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Himba people - how can I see them

Fordingbridge...
Level Contributor
514 posts
230 reviews
Himba people - how can I see them

Hi

I am interested in culture/people as well as wildlife/scenery.

I really want to try to see the Himba people.

I can't do a fly in safari.

I will be driving a SUV (& travelling alone) so going too far into the North West doesn't look possible.

Is anything possible for me please?

I'd be moving up from Swakopmund/Cape Cross/Spitzkoppe/Khorixas.

Sesfontein & Warmquelle might work maybe??

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks

Christine Bennett

35 replies to this topic
Slovenia
Destination Expert
for Costa Rica
Level Contributor
19,113 posts
62 reviews
1. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

Your best bet is to contact one of the local guides or lodges and organise a visit with them. Or to join a regular scheduled tour through one of the lodges in that area.

Fordingbridge...
Level Contributor
514 posts
230 reviews
2. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

Thanks for your reply.

I'm not very hopeful of my chances of seeing the Himba people other than in a 'human zoo'.

The various websites that I've looked at are pretty depressing. They list various 'Living Museums'. Often, local Himba people arrived in western clothes & changed into Himba clothes ready for the arrival of the tourists. I've looked on the websites of several of the lodges (Palmwag Lodge & Grootberg Lodge) but these seem to be just an organised trip to the same places. If this is the case then I might as well just drive myself there.

There is a Himba orphanage (Otijkandero Orphan Village - somwhere between Kamanjab & Outjo). Reading the reviews, this place has just got more & more cynical over the years & the local Himba are totally disinterested & just want to sell their trinkets (not even locally made stuff I believe).

Back to the drawing board I guess - a bit depressing really!

Thanks anyway

Christine Bennett

Fordingbridge...
Level Contributor
514 posts
230 reviews
3. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

Hi again

I know that there is a Himba Tour organised by Fort Sesfontein. It is guided by a Himba tribe member of their company.

I know that Fort Sesfontein is a pretty awful place to stay (the reviews are not good!). If the tour is semi-authentic then I don't mind suffering a grotty night there.

I've sent them an e mail to ask for more information about the tour.

I'm not holding my breath though.

If anyone has any experiences of Fort Sesfontein (& especially their Himba Tour), I'd really appreciate some input.

Thanks.

Christine Bennett

Jerusalem, Israel
Level Contributor
530 posts
39 reviews
4. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

Fort Sesfontein is an awful place to stay??? i'll stay there any day!!!!

when people travel to remote places they should expect the minimum and not luxury.... the fort is a great place, excellent food, beautiful freezing pool and basic rooms (that's all i need any way...)

you can contact Archie, the local guide i use there, he is based at the fort, directly archiegawusab@gmail.com

don't attempt to drive further then Sesfontein alone!

Fordingbridge...
Level Contributor
514 posts
230 reviews
5. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

Thanks for your message.

That's given me fresh hope that it might work out for me.

I'll read the reviews etc on Fort Sesfontein again. I'm really not 'precious' about where I stay. I'm quite happy staying in more basic places.

Thanks for the e mail address for Archie, the local guide. I'll send him a message.

I realise that Sesfontein is the furthest that I'd be able to drive - especially as I'm alone & only have a SUV.

Wish me luck!

Thanks again

Christine Bennett

Allentown...
Level Contributor
69 posts
21 reviews
6. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

I also use Archie for both Himba visits and the Hoanib Riverbed. He is very knowledgeable about everything in that region. I've actually always worked with him while working through the Khowarib lodge which is another excellent option.

For my last group, we also visited Himba on lands owned by Toko Lodge. This was a very good visit and the lodge there is quite fun and eclectic.

auckland
Level Contributor
757 posts
20 reviews
7. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

............ yes I have visited ‘the orphanage’ ( twice actually but that in itself is a loooong story),yes it will forever be a standout miserable experience. There are usually Himba women selling souvenirs at the little market in downtown Windhoek.

Fordingbridge...
Level Contributor
514 posts
230 reviews
8. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

Hi Buddy

Thanks for your message.

Khowarib lodge looks good.

I've also looked at the Toko Lodge (maybe that is a bit more expensive??)

I would be travelling up from Swakopmund through Damaraland & on my way to Etosha so I think that either of them could work for me.

Do they mainly go for the tour group market? If so, as a single female traveller, maybe I'd feel a bit 'out of place'.

Do you know if the roads up to the lodges are OK for a SUV (looking at some other lodges in other locations, you have to leave your car near the main road & use a shuttle if you don't have a 4 x 4.

Does Archie only work directly for the lodges or does he organise any tours himself.

Any preference of which lodge might suit me better.

Thanks for your help. I'm feeling enthusiastic now. I was getting a bit despondent with my trip planning!

Christine Bennett

Fordingbridge...
Level Contributor
514 posts
230 reviews
9. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

Hi Daintyfrog

Yes, I agree with you, the experiences of the 'orphanage' seem to be pretty awful. I really don't want to be in an uncomfortable setting like that.

Thanks

Christine Bennett

PS - I see you are from Auckland in NZ. I'll be visiting my son & his little family in Palmerston North for 2 weeks before I start my trip in Namibia. Then, after my Namibia visit, I return home to the UK.

auckland
Level Contributor
757 posts
20 reviews
10. Re: Himba people - how can I see them

What a fabulous trip you are in for....... enjoy!

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