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Three Shipwrecks on Namibia's Skeleton Coast

  
  

Namibia has several thousand shipwrecked vessels strewn across its vast coastline. The Skeleton Coast’s rough seas, roaring winds and strong ocean currents are primarily responsible for many of these beached ships’ fate.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure
(Image via I Dream of Africa)

 

Many of the wrecks on the harsh coastline have been completely destroyed by the sun, sea, and wind but a few are still visible. The vessels' remains can be seen up close by explorers who are keen on making the trek along the Land of the Brave’s beautiful but perilous coastline.

This blog post is about three of these still visible wrecks.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure
(Image via I Dream of Africa)

 

The Eduard Bohlen (1907)

This is perhaps one of the most well known shipwrecks in Namibia if not in the world. Its fame is largely as a result of its strange location. This is because the Eduard Bohlen appears to be stranded in the middle of the desert.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure

Stranded, in the desert.
(Image via BePic)

 

The Eduard Bohlen was a German cargo ship that ran aground while it was on its way to Table Bay from Swakopmund. It is believed that thick fog caused the ship to founder close to Conception Bay. Years after the ship ran aground the desert began to encroach on the ocean and the ship that was once stranded in the ocean slowly became stranded in the desert. The wreck currently sits about 500 metres from the ocean, making it a must visit site for wreck enthusiasts and history buffs alike.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure

The Eduard Bohlen, up close.
(Image via I Dream of Africa)

 

How to get there

If you want to get as close as possible to the Eduard Bohlen you can go on a guided 4x4 tour from either Luderitz or Walvis Bay with Coastways. You can also embark on a flying safari that will take you over the wreck. Suricate Safaris offer a few flying safari options and one of them will take you over the famous wreck.

An aerial view of the famous wreck.


The Dunedin Star (1942)

During the Second World War the Dunedin Star left Liverpool carrying munitions and supplies for Allied forces. On board as well as the cargo were 21 passengers who wanted to escape a war-torn London. The vessel, however, hit an underwater obstacle and landed up grounding 500 metres offshore, stranding its passengers and crew on the inhospitable Skeleton Coast.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure

A photograph taken shortly after the boat was wrecked in 1942.
(Image via John H Marsh)

 

The rescue efforts that followed were dogged by bad luck and adverse conditions. A tug boat dispatched to aid in the rescue efforts ran aground, while a Ventura bomber, tasked with dropping supplies for the survivors of the Dunedin Star, crashed into the sea after delivering its cargo to the stranded crew and passengers of the wreck. Both the tugboat and the warplane are still visible today.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure

All that is left of the famous vessel.
(Image via Trekity)

 

How to get there

The wreck is in the far north of the Skelton Coast National Park and as such you will not be able to drive yourself there. Flying into the northern section of the park is the only realistic option if you want to explore this famous wreck. Skeleton Coast Safaris offer a variety of aerial tours of the region.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure

Sometimes a 4x4 is just not sufficient.
(Image via Skeleton Coast Safaris)

 

The Suiderkus (1976)

Close to Henties Bay there are several visible shipwrecks, one of which is that of the Suiderkus, a relatively modern fishing trawler. The ship ran aground near Möwe Bay on her maiden voyage despite having a highly sophisticated navigational system. After a few months most of the ship had disintegrated but a large portion of the hull still survives to this day.

aaaaaxxxxxxx

Water flowing through the wreckage of the Suiderkus.
(Photo by Charlie Summers)

 

The hull is now perched on the beach and is currently a home for a group of cormorants. Because of its peculiar location and decaying frame it is a popular destination for photographers visiting the area.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure

The wreck is deteriorating rapidly; so don’t delay in getting there!
(Photo by Olwen Evans)

 

How to get there

The Suiderkus, as with many of the visible wrecks in Namibia, can be found within the Skeleton Coast National Park. The Skeleton Coast Camp offers tours of the nearby wrecks, the Suiderkus included, and if you choose to stay at that lodge then they will happily take you on a tour. Anglers who are fishing at the nearby Terrace Bay drive past the wreck on their way to the fishing grounds.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure

There is some world-class fishing on offer near Terrace Bay.
(Image via Cardboard Box Travel Shop)

 

As mentioned above, there are literally thousands of wrecks dotted along the coast of Namibia. The three chosen for this article have been picked because they are still visible and are relatively easy to access. As the Skeleton Coast National Park continues to become more accessible to more and more people other wrecks will be easier to visits. For now, however, you can beat the crowds and get exploring in one of the world's strangest and most haunting landscapes.

Skeleton coast, Namibia, Namibia photography, shipwrecks, eduard bohlen, shipwreck namibia, adventure
Bits of ships and old boxes of cargo are strewn across the Skeleton Coast…

Who knows what you could find!
(Image via Africa Travel Resources)

+++++++

Looking for more eerie adventure?
Check out our post on the ghost town of Pomona by clicking on the picture below:

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2014 Namibia Adventure Calendar: September to December

  
  

As promised, this is a follow up post to our recently published Adventure Calendar for 2014. You can find the calendar for June to August by clicking here. These two blog posts will equip you with all you need to know about the major adventure events that are happening in Namibia.

Desert Knights Mountain Bike Tour (7 – 12 September)

The Desert Knights MTB Tour is five days of cycling, and one day of canoeing, through Namibia’s scenic /Ai/Ais-Richtersveld Transfrontier Park. The park is located in the southern region of Namibia and straddles the border between South Africa and the Land of the Brave.

