The dramatic landscapes of the NamibRand Private Reserve define the Wolwedans Dunes experience. The lodge’s raised chalets feel integral to the spectacular outdoors, where the bone-dry, white plains and the red sand dunes extend to the dark mountain silhouettes—and well beyond.
Namib Rand is home to four small lodges run by Wolwedans, of which the most remote is the Boulders Camp. Dunes Lodge is easier to get to, but only by comparison: this place, on the edge of the Namib desert, is still as remote as it gets.
Any route within this vast land is scenic. We had the first taste of the magnificent scenery in the Wolwedans base camp, set in a shrubby desert grasslands valley flanked by the majestic mountain outcrops.
To get to the Wolwedans Dunes Lodge our 4×4 had to climb over the surging red dunes, which soon surrounded us entirely.
Fundamental simplicity and restrained decor dominate both in the guest chalets and in the main area. The design recalls colonial safari aesthetics. Leather armchairs, old chests, soft rugs, vintage furniture, paraffin lanterns, and antique collectibles all encapsulate the sensibility reminiscent of the bygone era.
The main area comprises a series of communal lounges and dining rooms linked by wooden decks, but there is also a swimming pool, its water doubling as a reservoir in case of fire.
This is something the Wolwedans staff likes to stress—the astute management of resources and design means the lodge’s green footprint is very low. This principle is encoded in the construction of all the buildings: the easy to remove wooden stilts ensures no trace would be left behind should the lodge ever have to be moved.
The great outdoors
Wind flapping the canvas is a constant reminder that the lodge is essentially open to the elements—it’s a true tent accommodation, even if raised on stilts, with wooden decks.
Set upright on the dunes, with a waterhole in front and the view towards a vast valley and mountains, the lodge makes the most of its location: there is nothing in the chalets to distract from the view outside.
And the outdoors is the main attraction here. Guided nature walks, bush picnics, sundowners and most of all game drives exploit the otherworldly sights of the Namib Rand. This private reserve has a plentiful stock of large game; zebra, oryx, and springbok being the most common.
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Adventure vacation, Desert destinations, Eco travel, Family vacation, Glamping, Local flavor, Lodges, Quiet location, Relaxing vacation, Romantic, Rustic chic, Safari, Secluded location, Wildlife travel,
Number of rooms & suites: 9
Rate per night: From $849 USD
*The rate is only approximate and is based on our own independent research, at the time of writing. We cannot guarantee the rate in any way.
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