11 day Cunene River Expedition Tour, Namibia

Rugged scenery and fascinating flora
Picture Gallery

Summary of this 11 day Cunene River Expedition tour:

  • Accommodation: Camping accommodation
  • Activities: Game viewing in the Etosha National Park, river rafting expedition, meet traditional tribes, view tame and wild cheetah
  • Destinations: Windhoek, Okaukuejo, Etosha National Park, Cunene River, Kamajab, Windhoek (Namibia)

What you can expect from this 11 day Cunene River Expedition tour:

The charm of this 11 day Cunene River Expedition tour is to be found in unique rugged scenery, fascinating flora, intriguing diversity of bird life and some great paddling. Enjoy game viewing in the Etosha National Park. Meet members of the Ovahimba tribe. Your Cunene River Expedition tour backup vehicle will carry all the overnight equipment.

Day 1: Windhoek

Guests arrive in Windhoek by air or road. Those driving will be informed where they are to meet the guide team and at what time. Those flying should arrange transfer into Windhoek (for own account). Guests should meet at the Kalahari Sands Hotel foyer for their collection at 17h00pm. Your first, Cunene River Expedition, night with the group will be in camping mode.

Day 2: Okaukuejo

Toyota minibuses are used for transport and have a luggage restriction (i.e. only soft bags please). After breakfast the group departs for Okaukuejo in the Etosha National Park.

Day 3: Etosha National Park

An early departure sees the group on the road to the Namutoni Camp on the eastern boundary of the park, via Halali where lunch will be organised. Many of the species found in the park will be seen, amongst them hopefully the rare and diminutive Damara Dik-Dik. Your Cunene River Expedition tour guides prepare the evening meal around the campfire.

Day 4: Cunene River

You set out after breakfast, heading North to Ruacana on the Cunene River. Your route takes you past numerous rural villages and through the 2 largest towns / cultural centres of Ovamboland, Ondangwa and Oshakati. The Ovambos are by far the largest tribe in Namibia. At Ruacana, where the Cunene first encounters Namibian soil, you may have the opportunity of viewing the Falls and Hydro-electric scheme, (time dependant) before continuing to your campsite on the river banks.

Day 5: Cunene River

After breakfast the gear is stowed in the back-up vehicles and rafts respectively. Safety and paddling instructions are given before departure. Rafts (or 2 man crocs) are used and everyone participates in paddling.  You spend approximately 6 hours per day on the water and the distances covered depend on flow and wind conditions. Provisions are carried on the boats for a picnic lunch at midday.

It must be stressed here that although there are some exciting rapids, this trip caters for those seeking an unusual wilderness experience on one of the remotest rivers in Africa. The charm of this participation safari is to be found in unique rugged scenery, fascinating flora, intriguing diversity of bird life and some great paddling. Your Cunene River Expedition tour backup vehicle will carry all the overnight equipment.

Days 6 - 8: Cunene River

You will enjoy the white water of some exciting rapids, explore small islands and meet members of the Ovahimba tribe. Handling these encounters sensitively, you may at their invitation, be able to take some interesting pictures. The scenery is varied and plentiful considering that the river winds its way through a semi-arid region.

You should see Goliath Heron, Greenbacked Heron, Bluecheecked Bee-Eaters, Fish Eagle and Osprey amongst many others. Crocodile are encountered on a regular basis but are usually shy and secretive. As you will be camping on the banks of the river, you meet up with your back-up crew each evening.

Day 9: Cunene River

The river breaks up into numerous streams as you paddle your rafts past well - wooded islands to arrive at the picturesque and remote Epupa Falls in the afternoon. Here the group will camp beneath the palms. Hiking along the rim of the gorge provides spectacular views of the falls. Epupa is also home to the Rufoustailed Palmthrush, a species endemic to this area.

Day 10: Kamajab

Packing up camp after breakfast, the party heads south through the Kaokoland, travelling along the western boundary of Etosha National Park. The group will reach Kamanjab in the late afternoon to camp overnight at a Cheetah Farm where they can view tame and wild Cheetah.

Day 11: Windhoek

After breakfast, depart for Windhoek via Okahanja, renowned for its curio market. Arrive in Windhoek at approximately 16h00pm. Transit passengers will be dropped off at the Kalahari Sands Hotel. Lunch is for your account. Please do not book flights out of Windhoek before 18h00pm. Overnight accommodation in Windhoek on Day 11 of the Cunene River Expedition Tour is also for your own account.

N.B.: This is an expedition and the itinerary cannot be expected to stay the same at all times. Please bear in mind that we are out in the 'sticks' and anything can happen! Maximum size of party can be up to 20 people. Minimum size to be 16 (any less and the trip will be cancelled or postponed with full refunds if necessary).


This is a malaria area. Consult your Pharmacist / Doctor, or call 4193172.The British Airways Travel clinic. One can also check the website. www.malaria.co.za

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