(8 bungalows) PO Box 103, Kamanjab; tel: 067 697016; fax: 067 697017; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Though frequently listed as a guest farm near Kamanjab, or even Outjo, Huab is a private concession area in spirit. It was founded by two well-known couples, Jan and Suzi and Dot and Udo. Both couples are well connected in Namibia, and have worked in tourism for years.
They came together to buy up a number of adjacent farms in a hilly area, around the headwaters of the Huab River. This land was previously farmed, but is of more significance as a refuge for some of the Huab River's desert-adapted elephants. The farmers had been fencing the land, and didn't enjoy the elephant's feeding forays on to their farms, causing much tension for both men and beasts. Now the internal fences are down over a large area, and antelope have been reintroduced to boost the existing populations. As the ecosystem reverts to its natural state, elephants are gradually being seen around the lodge more. This lodge is a textbook demonstration of how tourism can be used to finance conservation initiatives, and is a compelling argument for encouraging eco-tourism to Namibia.
The lodge itself is situated between the Huab and one of its tributaries, at their confluence. (Beware: if the rivers are in flood, reaching here can be difficult.) It is well signposted, and easy to find off the C35 between Kamanjab and Khorixas. Once you turn off the C35 the D2670 is some 30km long; it, has two farm gates on it, and becomes increasingly scenic, so don't expect a quick arrival.
Huab has been voted Namibia's best lodge every year since 1994. It shows: stunning thatch-on-brick design, tasteful décor, a little landscaping, and lots of quality. The huge bungalows all have two queen-sized beds and separate en-suite rooms for the toilet, and bath and shower. Electricity and hot water are mostly solar.
The guiding is top class. Jan is renowned as founder of Etosha Fly-in Safaris, and one of the country's best guides, so even if there's no game around, you'll still find the drives and walks fascinating. Similarly, Huab's hospitality is faultless, with delicious meals served for everyone together – relaxed, very social occasions. This could become pure eulogy, but Huab has two minor weak points. Firstly, its game density is increasing but still relatively low, especially when compared with, say, the long-established Hobatere. At Huab you may not actually see many of the larger animals. Secondly, it is one of Namibia's more expensive lodges – though I've yet to hear a visitor say that the lodge was poor value, and it costs a fraction of the price that similar quality commands in the rest of Africa.