Treesleeper Camp

 

Welcome to Treesleeper Camp!

Your cultural experience in the African bush.

Treesleeper Camp is a beautiful, exclusive camp site in the bush nearby the village of Tsintsabis in Namibia, Africa. It is a community based and sustainable tourism project with a strong focus on the culture of the Bushmen (San) people, the first inhabitants of Southern Africa. In fact, the name ‘Treesleeper’ is a translation from ‘Hei//omn’, the local Bushmen tribe in the area and the traditional inhabitants of Etosha National Park and surroundings.

Treesleeper Camp is perfectly located nearby the world famous Etosha National Park and has, apart from great private camping accommodation, some very interesting activities to offer. You can come over to walk a bushwalk or a village tour with a professional local tour guide, or you can experience a traditional performance at a camp fire in the evening.

A cultural centre has also been set up on Treesleeper Camp. Here you can sit and relax and buy basic necessities (cool drinks, basic camping food, cold beer, etc.). Apart from that you can buy local souvenirs and traditional Bushmen artefacts are exhibited. If you are lucky you can spot some small game at the nearby waterhole.

You have not seen Namibia if you have not been to Treesleeper Camp!

 

Activities

When you visit Treesleeper Camp we can offer you three activities: A bushwalk, a village tour and a traditional performance. All activities are dependent on weather conditions because they are all taking place outside and therefore Treesleeper Camp retains the right to cancel activities if necessary.

We prefer if activities are booked in advance, since we can not guarantee them taking place otherwise. This counts especially for the traditional performance, because during school holidays many children of the children’s group leave Tsintsabis and the people of the elderly group are often out hunting or working on farms.

All children younger than 12 years can join accommodation and activities for free if guided by an adult. Obviously they will not be counted then for activities where a minimum of people is required.]

Treesleeper Camp Treesleeper Camp

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. Bushwalk

If you do the bushwalk you will get a deeper understanding of the relationship that the Bushmen people used to have (and still have sometimes) with nature. You will learn about edible, poisonous and medicinal plants, see how they used to hunt animals, set up traps and made fire. The bushwalk is ideal for learning about the traditional way of life of the Bushmen. One guide takes you into the bush and explains about all these traditions.

2. Village tour

If you do our village tour you will get a better understanding of a culture in which traditions have now met the ‘modern world’. You will visit two very different current Bushmen villages and two families. Here you will see how they live nowadays and learn more about the contemporary situation. One guide will introduce you to families where you can ask questions and take photographs. This tour is about today’s ‘real life situation’ and does not exhibit Bushmen people in traditional clothes.

Apart from the fee for the village tour, you will also be asked kindly to bring a small appreciation for the families you will visit (this can be anything that you want to give, a T-shirt, a bag of sugar, some tea). We do this for entering their houses and gardens and for taking pictures. And this way these people get some extra support.

3. Traditional performance

A traditional performance by Bushmen is something magic. You can see traditional singing, dancing, healing and other ceremonies of the Bushmen, performed by children of the Tsintsabis Junior Secondary School or by an elderly traditional healing group. In case of the children you support the cultural activities of the school. The school has a fund for cultural activities and Treesleeper Camp supports that fund. You will get explanations and learn about the ritual dances and ceremonies and its’ meanings that are taking place around a camp fire.

Please realise that this activity must be booked in advance at least a week!

 

Treesleeper Camp Treesleeper Camp

 

 

 

 

 

Treesleeper Camp Treesleeper Camp

 

 

 

 

 

 

Accommodation

Treesleeper Camp is a camp site, but not just a camp site. It is an unforgettable experience of camping in the African bush. You can sleep up high between the trees! Choose at Treesleeper Camp what category of camp site you would like. We have made something for everybody who likes camping, in different price categories:

Category 1: Campsite with shared ablution but no tree deck.

Category 2: Campsite with shared ablution and a tree deck.

Category 3: Campsite with a personal ablution block and a tree deck.

And if you do not have your own camping gear, do not worry. We set up a tent for you, with a sleeping mattress, a sleeping bag, a pillow and we will give you some basic cooking equipment (a bundle of wood, some pots and pans and a gas stove). We can organise camping equipment for groups up to 5 people.

Obviously we provide wood for your braai (barbeque).
You can use the tree decks as a viewing platform or for placing your tent if you prefer to sleep on the deck. All camp sites are private areas with a braai, a tap, a picnic table (for 4 people), 2 solar lights and a bin. All ablutions have warm water provided by solar energy.

So in fact at Treesleeper Camp you can camp with lodge standards!

Treesleeper Camp Treesleeper Camp

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to get there

A 4×4 vehicle is not necessary to reach Treesleeper Camp. The location of Tsintsabis is shown on the map below:

Always follow the signs to ‘Tsintsabis’. Treesleeper Camp is situated next to this village.

From Tsumeb:

After the railway crossing in northern Tsumeb go straight onto the D3006 to Tsintsabis;

Follow this road for about 60km (Tsintsabis is signposted a few times) until you reach the signs indicating Treesleeper Camp.

