The Namibia Photography Tour will take you to some of Africa’s most impressive landscapes, ancient red sand dunes deserts with white clay cracked salt pans, spectacular rock formations originated from the times that the South American continent separated from the African continent, colorful flocks of flamingos, and savannas with surprisingly abundant and diverse wildlife. A photography tour is the perfect way to capture and experience the country’s untouched and wild nature.
This unforgettable photographic adventure will see you reach the southwestern tip of the African continent, travel far into the Namibian Desert, stand at the foot of camel thorn trees that are dead for at least 700 years, explore a once-booming diamond mining town, abandoned over 80 years ago and now partially buried by sand, experience marine wildlife along the infamous Skeleton Coast, witness a shipwreck that fell for the treacherous current and sandbanks along the coast.
The Namibia Photography Tour is a once in a life time event and will allow you create the images that you ever dreamed off under the guidance of two instructors who know Namibia from several previous visits and tours before.
Quiver Tree Forest
Ghost Town of Kolmanskop
Sossusvlei and Deadvlei
Shipwreck along Skeleton Coast
Wildlife at Etosha
Wild and Untamed Namibia
Join Willa Wei and Peter Boehringer from June 19 through July 3, 2023 for a fifteen day Namibia Photography Tour. This is a life time adventure for photographers with a background in landscape and wildlife photography, or for whom desires to learn and improve their photographic skills while traveling through the oldest desert in the world, experiencing one of the most captivating landscapes on Earth, and seeing free roaming wildlife.
We will stay at selected lodges and guesthouses and transportation will be in spacious, comfortable and suitable 4x4 vehicles to ensure that we will get through all roads met.
While English is the main language in Namibia your guides are polyglots and will host you comfortably in English, German, Portuguese and Mandarin.
Learn & Photograph with Passion
Work in different light conditions, with short/long exposure and aperture.
Learn about night photography techniques in the beautifully desolate surroundings of Namib Desert, Skeleton Coast, and Quiver Tree Forest.
How to handle equipment with care on location.
Assistance with camera settings, the basics of composition, guide and help in general.
Hands-on lessons that can help to take your photography skills to the next level.
Learn about image back up strategies in-the-field to avoid any loss of your irreplaceable images.
Review and constructive criticism/feedback of the images taken during the tour.
Short sessions of workflow in Capture One and/or Adobe Lightroom softwares.
List of must-have and of nice-to-have photography gear for during your trip.
Day 1 - Arrival at Windhoek Airport
On our first day of the Namibia Photography Tour we will meet at the airport where we will collect the 4x4s and drive to our guesthouse in Windhoek. You will have time to refresh and rest from your flight. Before dinner we will get together to get to know each other and go over details of our tour, after which we will have dinner together.
Day 2 - Quiver Tree Forest
As soon as we finish our breakfast we will get in our 4×4’s and head to Keetmanshoop and from there to the nearby located Quiver Tree Forest. Quiver trees are actually, despite their size not really trees, but huge aloe plants. These trees are scattered among basalt boulders and with the right light the setting provides incredible photogenic impressions. For those who still did not have enough with the day can go out and do astrophotography during the night.
Days 3 and 4 - Lüderitz
We will get up early before dawn for a sunrise session. Our aim will be to catch the first rays of golden light glimmering through the quiver tree branches, making for an enchanting morning scene. Once finished with breakfast we will continue with our journey to Lüderitz. The drive is long and will take us through the most vast and empty landscape you might have ever seen in your life. We can stop for a photo every now and then.
Depending on the conditions in the evening, there may be the opportunity to travel into the desert for a night photography session beneath the stars at an abandoned railway station to practice your astrophotography skills.
The following two days starts with a very early morning and a short drive to Kolmanskop Ghost Town. This was once where the Namibian diamond boom started in 1908. It became one of the wealthiest towns in the world despite its isolated location, including a tram, ice making factory and a hospital with the first X-Ray machine in the Southern Hemisphere. The town was abandoned in 1956 and left for nature to reclaim it. The interior of the abandoned houses display an array of vivid colors and textures which contrast beautifully with the sand dunes invading the privacy.
