Challenge level: 3 out of 5
|27 October - 5 November 2023||On Sale|
Join us in the volcanic sands of the Namib Desert in Namibia on this extraordinary 2023 charity trek for The Urology Foundation and Wellbeing of Women!
Kicking off at the Burning Mountain (the Brandberg Massif), which glows orange and red in the sunset, we’ll explore the spiritual rock paintings of the San (Bushman) tribes. Then we’ll embark on an epic five-day trekking challenge along the Ugab Riverbed.
With soft sand underfoot and acacia trees overhead, we’ll push through hot, sunny stretches and seek shelter at lunchtime. Along the way, we’ll keep our eyes trained for the majestic desert steenboks.
We’ll rise early to enjoy the cool of the morning and spend our nights under more stars than you’ve seen in your life. We’ll gain insight into the ancient history of the desert, make lifelong friendships with fellow trekkers and most importantly, achieve an epic challenge for two incredible charities.
Our special charity trek in Namibia welcomes you to fundraise for either the Urology Foundation or Wellbeing of Women. The funds you raise on your desert adventure will go a very long way to help the charity you choose to support.
The Urology Foundation
The Urology Foundation is the UK’s only charity representing all urological diseases including prostate, kidney, bladder and male reproductive cancers and non-malignant conditions including incontinence, urinary tract infections, erectile dysfunction and kidney stones.
Working with researchers, urologists, nurses and allied healthcare professionals, influencers and decision makers, patients and their families we are committed to improving the nation’s urology care and saving lives.
Wellbeing of Women
Wellbeing of Women save and change the lives of women, girls and babies. Led by women's voices, we improve health and wellbeing through research, education and advocacy.
We focus on women's health across the life course, from period problems, such as endometriosis, fibroids and polycystic ovary syndrome, to issues and complications in fertility, pregnancy and childbirth including miscarriage, stillbirth and premature birth, to the menopause and gynaecological cancers.
Why not extend your adventure in Namibia? See our FAQs for more details.
The excitement begins at the airport in London, where we meet as a group for the first time and catch our overnight flight to the Windhoek International Airport in Namibia.
Our local ground partner welcomes us upon our arrival and together, we transfer (approx. 4-hour drive) to the small and charming town of Uis. Tucked in the pre-historic Damaraland of Namibia, this tiny tin mining town enjoys the fantastic backdrop of the Brandberg Mountain in one of Namibia’s most beautiful desert regions.
Rising early, we have breakfast at the hotel before transferring into the heart of the desert, to the area around the extraordinary Brandberg Massif.
Also known as Dâures (the burning mountain), this whopping mountain of rock was formed 120 million years ago, when a single mass of granite punched through the Earth’s crust. Now dormant, the Massif is said to still glow red at sunset.
This isn’t the only wonder here to behold. We also get to explore the famous Tsisab Ravine at the foot of the mountain and its awesome array of spiritual rock paintings, including the White Lady. We have lunch here and then our challenge commences!
We follow the dry banks of the Ugab River, thankful for the shade of acacia trees in the vast desert and finally arrive at our comfortable night’s camp. Here, we settle down for dinner and our first night sleeping under a sky full of stars. You may also choose to sleep in tents, but why pass up the opportunity to see shooting stars as you drift off?
Waking early again to make the most of the cool morning, we have breakfast and trek down into the Ugab riverbed. Tackling its soft sand seems surreal when you think of the water that once flowed here.
The sun’s growing heat makes our challenge harder, especially with this tough terrain, but the extraordinary vistas are well worth it – and just think of the wonders the sand is doing for our calves! We pass a small swampy patch and then we’re on to our final stretch of the day.
The last miles lead us to our riverside camp just in time for lunch. We now tuck into some well-deserved food and settle down for a long rest, happy to avoid the fire of the afternoon sun.
At sunset, we’re ready to jump back on our feet and see first-hand what turns the Brandberg Massif into the Burning Mountain. It's just a short walk to our viewpoint and the mountain does not disappoint. Its dark rock comes to life in the sunset, glowing red and orange, quite different from its plainness this morning. We do our best to capture the natural wonder on camera, before returning to the camp for dinner and another night under the unpolluted desert sky (or tents if you prefer).
Breakfast at camp sets us up to tackle more soft terrain alongside the dry Ugab River. Along the way, we pass some ancient, isolated granite rocks called inselbergs or monadnocks. Dating back millions of years, these enormous heaps of pink granite make a striking distraction from the dry riverbed and the vast, baron panoramas.