Adventure, Namibia, Trail running, canoeing, mountain biking namibia, kiteboarding, Namib, Sossusvlei,

From the seat of you bike you will be able to take in the beautiful landscape.
(Image courtesy of Desert Knights)

 

Adventure, Namibia, Trail running, canoeing, mountain biking namibia, kiteboarding, Namib, Sossusvlei, Fish River,

You will also get a chance to zip down some Orange River rapids in a canoe.
(Image courtesy of Desert Knights)

 

This cycling tour is unique in that it affords its participants the opportunity to cycle both during the day and at night. Cycling through the desert at night, and under the full moon (which falls on the 9th of September), participants in the Desert Knights Mountain Bike Tour will get to witness the isolated and vast region in a light that few people ever will.

Adventure, Namibia, Trail running, canoeing, mountain biking namibia, kiteboarding, Namib, Sossusvlei, Fish River,

The landscapes transform at night.
(Image courtesy of Desert Knights)

 

To enter the event click here. Entries close on the 30th of June. There are only 100 places available on this tour, so be sure to book soon!

Adventure, Namibia, Trail running, canoeing, mountain biking namibia, kiteboarding, Namib, Sossusvlei, Fish River,

Riders riding out into the approaching twilight.
(Image courtesy of Desert Knights)

 

Pick n Pay Cycle Classic (12 October) 

This year will see the fifteenth time this cycling road race is being held in Namibia. Starting off as a small race of just over 750 cyclists the event has grown from strength to strength with each passing year.

The race is a great way for you to visit Windhoek if you are interested in competitive cycling. It will give you the opportunity to meet, greet and compete with the local cyclists in the capital city.  

Adventure, Namibia, Trail running, canoeing, mountain biking namibia, kiteboarding, Namib, Sossusvlei, Fish River,

2012’s runner-up Costa Seibeb (L) and 2012’s winner Till Droblisch (R).
(Image via the Sun)

 

This year the event is taking place on Sunday the 12th of October and there will be several routes on offer to entrants. The race is organised by the Windhoek-based cycling club Windhoek Pedal Power. If you want to be able to register for this race then all you have to do is subscribe to their newsletter here.

Registration for the Cycle Classic typically closes in early October so it is best to book your place in advance. Details are still being finalised for the event, so be sure to keep an eye on your inbox after you have registered with Windhoek Pedal Power.


Luderitz Speed Challenge (October 29 – 9 November) 

The Luderitz Speed Challenge is one of the world’s premier water sporting events for kiteboarders and windsurfers. The perfect water and wind conditions draw out hoards of international watersporting stars and this ensures that each year the Speed Challenge is a thrilling and record breaking event.

Adventure, Namibia, Trail running, canoeing, mountain biking namibia, kiteboarding, Namib, Sossusvlei, Fish River,

A contestant kicking up some spray in 2013.

(Photo via Luderitz Speed)

 

The event has seen numerous world records broken and this year there promises to be more of the same record breaking action. The Speed Challenge will be taking place from the end of October to mid-November, so if you find youself in Namibia's south during that time then be sure to head down to Luderitz to check all the action out.

Adventure, Namibia, Trail running, canoeing, mountain biking namibia, kiteboarding, Namib, Sossusvlei, Fish River,

Windsurfers and kiteboarders flock to Luderitz for this event.
(Photo via Luderitz Speed)

 

If you want to enter the race, or get involved as a sponsor of the event you can contact the organisers, Sebastien Cattelan or Sophie Routaboul on the details below.

Sébastien Cattelan

Email: cattelan.sebastien@gmail.com

Mobile: +33 (0)61 5341 411 (France)

+27 (0)791 634555 (South Africa)

Skype: seb.cat1

Sophie Routaboul

Email: luderitz.speed.challenge@gmail.com

Mobile: +33 (0)61 07 44 69 (France)

+264 (0)817 44 64 69 (Namibia)

Skype: soevent34

If you want a more detailed description of the event and its history then check out our blog post on it here.

KITE NEST

A windsurfer on the purpose built canal.
(Photo via Luderitz Speed)

           

Desert Ultra (November 14)

The Desert Ultra is an event organised by Beyond the Ultimate and it is a trail running race like no other in Namibia. The course is over 250km and it focuses on well-trained runners who are looking for an extreme challenge through some wonderfully isolated and awesome desert landscapes.

STARK

Stark, challenging and one of a kind stages.
(Image via Beyond the Ultimate)

 

Contestants are expected to be able to carry all your gear and water and the fields are usually very competitive. While there are refreshment stations along the way, you will be expected to fend for yourself along the gruelling stages.

PREP

Preparation is key if you want to succeed.
(Image via Beyond the Ultimate)

 

Here is a good link to a page that deals with FAQ associated with the Desert Ultra. If you want register for the race then simply follow this link.

Adventure, Namibia, Trail running, canoeing, mountain biking namibia, kiteboarding, Namib, Sossusvlei,

Runners making their way through a checkpoint.
(Image via Beyond the Ultimate)


It should be noted that Ultras are not for casual athletes, but if you are fully prepared, and in good physical and mental shape, then they can be some of the most rewarding extreme adventures one can have.

REWARD

Desert heat and tough trails make for a rewarding run.

(Image via Beyond the Ultimate)

 

100km of Namib Desert (30 November – 7 December)

Quite simply this event is a 100km race through one of the world’s oldest deserts, the Namib. The Namib is home to some of Namibia’s most famous wonders; these include Sossusvlei and Sesriem Canyon making it this ancient desert an amazing area to be able to run through.