Most of the rest of the day is to relax, stroll through Lüderitz, have a coffee or tea with pastry, a drive to Diaz Point.
In the afternoons, we will make our way back to Kolmanskop, ready for a sunset session within the abandoned mining town.
Days 5 through 7 - Sossusvlei
We will return to Kolmanskop for another morning shooting session, now that you know the different houses and their interior you can target on your composition and at the best moment of light display.
In sequence we will move on from Lüderitz, journeying through barren and yet beautiful landscape to Sossusvlei National Park which is one of Namibia’s most spectacular landmarks.
Once checked in to our lodge we will press on and drive down the valley to see the last sunlight of the day setting the dunes in colorful flames.
We are almost half through our tour and you are hopefully used to getting out of bed early morning as this particular morning will be our earliest one to get up. We have to drive to the end of the Sossusvlei road, drive a last stretch through deep sand and have a short hike to then enter famous Deadvlei. Here we will find 700 years old dead camel thorn trees reaching out a white flat pan, surrounded by red sand dunes. Photographing sunrise here will be the climax of the tour!
Deadvlei is such a unique and iconic area that it deserves a second visit or if you prefer an optional scenic helicopter flight or hot air balloon ride over Sossusvlei in the early morning. A helicopter ride can also be an option towards the end of the day as the low sunlight provides magnificent contrast in the dunes and creating wonderful textures in the landscape laying underneath.
Day 8 – Walvis Bay
After an early visit to Sossusvlei our adventure will take us to Walvis Bay. A complete different setting will be met here. Experience now cooler temperatures, see marine wildlife and witness the desert meeting the Atlantic Ocean.
Day 9 – Walvis Bay and Sandwich Bay Harbour
The day starts with an early breakfast to then join our tour guides who will take us along the sea salt mining company of Walvis Bay, driving then on the beach and meeting skittish sea wildlife and finally to see desert and huge sand dunes meeting the sea. It will we an adventurous experience driving along treacherous sand with crushing waves on one side and sand dunes on the other. The Skeleton Coast offers here a very unique sea and desert experience.
At the end of the day we will be back in Walvis Bay.
Day 10 – Spitzkoppe
The morning will allow us to experience sunrise along the lagoons in search for flamingos, cormorants, jackals. After a breakfast we will drive along the coast northbound towards the shipwreck Zeila. This is one of the many unfortunate ships that got stranded on the Skeleton Coast. After creating our shots of this remarkable place and walking a little bit along the crushing waves we continue our journey to Spitzkoppe. Rising gradually from the haze of the desert floor, these mountainous structures are among Namibia’s most recognizable landmark. Millions of years of weathering have resulted in a remarkable array of geological shapes throughout this area, including striking boulders and arched rock formations. We will spend sunset and into the night crafting our images.
Days 11 through 14 - Etosha
We will rise for an early morning sunrise session at the peaks of Spitzkoppe, scouting the area for interesting compositions before the first rays of light shimmer over the rugged landscape. Thereafter, we will have breakfast, pack up and head to Etosha Park.
Etosha is a national park in northwestern Namibia and one of the largest national parks in Africa. It was proclaimed a game reserve in 1907 and was elevated to the status of a national park in 1967. It gets its name from the large Etosha pan which is almost entirely within the park. The national park is home to hundreds of species of mammals, birds and reptiles, including several threatened and endangered species such as the black rhinoceros.
We will do a photographic safari here for the next three days. Expect to see baboons, elephants, zebras, giraffes, rhinos, hyenas, jackals, lions, various sorts of antelopes, just to name some of the many animals.
On the 14th day it is time to head back to Windhoek and sleep our last night in this remarkable country.
Day 15 – Windhoek
This is the last day of our tour. We will have a slow start of the day with breakfast after which you have the day to pack up, do some souvenir shopping in Windhoek.
Finally our shuttle service is to take us back to the airport and we will say goodbye. You will be going back home with wonderful memories and remarkable images waiting to be downloaded onto your hard drive, skillfully post processed and printed to finally hang on your walls at home.