As the sun draws higher, we reach our long lunch stop in the shade, but don’t get too comfy! We’re back on our feet to continue our adventure as soon as the air cools. Rejuvenated, we trek the rest of the way to our camp and arrive in the late afternoon. Now all there’s left to do is relax and enjoy dinner, before a great night’s sleep under the stars.
We have a longer trek today as we follow the riverbed into shadier terrain. This sheltered, more moist terrain makes a welcome change from the drier stretches we’ve conquered so far, but we may come across some bog, equally as challenging to cross as the sand we’ve grown used to.
This damper area of the desert is also home to majestic, deer-like steenboks. With fur the colour of sand, horns akin to a gazelle’s and big ears, steenboks have adapted to live in a habitat so unforgiving to other species. Keeping our fingers crossed and eyes peeled as we walk, we may spot a few enjoying the shadow of the trees and rocks.
With more ground to cover and cooler air to trek in, we take a shorter lunch break today and push on through the afternoon, until we reach our night’s camp for dinner and a great night’s rest.
Waking to breakfast at camp, we lace up our boots for our last day trekking! We’ve reached a lusher part of the desert, with more plantlife to entertain our eyes as we continue along the riverbed. We trek past thorny Faidherbia trees and more great rocks, later reaching a drier stretch of desert.
This signifies we’re close to our finish! Upon reaching our camp, we enjoy a well-deserved celebration dinner and a final night under the stars.
Our legs can have a good old rest today, as we transfer back to Windhoek. The rest of the day is free to do as you wish. Kick back at the hotel, or why not take this chance to explore the city? Head to the striking, sandstone Christuskirche German Lutheran church, or hit the shops for last-minute souvenirs.
In the evening, we reconvene at the hotel for a final group dinner.
After a late breakfast, we make the most of our last day in Namibia and head to a local school in Windhoek. This gives us an excellent opportunity to gain extra insight into the culture, and feel free to bring gifts for the children!
Then it’s time to start our journey home. We transfer to the Windhoek Airport for an overnight flight and touch down in London on Day 10. Here, we part ways, and you make your own way home.
Pay the registration fee (£349) and airport taxes/fuel surcharge (capped at £475), and fundraise £3,500 or more for The Urology Foundation or Wellbeing of Women.
Minimum sponsorship target
Pay the registration fee (£349) and challenge costs (£2,500) + airport taxes/fuel surcharge (capped at £475) and fundraise £1,000 or more for The Urology Foundation or Wellbeing of Women.
Pay the balance and fundraise £1,000 for The Urology Foundation.
Our charity trek in Namibia is not designed for Olympic athletes – it is designed for people from all walks of life, who want to achieve something epic for the Urology Foundation and Wellbeing of Women. We expect many people who sign up for this amazing charity challenge to have low fitness. The point is to train as much as you can and do your best.
There's no competitive atmosphere — quite the opposite! The Dream Challenges community spirit is second to none, and you're likely to form strong bonds and lifelong friendships with your fellow trekkers, especially as you all share the same important cause. Our unsurpassable support team, first-aid trained guides, and challenge doctor will be with you every step of the way.
That said, we strongly recommend you train for the trek. We'll walk for long hours on uneven terrain in the desert heat. The fitter you are, the more you'll enjoy the challenge. We'll send you a fantastic training plan once you sign up, which builds up as time goes on, so you'll be ready and raring to go by the time we fly to Namibia!
Please make sure to use high-ankle walking boots during your training and on the challenge in Namibia, as these are essential to protect your ankles on uneven terrain.
It's also worth checking out our top trekking tips and Nike Personal Trainer Faisal Abdalla's expert core and mindset advice here. And why not try some of our indoor training ideas for the days you don't want to face the weather?
Please don't be! The majority of people will sign up on their own and our Dream Challenges are renowned for the amazing camaraderie and friendships made as our groups take on these incredible feats together.
Once you've signed up for the trek, we'll send you a link to a private Facebook group for everyone registered for our Dream Challenges.
Please use this private space to swap questions, advice and updates with your fellow trekkers on your training and fundraising. You may also want to see if there are any fellow trekkers in your local area you can meet up to train and fundraise with.
Everyone who is at least 18 years old by the departure date is more than welcome to join this challenge. We'll have adults of all ages taking part to trek and make a big impact for the Urology Foundation and Wellbeing of Women — one of the many things that make our challenges so special!
You may never get to explore this stunning country again, so why leave as soon as our charity trekking challenge ends? Instead, jump on our Skeleton Coast optional extension package for an additional price.
The malevolent Skeleton Coast earned its name from all the whale skeletons that have washed up there over time. The clashing waters, unpredictable currents, regular tempests and thick fog work together not just to kill the largest known mammals on our planet, but also to wreck ships. Many sailors have lost their lives here, and their ships can still be seen strewn along the beach.