AMAZE

From the Dead Vlei…
(Image via 100km of Namib Desert)

CANYON

…to the Sesriem Canyon.
(Image via 100km of Namib Desert)

 

The 100km run through the desert is organised by an Italian company who put on races through out Africa (check out some of their other races here and here). It is the ninth time that the event has been held in Namibia and each year the field of participants has increased.

FUN RUN

A runner summits one of the massive dunes.
(Image via 100km of Namib Desert)

 

The race is a tough affair, but, you will be staying in top-notch accommodation for each of the four competing nights you are out on the route. So there will always be time for you to unwind and recharge. For a detailed program check out this page.

NICEPIC

Beautiful surrounds make this race a must.
(Image via 100km of Namib Desert)

 

If you want register for the race then click here and fill in your details and the team will get back to you with all the information you need. If you still need convincing then have a look at the subtitled video below.

(Video via 100km of Namib Desert)


+-------+

 

This and our last post should give any adventure holiday seekers enough ideas to fill a few months up in their trip.

If you know of any other extreme adventure events happening in Namibia in 2014 then leave a comment below.

Happy reading, and happy planning!

Capture Namibia: Photography Tips from Andy Biggs

  
  

The award-winning photographer Andy Biggs is the latest subject of our Capture Namibia series of interviews. Andy has been travelling around Africa for many years now and has a particular fondness for Namibia and the photographic opportunities it presents. Read on to find out why…

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    The dunes of Sossusvlei.

     

    Tell us about your most unforgettable moment while shooting in Namibia.

      One day we were flying along the coastline from Lüderitz all the way up to Hartmann Valley, and when we flew along the Lange Wand I saw an amazing sight. As I peered through the scratched airplane window, I was wondering how I could convey the giddy heights of the Namibian sand dunes. I wanted to capture the way the shafts of sunlight pierce the mist and highlight the sand textures.

      Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

      The Skeleton Coast.

       

      The huddle of Cape fur seals - a dark smudge on the strip of beach - gave a sense of the vastness of this wilderness.' The Skeleton Coast is an area of about 16,000 square kilometres of national park that runs along the Atlantic coast of Namibia.

       

        Every destination has its challenges and rewards; how does Namibia compare to other places you’ve photographed?

          The challenge with photographing in Namibia is how to capture how one feels about being in wide-open spaces.

          Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

          The vast Namib.


          The sights, the smells, the sounds all are difficult to translate into a 2-dimensional photograph. The reward is capturing that one photograph that tells a complete story in only one image.

          Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

           Four Himba women trek across the hot sand.

             

            Which three photos shot in Namibia are you most proud of and why?


              Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

              Skeleton Coast, Namibia 2006.

              This image won the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition in 2008 in the Wild Places category.

               

              Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

              Sossusvlei in B&W.

              I have an affinity for clouds when I am shooting at Sossusvlei, and when they arrive and there is good light it is a wonderful combination.

               

              Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

              Himba Family.


                When going on a Namibian photographic expedition, what is your equipment of choice? And what do you never leave home without?

                  I use digital medium format equipment from Phase One. This equipment allows me to capture photographs with tons of information and to make extremely large prints.

                  Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

                  Namib dunes at sunrise.

                  I would also never leave home without my tripod, as it allows me to capture images at the edge of light when the colour is at its best.

                   

                  Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

                  A tripod is essential for low-light shots.

                    A photographer friend is desperate to capture the best of Namibia. What top three tips would you give them?

                      1) Spend more time in each location and take the time to learn each area.

                      Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

                      The iconic Dead Vlei.

                       

                      2) Bring a second camera in case of equipment failure.

                      Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

                      The camera buddy system- two cameras are always better than one!

                       

                      3) Bring a tripod so you can shoot during the best times of the light.


                      Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

                      A quiver tree at sunset.

                       

                      Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips

                      And remember... Find time to have some fun!

                       

                      Namibia, Namibia photography, Capture Namibia, Namib, Sossusvlei photography, Andy Biggs, Namib, Himba, photography tips 

                      Andy Biggs is an avid adventurer, conservationist, teacher, and outdoor photographer whose photography celebrates the African landscape and its rich wildlife, people, and culture. His photographic safaris allow the traveler to not only enhance their understanding of photography, lighting, and wildlife, but to develop a life-long admiration for Africa's beauty and culture.

                      If you want to see more from Andy visit his website or his blog. You can also follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

                      More Photographer Tips

                      This part of a series of blog post interviews with professional photographers on how to Capture Namibia. Every week we'll be posting tips, tricks and amazing photographs from these impressive photographers.

                      Follow us to get the latest in the Capture Namibia series:

                                

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                      Namibia photography, photos Namibia, Africa photography, photography tips, photography in africa, photographs of namibia, photographs of africa

                       

                       Featured Photographers  

                         
                      Namibia photography, photos Namibia, Africa photography, Marsel van Oosten, photography tips, photography in africa, photographs of namibia, photographs of africa  Namibia photography, photos Namibia, Africa photography, Christopher Rimmer, photography tips, photography in africa, photographs of namibia, photographs of africa  Namibia photography, photos Namibia, Africa photography, Paul van Schalkwyk, photography tips, photography in africa, photographs of namibia, photographs of africa, hasselblad masters

                       Marsel van Oosten 

                       Christopher Rimmer

                      Paul van Schalkwyk


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                       Matthew Hood

                       Ted Alan Stedman

                       Jan & Jaye Roode

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                      Bill Gozansky

                       Roy van der Merwe

                       Hougaard Malan


                      What to do in Namibia during Autumn

                        
                        

                      It’s that time of year in the Southern Hemisphere where summer begins to leave and winter starts knocking at the door. In Namibia, autumn (or fall) is a particularly beautiful time of year. The weather is mild and there a whole host of activities and events for you to keep you entertained.