Namibia Photography Tour
June 19 - July 3, 2023
Number of guests: 8
All breakfast and dinner
Travel to and from the photo tour destination
Travel and Health insurance
Do you have any questions about the Namibia Photography Tour or would you like to go on a private customized tour?
USD 7,500 shared room (2 people).
USD 1,500 surcharge for single room.
Groups sign-up of 3+ participants receive a 5% group discount.
Alumni to previous photo tour or workshop receive a 5% discount on the base price.
All prices are per person.
To secure your reservation a deposit of USD 2,500 per person is required. Refunds are handled according to the Terms & Conditions. The remaining money is due 90 days prior to the trip.
We recommend an independent travel insurance. Knowing you have 100% trip cancellation coverage can make a big difference should you have to cancel for some unforeseen reason.
Namibia’s main airport is Hosea Kutako International Airport.
We will arrange one pickup transfer and one return transfer to the airport on the arrival- and the departure day.
VISA & PASSPORT
A valid passport is required to enter Namibia. Visitors to Africa must have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months beyond your intended departure date, together with onward travel documents, proof of accommodation and sufficient funds for the duration of your stay.
Many nationalities do not require tourist visas for stays under 3 months. For a complete list of visa exemptions, as well as up-to-date information regarding visa fees and requirements, visit: namibiahc.org.uk.
It is worth leaving copies of your itinerary, credit cards, passport, visa and insurance details with family or friends so that they can be contacted in case of emergency. An even better plan is to also email yourself copies of these important documents just in case.
Namibia is one of the sunniest places on earth, with approximately 300 days of sunshine a year. December to March is relatively humid in most of Namibia, with some localised rainfall. April and May are pleasantly dry, without being dusty. The weather is cooler during June to August, when the landscape dries out and animals congregate around watering holes, making it a good time for wildlife photography. The weather warms up again during September to November.
Min 13°C , Max 26°C .
English is the official language of Namibia. There are several local languages spoken in different regions, as well as German and Afrikaans.
BASIS AND RATES
All prices are quoted in US Dollars (US$). The prices are based on current tariffs and are subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances. While Peter Boehringer Photography will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, if it is necessary to levy a surcharge, Peter Boehringer Photography reserves the right to do so, and notification will be given at the time of final invoicing.
A deposit is required at the time of booking. The invoice for the balance of payment will be issued 180 days prior to departure of international tours and 90 days for tours in the U.S.A., where after final payment is due. For reservations made within 180 days (international tours) or 90 days (tours within the U.S.A.) of the departure date, full payment is required when the reservation is accepted. In order to participate on a photography tour or workshop the participant must have made full payment prior to the start of the photography tour or workshop.
CANCELLATIONS AND REFUNDS
All cancellation notices must be received in writing and will become effective on the date, which the letter or email is received by Peter Boehringer Photography. There is no cancellation charge until 180 days (international tours) and 90 days (tours within the U.S.A.) before departure with exception of transaction fees (5.8% + $0.6 + international exchange fees, if applicable). Cancellation charges less than 180 days (international tours) or 90 days (tours within the U.S.A.) before departure are expressed as a percentage of the total price, and are as follows: 179 – 91 days, for international tours, and 89 – 31 days, for tours within the U.S.A., before departure 50%, and 90 days for international tours and 30 days for tour within the U.S.A. or less before departure 100%. Leaving a photography tour or workshop in progress, for any reason whatsoever, will not result in a refund, and no refunds will be made for any unused portions of a photography tour or workshop. Peter Boehringer Photography reserves the right to cancel a photography tour or workshop because of inadequate enrollment that makes the trip economically infeasible to operate, or because of good-faith concerns with respect to the safety, health, or welfare of the participants. If a photography tour or workshop is cancelled prior to departure, you will have a choice between a full refund minus transaction fees (5.8% + $0.6 + international exchange fees, if applicable) or a credit towards a future photography tour or workshop equivalent to amount paid. If Peter Boehringer Photography cancels the trip in progress, you will receive a pro-rata refund based on the number of days. Peter Boehringer Photography is not responsible for any refund for airline tickets, hotel accommodation, etc. purchased by the participant.