You'll see all this on our extension, and look out for the local wildlife. Rhinos, giraffes, seals, and zebras all roam around here! We'll reveal more details as our challenge gets closer.
You will need a pair of quality walking boots with ankle support — these are essential for trekking on uneven terrain. Please also bring a 2-3-season sleeping bag, a sun hat, and a 2-litre water bottle.
We'll supply you with a comprehensive list of everything you will need to take on your trekking challenge well before we leave for Namibia.
We stay in a range of accommodations on this amazing TUF adventure challenge, including comfortable hotels and cosy camps in the Namib desert.
All camping equipment, excluding bedding, is provided and set up for us upon our arrival at each camp. Please bring your own 2-3-season sleeping bag.
We organise our accommodation on a twin-sharing basis, which is included in the challenge cost. However, if you would rather pay for a single supplement and have a room/tent to yourself, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 01590 646410 (Mon - Fri, 9am-5pm) at least 17 weeks before your challenge and we can arrange this for you at an additional price.
Yes of course! You may never get to explore this fascinating country again, so why leave as soon as our charity trekking challenge ends? Instead, jump on our Skeleton Coast optional extension package for an additional price.
The malevolent Skeleton Coast earned its name from the whale skeletons that have washed up there over time. The clashing waters, unpredictable currents, regular tempests and thick fog also work together to cause shipwrecks. You'll spot many ships strewn along the beach on our extension. Plus, don't forget to look out for the local wildlife, including rhinos, giraffes, seals, and zebras.
We'll send you the full details, including the price, once you're registered for the challenge. If you'd like to book a place on the optional extension for an additional price, please give us a call on 01590 646410 (Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm) or email us at email@example.com at least 17 weeks before the challenge and we'll be happy to help.
Alternatively, if you would simply like to extend your stay in Naimibia, but would not like to partake in the optional extension, we can arrange this for you. Please just get in touch on the email or phone number above to discuss your options at least 17 weeks before the challenge.
Your registration fee of £349 per person is used to administer the challenge and secure your seats with the airline.
Your challenge costs (covered by TUF providing you fundraise £3,500 or more) will include:
*We organise our accommodation on a twin-sharing basis, which is included in the challenge cost. However, if you would rather pay for a single supplement and have a room/tent to yourself, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 01590 646410 (Mon - Fri, 9am-5pm) at least 17 weeks before your challenge and we can arrange this for you at an additional price.
In addition to paying your registration fee (£349) and fundraising the minimum sponsorship target for either TUF or Wellbeing of Women (£3,500), you'll need to budget for your:
The group size for this challenge is likely to be around 30 people.
Please take out your own travel insurance upon registering for our trek in the Namib Desert, covering health, accident, loss and repatriation. We advise you to arrange your insurance as soon as you can after you register to ensure you have coverage for your booking as well as the challenge itself.
In your Welcome Pack, you will receive information about an insurance provider that specialises in our type of overseas charity challenges and also covers you for cancellation due to medically-diagnosed COVID-19.
You can, however, take out your own insurance, providing it covers you for a charity trek in Namibia. Please ask the insurer about the nature of the cover. It is your responsibility to ensure you have adequate cover for your challenge.
Currently, GB citizens don't require a visa to enter Namibia for up to 90 days, but we'll let you know if this changes.
The Dream Challenges team are here to help you achieve your trekking challenge in Namibia, and we will support you all the way. We're always on hand to answer any questions that you may have about your training or the challenge itself.
Once you've signed up, we will send you a Welcome Pack with everything you need to know about your overseas challenge, including the itinerary, an example insurance policy, details about our challenge destination and the weather we can expect while we're trekking in the desert, the structure of an average trekking day, a full kit list and a realistic training plan to help you get fit for the challenge. The training programme builds up gradually as the event gets closer.
We'll also send you regular updates in the lead-up to the adventure, with more important details, motivational resources, and seasonal fundraising ideas.
During the trek, we'll have a UK doctor with expedition medicine training accompanying the group at all times, along with a team of outdoor remote first-aid trained challenge guides.
Vehicles will carry your luggage, food and water. You will only need to carry a small day pack, containing essential accessories and equipment, including your 2-litre water bottle.
Of course! We’ll have a team of outdoor remote first aid trained challenge guides, and a UK doctor with expedition medicine training.
As we're not medically trained, we're afraid we can't offer you advice on this. We recommend you contact your GP or your local travel clinic, who will have the latest travel health advice.
We also recommend you visit the NHS Fit for Travel website here, to keep up to date with current travel health news and advice on staying healthy abroad.
NHS Fit for Travel website: https://www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/home