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Kulala Desert Lodge, Sossusvlei

Kulala Desert Lodge

Kulala Desert Lodge is a characterful desert property that has been constructed in a traditional African style, with clay buildings, wood and wicker furniture and high thatched ceilings. The main area includes a cosy lounge with an open fireplace, a dining area that extends outdoors, a plunge pool surrounded by shaded seating and sun loungers and a wraparound veranda overlooking the riverbed, where you can sit out and take in the wonderful views over the Namib Desert.

Days are spent exploring the area’s desert-adapted wildlife and the dramatic landscape of the Sossusvkei dunes, while back at the lodge you can dine al fresco in the fading light before sleeping on your rooftop to appreciate the star-filled night sky.

Our rating: First Class

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Rooms

Accommodation is in individual thatch and canvas units, which are built on raised wooden platforms to optimise on the views and the cooling breezes. Each features an en suite bathroom, a veranda with sweeping views over the desert and a private rooftop terrace where you can choose to sleep beneath the stars. The rooms are simply but comfortably furnished with large double beds, wicker seats and traditional-style lanterns, which provide an authentic desert camp atmosphere. They also feature lots of windows to ensure plenty of natural light and ventilation.

Location

The lodge is situated within the 270 square kilometre Kulala Wilderness Reserve in the arid Namib Desert. With a private entrance to Namib Nauklift National Park, it offers the closest accommodation to the rolling red dunes of Sossusvlei. A variety of desert-adapted wildlife can be found within the reserve, including ostrich, springbok, black-backed jackal, hyena, gemsbok, porcupine and bat-eared foxes, as well as diverse birdlife and reptile species.

Food and Drink

The restaurant at the lodge serves tasty international cuisine, which can be eaten al fresco while looking out over the surrounding landscape. At sunset, enjoy a scenic sundowner as the desert changes colour in front of you. This can be done at the lodge itself or as part of a nature drive in a more remote spot out in the reserve.

Families

There are several family rooms available at the lodge, which can accommodate up to two adults and two children.

Facilities and Activities

The lodge has a pool in which to cool off during hot afternoons, as well as a lounge area where you can relax with a good book. The waterhole in front of the lodge attracts wildlife such as oryx, ostrich and jackal, providing excellent photo opportunities. Activities available include day and night game drives, guided nature walks, eco-sensitive quad biking, horse riding safaris and hot air balloon rides.

Environmental and Social Responsibility

The lodge has a pool in which to cool off during hot afternoons, as well as a lounge area where you can relax with a good book. The waterhole in front of the lodge attracts wildlife such as oryx, ostrich and jackal, providing excellent photo opportunities. Activities available include day and night game drives, guided nature walks, eco-sensitive quad biking, horse riding safaris and hot air balloon rides.

Local Excursions

Sesriem Canyon is well worth a visit during your stay. Formed over millions of years, it’s around three kilometres long, offering breath-taking views and walking trails. Your stay also wouldn’t be complete without visiting Sossusvlei, a huge clay pan surrounded by sand dunes. Those who are more active can climb the area’s highest dune, 325 metre Big Daddy, to enjoy wonderful views across the desert from the top, with the ascent taking around an hour and a half. You may also wish to visit Dead Veli, another salt pan where skeletons of trees form an eerie presence.

Our opinion

We think this desert dwelling has a truly unique character. As the closest lodge to Sossusvlei, you’re in the perfect position to get an early start and take advantage of the morning light in the dunes.

Sossusvlei & Sesriem itinerary suggestions

Nearby accommodation

Nearby places

Places & hotels on the map

    Alternative places to stay nearby

    Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favourite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.

    • Desert Homestead, Sossusvlei

      Desert Homestead Lodge

      Medium

      Close to some of Namibia’s greatest desert scenery, Desert Homestead Lodge is a welcoming, characterful option surrounded by rugged mountains. Combining African style and Western comforts, the lodge makes an excellent base for exploring the towering dunes of Namib-Naukluft National Park.

    • Accommodation at Desert Quiver Camp

      Desert Quiver Camp

      Simple

      Desert Quiver offers simple but modern self-catering accommodation, situated just five kilometres from the entrance to Sossusvlei.

    • Hoodia Lodge, Sossusvlei

      Hoodia Desert Lodge

      First Class

      A warm greeting, a cool towel and a cold drink welcome guests at this lodge after a dusty day on the road. The lodge enjoys a beautiful location conveniently close to the national park entrance for Sossusvlei at Sesriem.

    • Little Kulala, Sossusvlei

      Little Kulala

      Opulent

      Little Kulala is very arty and stylish. The rooms have been carefully designed and have dramatic desert views. We highly recommend it as somewhere totally unique to stay in the desert.

    • Little Sossus Lodge, Sossusvlei

      Little Sossus Lodge

      Medium

      This is a fairly simple, eco-friendly lodge. The rooms are clean and comfortable, and the staff are warm and friendly.

    • Sossus Dune Lodge, Sossusvlei

      Sossus Dune Lodge

      Medium

      Sossus Dune Lodge is in a very convenient location to visit Sossusvlei, with the added benefit of being very close to Sesriem Canyon. It is also a great lodge from which to access the dunes at first light.

    • Junior suite at Sossusvlei Lodge

      Sossusvlei Lodge

      First Class

      This lodge is located at the National Park entrance to Sesriem, the perfect base from which to explore the ancient dunes of Sossusvlei.

    • Desert Camp, Sesriem

      The Desert Camp

      Simple

      This affordable accommodation comprises twenty units, each with en-suite bathroom, twin beds, shaded verandah with outside cooking facilities including a small zipped away kitchenette and bbq.

    Experiences while staying here

    The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.

    • Climbing the sand dunes at Sossusvlei

      Sossusvlei Dune Excursion

      Sossusvlei & Sesriem

      Enjoy the amazing scenery of Sossusvlei, and maybe take a short walk to Dead Vlei, a bizarre collection of ancient camelthorn trees, or climb the nearby dunes.

    • Sunset ride from Desert Homestead

      Sunset Horse Riding

      Sossusvlei & Sesriem

      Riders wind their way across the grassy plains and through ancient water courses and eventually up a steep mountain track, where a friendly barman with a selection of cocktails awaits them.