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Namibia – Landscape, Wildlife and Stars Photography Workshop

Event Details

  • From: September 6, 2023
  • To: September 17, 2023
  • Starting at: 07:00 PM
  • Finishing at: 12:00 PM

Photography Adventure to Namibia, Africa

September 6-16, 2023

Namibia is home to some of Africa’s most breathtaking landscapes, with desolate salt pans, remote red deserts and savannahs teeming with wildlife. A photography workshop is the perfect way to capture the country’s untouched natural wonders and you’ll make photos of a lifetime. 

During our adventure, you will travel far into the Namibian Desert, stand at the foot of dead trees that have become 1000-year-old monuments to the stubbornness of nature and venture deep into one of the most exclusive natural parks in the world.

Once you arrive in Namibia, we handle all the details, even meals are included in the price. You will be guided to the most photogenic locations carefully planned for the best light. 

September is a great time to visit Namibia. The temperatures are very comfortable: days being in the 80’s and nights in the 50’s. With relatively low humidity it is likely we’ll have clear skies and cloudless nights. Earlier rains have filled the drinking holes which presents a perfect time to photograph visiting animals that congregate there in large numbers.

Here are some highlights that you can expect to capture with your camera:

The Quiver Tree Forest
Quiver “Trees” aren’t actually trees at all, just very big plants. Still, their remarkable silhouette makes for a great picture, especially against the backdrop of night sky illuminated by stars. The Quiver Tree Forest near our accommodation has two locations that we will spend our time in, both within a five minute drive, and are easy get around.

Sossusvlei
The two mesmerising salt pans of Sossusvlei and Deadvlei lie in the Tsauchab Dune Valley, which is part of the Namib Naukluft National Park. Thousands of years ago the Tsauchab river began to slice through the sand dunes as it sought the Atlantic Ocean – but they didn’t quite make it. The result is an impressive wetland set among what are some of planet Earth’s tallest dunes.

The now lifeless plains of Sossusvlei and Deadvlei offer incredible photo opportunities for those brave enough to venture out onto the flats. The remains of trees, jutting out from the baking sand, provide eerie silhouettes and a point of reference against an endless horizon.

Erindi Private Game Reserve
You will have incredible opportunities to photograph Africa’s most iconic safari animals and endangered species, including elephants, lions, rhinos, leopards, giraffes, cheetahs, zebras, antelopes, countless birds and more. 

Who is it for:  
Beginner, amateur, enthusiast, semi-pro and pro photographers DSLR, mirrorless, compact or iPhone cameras. There will be some walking and hiking involved, so you need to be able to carry your photo gear and walk up to a mile. This won’t be shoot-from-the-truck only.

What’s included:
Accommodations, single rooms
All meals starting with dinner on the first day and ending with breakfast on the final day of the tour
Beverages, except for premium/imported liquor and wine
Permits, park and entry fees
Transportation, including transfers to/from airport
Bottled water in cars
All expenses for all guides and drivers

What’s not included:
Your flight to Namibia
Highly recommended travel insurance
Personal expenses
Premium/imported liquor and wine

Group Size: 8 participants

The itinerary (subject to change) While we make every effort to keep to the itinerary, our journey may take us in slightly different directions, which will only enhance the experience!

Sept 6, 2013: Arrival in Windhoek
You’ll arrive at Windhoek Hosea Kutako International Airport, where you’ll be met by your guides and transferred to your accommodation at Windhoek Country Lodge. When selecting your flights, please arrange to arrive during the day before 5:00 p.m. There will be some time for you to check in to your hotel, relax and to explore the capital city of Namibia in the heart of the country’s central highlands at your own leisure before we meet as a group for a welcome dinner at 7:00 p.m. in the hotel restaurant. Over a delicious meal, you’ll have the chance to get to know your fellow travelers a little bit better as your guides go over the itinerary and plan for the days ahead. They’ll give you the low-down on what you can expect and you’ll have the opportunity to ask any questions before the workshop begins.

Sept. 7  Wildlife in Erindi
We’ll head to Erindi Wildlife Preserve to photograph some of Africa’s amazing animals. There will be a presentation on wildlife photography, before we take a spectacular drive through the reserve in for our first chance at capturing incredible images of the wildlife. Some of the prolific species that you can expect to come eye to eye with include giraffes, zebras, oryx, kudu, wildebeest, waterbuck, springbok, impala, hyenas, warthog and lions. After the sun sets, we’ll return to the Lodge for dinner. In the evenings, we will head out on exciting night drives of the park, which will present new opportunities for photography as we enter the mysterious realm of nocturnal species. 

