This route hugs the eastern and northern edges of the Namib Desert, and cuts through the top of the Namib-Naukluft National Park. The quickest way to Walvis Bay is to stay on the C14, but it’s well-worth detouring through Homeb and Gobabeb, and taking the D1983 along the Kuiseb River. This usually dry river marks the northernmost edge of the Namib – a striking ribbon of low, green vegetation between the endless red dunes to the south and the golden grasslands to the north.
Highlights of Sossusvlei to Walvis bay
The small settlement of Solitaire is about an hour north of Sossusvlei, and has a German bakery, small general store and fuel. It’s tiny, but a popular place to stop and there’s always a bustle of activity around. Adventurous 4×4 drivers can try the sandy riverbed and 4×4 tracks through the Kuiseb Canyon (permits can be bought at the Ministry of Environment and Tourism office in Sesriem). Otherwise first cross north on the C14, and then back south to Homeb where you can camp on the edge of the Namib desert.
Practical + driving advice about the Sossusvlei to Walvis bay (time needed)
It’s about four hours’ drive from Sossusvlei to Walvis Bay on the C14. The 4×4 route along the southern banks of the Kuiseb River crosses the river at the Kuiseb Canyon just east of Homeb where you can camp overnight. Only attempt this route if you have 4×4 experience and you’re sure the riverbed is completely dry. Otherwise, cross the river on the C14, then drive back south to Homeb. This road to Homeb is well-graded gravel and can be driven in any type of vehicle. Homeb camp itself, however, is right on the riverbank, in deep sand.