ETOSHA NATIONAL PARK
Growing up in this majestic paradise I have vast knowledge of the park, wildlife and its waterholes.
History of the Etosha National Park
Etosha Park was declared a nature conservation area in 1907. The protection area at that time was four times bigger than today. Reason for the creation of the conservation area was the near depletion of the once abundant wildlife through poaching and big game hunting.
The protection area was decreased as from 1928 and in 1958 and 1967 further reductions took place until at the beginning of the seventies the Park received its present borders and was completely fenced in 1973.
Wildlife and Nature
The name Etosha is derived from the Oshiwambo and means “big, white place”. More than 100 mammal species and 340 different species of birds are found in the park.
Due to the fencing of the Etosha National Park, the animals living in the park were depending on the water and food resources found within the fence. Thus the water supply is granted by water holes, some of natural origin some artificial.
In the western part of the park, 5 natural and 27 artificial water holes are found, whereas 29 natural and 12 artificial water holes are found in the eastern part of the park. These form the livelihood for the animals in the Etosha and also serve tourists for game viewing. On the map which each visitor receives when entering the park, the waterholes, as well as the network of roads, are marked.
The park has a total of four entrances: in the east the von Lindequist Gate, in the north the Nahale IyaMpinga-Tor (also called the King Nehale Gate); in the south the Andersson Gate and in the west the Otjovasondu Gate, which should open the still inaccessible western parts of the park to general tourism in 2012.
Accommodation facilities in the Etosha National Park
Okaukuejo is the main camp and here you also find the main entrance into the park.
Namutoni in the east is the former fort of the German protection troops;
Halali is situated in the middle between Okaukuejo and Namutoni about 70 km apart from each camp respectively;
Onkoshi is the fourth rest camp and can only be reached by shuttle from Namutoni;
The Dolomite Camp is situated in the western part of the park.
The first three camps mentioned above have restaurants, various accommodations, campsites, kiosk, landing strip, fuel station, etc.
To be able to visit all waterholes surrounding the respective camp one should plan a stay of at least two days.
The ‘white ghosts’ of Etosha, can be observed drinking at the Nebrownii waterhole, where the dry white clay dusts their skin and coats the entire elephant in white – often brilliantly offset against the bright blue sky.
ONJOWEWE LODGE, Filmhouse, House in the Rocks
The Onjowewe Lodge or House in the Rocks as people know it will be one of our destinations we will visit on our way to Etosha National Park. It was built into granite rocks and for every photographer, a dream come true to witness the beautiful sunsets. A Himba Village is located nearby, where we can witness the tribe in their normal habitat.
BRANDBERG, White Lady Lodge
On our way to Etosha National Park, this is definitely a destination we have to visit. The highlight will be seeing the desert-adapted Elephants in the Ugab river bank. Brandberg White Lady Lodge lies at the foot of the Brandberg Mountain, the highest mountain in Namibia, within easy reach of the famous Bushman “White Lady” rock painting.
MAP OF ETOSHA NATIONAL PARK
The Springbok congregate in vast herds and are also found in Etosha National Park, where they often mingle with herds of zebra and wildebeest, a predators delight!