Swakopmund Tours
Living Dunes Experience from Swakopmund
4.5

Living Dunes Experience from Swakopmund

By Charly's Desert Tours
About
Explore the desert wildlife of Namibia’s sand dunes and follow alongside desert guides as they track web-footed geckos, snakes, chameleons, scorpions, and toktokkies, also called “fog-basking beetles.” This Swakopmund desert tour includes pickup and drop-off at local hotels, as well as all national park fees, and it gets you access to a restricted area of the dunes that requires special permission.
from
R 961,55
per adult
Lowest price guaranteeReserve now & pay laterFree cancellation

Ages 3-80, max of 10 per group
Duration: 3h 30m
Start time: Check availability
Mobile ticket
Meets animal welfare guidelines
Live guide: English
More

Highlights
  • See the natural highlights of Swakopmund's coastal dunes
  • Track Namibia’s hard-to-find desert creatures
  • Go off-road on a dune drive by 4WD vehicle
  • Convenient, door-to-door transport from Swakopmund hotels

  • GST (Goods and Services Tax)
  • National Park fees
  • Bottled water
  • Driver/guide
  • Professional guide
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off (no pick up at Airbnb's or private homes)
What's not included
  • Gratuities

Meet a driver at your hotel in Swakopmund and then travel into the coastal dune belt that’s just beyond the city limits. Spot some of the natural highlights of the desert landscape as you drive into the dunes, but many of the desert’s most fascinating sights require a trained eye and a firsthand look. Learn about the fascinating animals that thrive in Namibia's arid landscape; search for creatures that crawl, slither, and hop across the sand; and find out how to identify the subtle tracks they leave. Following the wildlife portion of this Swakopmund dunes tour, pick up some speed on a dunes drive, and finish with return transfer to your hotel.

Start:Multiple pickup locations offered.
  • Desert explorers adventure centre, 8G7H+XMM, Nathaniel Maxuilili, Swakopmund, Namibia
    We will meet you at the parking area of Desert Explorers. Our vehicles are easy to recognize with the Charly's Desert Tours logo on the doors.
Pickup details
  • We do not collect from any Airbnb's. Guests staying at an Airbnb must meet us at our office in the Brauhaus Arcade in Sam Nuyoma Avenue.
Hotel pickup offered
During checkout you will be able to select from the list of included hotels.
    Additional pickup options
    During checkout you will be able to select from the list of included pickup points.
    • Desert explorers adventure centre, 8G7H+XMM, Nathaniel Maxuilili, Swakopmund, Namibia
    End:This activity ends back at the meeting point.

      • Not wheelchair accessible
      If you have questions about accessibility, we’d be happy to help. Just call the number below and reference the product code: 14755P1

      • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
      • Child rate applies only when sharing with 2 paying adults
      • A minimum of 2 people per booking is required
      • Most travellers can participate
      • This experience requires good weather. If it’s cancelled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
      • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 10 travellers

      • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.

      If you have questions about this tour or need help making your booking, we’d be happy to help. Just call the number below and reference the product code: 14755P1

