Vespa Veterans recall their never to be repeated Canyon adventure - Namibia Safari and Lodges - Gondwana Collection

Namibia with Heart and Soul: Take our hand and let us introduce you to this awe-inspiring country. Come and stay with us, experience Namibia.


Where the Namib Desert stretches languidly from the Atlantic Ocean and wild land extends into infinity, dreams become real. At this place where fantasy meets reality, you'll find the Gondwana Collection safely positioned.

Take our outstretched hand and let us introduce you to our extraordinary country, Namibia. From the massive chasms of the Fish River Canyon, the fossilised dunes of the Namib Desert and the red sands of the Kalahari Desert to the waterways of the Kavango and Zambezi, there are countless marvels to behold. Explore this awe-inspiring wilderness from the warmth of our lodges, created with conservation cognizance and ample character. And return to relax after an exciting day of discovery.

This is the Gondwana feeling: Namibia with heart and soul.

Come and stay with us, experience Namibia.

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10-Day Namibian Highlights Tour
Enjoy Namibia’s most popular destinations on this compact guided tour that incorporates visits to the Kalahari and Namib deserts – including the famed Sossusvlei dunes, the intriguing coastal town of Swakopmund, the Twyfelfontein rock engravings and Etosha National Park. more

3 Day / 2 Night – Sossusvlei Shuttle Safari
Exciting adventures await those who partake in this exhilarating safari to Sossusvlei, one of the most spectacular sites in the world. The magnificent star dunes are a photographer’s dream and the spectacular landscape will leave memories to last a lifetime. more

Namibia Road Map 2018/19

Anyone touring Namibia should definitely take our road map along. It is available from Gondwana free of charge, or as pdf download. This map features fascinating experiences plus recommended accommodation. At the same time it is an ordinary road map with all the essential information of the official Namibia road map by Prof. Uwe Jäschke and the Roads Authority of Namibia.

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Go Big

Discover Namibia’s main attractions.

This package offers a four-wheel drive vehicle and a thirteen day trip through the beautiful Namibian landscapes. Starting from Windhoek you will head south, into the Kalahari where your first night will be spent enjoying the sunset at the Kalahari Anib Lodge.


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Go Epic

Experience Namibia's famed locations.

Take eleven days to discover Namibia in an Epic way. This self drive safari - which includes a four-wheel drive vehicle - will take you to the famous Namibian locations that will make you long for the vast open spaces long after you return home. Starting in Windhoek you will head south to the Kalahari Desert.


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Go Wild

Track Namibia's awesome wildlife.

This 12 day self drive safari includes a four-wheel drive vehicle and stopovers at all major wildlife-viewing sites. Starting from Windhoek you will head towards the famous Etosha National Park, where 3 nights will be enjoyed at the unique Etosha Safari Camp.


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Car Rental

Enjoy an active Namibian adventure.

We offer a comprehensive travel service including car rental, accommodation, safaris and self-drive itineraries and day trips. Interested? For detailed information and vehicle specifications of our Renault Dusters SUV 4WD and Toyota Hilux Double Cabs 4x4, please click below.


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Gondwana's Newsroom

Vespa Veterans recall their never to be repeated Canyon adventure

Avatar of inke inke - 15. July 2016 - Discover Namibia

Gruelling descent into the Fish River Canyon.

Taking a scooter through the Fish River Canyon? Impossible! This would be the reaction of any sensible person who has seen the second largest canyon on earth with their own eyes. Yet this didn’t stop six members of the Cape Town Vespa Club to nevertheless attempt the impossible in 1968 – getting themselves into an adventure without equal!

The Cape Town Vespa Club made a bet in 1967 amongst some of its members, to be the first to take a vehicle through the second largest canyon on earth. They planned to descend into the canyon at the main viewing point and take their Vespa’s to Ai-Ais, 80 km to the south.

After six months of intense preparation the men set off for the Fish River Canyon on 9 July 1968 – with three scooters, spare parts and equipment. They had named the scooters Veni, Vidi und Vici (as in Roman emperor Julius Caesar’s famous words: I came, I saw, I conquered). It was a grueling experience during which their transport often turned into goods to be transported. As the expedition unfolded, Veni plummeted down into the gorge, Vici sank to the bottom of the Fish River and Vidi’s engine finally packed up for good.

Totally exhausted they climbed out of the canyon on the 18th July, grateful for the ‘escape route’ at the sulphur springs where they took stock. They had lost three Vespa’s and managed only about one-and-a-half kilometres per day. But all was not lost. They had left the first ever tyre marks in the canyon and had an experience they would never forget.

42 years after the expedition, three of the six men returned to the Fish River Canyon from 11 to 13 June 2010 on invitation of our MD, Manni Goldbeck. Johnnie Johnson (who has since passed away), Aubrey Jackson and Graham Nell were happy to relate their adventures in the quirky comfort of the Roadhouse bar, while Terry Davidson was unable to attend. 

The other two members of the team could not be located, until news of the reunion reached them and they made sure to contact us. Peter Derichs reached out from Johannesburg and finally Tony Beckley contacted us all the way from Brisbane, Australia! Inspired by the reunion and the story of the Vespa expedition recounted by Gondwana, he created a wonderful website about the utmost adventure of their life.

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