                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      Sossusvlei in autumn.

                      Autumn in Namibia

                      In autumn the colours of Namibia come out in full force. Puffy white clouds, crystal clear skies and the deep red of the desert sands combine spectacularly to provide any photographer with enough backdrops to fill a thousand photo albums.

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      The land meets the sky in spectacular fashion during this season.
                      (Image via Tok Tokkie Trails)

                      Late rains sweep through the usually arid countryside and provide photographers with a unique chance to get shots of the Land of the brave as these powerful, but brief, storms sweep through it.

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      Lightning at night near Gobabis.

                      The temperatures during these months are mild with daytime temperatures rarely exceeding 30 degrees Celsius and nighttime temperatures seldom dropping so low as to cause discomfort. The wind dies down on the coast, while the southern regions cool off, and in the central parts of the country seasonal rains often refresh the landscape that has been baking in the summer heat. Autumn then is truly a ‘goldilocks’ season in Namibia.

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      Not too hot, not too cold… Everything is just right in Namibia during autumn!

                      With all these factors in mind, let’s take a look at some activities that we recommend you try do while visiting Namibia in autumn.

                      Walking in the desert

                      Deserts are, as you all know, very hot during the day and extremely cold at night, but the mild autumn temperatures mean that explorers have the perfect opportunity to go out into Namibia’s deserts without having to deal with blisteringly hot days and freezing cold nights. Below are a few operators that offer some of the best guided desert walks in Namibia.

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      Explore the desert by foot.
                      (Image via Tok Tokkie Trails)

                      The Living Desert Tour with Tommy’s Tours and Safaris

                      Tommy has been running tours of the Namib just outside Swakopmund since the 90’s. On Tommy’s Living Desert Tour he takes guests on a journey through the seemingly empty dunes near the bustling coastal town. Focussing on the smallest creatures this tour will highlight the amazing variety of desert-adapted animals that call the Namib home.

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      Tommy with one of the little critters that live in the harsh desert.
                      (Image by Wendy Kaveney)

                      Tommy not only focuses on the animals that live in the red sands of the dunes but also on the plant life and the landscape itself. His Welwitchia/Moon Land Scape Tour is definitely worth checking out if you have the time to spend the full day trekking around the dunes.

                      Discover Namibia’s “Little Five” with Living Desert Adventures

                      Based in Swakopmund Chris Nel’s Living Desert Adventures also takes guests on a tour of the dune belt near Swakopmund. Chris’ focus is on the so-called “Little Five” which includes the Palmato Gecko, the Cartwheeling Spider, and the Shovel-Snouted Lizard, the Sidewinder Snake and the Namaqua Chameleon. If you’re lucky then you may catch a glimpse of all five!

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      The Palmato Gecko, probably the cutest of the Little Five.
                      (Image via Living Desert Adventures)

                      Exploring the Namib with Tok Tokkie Trails

                      This is a locally run company that gives guided tours in and around Sossusvlei and the NamibRand Nature Reserve since 1991. Tok Tokkie specialises in putting visitors in touch with the fragile ecosystems of the Namib Desert at once giving guests the opportunity to take in the beautiful surrounds and learn about the need for conservation in these fragile environments.

                      Check out their itineraries here for a detailed description of the different tours they offer and you can choose which one best suits you.

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      Get in touch with the Namib and its contrasting surrounds.
                      (Image via Tok Tokkie Trails)

                      Coastal Fishing

                      The favourable weather conditions in autumn make for excellent angling opportunities on the coast line of the Land of the Brave. Fishing in Namibia is very highly rated and there is an avid community of fishermen within the country.

                      The Skeleton Coast in particular is one of the most talked about fishing spots in Southern Africa and people come from all over the world to try catch a few of the ocean’s finest there. The 200km stretch of coastline that is Dorob National Park is completely open to anglers, as long as you have a valid fishing permit.

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      Coastal fishing on the Skeleton Coast.
                      (Image via Planet Sea Fishing)

                      Here is a great guide to fishing in Namibia if you are interested in planning a dedicated fishing trip. While here is a list of fishing safaris ranging from day excursions to multiple night adventures that one can embark upon.

                      Cycling

                      Getting on a bicycle and touring around Namibia is a great compromise between driving and walking through the country. You get to cover greater distances than by foot, while still being close to the natural surroundings. There are several companies that run guided cycle tours through out Namibia and cycling pretty much anywhere in Namibia in these mild months is sure to be a worthwhile experience.

                        Mountain Bike Namibia

                      This is a local company that offers shorter six day tours as well as a massive 4-6 week tour that includes the must see locations of Sossusvlei, Swakopmund, Damaraland, Kaokoland and the Etosha National Park.

                      image Cycle Namibia  

                      Cycle Namibia specialises in tailor made tours to suit all skill levels and tastes. Have a Look at their website to find out more.

                      Screen Shot 2014 04 10 at 2.03.36 AM  Bike Tours Direct

                      This internationally run company offers a 17-day cycling safari that is not to be missed.

                      Hiking 

                      You should know by now that the weather is your friend during autumn in Namibia. This means it is an excellent time to strap your backpack on and head up some mountain trails. We have chosen two hikes that would be spectacular to do during this time of the year.

