The Heart of an ancient landscape
Sossusvlei Desert Lodge
Land of sand and sea, Namibia is a country of captivating contrasts, where horizons know no boundaries and you can lose yourself in time and space. Among these vast ancient vistas a thousand tiny miracles play out each day, as fascinating desert animals and plants make dozens of unique adaptions that allow them to thrive in this arid environment. Natural beauty on a grand scale stretches beneath impossibly blue African skies. Stripped down to barest simplicity, the dunes are taller and the stars are brighter than you have ever imagined.
Spectacularly beautiful location
A romantic base fir a series of fascinating desert adventures. &Beyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge lies deep in the midst of this unspoiled desert wilderness. Spacious and serene suites envelope guests in pure indulgence, complete with an outdoor shower and a dramatic skylight over the bed for late night star gazing. Elements of bone, slate and stone create a dramatic, yet entirely natural, look, while rough timberwork, twiggy chandeliers and wooden sculptures call to mind the craggy mountains.
The dusky pink colours of the natural rose quartz that Namibia is known for provide a fresh contrast to the creams and greys of the interiors. Hemp rugs are strewn over pebble floors, while rustic vintage furniture and whitewashed wooden pieces fill the guest areas.
Decadent dinners are served in a beautiful new setting night after night, from the open lodge veranda to the cosy and intimate wine cellar. The vast desert sands become a setting for magnificent meals beneath stars, served among the majestic dunes or sometimes in the midst of the romantic and mysterious fairy circles. Tucked within the tranquil interiors of the lodge, guests are romanced by the sheer beauty of the location and aspect of the lodge, and delighted by the wide scope of adventures that await them.
The sand and dunes of Sossusvlei
Guests at &Beyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge are treated to a sunrise adventure at the nearby dunes of Sossusvlei, the biggest dine field south of the Sahara. Coloured a thousand different shades of orange, amber and ochre, an endlessly undulating landscape of sand dunes heaves and tosses above the rocky desert floor. Known as the NAmibSandSea, the flowing lines of the dunes contrast with their stark surroundings, a strangely soft and voluptuous phenomenon in the austere landscape. Some of the highest dunes in the world rise on both sides as guests are driven deeper into the dune field. The gold rays of the rising sun set the eastern faces of the mountains of sand on fire as their western slopes remain in deep and ramatic shadow.
In the cool of the morning sun, travellers slither and slide their way to the top og Big Daddy and gasp in awe as the full extent of this majestic sea of sand is unveiled. Even deeper in the dune field there is hauntingly named Dead Vlei, where the dead branches of camel thorn trees, bleached a fine white by decades of sun and sand, stretch out in a strangely graceful dance.
Strange desert wildlife
While Sossusvlei is not a traditional wildlife destination, scenic drives into the craggy mountains offer the chance to spot zebra, giraffe and even leopard, as well as smaller, desert-adapted creatures. Dune drives explore the mass sandy dunes surrounding the lodge and guests may encounter ostrich or the magnificent gemsbok posing atop a distant dune. Quad biking through the dunes set the pulse racing, while an expert guide ensures that ecologically sensitive areas are not affected. Guided hikes up the mountain behind the lodge visit the ancient Bushman paintings, while guests are free to indulge in a leisurely stroll in the lodge surroundings on their own. Scenic drives visit the fascinating petrified dunes, stopping to admire the beautiful desert sunset. The massive boulders of Bushman’s koppies, haphazardly strewn one on top of the other like a giant’s building blocks, provide the ideal spot for exploration.
Africa’s darkest skies
With velvety skies completely free from light pollution, the NamibRand Nature Reserve, where &Beyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge is situated is an International Dark Sky Reserve. The lodge’s private observatory, which boasts one of the biggest privately owned telescopes in the southern hemisphere, is the ideal spot to settle back in the deep wingback chair and prepare to discover the wonders of the star strewn sky under the guidance of an international astronomer. An astronomer is always available at the Lodge to spend time with guests and to share stories about the constellations, as well as unbelievable views of the moon and planets such as Jupiter or Saturn.
A spectacular contrast to the dry desert landscapes of Namibia, neighbouring Botswana boasts the unexpected beauty of the Okavango Delta, a maze of crystal clear lagoons and channels that sustain a lush and verdant landscape, where &Beyond has four Delta Lodges. Further North is the wildlife rich Chobe National Park and the mysterious Savute, where &Beyond’s Under Canvas tents offer a taste of authentic, fully serviced camping adventures.
To find out more about &Beyond Sossusvlei Lodge or any of &Beyond’s Botswana Lodges, visit www.andbeyond.com or contact your preferred travel partner.
Flamingo readers special offer:
Balloon me over Sossusvlei
and Beyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge
Stay for 3 nights and we will include a Hot Air Balloon safari over Sossusvlei
01 September – 31 December
Tel: +27 (21) 426 0991