take pictures, even when bringing some food. Anyone has an address of Himba friendly guided tours?
Thank you for your help.