The great white place is known locally as Etosha National Park. The white place referred to here is the white salt pan that covers a huge area in Etosha. At 2.2 million hectares, Etosha is big. Not only is it big, but it provides a home for thousands of animals and birds. The entire area is in a pristine state, which means that although there are administrators in the form of wardens and rangers, the area is not interfered with much.
Etosha is the “holy grail” of national parks in Namibia. It is the most visited park by both locals and foreign tourists. To accommodate visitors, three rest camps are located within the Park. Okaukeujo (pronounced “Okakwayo”) is the flagship of these. Luxury bungalows, chalets and campsites offer different types of accommodation. A pool, restaurant and shop complete the picture. The main attraction in Okaukeujo is the illuminated watering hole. When night falls, the spotlights are turned on and visitors enjoy a magnificent show. Games of all kinds and sizes visit the watering hole throughout the night and provide live television for visitors. Since the game is used to light, it doesn’t bother them at all.
Namutoni and Halali are the other two rest camps in Etosha. As with most things in life, these camps have their own personality. Halali is rugged and the smallest of the three camps. Namutoni with its historic fort is more history oriented.
With a plethora of watering holes located in the park, hunting is spread far and wide. Visitors can easily reach these waterholes as they are all connected with a good road system. You don’t need a 4×4 vehicle as such, as smaller sedans can get to most water holes. The waterholes can be visited at any time during the day, but the best times will be just after sunrise and just before sunset. Make sure you are close to your destination as the sun sets as the campgrounds close their gates at sunset. This is done to ensure the safety of visitors inside.
Etosha is known for its huge herds of plains zebra, blue wildebeest and antelope. Giraffe, Oryx, Red Hartebeest and Eland are some of the larger antelope present in Etosha. Most predators can also be seen, including lions, leopards and cheetahs. The smallest predators can be seen at night in the different springs in the camps.
Big game like Elephant and Black Rhino are seen daily, so there is something for everyone. Etosha is truly a wonderful experience, and definitely one of the “must do” things when in Namibia.