Sept. 8: Wildlife in Erindi
We’ll rise early to do a sunrise drive through the park. The early hours are crucial for the chance to capture the wildlife at their most active. As the sun is at its highest in the afternoon, you’ll have some leisure time in which you may edit your photos, before we meet together as a group in the afternoon to take advantage of the golden light. We’ll head out for another sunset drive and return to the Lodge in the evening for dinner. Once again we will do a night drive. Hearing the animals calling throughout the night is a magical and eerie experience, and no doubt you’ll end up with some truly fascinating pictures.

Sept. 9: More Wildlife
We’ll rise early for a sunrise drive of the park, getting our last shot of Erindi’s magnificent wildlife. We will return to the Lodge for breakfast. Then we are off to Walvis Bay.

Sept. 10: Walvis Bay
Although the morning light is breathtaking, sunset amongst the mountain’s magnificent rock formations is especially beautiful. We’ll stay out late for the opportunity to photograph the granite landscapes, rock arches and massive boulders beneath an incredible, starry night sky. We’ll spend one night in Walvis Bay.

Sept 11: Sossusvlei National Park
We’ll move towards one of Namibia’s most spectacular landmarks – the Sossusvlei National Park. Nestled against the low-lying mountains of the Namib-Naukluft National Park, our accommodation offers magnificent views of the sand dunes and an unforgettable desert experience.

We’ll spend some time exploring the area surrounding the salt and clay pan of Sossusvlei, where the sand dunes are the only things separating you from the Atlantic Ocean. Our highlights will include: Solitary dead trees entrenched at the base of breathtaking, gargantuan red sand dunes. They make for a stark contrast against the desolate backdrop when illuminated by warm, golden light. Desert wildlife. Though seemingly barren, the Sossusvlei provides a perfect habitat for native animals. We’ll spend our days discovering and photographing the large antelope species known as oryx, as they evade cheetahs and leopards hunting them amongst the sand dunes. An optional scenic helicopter flight over the majestic Sossusvlei. There is nothing more breathtaking than soaring over the oldest desert in the world as you capture the scenery below. You’ll be treated to incredible aerial views of the point where magnificent sand dunes meet the vast expanse of the Atlantic ocean. Astrophotography beneath Namibia’s starry skies. Sossusvlei has some of the darkest night skies on Earth, making it the perfect spot for practicing star trails and shooting the Milky Way. In order to stay back after dark at Sossusvlei, we’ll need a special permit. Please note that the park rules may change in the lead-up to our arrival, so unfortunately we are unable to guarantee that we’ll have access for photography at night. 

Sept 12: Sossusvlei National Park
We’ll spend our mornings in the spectacular white clay pan of Deadvlei, also known as the ‘Dead Marsh’ of the desert. Bordered by sand dunes within this extraordinary basin are the skeletal remains of ancient trees up to 900 years old. They make for surreal compositions, whether alone or in groups. We’ll have a special permit allowing us to enter the National Park before the gates are opened, meaning that we’ll have the area to ourselves as we capture the unique shapes and abstract details of Deadvlei during each sunrise. Of course, the light will change as the time passes, so our compositions will vary throughout the day.

Sept 13: Quiver Tree Forest Camp
We’ll begin our journey to the Keetmanshop, located at the main crossroads of southern Namibia. This small town in the Karas Region of southern Namibia is known as the gateway to a large quiver tree forest, where thousands of these spectacular branched aloe succulents stand tall, making for the perfect subjects for photography in this arid and rocky landscape. Over the next two nights, we’ll make our base at the Quiver Tree Forest Camp, where we’ll be well situated to make trips out for astrophotography with the indigenous quiver trees reaching up mysteriously towards the starry night sky. If it is clear overhead, then we will spend our nights capturing these iconic seemingly upside-down trees framed by a background of stars and the beautiful arch of the Milky Way.