From Namutoni (Etosha National Park):

Drive to the main tar road (B1) and turn left on this road, direction Ondangwa;

After 9km, turn right onto the D3001 where you cross the railway;

After 80km, turn left at the T-section onto the D3006;

Follow this road for 3.5km until you reach the signs indicating Treesleeper Camp.

From Rundu:

Follow the B8, direction Grootfontein;

After 146km, turn right onto the D3016;

Follow this road for 96km until you reach the signs indicating Treesleeper Camp.

 

Company information

Manager

Mr. Moses //Khumub

Treesleeper Camp

 

Employees

19 employees

Office

Treesleeper Camp

Postal address: PO Box 1174, Tsumeb, Namibia

Phone and fax: +264-67-221752

E-mail: info@treesleeper.org

URL: http://www.treesleeper.org

Background

Treesleeper Camp is a development project first of all. The basic idea is that tourism will bring certain profits to the community of Tsintsabis, the village nearby the camp site.

The Foundation for Sustainable Tourism in Namibia (FSTN) has been set up in order to realise the Treesleeper Camp project in Tsintsabis, Namibia. It is a Dutch legal body. The FSTN has 5 board members, them being:

Stasja Koot, M.A.: Chairman

Jan Peter Loovers, MA: Secretary

Ferry Bounin, M.A.: Treasurer

Jan Willem den Heeten, M.A. Board member

Dr. Walter van Beek (associate professor): Board member, advisor

With this project the FSTN and the Tsintsabis Trust aim to contribute the community of Tsintsabis as follows:

1. Extra income: in Tsintsabis there is a need for more sources of income besides agriculture. Tourism will stimulate the small scale economy;

2. Employment: many of the local youngsters think positively about tourism. A fair number of them speak English and is looking for work;

3. Extra focus on improvement of the position of women;

4. Increase of self-esteem of the people by a positive approach of their culture;

5. From an ethical point of view the project is very desirable: in the past the Hei//omn Bushmen were driven out of this area, including the Etosha National Park. By including them in profiting from the growing tourism in their region, they ‘get back a little of what was once taken from them’. Realise that Tsintsabis is a resettlement farm owned by the government of Namibia (the Ministry of Lands and Resettlement) and Hei//omn people are the only ethnical group in Namibia without land of their own;

6. Ecological awareness for tourists as well as inhabitants of Tsintsabis.
The building up of the camp site, the fundraising and the trainings have mostly been done by the FSTN during the years 2002 until 2007. The FSTN has also helped founding the local legal body, the Tsintsabis Trust, who are the legal owner of the project.

Currently the FSTN is still responsible for this website. Also, the chairman of the FSTN, Stasja Koot, still writes articles for the website www.hoever.nl, most of them based on the experiences of Treesleeper Camp.

Background: Treesleeper Camp

The word ‘Treesleeper’ has been derived from the biggest ethnic group in the village of Tsintsabis, the Hei//omn Bushmen. For the people who are not familiar with Khoisan (Bushmen/San and Nama) languages: The sign ‘//’ in the word Hei//omn is not a mistake. In the Khoisan language group four so-called ‘clicks’ are being used, them being: ‘//’, ‘!’, ‘/’ and ‘‡’.
When the Hei//omn still used to hunt, they sometimes fled into trees not to be caught by lions. Because of the patience lions have, the Hei//omn sometimes had to spend the night in the tree. Apart from this explanation, it also helped to sleep in the trees with a fire underneath against mosquito’s. ‘Hei//omn’ in fact means ‘Treesleepers’. Therefore the name Treesleeper symbolises the whole project: It respects the traditional culture of the Hei//omn while at the same time covering the tourists who are to visit the enterprise. This last reason is because the tourists have a chance to become a Treesleeper for a night by camping on a tree deck.

Treesleeper Camp is a form of what we call ‘community based sustainable tourism’. This means that the members of a local community are involved in all the aspects of carrying out the tourist activities, so they can have some income of their own. They should have a fair income for all their labour activities. As much as possible will be done by the local community, and the FSTN has always paid extra attention to ‘modern’ abilities (eg. working on a computer). By training and educating the local people, they will eventually be capable of improving their own situation independently and with responsibility.

Therefore, especially for this project a legal body (the Tsintsabis Trust, TT) has been founded in Tsintsabis. The TT is the owner of Treesleeper Camp. Everything related to the project will always be discussed with the TT (as representatives of the community). With them anything concerning the project is discussed.

Treesleeper does not aim to adjust attractions only to the needs of tourists. We want to give a realistic image of both the traditional and the contemporary way of life. Without bothering the tourists too much with ethical or moral aspects (they are on vacation, after all), we will give some attention to pointing out the contemporary situation of the (Hei//omn) Bushmen. Apart from that it is an environmental project, eg. as much as possible we work with solar energy. All warm water at the camp site is provided by solar geysers, every camp site has 2 solar lights and the electricity at the cultural centre is also provided by a solar panel.

 

 

 

Category: Novelties, Region: Oshikoto