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      Hikers setting off on an adventure.

                      Fish River Canyon

                      In the south of Namibia one can go on the epic Fish River Canyon hike. There are various options ranging from day hikes to a mammoth five-day camping hike. You can read more about these hikes here. Note that you are not allowed to hike into the canyon unaccompanied by an official guide as it has been deemed to risky to explore the canyon without an expert.

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      If you’re into hiking, don’t miss the opportunity to see this canyon.

                      The Waterberg

                      The Waterberg in the central northern region provides visitors with somewhat more leisurely hiking options. As opposed to the Fish River Canyon hike explorers can walk around at their own leisure in the Waterberg Plateau Park.

                      You do not need a guide with you and you can pick up a map of the various trails at the NWR reception at the entrance to the park. Read more about the walking/hiking trails you can explore in the park here.

                       

                      Swakopmund, Namibia, namibia fishing, luderitz, waterberg, fish river canyon, adventure, namibia hiking, safari

                      The trails are clearly marked and easy to follow.

                      Be advised though, it is never, ever, a good idea to go hiking on your own and you should always take someone with you no matter how simple a trail seems or how well you know the route.

                      +++++++++++++++

                      There it is! Several reasons why you should spend some time in Namibia during autumn. If you don't have plans to come to Namibia already, but want to, then know that if you plan your adventure for this time of year you are sure to have an amazing time.

                       

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                      The autumn sun setting behind a lone windmill.

                      Flying over Namibia's Skeleton Coast

                        
                        

                      The Skeleton Coast is one of Namibia’s most remote locations. It is also one of the most beautiful and unique places in the world. This blog post will give you everything you need to know about going on a once in a lifetime flying safari to this isolated paradise.  

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                      Flying high above the dunes
                      (Image courtesy of Natural High Safaris)  

                      The Skeleton Coast can be difficult to get by land, as much of it is restricted and vehicles are simply not allowed in. But by plane, exploring this area is a cinch! There are several different ‘fly-in’ options for the traveler who wants to explore from the skies, with a variety of operators offering packages that range from scenic day flights to four-day flying tours.

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                      Get a unique view of the icnonic Sossusvlei from the skies.
                      (Image courtesy of Expert Africa)

                      Skeleton Coast Safaris

                      One such operator who organizes three-day safaris is the Schoeman family who run Skeleton Coast Safaris. It is a small family business that specialises in taking small groups of visitors (no more than eight) into Namibia’s desolate and beautiful Skeleton Coast.

                      The Schoeman’s run three camps which guests are ferried to and from in light aircraft. At each camp unique and beautiful flora, fauna, geology and shipwrecks can be found and explored making this experience definitely one for the bucket list. 


                      (Video courtesy of Expert Africa)    

                      Three nights, three camps

                      The three night tour usually follows the same schedule but nothing is set in stone when you get to places this remote. Each night you will be in a different location, and each of the camps you visit has its own distinct appeal.  

                      There is the Kuidas Camp, with its shipwrecks, amazing birdlife and astonishing stargazing opportunities in the evening. These attractions make the Kuidas Camp is the perfect way to kick-off your three day fly-in safari of the Skeleton Coast.  

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                      The camp is lush and yet the surrounds are stark.
                      (Image courtesy of Expert Africa)    

                      On your second night you will be stopping at the Leylandsdrift Camp which is situated near a natural spring. The camp borders the Skeleton Coast National Park and getting to this camp may juat be the highlight of your day as you will do several low sweeps of the surrounding area. Flying above this astonishing landscape will give you a once in a life time opportunity to take in one of Namibia’s most beautiful areas from a unique perspective.

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                      Isolated and beautiful, the desert dunes of Namibia's West coast.
                      (Image courtesy of Expert Africa)

                      Once you touch down at Leylandsdrift Camp you can go tracking desert adapted elephants (read more about these amazing creatures here) and visit the nearby Himba settlement where you can learn about one Namibia’s indigenous cultures.  

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                      A Himba woman.
                      (Image courtesy of Expert Africa)    

                      The Kunene River Camp is most often the last port of call for adventurers on the three day Skeleton Coast Safari. To get to this camp you will fly North from the Leylandsdrift Camp over seal colonies and more beautiful rolling desert. Once at the camp you will be treated to an open air 4x4 safari that will take you to the border between Namibia and Angola.  

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                      The Kunene River camp looks over the mighty river.
                      (Image courtesy of Expert Africa)

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                      Mountains and dunes meet on the plains near the camp.
                      (Image courtesy of Expert Africa)  

                      When you visit this camp, and during your journey to the campsite, keep an eye out for Namibia’s ‘fairy circles’. Seeing these geological wonders in the stirring mountainous region is truly unforgettable.  

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                      4x4 tours are all part of the unforgettable experience.
                      (Image courtesy of Expert Africa)  

                      Obviously a tour like this is an absolutely amazing experience which is incomparable to anything else you can do in any other country, but don’t just take our word for it: Read what people who have been on the tour think about it over here.  

                      Other operators

                      If a multiple day flying safari sounds a bit too hectic then why not hop on a scenic flight instead and get to witness Namibia unfold below you as you take a low-level flight over its dunes and landscapes. Here are just some of the companies in Namibia who offer scenic flights and flying safaris:

                       

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                      One of the Skeleton Coast's many shipwrecks, seen from above.
                      (Image courtesy of the Namibian)  

                      One piece of advice

                      If you plan on visiting the Skeleton Coast remember that it is always wise to bring clothes that are good for both extremes of temperature that you will be exposed to in the region. During the day it can be extremely hot, while during the evening it can get bitterly cold- so make sure you bring shorts, t-shirts, long pants and sweaters.  

