“An awe-inspiring wilderness camp set atop gargantuan boulders in the Erongo Mountain Conservancy, in central Namibia”
Erongo's 10 luxury chalets, which strike a perfect balance between authenticity and comfort, are set atop high stilted platforms with top-of-the-range canvas tents hung beneath high, pole and thatch roofs. Each has been raised above the hillside amidst rocks and trees at a good distance from the next, which guarantees you a maximum of privacy as well as an uninterrupted view of the boulder-strewn mountainside from the planked deck.
All door and window openings are lined with mozzie netting, and flaps which can be dropped down at night: we chose to leave ours open and awoke to the unforgettable spectacleof dawn breaking over Erongo's primeval landscape.
We loved the simple, authentically bush feel of our tented quarters: two canvas-backed chairs and a low table out front, and inside, low twin beds dressed in crisp white linen with the softest of pillows, plus stick chairs and tables and a simple hanging rack for your clothes. Light is provided by chiselled brass lanterns when the camp generator is running and by candles when it's switched off. It was great to be provided with the makings of tea and coffee as you're bound to wake early to the mesmerising sounds of the African veld, whilst the small fridge, stocked with wine, beers, soft drinks and bottled water, is a big plus after a hot foray into the surrounding bushveld. There's a safety box, too, though it never occurred to us to make use of it.
Bathrooms are accessed through the rear of the tent and have been wrapped round the hillside's trees and boulders: they vary according to the lie of the land but all come with high rain showers and retro-style sinks with brass taps. Expect a face, hand and bath towel as well as liquid soap, body lotion and tea tree oil insect repellent.
All meals at Erongo feel like special events thanks to the unique beauty of its hilltop dining lodge: memories of sunsets and sunrises seen from this incredible vantage point will stay with you for years to come.
Breakfast gets going from 7am onwards, which is when the morning nature walks generally get underway: tea, coffee and rusks are on offer if you plan to set out any earlier. A cold buffet is laid up to one side of the lodge and includes a choice of cereals, homebaked breads and muffins, yoghurts and a fresh fruit salad, a big selection of cold meats and cheeses, and a choice of apple or orange juice (these are of the carton variety). Once you've served yourself tea and coffee and are settled at your table, one of Erongo's cheery staff will be over to take your hot breakfast order.
When we stayed, the lunch choice was between chicken pita served with a green salad, penne pasta with bacon, basil, tomato and blue cheese sauce, a ploughman's platter or a chunky club sandwich. But with a generous afternoon tea included in the price of your stay, which includes a big choice of homemade cakes and - yes - meatballs, you may decide to skip lunch.
At dinner, individual square dining tables are laid up in a double tier facing out to the Erongo mountains: it pays to get up to the lodge soon after sunset to ensure you're in pole position for those views. There's an enticing choice of wines, all of which are kept in coolers: keeping bottles at room temperature in this climate just doesn't work. All the reds, whites and roses are from South Africa and we were impressed at how Erongo's staff were able to guide us through the wine list.
Dinners stick to a 4-course formula and ours was exceptionally good. A starter of spinach pancake filled with tuna and drizzled in apple vinaigrette was followed by a fresh garden salad. For our main course we were offered a choice of peppered oryx steak with a spicy mole sauce (it didn't quite come off) or grilled chicken breast in satay sauce (which certainly did) whilst a dessert of crème caramèl followed by coffee ended our meal on a more traditional note.
Erongo would make a great choice if you were keen to give your child(ren) a gentle introduction to wilderness nature walks. There are no big nasties in the surrounding bushveld to be feared and, providing you take a few elementary precautions, it's perfectly safe to walk straight out from camp. Kids would love the beauty of the location and the pool, and would get great mileage out of watching dassies and lizards popping up from behind the rocks at every turn. Menus can be adopted to meet children's dietary needs and babysitting can be arranged if parents fancy taking time out for a relaxing dinner. Children 12 years and under, sharing with 2 full paying adults, pay 50% of the quoted adult tariff. Children 6 years and under, sharing with 2 full paying adults, stay free
Children (4-12 years)
Extra Beds Available