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Spitzkoppe Campsite: Magical Sunsets and a Billion Stars in the Namib Desert

The first time you see Sptizkoppe rising from the Namib plain you’ll be mesmerized. Also named the Matterhorn of Namibia, Spitzkoppe towers 700m above the Namibian plains. This incredible formation was created after millions of years of erosion resulting in a unique landscape of granite boulders and bridges. 

Person on a road
Driving to Spitzkoppe

We’ve camped at Spitzkoppe a few times and it has quickly become one of our favorite places in Namibia. The solitude, complete peace, the night sky, the sunsets, and the crazy unique oversized boulders make this a real treat for those lucky enough to be able to visit.

If you are not camping, you can always visit for the day as day visitors are welcome, but you’ll miss the sunset and the night sky. 

We always stay at the community campsite. With over 30 campsites there’s no need for a reservation, and you can just turn up. In the rare event that the campsite is full, there are a couple of other options nearby (see below).

truck and a tent by big boulders
Camping at Spitzkoppe

You do not need a 4×4 to visit Spitzkoppe. After we sold our truck, we visited using a tiny rental car.

tent on a desert campsite
Spitzkoppe campsite

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Community campsite at Sptizkoppe

The 31 campsites at Spitzkoppe are all dispersed around Gross Spitzkoppe and the Pontok Mountains. We tend to choose the ones around Gross Spitzkoppe for a better view of the sunset. You’ll feel as if there’s no one else. Some have minimal shade, and we’d recommend you choose one with a big boulder so you can sit by it when you need a shady spot or find one of the secret caves. 

camping tent behind a boulder
Finding shade is sometimes difficult.

Some campsites have dry toilets (long drop toilets), and no showers or flush toilets. Hot showers are located by the reception area. The campsites are pretty far from reception so we waited until we were on our way out to use them. There is no running water so you need to bring water with you. 

Things to do in Spitzkoppe

There are plenty of things to do in Spitzkoppe that will keep you busy during your stay. 

  • visit The Bridge
  • visit one of the ancient rock painting sites
  • watch the glorious sunset
  • stargazing and night photography
  • rock climbing
  • hiking 
  • wildlife watching

Visit The Bridge 

natural bridge with person standing under it
The Bridge at Spitzkoppe

Visit one of the rock painting sites

To visit these rock paintings you must hire one of the local guides that can be booked at reception upon arrival. 

Watch the Glorious Sunset

The sunset here is no joke! Watch the sun go down while the Spitzkoppe boulders turn a deep red color. The photo below shows the sunset from our campsite, as the sun sets behind Klein Spitzkoppe (Little Spitzkoppe).

sunset over a mountain
Sunset at Spitzkoppe overlooking Klein Spitzkoppe
woman taking a photo at sunset
Sunset photography
granite mountains at sunset
Sunset from the campsite

Stargazing and night photography

If you are visiting for the dark sky, plan your visit during the dry months and you’ll probably get a clear sky. With no light pollution, the night sky is one of the best.

Rock Climbing and Hiking

Never underestimate this area. Always carry enough water with you and preferably only hike/climb during winter. Summer temperature can rise above 100F.

Wildlife watching

There’s plenty of wildlife at Spitzkoppe. 

We’ve never seen baboons, but we’ve heard them a lot. The rocky habitat is also ideal for the rock hyrax. We’ve also seen klipspringers near Bushman’s Paradise, pretty high up on a very steep rock cliff. 

Klipspringers on a boulder face
Klipspringers near Bushman’s Paradise
dassie rat portrait
Dassie Rat

We’ve seen leopards at Spitzkoppe. We actually had one at our campsite while we were having dinner. You can read our leopard sighting here. On our way out, we told the people at reception but no one believed us. So be vigilant and don’t wander off by yourself at night. 

One of our favorite memories was watching lovebirds going on about their business. 

lovebird on a boulder
Rosy-faced Lovebird

Other birds found at Spitzkoppe are: Herero chat, Monteiro’s hornbill, Namaqua sandgrouse, White-teiled shrike, Stark’s lark, Greater kestrel, Lanner falcon, Peregrine falcon, Rüpells bustard, Martial eagle, and African hawk-eagle.

Rates (2019)

Per adult per dayN$ 190.00
Per child (2-12) per dayN$ 130.00
Per personN$ 80.00
Per child (6-12 yrs)N$ 40.00
Per vehicle (less than 9 pax)N$ 80.00
Per vehicle (more than 9 pax)N$ 100.00
Per motorcycleN$ 45.00

Getting to Spitzkoppe

Take the B1, then the B2 from Windhoek towards Usakos. 40km (24.8miles) after Usakos turn right onto the D1918 towards Hentjies Bay. After 18km turn right onto the D3716 for about 11km (6.8 miles)

Other Spitzkoppe accommodation

If you feel like splurging, stay at the luxurious Spitzkoppen Lodge. With only 15 double-occupancy cabins, a restaurant, and a pool this is the place if you want to visit Spitzkoppe but don’t feel like camping. 

Another option is the Spitzkoppe Tented Camp and Campsites, located 500 meters outside Spitzkoppe Mountain Reserve.

Join a tour that will take you to Spitzkoppe 

Not on a Namibia self-drive holiday? No problem! You can still get there.

This 12-day tour  stops at Spitzkoppe for a night. 

sunset on a plain
Sunset at Spitzkoppe
a red truck and a tent by big red boulders

Cristina Garcia

Zoologist and wildlife photographer. She has worked in the field with jackals, wolves, cheetahs, & leopards. She serves on the Board of Directors of SEE Turtles, a non-profit sea turtle conservation organization.

Read her posts at Travel For Wildlife and see more of her work at Truly Wild, & Our Wild Yard.

Stay at Spa

Friday 2nd of September 2022

Excellent wildlife pictures