Your hosts at BüllsPort Lodge & Farm in the NAUkLuFT in the southern centre of Namibia

Ernst Sauber was born in Namibia, his wife Johanna comes from the Frankfurt area in Germany. The two met in April 1989 at the Hotel Maltahöhe, where Johanna was staying during a holiday trip and Ernst was attending the birthday party of a local farmer. They married shortly before Namibia became independent in March 1990. Their first son was born that same year and their second son two years later.

Ernst is a passionate farmer. But after several years of drought in the area near the Namib Desert, he had to sell his last cattle and Karakul sheep. Even the small petrol station and the shop did not bring in enough to feed the family. As tourism picked up since independence, Ernst occasionally worked as a tour guide. In April 1993, he and Johanna opened the BüllsPort guest farm with five rooms.

Over the years, Ernst established 14 hiking trails, including the now famous trail through the Quiver Tree Gorge and a trail to the lesser-known ‘Bogenfels’ (rock arch) of the NAUkLuFT. Horse lover Johanna founded a stud in 1997 and offers riding lessons and rides in the great outdoors of the NAUkLuFT.

In 2010, Johanna lost the sight in her left eye in a riding accident. Her older son was killed in a road accident in 2012. But the Saubers did not let these strokes of fate get them down. Ernst rebuilt the cattle farm and opened up an emergency pasture on the ‘Alm’, high in the Naukluft mountains, for times of drought.

However, years of drought and an invasion of mountain zebras into grazing areas on the farm finally forced him to sell his core herd of 57 cattle in 2020. With some effort, he switched to sheep farming so that the farm could continue to operate and carry BüllsPort through the corona crisis, i.e. through two years of drought in tourism.

Lodge comfort with personalised hospitality

Johanna and Ernst have also continued to invest in their hospitality. Following extensive remodelling in 2016 and 2017, BüllsPort now offers 12 spacious, air-conditioned rooms with lodge comfort. Good WiFi was installed in all rooms in 2021.

The farm atmosphere and the personal style of the guest accommodation, on the other hand, have hardly changed since the guest farm was founded in 1993. Guests now enjoy their evening meal at separate tables, just like in a lodge. However, they can meet their hosts over coffee and cake or during sundowners and gain an insight into everyday farm life and life in Namibia through personal dialogue.

BüllsPort Lodge & Farm is an important employer in the rural area. Most of the 15 employees come from the surrounding area. Trained in-house during daily operations, they have grown together to form a strong team. Since 1996, BüllsPort has hosted young interns from Germany, who help and constantly provide inspiration and new ideas.

BüllsPort host farmer Ernst Sauber horse breeder Johanna Sauber dog Jack Russell Sisi Naukluft Namibia
Your hosts: farmer Ernst Sauber and horse breeder Johanna Sauber with Sisi, one of the five four-legged family members and ‘guest relation officer’. Photo (2018): BüllsPort Lodge & Farm

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