Out Of Zuffenhausen
Tour the magnificent natural scenery of Namibia with Porsche Travel Club
Agemsbok (large antelope in the Oryx genus) leaps behind an enormous rock formation after turning its head with an inquisitive look on its face. The sunset has cast a golden glow on the stone, and the gentle wind blew up a few grains of sand. It was the perfect picture, especially so for German physician Hans-Joachim Baumgartl (aged 54). This was Namibia, and Baumgartl was one of the few on an exclusively trip with the Porsche Travel Club.
Namibia is more than twice the size of Japan, and approximately twenty Switzerland within its borders. Only around 2.3 million people reside here, along with hundreds over species of mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians. Less than a fifth of the roads are well paved and the dirt tracks simply kick start a couple miles outside the capital city of Windhoek – and
with it come adventures. Bushes cling to the ground around an occasional acacia or lush, green Mopani tree. Or there is simply a view of endless sandy flats.
Members are riding the Cayenne S as it flies over dirt road. Dust swirls around the SUV’s tires, leaving a long trail floating in its wake. Geologists estimated that this expanse of rocky debris on the far side of Swakopmund is eighty million years old – one of the oldest deserts in the world. The radio crackles and Guide Frik Orban (aged 48) alerts the group to another Oryx on the other side of the road.
“I can hardly imagine a greater contrast to my work,” he says. As his eyes gaze out over the distance, he is finding new energy, perspective, and peace of mind in Namibia. Baumgartl is impressed by the perfect organization of this trip, the small group, the fine accommodations—and the comfortable SUVs. “The most beautiful thing is the friendliness of the people—along with the landscape, which is spectacular,” he adds. This trip to Africa will surely not be his last. That much is certain.
The Porsche Adventure Tour of Namibia includes the sand dunes of Sossusvlei, which can reach heights of 1,250ft, the Namib-Naukluft National Park, Swakopmund and Damaraland, Twlfelfontein, and the Etosha Pan – a saltpan with an extensive array of wildlife. It will be a dream come true for Africa and wildlife lovers. “Compared to other African countries, Namibia has far more open space, as well as greater security,” says Orban. Animals are often observed in their natural habitats, which also promote sustainable tourism.
Tourist Gudrun Schmer from Wuppertal-Sudberg was looking for an adventure of her lifetime, and this tour was perfect for her. A fan of Africa, she and her husband are travelling the southern park of the continent for the first time. “This time we wanted to go on an organized safari, do some serious photography, see a lot of animals and as much natural scenery as possible,” she says. So the couple decided on a trip with the Travel Club. After all, they’ve both been driving Porsches for over thirty years. “It’s very practical that everything is perfectly planned,” she adds, “yet it also has character.”That character includes not only the well-stocked cooler in the Cayenne, but also the unique lodges. They offer both comfortable tents, with open-air showers and a view of the horizon, and traditionally styled round huts for camping. In the afternoon, a gentle desert breeze blows across the sprawling grasslands. The veranda of the Ongava Lodge in the southern part of the Etosha Pan is an inviting place to have a drink and observe wildlife.
Etosha translates to “great white place”, and measures around 1,850 square miles. Its inhabitants include elephants, lions, cheetahs, giraffes, rhinos and leopards. The usually dry area fills occasionally after heavy rains, but other than that, is perfect to spot wild animals in action – catching preys, grooming each other, or simply birthing.