Best 5 Reasons To Visit Waterberg Plateau Park In Namibia
The best 5 reasons to visit Waterberg Plateau Park are; Game viewing, Hiking and cliff walks, Botanists bounty, Endangered species and Cultural intrigue. The park is found in a South western African country called Namibia and it is one of the country’s less frequented but surprisingly rewarding wilderness areas. It is characterized by the majestic plateau itself which stands out compared to its surroundings.
The reserve is particularly known for its diverse vegetation and being somewhat of a ‘breeding ground’ or relocation haven for endangered or rare species like the black and white rhino. Rare antelope species that thrive here include eland, roan antelope, tsessebe and sable antelope.
If you are not after ticking dangerous game species or predators off your list, you’ll really enjoy the more unique offerings of the Waterberg Plateau. Here are the best 5 reasons to visit Waterberg Plateau Park in Namibia;
1. Game Viewing at Waterberg Plateau Park
The steep cliffs and low-lying areas are home to a number of big game species. Elephants, rhinos, giraffes, small carnivores and a number of antelope and birds can be seen year-round in the park. Among the many antelope species found here are the kudu, the eland and the red hartebeest.
Cape Vultures, once abundant, are now scarce and one of the main attractions of the park. The 8 remaining breeding pairs of these vultures are found within the borders of the park – the only ones of their kind in the whole of Namibia. All game drives are guided and take place bi-daily.
2. Hiking and Cliff walks at Waterberg Plateau Park
There are a few guided tours guests can take around the area to appreciate the scenery and wilderness around them. One of these guided tours takes you to the top of the plateau and offers an amazing view of the park and its surroundings on a clear day. There are also nine unguided hiking trails, including a serious 42km adventure where hikers are expected to be entirely self-sufficient.
3. Botanists’ Bounty at Waterberg Plateau Park
With around 500 species of flora occurring in the park, the Waterberg Plateau is renowned for its diversity. A whopping 74 species of grasses occur in this area. Approximately 69 tree species have been identified, while 139 have been recorded in the area in total (i.e. beyond the borders of the park itself as well). If the finer details of nature fascinate you, you will find a visit to the Waterberg Plateau particularly rewarding.
4. Endangered Species at Waterberg Plateau Park
Due to the fact that the plateau is inaccessible from below, several endangered species were relocated here from other parks to protect again poaching. You’ll be able to encounter the critically endangered black rhino in an area where it thrives on its safety.
5. Cultural Intrigue at Waterberg Plateau Park
The area is the historical home of the Herero people, who were practically wiped out during a genocide perpetrated by occupying German forces in 1904. You can learn more about the Battle of Waterberg and the Herero and Namaqua Wars during your visit to the park.
Other than the best 5 reasons to visit Waterberg Plateau National Park in Namibia, there are several other lovely activities at the park which will bless you with unforgettable and beautiful memories.
When to visit Waterberg Plateau Park
The park is accessible any time of the year therefore open to visitors at all times. However the best time to visit is from July to September because around this time, the wild animals are not scattered which makes it easy to spot and view them.
Though dry, May to October is also ideal because the temperature is not so hot which makes touring fun and you will capture beautiful images of the animals as they gather to take water.
Please remember to have drinking water to stay hydrated and carry sun screen and sun glasses to avoid effects of the sun rays on your skin and to prevent sandy dust from falling in your eyes when the wind blows the dust respectively.
You can also decide to tour during the wet season at the park. This is usually around November to April. Here birding safaris are most favorable, the rainfall gives the park a new look with flowers, thick vegetation and a refreshed general appearance.
The activities you are interested in doing will determine when you decide to visit the park.
How to get to Waterberg Plateau Park
The park is 320km away from Etosha in the South Eastern direction and 300km away from Windhoek (The capital city of Namibia) in the North Eastern direction.
Using a normal 2×2 WD private vehicle or a hired 4×4 WD tour van, you will be able to reach Waterberg Plateau Park in 4hrs from Etosha or in 3 and a half hours if you are coming from Windhoek.
You can actually personally drive yourself to the park if you want, however this can only be done outside the park, within the park, you will need the park’s guides and drivers to take over your drives using tour vehicles.
There is Hosea Kutako International Airport in Windhoek which is Namibia’s main entry point for people flying into the country. However there are no scheduled domestic flights to Waterberg Plateau Park but an airstrip for charter flights is available and the tour operators you choose to work with can will usually book for you a flight.
Where to stay when you visit Waterberg Plateau Park