Little Ongava

Eastern Etosha, Etosha & North, Namibia Book from

A uniquely spoiling lodge for just 6 guests, set atop a rocky outcrop at the heart of the Ongava Reserve, 5 hours north of Windhoek
If your safari idyll is all about fleeing the crowds whilst getting close to the wildlife, Little Ongava would make a brilliant choice. The setting of the lodge, which has just 3 suites sleeping a maximum of 6 guests, is as spectacular as they come, straddling the highest point of a rocky outcrop of dolomite with soaring views out across mopane woodlands to the southern border of Etosha Park.

The mission statement of this lapa-style lodge was to create a truly intimate and cosy retreat in the wildest of settings. The main lodge is a triumph of Afro-ethnic chic, where masks from Burkina Fasso, woven plates from Ghana, Congolese hangings and Ethiopian trays are set beneath high pole and thatch ceilings. Wraparound openings draw your gaze out to Little Ongava's best feature, a huge expanse of deck where alfresco meals are events never to be forgotten. Track lion, leopard, cheetah and rhino in the Ongava Reserve, then hunker down back at the lodge and luxuriate in your private plunge pool; this place is the proof that Small can be synonymous with Beautiful.


  • Expect pampering to perfection at one of Namibia's most intimate and spoiling lodges
  • Glass-wall bathrooms, roll-top baths; this is probably Namibia's most luxurious safari set-up
  • Dine beneath the stars, head off on night game drives, then return to your private plunge pool
  • Wave goodbye to the rest of the world and cosy up with a loved one: every day feels like a honeymoon here
  • Abandon yourself to the uniquely beautiful setting where Room with a View takes on a whole new meaning


  • Be prepared to dine at one table with your fellow guests unless you prefer to eat alone in the intimacy of your suite
  • Only 1 suite has a proper kingsized bed, although the other 2 can be made up as doubles
  • A stay at Little Ongava is an expensive treat, though you won't regret pushing that Namibian boat out

Best time to go

The Dry Season roughly equates to July through to mid November (even though it stops raining earlier in the year) and is when most folk visit the area in and around Etosha.

The busiest season in Etosha coincides with the northern European summer holidays, that's to say July and August, which means an ideal time to be here is any time between September and November.

From December through to mid February be prepared for high (mid 30sºC) temperatures. During the Rainy Season (January to March), the animals can find water without recourse to the holes along the southern routes through the park so the chances of spotting game are considerably reduced.

Bear in mind that even if daytime temperatures are high throughout most of the year they can rapidly descend at night and the lodge's hilltop position means that it catches the breezes. So remember to pack a fleece.

Our top tips

Pack your swimmers, a camera with an extra memory stick and a very warm jacket for evenings. If you wear contact lenses, bring glasses in case of dust irritation.

Great for...

Great Outdoors
  • = Recommended
  • = Best in region
  • = World favourite
  • Safari Lodge
  • 3
  • 8+ year olds only
  • Open all year
  • Plunge Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym


The 3 suites at Little Ongava - 2 have French twin beds, the third a kingsize double - are reached by way of raised wooden walkways which thread their way between dolomite boulders and ancient acacias. They are vast living spaces, each encompassing a high-ceilinged bedroom, open-plan sitting room and a bathroom whose all-glass walls enhance the sense of stylish space: you can luxuriate in your roll-top tub whilst taking in the vast panorama that stretches out towards Etosha.

The earthy brown and ochre of the suites' colour schemes is evocative of the colours of the Ongava bushveld, whilst a seamless mix of pole, thatch, stone, glass and canvas bears the stamp of one of Namibia's leading interior designers. Each one comes with a full quotient of creature comforts like air-con, a tea and coffee station, safety box and bar fridge.

The same luxurious vibe spills over into the fabulous bathrooms where you'll find twin surface-top porcelain sinks set atop rough-hewn surfaces, an outdoor as well as indoor shower, piles of towels and flannels as well as a generous selection of soaps, gels, creams and shampoos.

However, the suites' top feature has to be their big wooden decks and private drop-rim plunge pools. If you find it difficult to drag yourself away from this delectable spot, don't worry: you can choose to have any of your meals served up right here.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Coffee tea making
  • Extra beds
  • Internet access
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Plunge pool
  • Plunge pool
  • Safe box
  • Terrace
  • Toiletries


All meals at Little Ongava are moveable feasts. The easy, intimate mood of the lodge is conducive to striking up new friendships with fellow guests, so the chances are you'll be happy to share dinner at the main lodge's single table: whenever the weather is right it will be laid up beneath the stars on the main deck. But should you want to dine a deux, just ask: supper can also be served in the intimacy of your private suite, inside or out.

Arriving guests are asked about their dietary predilections and menus can be adopted accordingly. Dinner is served at 8pm and is the focus of your culinary day at Little Ongava: you may choose to make your way across to the main lodge a little earlier for a sundowner in the company of your fellow guests. Expect a 4-course meal: soup, salad, a choice of white or red meat - much of it game - and a dessert, accompanied by a house red or white served à volonté. If you'd prefer a more special wine there's a small selection of reds, whites and rosés from South Africa. After dinner, coffee and tea are served round a boma fire where talk will almost certainly be of animals, stars and the wonders of travelling in Namibia.

If your game drive is going to take you into Etosha Park, lunch will take the form of a picnic (this ensures you get a maximum amount of time at the Park's extraordinary watering holes), whilst back at the lodge you can expect a light, 2-course meal plus tea and cake at 4pm. Expect a combination of continental and English-style breakfasts before you set out on your game drives, which get on the go from 5.30am onwards.

Features include:

  • All meals included
  • Bar
  • Coffee tea making
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Vegetarian menu


  • Dip into your private plunge pool, lie back on a lounger and gaze out to the vast plains beneath you

  • Track white and black rhino and prides of lion through the Ongava reserve in the company of the lodge's expert guides

  • Birdwatch from Little Ongava's high deck, from where you have an excellent chance of spotting rockrunners, Rüppell's parrots, short-toed rock thrushes, white-tailed shrike and a host of other feathered friends

  • Take a day trip into Etosha Park: the activity around its water holes during the dry season is one of Namibia's great wildlife events

  • Head out from the lodge on foot in the company of an armed guide; an unforgettable way to experience the raw beauty of the Namibian bush

  • Slump into an armchair with a book from the lodge's library

  • Hush up in Ongava's hide: it's yards from the watering hole where you're bound to see buck and birds, and may see a whole lot more besides

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Birdwatching
  • Hiking
  • Private guided tours
  • Safaris
  • Wildlife


Little Ongava is a family friendly camp and accepts children aged 8 and above, but you will need to pay extra for a private vehicle for excursions. 8-12 year olds are on a discounted rate and 13+ are charged at full rates

Best for:

Children (4-12 years), Teens (over 12)

Family friendly accommodation:

Extra Beds Available

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