      Reserve your spot

      Similar experiences

      Itinerary
      • Pass by
        Swakopmund
      About the operator
      Don’t take it from us – here’s what people have to say about this operator:
      • Charly's Desert Tours
        216
        Swakopmund, Namibia
        Joined in September 2012
      • shannonaQ6004IF
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        A great tour to learn more about plants
        We'd highly recommend this tour! Our guide, Erst, was super informative! We learned so much about the plants and geology of the moon landscape. We even got to see a spider and few geckos. The landscapes were spectacular, but what made the tour really special was how Erst explained the beauty and wonder of the desert to us. He really has a deep respect and admiration for nature that shows in his tours!
        Written 11 August 2022
      • Chrisinkingwood2
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Amazing
        This was a very interesting trip and I learned a lot about the plant. It is one of the oldest types of plants in the world and able to survive in very hard conditions.
        Written 22 July 2022
      • Carmody06
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Very helpful, easy booking, professional
        We used Charly's Tours to arrange our airport pickup, which included a short tour through Walvis Bay and out to flamingo lagoon, as well as a stop for a covid test (for travel) and an ATM. The price was much lower than other quotes we received and everything went perfectly. Couzette in the office is super helpful and fast with her emails. We also booked the quad bike and sandboarding combo tour through them. It seems like the only company that actually provides the quad biking is Desert Explorers and other tour companies help arrange it. But the price is the same regardless. We had a great time on our 3 hour tour of the dunes. Sandboarding was fun, but be prepared to walk up the huge dune after each run. This is a different dune than the one you would go to if you do the tour that is only sandboarding where you drive there. Something is consider maybe? This one was extremely scenic and very fun to get to.
        Written 16 February 2022
      • Martin Z
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Awesome experience - absolutely brillant guide!
        The tour through the moon landscape was an awesome experience. Breathtaking views, great nature and a fantastic geology. We have had the extraordinary privilege being guided by Bawden, He is featuring an amazing profound knowledge in all the disciplines like nature, geology, society and national and international history. His competence is outrageous. A really great personality and a fantastic guide.
        Written 4 November 2021
      • SimonWB
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Fascinating
        The tour took bus deep into the moonscape desert. We were shown all sorts of special plants and amazing landscapes. The welwitschia plants were fascinating. Do take the afternoon tour. the guide was very knowledgeable.
        Written 25 May 2021
      • Charlene2587
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Absolutely fantastic afternoon
        We had such a lovely afternoon on this tour and was really interesting as I had no idea how much produce Namibia grew for themselves. We visited a local producer of jojoba and saw all the products they made and how the oils were extracted. There were some cute pups running around too which is always fun! We saw a local working farm which grew their own veggies etc and had an olive grove from which they made their own oil and jarred their olives. We bought some to take home as it was very tasty and they made lovely gifts. The coffee shop experience was great where we met an outfit who were passionate about what they do. It was the first time I’d experienced how different coffee can taste depending on how you prepare it. We had lots of tasters and there was some great food to accompany. We took some beans away with us too. The final stops on the tour was just around the corner from the coffee shop. We had a gin tasting and it was the first time I’d had gin neat. We were told, and also tasted, how different accompaniments from ice to fruit to tonics can bring out different accents in gin and totally change the taste. Really lovely time spent here. Lastly, we went to Namibia Dunes Craft Brewery. Very enthusiastic brewer who is really proud of his produce and rightly so. I’m not a big beer drinker but there is certainly enough choice to find something to suit your palette. We got quite a few for the remainder of our trip and had them in the evenings. We still have our pint glasses and we have fond memories of this day when we use them. Please do take this tour if you have the opportunity as it is really interesting and well run.
        Written 25 April 2020
      • LoveToGangAwa
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Life in the Living Desert
        This highly recommended informative Desert Tour was a highlight of my October visit to Swakopmund. It was made even more enjoyable being in a party of five which meant getting a lot of first hand information. Our guide imparted her love for and knowledge of the living desert with humour and in an easily understandable manner. Her concern for the fragile environment was much in evidence. She made sure that we got to share the secrets of the living desert.
        Written 23 December 2019
      • TAMAN1951
        0 contributions
        3.0 of 5 bubbles
        Beautiful dunes but
        The adventure not what we expected. The good. Beautiful dunes and well informed guides. They did source a number of critters like a gecko, a chameleon, a horned Adler and a side winder. Truck was too full with 6 folks packed in and to make it worse two trucks followed each other the entire time. Twelve people crowding around a 3 inch gecko is too much. I did not really enjoy the outing so I can not recommend. The geography however is very nice.
        Written 19 October 2019
      • trippppping
        0 contributions
        4.0 of 5 bubbles
        Great tour but too many people
        We really enjoyed this tour but be prepared to have to compete with a lot of people to see the desert creatures as everyone huddles in around the guide. There were about 20 people and it was hard to see the little creatures sometimes. Our guide was very friendly and knowledgable.
        Written 19 September 2019
      • LaurensG16
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Local products from Namibia
        We started by visiting 2 farms just outside Swakopmund. Our guide took the time showing us around, explaining and answering questions. We got to try some olive oil, olives and had some samples of oils from the jojoba farms intended for the cosmetic industry. Next we drove to An area with several shops of local products. Had some great coffee and amazing local appetizers at the Two Beards and a Saint. Next visit was to the Namib craft Beers brewery, 100% approved by us as Belgian beerlovers. We ended at a nice gin destillery, which was made with some great botanicals Namibia has to offer. Definitely worth it!
        Written 19 September 2019
      • Weltenbummlers
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Choose this tour
        John was our Living Dunes Experience guide. He was excellent and explained everything clearly. He managed to find a gecko, chameleon, scorpion and two snakes. It was fascinating to see where these 'animals' live and how difficult it would be to see them without an expert guide. Driving across the dunes was wonderful. Tour was N$650 per person. Would highly recommend. Just don't forget to put your seat belt on when driving along the dunes as it can get quite bumpy.
        Written 16 September 2019
      • Emre A
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Welwitvhia Tour with
        We book a sands & rock tour from Charly's Desert tour. It is actually a combination of Living Desert tour and Welwitscia tour. Although living desert tour was very enjoyable with "little five" we found out that Welwitscia tour was better in many ways. In this tour we seen 3 different types of desert, and plants that survive on this harsh environment. Our guide Frank was fabulous. He knew the geography, history and flora of the desert very well. He answered all our questions with care.
        Written 9 September 2019
      • Camel-thorn_Pyrenees
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        Bites & Brews
        We did the Bites & Brews tour. It was a lovely experience, but there is still some room for improvement in the first part of the tour when visitors go check out the olive groves and different oils made for cosmetic purposes. Perhaps some games to make it more interactive or a sit-down experience in the olive grove while doing the tasting. We had a lovely guide, though. Everyone in the group was Afrikaans but one person, and the guide always tried to divert the conversation back to English. Then we got to the coffee tasting which was absolutely lovely! Two Beards and a Saint is just in a league of their own. We didn't want to leave. The beer tasting was also fun. We ended off with the gin tasting.
        Written 5 September 2019
      • SteFunny_17
        0 contributions
        5.0 of 5 bubbles
        An experience to be lived absolutely!
        We opted for the little five tour and we saw 4 out of 5. We were a group of 9 people. In fact, you should know that the spider you will not see it, because the guides no longer take it out of its hole for animal protection. But you will undoubtedly see the other four.
        Written 26 August 2019
      • Per M
        0 contributions
        2.0 of 5 bubbles
        A lot of talk but little to see
        We went on a living dunes experience with Charlys Desert Tours. The guide was good and talked a lot about politics and wild life. Unfortunately, there was little to see and we spotted only a snake, a chameleon and a lizard. That is not much for a 3 hour drive. We were very disappointed and cannot recommend this experience.
        Written 18 August 2019
      See all 216 reviews
      These reviews are the subjective opinions of Tripadvisor members and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

      Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

      Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

      Popular mentions

      4.5
      4.5 of 5 bubbles62 reviews
      Excellent
      48
      Very good
      7
      Average
      4
      Poor
      2
      Terrible
      1

      Charlene2587
      London, UK
      5.0 of 5 bubbles
      May 2019 • Couples
      This was such a lovely way to see the dunes and some of the wildlife that live there.

      Our guide was super knowledgeable about the dunes and all that live there as well as the history of Swakopmund and how events have shaped Namibia into the country it is today.

      You will drive around looking for the different animals and plants and obviously there is no guarantee of what animals you will see but we saw plenty.

      I’m not a big fan of snakes but we found a little tiddler thanks to our guides tracking experience. We also found a bird that ate my seed and but snacks out of our hands.

      Such a wonderful way to see the landscape and a really fun morning spent. If you have the opportunity to do this tour then please do. We booked 4 excursions with Charly’s and the process was seamless. When everything is arranged for you it really allows you to relax.
      Written 25 April 2020
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

      Wendy L
      London, UK
      2.0 of 5 bubbles
      Picked up on time - informative guides but WAY too many people for one tour. 23 adults cramming round a tiny desert creature just didn’t work - we could hardly see. Unless you were prepared to push in front of people (which we weren’t) it was easier to stand back. One women smoked 3 times and left her butts in the sand…..if the main purpose of this tour is education to conserve this should not have been allowed
      Written 18 September 2022
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
      Dear Wendy L, we have been overwhelmed by a sharp increase of bookings in the past few weeks, and we are extremely grateful that business is returning post pandemic. We will use your honest feedback to make some adjustments on the tours in order to manage the group sizes better. As you are saying, the main purpose is to educate and to conserve, so the smoking, or leaving the cigarette butts in the sand is something we cannot allow to happen. I thank you taking the time to write an honest review, it is of great importance to us to continuously improve the experience.
      Written 19 September 2022
      This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

      4.0 of 5 bubbles
      Dec 2023 • Family
      Good tour but I set my expectations too high after my friend recommended the Living Desert Tour in Swakopmund to see chameleons.

