In a land of high-rise dunes, with an ancient salt pans, elephants and lions and endless stretches of dramatic coastlines, Namibia truly is a country of immense beauty. One of Namibia’s wildlife highlights is the Etosha National Park. Located in the north of the country, this national park is both easily accessible and a sanctuary for wildlife and birds.
Take a look at some interesting facts about Etosha that may sway you to embark on a Namibian odyssey:
1. It might be in the middle of a desert, but Etosha brims with life
This national park is located in the a rather moist environment, albeit surrounded by magnificent dunes and golden grass plains and mopane vegetation which accounts for much diversity in this place. Here, you’ll find four of the Big Five mammals (the buffalo is the only mammal not found in the park).
Visitors can look forward to seeing zebra, the rare Black-faced impala, oryx, cheetah, giraffe, eland and hyena. In terms of birdlife, it’s truly amazing to see how many birds thrive here. During the rainy season, one million flamingoes use Etosha as a breeding ground. Falcons, harriers and the Egyptian vulture are some wonderful birds to introduce yourself to.
Black rhino in the park | Image: andBeyond
Etosha also has the most Black rhino in the world, a fantastic animal to see on safari.
2. Game viewing is almost guaranteed
Strategically placed watering holes can be found throughout the park, a huge drawcard for thirsty animals. This makes for easy wildlife sightings and exciting predator-prey interaction. Peak drinking times for game is about 9am to 3pm daily. Patience pays off- when game drinks, predators are not far behind.
3. You can access the park in a variety of ways
Etosha National Park is often a destination for self-drive adventurers, however, if you prefer to be flown in, that can be arranged with pleasure although at an additional cost. It is recommended that you enjoy a self-drive as the beauty of Namibia cannot be understated.
4. There is a variety of accommodation to suit any budget
Onguma Tented Camp in the Onguma Game Reserve
Etosha has many camps that are clean, equipped and suitable for families. They are also concentrated around the watering holes, making wildlife sightings easier for you. If you’re looking for something a bit more luxurious, we highly recommend private game reserves that lie in and adjacent to Etosha. These are Onguma, Ongava and Mushara. All three offer wonderful accommodation with five-star service and planned safari activities like 4x4 game drives, cultural tours and walking safaris. Contact us if you’d like to know what each game reserve offers.
5. Etosha National Park is open all year round
Image credit: Etosha National Park
Etosha never closes, so this is always a great getaway destination. The best time to go is dependent on what your expectations are.
December to March
In December, the rains begin, reaching the most rainy point in February. The rain isn’t a deterrent though, as this is a peak season for 4x4 adventures. The rains transform Etosha into a lush garden dotted with wildflowers and there are plenty of newborn babies to discover around this time. It is very hot and wet during this period.
April to July
In April, some animals are still calving during this time, with shorter rainfall. June and July is a busy time at the park, with many local and international visitors arriving to enjoy the warmer weather and wildlife congregating at water holes. It is warm and sunny but very cold in the early morning and nights.
August to November
This is the peak season in Etosha. Your chances of seeing all manner of wildlife is very high.