In order to participate in a photography tour or workshop you are required to have comprehensive insurance coverage for personal accident and injury, medical and repatriation costs during the photography tour or workshop. In addition Peter Boehringer Photography strongly recommends that you arrange cancellation and travel insurance covering the loss, expenses and damages arising from, including but not limited to, cancellation of the photography tour or workshop (whether in whole or in part), loss of baggage and personal money and belongings, as well as flight cancellations and delays.
You must be in good physical and mental health. Any physical condition or treatment requiring special attention must be reported in writing at the time of booking and again when signing Peter Boehringer Photography’s waiver of liability. By registering for a photography tour or workshop, the participant certifies that he/she does not have any mental, physical, or other condition or disability that would create a hazard for him/herself or other participants. Peter Boehringer Photography reserves the right in its sole discretion to accept, decline to accept, or remove any participant of a photography tour or workshop, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever, in our judgment, conditions warrant or if I Peter Boehringer Photography deems it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of the participants.
If you have special requests, e.g. dietary, cabin number, bedding type, airline seat or other requests, you should inform Peter Boehringer Photography of these at the time of booking. Peter Boehringer Photography cannot guarantee that such requests will be met, and will have no liability to you if such requests are not met.
Peter Boehringer Photography shall not be held liable for (a) any damage to, or loss of, property or injury to, or death of, persons occasioned directly or indirectly by an act or omission of any other provider, including but not limited to any defect in any aircraft, watercraft, or vehicle operated or provided by Peter Boehringer Photography; and (b) any loss or damage due to delay, cancellation or disruption in any manner caused by the laws, regulations, acts or failures to act, demands, orders, or interpositions of any government or any subdivision or agent thereof, or by acts of God, strikes, fire, flood, war, rebellion, terrorism, insurrection, sickness, quarantine, epidemics, theft, or any other cause(s) beyond our control. The participant waives any claim against Peter Boehringer Photography for any such loss, damage, injury, or death.
Peter Boehringer Photography shall not be liable for any air carrier’s cancellation penalty incurred by the purchase of a non-refundable ticket to or from the participant’s Peter Boehringer Photography’s photography tour or workshop departure city. It is the sole responsibility of the participants to organize their own transportation to and from the meeting point as described in the photography tour or workshop itinerary, e.g. airport, hotel, and to ensure timely arrival. The participant should not book flights and/or hotel accommodation until Peter Boehringer Photography has issued final confirmation for the photography tour or workshop. In the event of late arrival it is the responsibility of the participant to join the photography tour or workshop, and to carry all associated expenses. Peter Boehringer Photography is not liable if the participant misses any portion of, or the entire photography tour or workshop as a result of the delay. Baggage and personal effects are at all times the responsibility of the participant.
Other terms and conditions may apply to some photography tours or workshops, and details will always be provided with pre-trip mailings. By making the deposit payment, the participant agrees to the terms and conditions and the responsibility statements herein on behalf of all the individuals included in the booking.
The Namibian dollar (N$) is divided into 100 cents. This is freely convertible in Namibia; there is no black market and no customs regulations applicable to moving it across borders. It is currently tied to the South African rand so that N$1 = R1. Rand can be used freely in Namibia – nobody even notices. It is though, often difficult to change Namibian dollars once you leave Namibia. The contrary is also valid. Many banks overseas know only the exchange rate for rand and, and don’t supply Namibian dollars, or even quote a rate for it. Buy in the US, prior to your trip, South African rand.
Cash in the form of Namibian dollars or South African rand is essential for buying small items, and in remote areas, although we have to say that we saw a great improvement over my last several trips regarding credit card acceptance. However, cash is essential for tipping when staying at lodges and restaurants.
The major credit cards (Visa and MasterCard) are widely accepted by lodges, hotels, restaurants and shops, but American Express and Diners Club cards are increasingly difficult to use. Even smaller towns have ATM’s, either as part of a bank, or inside a supermarket, and withdrawing cash by this means is usually no harder than in the US.