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                      Dunes and airplanes- a match made in Namibia.
                      (Image courtesy of the Namibian)

                      Visit the Edge of Namibia's Namib Desert

                        
                        

                      Aus is a small village that can be found in Namibia’s south west. It lies on the B4 national road and is a popular site to visit for travellers exploring the deep south of Namibia or those who are making their way to or from the charming harbour town of Luderitz. 

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                       Aus, stark and beautiful.

                      How Aus was founded

                      Aus’ origins can be traced back to July 1915 when German forces surrendered to the South African forces who had been pursuing them through South West Africa (what is now Namibia) as part of the WWI effort.

                      The location where the village now stands used to have internment camps for the German prisoners of war, but in May 1919, after the ratifying of the treaty of Versailles, the camps were dismantled. Now all that remains of that era are a few graves of the soldiers who passed on at the camp or in the surrounds. But the village that sprung up around the camps remains.

                      The village itself is modest and unassuming, but it's location makes it the perfect place to use as a base of operations when exploring the interior of Namibia's south. For example, to the west of Aus is one of Namibia’s most talked about attractions. In this area, just outside the village, a patient traveler can catch a glimpse of one of the few herds of wild horses in the world.

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                      Wild horses are very inquisitive creatures.

                      These wild horses cohabit the land with ostriches, oryx and other desert adapted animals. Check out our post on the Wild Horses of Namibia to find out more about these amazing feral creatures.

                      Things to do and see while in Aus

                      As already mentioned, beyond being a very pretty and relaxing place in it’s own right, many adventure seekers use the small village as a base to explore the southern interior of Namibia.

                      125km West of Aus is Luderitz. Check out our blogs on what the quaint seaside town has to offer, from its unique architecture, adventure sports, cultural activities, and a nearby ghost town you’ve never heard of. This little coastal town is also a fantastic gateway to the stirring south west coast of Namibia and is a must visit if you are in the south.

                      To the East of Aus you can find Keetmanshoop and the quiver tree forest, which are both remarkable destinations for those willing to go off the beaten path.

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                      The iconic quiver tree.

                      To the south of Aus lies the Orange River, the border between Namibia and South Africa and the astounding Fish River Canyon. You must read our post on the amazing day hike you can take into the canyon by clicking here.

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                      Hiking in the Fish River canyon is once in a lifetime experience.

                      Where to stay in Aus

                      Klein Aus Vista

                      Klein Aus Vista is a collection of four different styles of lodges, the Desert Horse Inn, Eagles Nest Chalets, the Desert Horse Campsite and the Geisterschlucht Cabin. These four accommodation options mean there is something to suit every adventurer’s taste when looking for a place to spend a few nights in Aus.

                      Klein Aus Vista is part of the Gondwana Collection of lodges and accommodation option. The Gondwana group often has special rates and package deals for travellers in Southern Africa, so be sure to check out their website to see if you qualify for any special rates.

                      The Desert Horse Inn

                      This is the perfect place for families of all ages to stay for a few nights. The rooms are beautifully situated and simply appointed. There is a good restaurant and plenty of space and excellent views of the beautiful semi-arid surrounds.

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                      The Desert Horse Inn, comfortable and unforgettable.

                      Eagles Nest Chalets

                      These chalets are a 15 minute drive from the Desert Horse Inn’s main reception and are very popular. Each unit is uniquely decorated and is situated in such a manner that once you arrive at your chalet you will feel like you are in your own private wilderness.

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                      A view from one of the chalets.

                      Each chalet is built around the massive boulders that have settled at the foot of the mountain against which the buildings have been constructed. 

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                      The individualised rooms are...

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                      ...literally built...

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                      ...in and around the natural rock formations.

                      Desert Horse Campsite

                      Klein Aus Vista also manages two self-catering accommodation spaces, one of which is the Desert Horse Campsite which affords campers the opportunity to set up camp under beautiful camel thorn trees and amongst the enourmous granite boulders which litter the entire area.

                      This is an excellent place to use a base of operations for those adventurers who would like to a bit of light rock climibing and hiking in the mountains of the region. The campsite is also a mere 20km’s away from where you can find Aus’ famous wild horses.

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                      DIY camping at its finest
                      .

                      Geisterschlucht Cabin

                      The Geisterschlucht Cabin is quite the hidden gem at Klein Aus Vista. This unique and rustic little cabin can only be hired by one group o travellers at a time, regardless of their number. There are two dormitories in the cabin that sleep ten people each.

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                      Isolated and inspiring, the cabin is a perfect getaway.

                      This means that you and your travel companions can settle down on your own in the beautiful surrounds. Like the Desert Horse Campsite the cabin is close to the wild horses and is also an excellent place to set off on hikes from.

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                      If you stay at the Geisterschlucht cabin look out for the nearby relics from a bygone era.

                      If all these options are fully booked then check out this link, for a few other places where you can lay your head to rest in and around Aus.

                      A final tip

                      While staying at the Desert Horse in you may also want to take advantage of their sunset drive. Here are three pictures taken on one of these drives:

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                      Accommodation, namibia hiking, Activities, Adventure, desert, trip planning, history, wild horses, namibia horses, self drive namibia

                      Accommodation, namibia hiking, Activities, Adventure, desert, trip planning, history, wild horses, namibia horses, self drive namibia

                      Namibia's southern regions have so much to offer- so don't miss out!