      On booking, we were told we would definitely see a chameleon. However, when we were picked up in the morning we were told that this company hadn't seen chameleons for 3 months. But just one week before we did this tour, my friend had seen a chameleon through Tommy's Desert Living tour.

      Was definitely great to see the geckos and snakes, but I do wish we had booked Tommy's Living Desert.
      Written 23 December 2023
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

      otter2016
      Liverpool, UK
      5.0 of 5 bubbles
      Apr 2022 • Solo
      One of the highlights of the holiday. Thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon learning about the desert. Ernst was great, showing us a lot of plants and creatures and explaining the formation of the desert. Great drives and beautiful scenery.
      Written 6 May 2022
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

      Luke Stevenson
      Cape Town, South Africa
      5.0 of 5 bubbles
      This was an awesome experience which was led by our very knowledgeable guides, Johnny and Ernst. We had such an awesome time and learnt so much. He let all the kids see the animals up close and showed us all cool experiments with magnets and the sand. I highly recommend you do this trip. We saw so many animals and so many beautiful things.
      Absolute must do for Swakopmund!!
      Written 10 July 2022
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

      5.0 of 5 bubbles
      Aug 2022
      This is a great tour to learn more about the animals and reptiles in the area. We'd highly recommend this tour! This was our second tour with Erst, our guide. And we were delighted to have him for a second tour. He's a great storyteller! We learned so much about the animals and geology of the desert. As usual, what made the tour really special was how Erst explained the beauty and wonder of the desert to us. He really has a deep respect and admiration for nature that shows in his tours!
      Written 11 August 2022
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

      5.0 of 5 bubbles
      Nov 2021 • Friends
      What a memorable experience! Well trained and knowledgeable guide/ driver. Did not know how secretive the desert creatures can be. Our guide knew exactly where all the little creature's hising spots were.

      Rest assured that responsible tourism practices are observed. All animals placed back where found.

      Guide/ driver will collect patrons at residances or holiday accomodation. Wear a hat and apply sunblock! Approximately 3hour tour.
      Written 1 December 2021
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
      Valuable advise to wear a hat and sunblock! Thank you for the positive review, we pride ourselves with being a responsible operator and our guides are truly amazing.
      Written 1 March 2022
      This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

      Andy P
      Manchester, UK
      5.0 of 5 bubbles
      From collection to drop off this was an excellent trip. Saw some fascinating animals, sidewinder, chameleon, gecko's and more. The guide Bawden was very knowledgeable about the creatures and the desert. Wine and cheese on the beach was a lovely way to end the trip before returning to the ship.
      Written 7 February 2023
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
      We are super happy that the cruise ship visit Namibia again, and that you and many more guests enjoy what we offer. Thank you for the positive review.
      Written 8 February 2023
      This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

      Anne-Fleur
      Brussels, Belgium
      5.0 of 5 bubbles
      Aug 2021
      We had a great morning discovering the life of the 5 small desert animals. Our guide, Ernest, was very knowledgeable, interesting and friendly. He worked hard to get us to see as many of them as possible :-)
      We enjoyed getting the chance to see what is usually invisible to our inexperienced eyes when walking in the dunes.
      Thank you for all we learnt!
      Written 22 August 2021
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
      Great that you took the time to write a review. It sure is amazing what a trained eye can see in nature, and we are very happy that Ernst is a longstanding member of our team. We sure will rely your compliments to Ernst.
      Written 23 August 2021
      This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

      5.0 of 5 bubbles
      Wonderful guide , jurgen , shared his knowledge of nature and life in the dunes . Respectful of the environment unlike other operators (sandwich harbour) who tore up the dunes in their 4x4’s . Jurgen made sure to teach us about the delicate wild life . We loved every single moment
      Written 14 April 2023
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

      Showing results 1-10 of 41

      Living Dunes Experience from Swakopmund provided by Charly's Desert Tours

      All Swakopmund HotelsSwakopmund Hotel DealsLast Minute Hotels in Swakopmund
      All things to do in Swakopmund
      Zoos & Aquariums in Swakopmund
      RestaurantsFlightsHoliday HomesTravel StoriesCruisesCar Hire