Sitting on what felt like the wrong side of the car, shifting with the wrong hand, and driving on the wrong side of the road, I was listening to a CD of local marimba music on my way to Etosha National Park in northern Namibia. I was going on a safari for one!
Being an animal lover since childhood, going on safari in Africa had been a dream for years. I wanted to see lions and elephants and giraffes and zebras in their native habitat, not in a zoo. But I prefer solo travel and just never could get excited about the idea of a group safari. Namibia was my perfect travel destination. With amazing scenery and wildlife, it is also considered very safe, even for solo women travelers.
Etosha National Park is a gem of wildlife-viewing in Africa, especially in the dry season from June through November when all of the animals must come to waterholes to drink and bathe. But it is relatively unknown, so not crowded with tourists. I could drive for miles without seeing another person, but couldn't go far without seeing a springbok, oryx or zebra.
Okaukuejo Camp is near the southern entrance of the park and has a permanent waterhole which attracts an amazing variety of wildlife. Though there is definitely a pecking order - with elephants at the top - all of the animals seem to coexist at the waterholes and share the bounty that is life in a parched landscape.