                      Namibia's Sesriem Canyon: Just before the dunes of Soussesvlei

                        
                        

                      Sesriem is often only thought of as just a gateway to the famous and amazing Sossusvlei, but it is also home to the Sesriem Canyon, a natural gorge carved millions of years ago by the once mighty Tsauchab River.

                      If you are heading into the Namib and you find yourself in the Naukluft National Park of Namibia, you will no doubt hear talk of Sesriem, a small settlement with a filling station and general supplies store close to the southern end of the Naukluft Mountains.

                       

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                      Sesriem Canyon, Namibia

                      Photo courtesy of TravelNewsNamibia.com

                       

                      Some Sesriem Canyon Facts

                      The canyon’s birth dates back between two and four million years, when continental upheavel resulted in the creation of most of the westward flowing rivers in the Namib Desert region.

                      Today the Tsauchab River only runs after good rains fall in the nearby Naukluft Mountains, but the canyon is a testament to the rivers long-past prime some 15- 18 million years ago when the gorge was created by the river’s once sweeping movement.

                      The canyon is up to 30 metres deep at points and is roughly about 1km long- with a width that ranges between one and three metres wide, flattening out as it approaches the iconic Sossusvlei.

                      The name Sesriem is derived from the Dutch/Afrikaans words for “six (zes) belt (riem)” and was given to the settlement by explorers returning from the Dorsland Treks. “Six belt” is a reference to the six belts, usually made of Oryx hide, that a thirsty settler would have to tie together in order to reach down into the deep hollows in the canyon floor to extract the crystal clear cool underground water which collects under the canyon’s floor.

                       

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                      Take a stroll along the river bed of the Sesriem Canyon

                      Photo courtesy of summitpost.org

                       

                      What is there to do?

                      Sesriem canyon is an interesting place to walk and appreciate the canyon’s multiple layers of exposed rock. It is best appreciated at sunrise or sunset, where the changing shadows and soft light foregrounds the area’s breathtaking scenery, setting up excellent photography opportunity or offering a weary traveler a chance for some quiet reflection.

                      For those visiting by day, a walking trail leads into the canyon from where the layers of the different sedimentary layers are more clearly visible.  A variety of tree species also grow within the canyon, such as the unique laurel fig.

                      Do note though, if you are visiting in the warmer months of the year, do try and avoid walking around during the hottest parts of the day. Rather beat the heat and leave for your walks through the canyon very early or later in the afternoon when the Namib begins to cools down.

                       

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                      If you're staying in the park, ask your lodge to organise a special sundowner over the canyon for spectacular views

                       

                      The Sesriem Canyon’s hidden treasures

                      After good rains, pools of water collect in the narrow, sheltered sections on the floor of the canyon. These pools of crystal clear water are an invigorating sight in the barren and stark surrounds, and some of the larger pools even present adventurous explorers with a chance to enjoy a refreshing swim.

                      Deeper hollows in the canyon’s floor hold supplies of permanent water, even in the dryer months, which many animals use to survive in the harsh land. The pools are filled with species of fish, so be on the lookout for the barbell which call these pool’s their homes.

                      A campsite managed by the Namibia Wildlife Resorts is situated close by under huge camel-thorn trees, and right by the Sesriem gate, hot air balloons depart in the early morning, providing scenic flights over the Sossusvlei dunes.

                       

                      Visiting Sossuvlei via Sesriem

                      The sand dunes at Sossusvlei are some 60km from the entrance the Sesriem gate of the Naukluft National Park, and the drive to the famous dunes will take about an hour.

                      The gate into Sesriem only opens at sunrise, so if you are staying outside of the park (which you will be unless you are staying at the Sossus Dune Lodge), you will have to wait until sunrise to begin their journey to Sossusvlei.

                       

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                      Never-ending views over the Namib at Sossus Dune Lodge, a stone's throw from Sesriem Canyon

                       

                      More stories

                      If you like nature walks: read about the Waterberg

                      If you like canyon hikes: read about the Fish River Canyon 

                       More on the Sossusvlei area

                       Waterberg Fish River Canyon Deadvlei 

                       

                      The Wild Horses of the Namib

                        
                        

                      The wild horses of Namibia have captured the imaginations of countless authors, photographers and wildlife enthusiasts. They can be found in the south west region of Namibia and they are truly a sight to behold.

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                      Horses up ahead!

                      (image courtesy of Wild Horses of the Namib)

                      Wild horses: the myths and the truth

                      The wild horses of Namibia have been wrapped in mystery for many years. With various travellers, zoologists and historians trying to trace their origins for the last 100 years. As a result of the mystery several different stories have developed, and it is only recently that the truth about these animal’s introduction in to the wild has become known.

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                      Horses on the outskirts of the Namib
                      .
                      (image courtesy of Wild Horses and Mustangs)

                      There are many origin stories for these wild horses, some suggesting these horses were abandoned by German stud farmers, others claim that the horses survived a shipwreck and made their way into the interior of the country. But these popular theories have been recently dismissed and disproven and historians and zoologists now have the answer to the question of where these mysterious beasts came from.

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                      Where do the horses come from?

                      It was 1914, and German and South African troops were doing battle across what was then called South West Africa. The German forces had begun retreating from the 10 000 strong South African battalion who were well armed and well equipped with over 6000 horses.

                      The South Africans had set up a semi-permanent camp in the Namib around a dug well to provide water to the troops and their horses. It was this camp that the retreating Germans decided to disrupt in order to try and delay the advancing South African troops.