Sept 14: Quiver Tree Forest Camp
We’ll get up early before dawn for a sunrise session. Our aim will be to catch the first rays of golden light glimmering through the quiver tree branches, making for an enchanting morning scene. Thereafter, we’ll return to the Quiver Tree Forest Camp for breakfast, after which there will be some time to relax and review our pictures. After lunch, you’ll have the opportunity to engage with your photo guides for a series of discussions and post processing master classes, before you head off for a sunset session back at the Quiver Tree Forest. The desert scenery changes immensely with the moving angles of light and it will be a delight to see how the atmosphere transforms the mood and overall aesthetic of your images. Dinner will be followed by another long and exciting night as you hunker down beneath the glittering fabric of the sky for star trail, Milky Way and astrophotography, using Namibia’s iconic quiver trees to form an astonishing foreground within the vast and exceptional landscape.

 

Sept 15  Wandering Back
After a sunrise shoot and breakfast, we start our long drive back to Windhoek. We’ll make some stops along the way as we go back to the city. Keep your eyes open, you never know what we’ll see along the way!

Sept 16 Departure
This will be the final day of our Namibia photography adventure. We can photograph around Windhoek in the morning and then it’s off to the airport.

Photo Equipment

You’ll want to have a wide angle, telephoto and possibly a macro lens. For the wildlife you’ll want at least a 400mm lens. To get the best star photos, the wider and faster the lens the better, a 15mm f/2.8 is the range you want. Make sure you have lots of memory cards, spare batteries and charger and maybe a polarizer filter. Loren will be shooting extensively with a tripod but that may not be for you. But if you want to photograph more stars than you’ve ever seen, you’ll want a sturdy tripod, don’t skimp here either on quality or size. Stay away from light “travel tripods” since we are going be shooting things you probably won’t see again in your lifetime and getting a fuzzy photo because of shaky tripod would be criminal. If you aren’t absolutely sure of everything that your camera does, bring your instruction manual so we can help you fix any problems. I always suggest people download a PDF version of their camera manual to their phone.

Prior to the trip you’ll receive information about electrical converters and other suggested equipment and clothing.

Registration fee includes professional photography instruction, pre-trip planning, single occupancy lodging, ground transportation and meals. If you are a couple or have a roommate, there is a $500 discount per person for a double room. The registration fee does not include airfare to Namibia, snacks or personal items. Rates are net, per person, in U.S. dollars. Final payment is due June 1, 2023.

Regular registration: $7800
Previous clients: $7300
$500 discount per person for couples sharing a room

Deposits and Cancellations

A $2000 deposit is needed in order to secure your space in the workshop. Full payment must be received by June 1, 2023.

Notice of your cancellation must be made in writing, at which time the following refunds are offered:
• 120 days or more before workshop: Full workshop refund minus the deposit. Your deposit, minus $75 credit card and handling fees, will be refunded if your spot can be filled.
• 120 or fewer days before workshop: no refund guaranteed. Your payments, minus $75 credit card and handling fees, will be refunded if your spot can be filled.

No partial refunds are made for unused portions or services of a workshop. Workshops are sold as a package only.

If a workshop is cancelled, you will receive a full refund of any money paid. But if the workshop is canceled, LorenPhotos, LLC, will not be held responsible for your other expenses, such as airline ticket, that may be associated with the canceled workshop. It is highly recommended that you purchase trip insurance to be safe.

Insurance

While we can’t mandate travel insurance it is highly, highly recommended to cover at a minimum the following: medical evacuation, repatriation of remains and medical insurance. We work work with Allianz and can provide more detailed information.

About Loren Fisher

This workshop is being led by Loren Fisher, who has been a professional photographer since 1978. He worked at seven newspapers including USA Today, is a past president of the New Jersey chapter of ASMP, was an adjunct professor at Rutgers University and sells his fine art photography at his gallery in Woodstock, VT. He has lead dozens of workshops around the world including Iceland, Chile, Italy, France, Guatemala, Florida, Oregon, New York, Vermont, Maine, Maryland, New Jersey, Boston and Washington, D.C. He has published two photography books “Pope John Paul II: An American Celebration” and “Branson Backstage.” Loren has been to 50 states and over 20 countries and is based in Woodstock, VT.

What else you need to know

Once you register, you will receive more information about the trip. It includes suggestions for traveling in Namibia including photo equipment and clothing and visa information. Again, it is highly recommended that you have trip insurance and evacuation insurance in case of sickness or an emergency.

Questions? Email Loren at Loren@LorenPhotos.com or call/text 802-332-6611.


Registration