Etambura Camp

Etambura, Namibia’s first Himba co-owned camp is situated in Orupembe Conservancy on top of one of the highest hills above the holy plains of Onjuva where livestock and springbok peacefully graze together.

The holy plains are steeped in mystery, with several different stories of why the area was consecrated by the semi-nomadic Himba herders who live here. Etambura is the ideal place to relax. You might see a klipspringer or, at dusk, a Jameson’s rock rabbit. Tiny footprints padded throughout the camp are evidence of genets and African wildcats. The calls of a diversity of birds, the whispery rustle of paper-bark and other commiphora trees, bottle trees in bloom, the rich hues of purple-pod terminalia with unimpeded 360 degree views make this unique Namibia safari spot unforgettable. After a game drive where you might be fortunate enough to see black rhino, enjoy a stroll and explore the hill, a botanical treasure trove with its many endemic species of plants and shrubs.

The horseshoe-shape of Etambura Camp's recreational area, built from natural materials, fully blends in with the contours of a hill-top skyline. Enjoy your meals on Etambura’s circular decks with spectacular views over the hills, valleys and plains, or in the spacious dining room. Should you just want to relax, settle down in the cool comfort of our lounge and unwind in the tranquility of this high oasis.

Enjoy a drink as the sun sets and, when the last oranges, purples and pinks have faded, watch as one by one distant fires from surrounding Himba villages light up and flicker in the darkness, softly reminding you that you are indeed in Africa.

Chalets at Etambura Camp

Etambura has five canvas and thatch chalets (one of which is wheelchair friendly), each with its own private deck extending from the hill and into the beyond, conjuring illusions of “stepping into air”.

The twin bedded rooms are comfortably furnished and provide a wonderful retreat. Each bathroom, built either into the surrounding marble outcrops, or artfully created so as not to encroach on the endemic flora, has its own charm. Bed linen and towels are provided.

Built on a wooden platform and, in some cases, on stilts, each unit is positioned to optimize the view. Lie in bed and be dazzled by an incredible sunrise. At night follow the path of the stars across a cobalt sky. Observe the skittish rock hyraxes sunning themselves on jagged rocks, listen to the calls and discover a world of birds that thrive in this environment.

Experiences at Etambura Camp

Experience stress relieving solitude and watch free roaming wildlife in a wild land without fences, knowing your presence is making conservation sustainable for the people who live in this vast region.

Whilst at Etambura Camp, meet and hear the stories of the conservancy game guards, the men who protect the desert wildlife – black rhino, desert adapted elephant, giraffe, gemsbok, springbok, lion, leopard and cheetah. Set out on a 4x4 game drive or feel Africa under foot on a guided walking safari, including rhino tracking with conservancy game guards or visit local traditional leaders and see how conservancy staff and members live and work. Hear the real problems and their local solutions.

Enjoy a traditional meat feast and taste desert goat. Guests will be expected to join in the singing and dancing and share songs from their own country. Highlights may include taking part in the annual harvest of commiphora resin – the perfume plant or myrrh made famous by the Bible’s three wise men and visit Wereldsend, historic base camp of IRDNC from where the now national community-based conservation program was piloted in the early 1980s.

Watch, day by day, as the story of one of Africa’s most enduring community-based conservation programs unfolds, and meet the people who have made it work on the ground.

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