Changing money at any commercial banks is easy, but a lengthy process. Opening hours are not as we are used in the US and smaller towns have weird schedule. You need to have your passport with you and make yourself ready to spend some 15 to 30 minutes to get it done. US$ 100 bills are generally not accepted and bills must be in a very good condition or they will be rejected. US$ bank notes dated before 2003 will not be accepted in Africa due to high number of forgeries.
Keep all valuables and cash well hidden. It is well worth having a small wallet for local currency that is easily accessible for shopping and a separate wallet for credit cards and foreign currency, keep them in different places.
Tipping is a very difficult and contentious topic – worth thinking about carefully; thoughtlessly tipping too much is just as bad as tipping too little.
Helpers with baggage might expect a couple of Namibian dollars for their assistance. Restaurants will often add an automatic service charge to the bill, in which case an additional tip is not usually given. If they do not do this, then 10% would certainly be appreciated if the service was good.
If a guide has given you really god service, then a tip of about N$150 (US$10) per guest per day would be a generous reflection of this. If the service hasn’t been that good, then don’t tip.
PHONE & WIFI
Phone connection will be possible only in larger towns such as Windhoek, Lüderitz and Walvis Bay. All other places, during our trip, your phone will be off the grid.
Most guesthouses and lodges have WiFi, although not necessarily with good and fast connections and sometimes even not working at all. Better, do not count with any service!
Some vaccines are recommended or required for Namibia. The National Travel Health Network and Center and WHO recommend the following vaccinations for Namibia: hepatitis A, hepatitis B, typhoid, cholera, yellow fever, rabies and tetanus. Recommended for most travelers to the region, especially if non vaccinated.
Yellow fever is only needed if you are entering Namibia coming from a country which has Yellow Fever. If you never were vaccinated for it, you will have to get the vaccination at least 10 days prior of entering the country that has Yellow Fever advisory.
COVID-19 travel restrictions, mandatory vaccination and testing prior to travel were all lifted. There is the possibility of changes in this matter and we recommend to get updated at the US Embassy in Namibia at least one month prior to your flight.
Malaria is a risk in some parts of Namibia. We will not be even close to any of the malaria areas. You will not need any malaria prophylaxis.
Having a small first aid kit is highly recommendable.
We will be carrying around during our entire tour a GPS and GEOS SOS device to ensure our constant exact positioning and SOS signal in case of a health emergency.
Namibia is, for the most part, a safe country to visit. However it does have a rather high crime rate. Crime is a serious issue in Namibia’s capital Windhoek and other areas throughout Namibia. Incidents such as muggings and bag snatching happen frequently, especially in areas frequented by foreigners.
Nevertheless, Windhoek is generally friendly, but obviously don’t flash your touristness and your wealth about. Nevertheless, Peter had his ATM card stolen during his last Namibia trip.
Always lock the vehicle up and leave in a secure place when going out or while you are shopping. This is especially important in populated areas. Always leave one of your party with the vehicle to look after it, especially in towns. Never leave cameras and valuables in view and always drive with the doors locked when in towns.
CAN I DRINK TAP WATER IN NAMIBIA
Tap water is purified in hotels, lodges and other public places so is safe to drink. If you are worried about drinking the tap water, bottled water is available to purchase throughout Namibia.
Any trips I organize or organize with another photographer are private and non-business. I am a physician by trade and I take people along with me on my trips because I enjoy the company and the opportunity to help people get to know and photograph the Southwest. I do not make a business out of it. My goal is to have a pleasant, safe trip with artistic value photography as a result. We share expenses, gear, ideas, and experiences. We will not be going anyplace on public lands that are not generally open to the public. No photographs you take on public lands may be used to promote the sale or use of a product or service. We will not do any "commercial filming" as defined in the Code of Federal Regulations. We will respect nature, leave only footprints where we are allowed to leave footprints, and take only our images, memories, and friendships home with us.
Digital photography, social media and modern travel patterns changed nature & landscape photography radically. The amount of people visiting the wilderness increased over the last two decades exponentially. Nature is coping poorly with the increased human presence. It is time that we all, who value nature and photography, question our behavior out there and prioritize the well-being of nature over photography. As such I support the entities Leave no Traces, Nature First, Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition and Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance.