What we say
Tsondab Valley lodge is a small owner-run lodge situated in one of the most scenic parts of the Namib Desert. The lodge is a hidden gem, far from the crowds that frequent the more mainstream tourist area around Sesriem and Sossusvlei, and is the ideal location to enjoy the tranquillity & views that make the Namib Desert such a special place. The lodge entrance is 9km north of Solitaire, the ‘driveway’ winds for 18km through beautiful desert plains and dunes. Expect to spend at least half an hour on this drive, and much longer if you are with an avid photographer. The lodge itself is situated on a ridge overlooking an ancient river bed, the views are magnificent.
We found the lodge to be unpretentious, friendly and comfortable, the perfect place to relax and enjoy the Namib. As it is a small lodge with only five guest rooms it is perfectly suited to self-drive tourists in Namibia. The hosts Hans & Kristin are fascinating and have hand-built every part of Tsondab Valley Lodge. Their passion for the Namib Desert, the lodge and their guests shines through. Kristin prepares excellent meals and the atmosphere around the communal dining table is festive and sociable.
The rooms are simple but provide all the comfort one needs. A special treat occurred during dinner when we were asked if we wanted to sleep on the roof of our bungalow. This seemed like an opportunity not to be missed, and when we returned to our room (after several glasses of wine) we found our bed beautifully prepared. Unfortunately, while we were there it was full moon and star gazing was not at it’s best, but one can only imagine how magnificent they would look. On waking our bed was slightly damp as the desert mist had descended during the night – but this only added to the beauty of the location. The views from the rooms is remarkable and we highly recommend the rooftop sleeping arrangement.
Activities at Tsondab include scenic flights (Hans is a keen pilot), hikes and scenic desert drives. As our time was limited Hans took us on a scenic drive and sundowner. His passion for the property still shines through, regaling us with fascinating stories as the old Landrover bounced down dry river beds and over Namib sand-dunes. These drives are really about enjoying the desert scenery, but we also managed to spot several gemsbok and mountain zebra. At sunset, we enjoyed a G&T on top of a dune as tok-tokkies, geckos and other fascinating desert creatures frolicked around us.
We were sad to leave the lodge the next morning, but we had to join the Namibia Scientific Society for our Sea of Sands Tour! We are so keen to get back to this beautiful place that we have offered our services to look after the property whenever Hans & Kristin need to getaway. We hope they are planning a holiday soon!
What they say (the facts!)
Tsondab Valley is your exclusive and remote destination; far removed from mass-tourism, offering you you the space and time you need to relax and forget the daily strains back home
Our lodge consists of five extravagant bungalows; each featuring a roof terrace accessed by an outer staircase. Let yourself be enchanted with a private sundowner on your roof or with a night under the stars.
Why we like it
Tsondab Valley reserve is not a replacement for visiting Sossusvlei. But if you have already visited Sossusvlei before then it is a superb (and superior) alternative. For first time visitors to Namibia, we would strongly suggest splitting your time in the area between a lodge closer to Sossusvlei and Tsondab. It could easily be included in most of our self-drive itineraries and would be an excellent addition to the Dunes & Etosha Self Drive Safari.