Located in the far north-west, Kaokoland (also called Kaokoveld) is one of the relatively untouched regions in Namibia. The almost inaccessible area south of the Kunene River is home to the Himba ethnic group, who have kept their ethnic individuality and culture in the seclusion of Kaokoland.
Travelling through this region should only be done in the company of an experienced guide and in offroad vehicles. Routes are hardly signposted, corrugated and extremely stony or sandy. Service facilities are limited, and also accommodation. You must camp in the wild.
The route to the Epupa Falls at the Kunene River is easy to drive, and the stretch is rocky and rough, but well sign-posted and has neither difficult passes nor soft sand tracks. However, after heavy rainfalls passing through the Ombuku riverbed near Okongwati can prove difficult.
The scenery at Epupa Falls is enchanting, with palm and baobab trees lining the riverbed. Above the waterfalls you find nice pools for swimming, but beware of crocodiles
The Van-Zyl's pass is regarded as the most difficult mountain pass in Namibia. The narrow track, leading through the rugged Otjihipa Mountains, consists of coarse screed and jagged rocks. The gradients to be surmounted are quite extreme. For this reason, it takes about three hours to cover a distance of 10 kilometres by car. Only well-equipped four wheel drive vehicles and good ground clearance are able to manage the trip.
Once you have reached the bottom, the utopian landscape of the valley, surrounded by shimmering purple mountain chains, embraces you. Slightly soft but negotiable sand roads lead through a slightly undulating grass savannah. Following the northerly direction will lead you to the most beautiful site at the Kunene River. Directly at the river lies Camp Okarohombo, managed by the local Himba.
On the way back, you pass through the valley of the Marienfluss in a southerly direction to Orupembe and from there on, the D3707 leads to Purros at the Hoarusib River, an oasis amidst stunning nature. There are Himba settlements and a camp for overnight stays.