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Dara Nawas Camp, Damaraland

Doro Nawas Camp

Set on a small kopje on the edge of the dry Aba-Huab River, Doro Nawas Camp offers unspoilt panoramic views south towards the red cliffs of Twyfelfontein, west across the grass plains and north towards the dramatic Etendeka Mountains. These can be enjoyed from the main lodge, which features airy indoor and outdoor dining areas, a bar, cozy lounge, pool and local curio area. A staircase leads up to the roof, where you can relax with a sundowner or gaze up at the stars. The atmosphere here is laid-back and intimate, with the property offering a traditional African safari style, featuring thatched roofs, wicker furniture and exposed wood.

Our rating: First Class

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Rooms

Accommodation is in a small number of individual thatch, stone and canvas units, which have been designed to blend into the surrounding landscape. Each features an en suite bathroom with outdoor shower, a large double bed or twin beds and a shady terrace with seating where you can relax and enjoy the views. You may also move your bed out onto the terrace to spend the night sleeping beneath the stars. Large glass windows provide views and natural light, while the décor has a traditional African style, with polished stone floors, African print fabrics and wooden and wicker furniture.

Location

Situated within the Doro !Nawas Conservancy in the dry Aba-Huab River Valley, the camp makes an excellent base for exploring the area’s diverse range of wildlife, including desert-adapted elephant, black rhino, springbok, oryx, ostrich and an array of birdlife, some of which are endemic to the region such as the Damara hornbill, Carp’s tit and Rüpell's korhaan. The camp is also close to Twyfelfontein, home to over 2,000 ancient rock art sites.

Food and Drink

Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served in a buffet style at set times, but are enjoyed on individual tables for an intimate dining experience. Vegetarians can be catered for on request, and the food is generally tasty, including salads, vegetables, grilled meats and kebabs. You can dine indoors, out on the deck or on the roof while enjoying the sweeping views of the surrounding landscape.

Families

There’s a family room that can accommodate a family of up to four. As the camp is unfenced and sometimes visited by wildlife such as elephant, children should be supervised at all times.

Facilities and Activities

You can cool off and relax at the pool between activities, which revolve around game and bird viewing on day and night game drives and guided walks. You can also visit Twyfelfontein, where Africa’s largest collection of ancient petroglyphs can be seen. The art often reflects the area’s wildlife, including springbok, oryx and ostrich found on the plains. Meanwhile, Hartmann's mountain zebra frequent the higher mountain slopes, and desert-adapted elephant, bat-eared fox and, occasionally, black rhino and cheetah can also be spotted.

Environmental and Social Responsibility

The camp is a project that’s jointly owned by Wilderness Safaris and the local Doro !Nawas community. All the staff are local, and funds are put directly back into the community, which has a 40% share in the property.

In terms of protecting the environment, the camp has been built to have minimal impact on its surroundings. It uses solar power to heat its water and eco-friendly systems to treat waste water. Electricity is generated using a hybrid system where a diesel-powered generator charges batteries that supply the electricity through an inverter, therefore meaning that the generator only operates for eight hours each day rather than 24 hours.

Our opinion

We like this camp as it's jointly owned with the local community and well located for visiting Twyfelfontein’s petroglyphs. The scenery is spectacular, and sleeping out on your terrace under the night sky is unforgettable.

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