Imagine reading your vows amongst the rolling dunes of the Namib Desert, stopping to admire the rugged beauty of rocky hills that reflect the golden hues of the sunset, and ending your days under the vast, never ending stretch of twinkling stars in the night sky. When you elope in Namibia, you’ll find an adventure that ignites your senses and sparks the flame of adventure, and by the end of it you’ll fall deeply in love with the otherworldly, remote landscape where you married your best friend.
This guide will give you some tips for planning your very own wild road trip elopement in Namibia – one that combines adventure and elegance, rugged wilderness and soft beauty, and all the raw, real, authentic emotions as you embark on your greatest adventure yet.
Getting there when you elope in Namibia
Your journey will begin with traveling to Namibia. There are very few direct flights to this wild, remote country – so most couples will have a layover in Johannesburg, South Africa before boarding another aircraft to Windhoek in Namibia. From Europe, companies such as Lufthansa offer a layover in Frankfurt, while Ethiopian Airlines splits the flight halfway at Addis Abeba.
Getting around Namibia for a road trip elopement
A road trip elopement through Namibia is the most incredible way to explore the otherworldly wilderness and the breathtaking locations that this country has to offer. With a road trip elopement, you can discover off the beaten path landscapes, spend weeks chasing jaw-dropping views, exploring the pure wilderness, spotting wildlife, and being immersed in your one-of-a-kind elopement experience. You’ll have the freedom to travel at your own pace, be spontaneous, and enjoy every dazzling, magical moment.
A 4×4 vehicle (4WD) is the best option for a road trip through Namibia, as it will allow you to reach even more secluded spots! There aren’t many highways in the country, and many of the roads are unpaved gravel – but, with a 4×4, it’s easy to navigate.
Here’s a tip for your road trip elopement – watch out for animals as you drive! The wildlife is one of the most amazing things about eloping in Namibia, and you’ll see giraffes grazing, wildebeests running, and so much more.
The Best Places to Elope in Namibia
A road trip elopement means you can experience so much, and see a wide variety of raw beauty and rugged landscapes. A complete list of pit stops on your road trip would be never ending – but here are a few ideas for the most incredible, breathtaking places to have your elopement ceremony or to stop and soak in the views.
The Namib Desert
The Namib Desert spans for nearly 2000 km, so you’ll find plenty of epic spots within this stretch of scenery. This is the world’s oldest desert, and it features rolling rust red sand dunes that seem to extend into the horizon forever.
While you’re here, you can stay at Sesriem Rest Camp, at a campsite that features a pool, restaurant, and other amenities – the perfect blend of rugged adventure and a little bit of desert luxury. For a more exclusive experience, you can stay at the luxurious Sossus Dune Lodge.
Both accommodations give you access to the park an hour before it opens to the general public, and you can stay for an additional hour after sunset – so you can have the views to yourselves!
The ocean contrasting with the desert is a unique sight – and Namibia’s coastline is the perfect place to go for epic adventures like scenic flights, skydiving, kayaking amongst sea lions (and if you’re lucky, dolphins), boat tours, and buggies through the sand dunes! The area is a reserve for wildlife, and you’ll see all kinds of birds, like pelicans and flamingos, as well as adorable sea lions.
At Sandwich Harbour, the rolling sand dunes meet the crashing sea, and you can take an expedition, led by an experienced guide, from Walvis Bay – but it’s only accessible at low tide!
The coast is a unique spot, often covered in a mystical fog – the weather is different from the rest of the country (colder and foggier) due to the microclimate created by the cool ocean clashing with the desert heat.
After leaving the coast, and on your way to Etosha National Park, you’ll cross the Damaraland, where desert elephants and rhinos roam free amongst rocky boulder formations and layers of mountains. Sunsets drench the entire landscape in golden hues, and it’s a truly unforgettable place.
The views are incredible, and while you’re here, you can stay at Mowani Mountain Camp, in a luxurious open air suite surrounded by the epic views.
Etosha National Park
Etosha National Park is a prime destination for wildlife viewing. This game reserve offers a safari experience that will take your breath away, and the natural water holes attract wildlife including elephants, lions, leopards, rhinos, giraffes, zebras, and so many more. You can drive through the park on your own!
The Best Time to Elope in Namibia
I recommend at least a few weeks for your road trip elopement in Namibia. Three weeks is the perfect stretch of time to allow you to travel all over the country, explore all of the most epic landscapes, and be able to take it slow and soak in every magical experience.
You’ll need to set a date for your elopement, and while anytime is an incredible time to explore Namibia, the weather does vary throughout the year.
May Through October
May through October is the most popular time to visit Namibia, as this is the dry season. There is almost no rain, and the sun sparkles on the desert landscape all day. This is the best time to see wildlife, as they will gather around rivers and water holes, making them easier to spot. And though Namibia is pretty warm all over the country, nights in the desert do get cold. Some layers and warm clothing is best for early mornings and late evenings.
Though this is the most popular time to visit Namibia, the country is so remote and underrated for travelers and explorers, and most places (with the exception of the most popular spots, like Etosha National Park) won’t feel crowded at all.
November through April
This time of year is pretty wet in Namibia – most afternoons bring with them a light shower, but the good news is these showers are usually short! The scenery is greener, and you can see patches of lush vegetation amongst the copper tones of the desert. You’ll see more newborn animals, but, the wildlife is often more difficult to spot.
This time of year is not as popular for visitors, so rates are lower and you won’t see as many people around. It does get very hot, so you’ll need a plan to cool off during the day.
Hiring a Photographer When you Elope in Namibia
The day you get married is one you’ll remember forever, and it’s so important to have photos that you’ll cherish for years to come. As an elopement photographer, my job is to tell the story of your day through natural light, stunning landscapes, and the raw, authentic emotions of your day.
Having traveled to Namibia several times and fallen in love with this stunning gem of a place, I’ll be by your side as you road trip through the desert, as you catch your breath when you pass the most incredible landscapes, as you feel your heart beat faster when you exchange vows and promise to spend the rest of forever with your best friend.