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                      Dueling horses.
                      (image courtesy of the Namibian)

                      A German military report makes the following observation: “In the morning of March 27, the tireless flight lieutenant Fiedler flew to Garub and successfully dropped bombs on the enemy camp amidst 1700 grazing cavalry horses causing great confusion.”

                      The bombs that were dropped would have scattered some of the horses and many of those animals would not have been recovered as the South African troops quickly pulled up stakes and pursued the German forces shortly after the bombs fell.

                      The horses that fled into the wild during these World War I skirmishes were supplemented by other escaped horses from stud farms around the region. Based on photographic evidence, a former mayor of Luderitz, Emil Kreplin, had been breeding workhorses just south of Aus in Kubub, and that some of these horses escaped the farm and eventually joined with the other horses who had made it into the wild in the region.

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                      The wild horses of Namibia are sociable animals that tend to stick together.
                      (image courtesy of the Namibian)

                      The horses would have likely congregated around the region's mountains as there are many natural watering holes that can be found at the foot of the mountains.

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                      Foal and mother in the harsh environment
                      .
                      (image courtesy of African Bush Bird Tours)

                       

                      How do they survive?

                      After diamonds were discovered at the nearby Kolmanskop in 1908 the German colonial authority decided to demarcate a massive area of land that was off-limits for anyone without the proper clearance. As a result of this the horses, who mostly escaped to the wild between 1914 and 1930, were able to live in a small area of land that was relatively free from humans.

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                       These horses live in extreme conditions

                      The horses were also able to drink from the watering hole that the South African army had made and were thus able to stay hydrated in the parching desert heat.

                      Then, in 1986, the mining company who had the rights to mine the area for diamonds turned over the land on which the horses were living, previously called Diamond Restricted Area 2, to the Namibian government for inclusion in the Namib Naukluft Park.

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                      The horses are now free to roam large tracts of land free from human interaction

                       

                      What is the best way to get to the horses?

                      If you want to see these majestic beasts your best chance will be heading to the small town of Garub. The little town of Garub is 20km west of Aus which is the main town in the region.

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                      Horses investigating our parked car on the B4 toward Garub.

                      A small observation deck has been built inbetween Garub and Aus that visitors can use to look out on to a watering hole that has been constructed for the horses. Horses, gemsbok (oryx) and ostriches often frequent this oasis and seeing all three in the same space is truly a magical experience!

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                      Oryx, ostriches and wild horses all drinking from the watering hole.

                      This shelter is easy to find as it is just off the B4, 20km outside Aus, and is well sign posted.

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                      The lookout point is sign posted once you turn off the B4.
                      (image courtesy of Wild horses and Mustangs)

                      If you want to stay in Aus for a few nights then look out for our post all about Aus and the things you can do there whilst visiting this hidden gem of Namibia’s southern region.

                       

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                      Wild horses at sunset.
                      (image courtesy of Cheryl Korff, via Panoramio)

                       

                      More on this topic

                      Read about the desert adapted rhinos of Namibia

                      Download our adventure travel planning guide

                      Read about the Desert Adapted Elephants

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                      The Living Desert Adventure: The Namib's Hidden Lives

                        
                        

                      Visitors to Namibia’s coastal region often head to Swakopmund for its stunning dune coast which is flanked by the magnificent Atlantic Ocean. Here adventurers can experience the thrill of whizzing down a dune on a sand board or quad biking their way over the sandy peaks.

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                      The seemingly hostile and uninhabited Namib Desert

                      High adventure in an ancient desert

                      Swakopmund is known as the adventure capital of Namibia, whilst the aptly named Namib, meaning vast and empty, is known as one of the oldest deserts in the world. Just looking at the arid landscape, you would never think it was home to a teeming, dynamic ecosystem of specialized tiny animals and resilient flora and fauna. The eye-opening “Living Desert Tour” is such a fascinating experience because it reveals the Namib’s many hidden treasures to those who go on it. 

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                      The ever enthusiastic and entertaining guide, Chris Nel from Living Desert Adventures

                      Started in 2005 by Chris Nel, Living Desert Adventures offers an educational day tour through the sand dune deserts of coastal Namibia. The trained guides enthusiastically introduce visitors to the resilient insects, arachnids and reptiles that call the Namib home.

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                      Can you spot what creature is lurking in the grains of sand?
                      (Photo courtesy of Chris Nel from Living Desert Adventures
                      )

                      What you can expect on the tour

                      The tour starts at 08:00 (with the guides collecting you from your place of residence) and lasts from 4 to 5 hours. Participants will be introduced to conservation practices in the area, the unique geological structure and a brief overview on how the desert was formed.

                      You will hear about the “muesli” and “milk” that gives life to the arid landscape’s residents, the “little 5” and all manner of other interesting facts. The informal, fun presentation style of the guides was a wonderful bonus.

                      The real gems of the tour of course are the tiny animals that the guides are able to coax out of hiding to introduce to the guests.  On your tour you will definitely be meeting a few of the deserts best known residents, so here are some crib notes on these wonderful creatures so you know what to expect.

                       

                      The Namib Dune Gecko:

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                      Note the longer than usual legs to help with heat regulation.

                      This web-footed gecko is endemic to the area and, being nocturnal, can usually be found on the compacted wind side of a dune where it feeds at night.  It comes in a variety of colours, but its webbed feet, large fixed lens eyes and transparent skin give it a beautifully unique appearance. If you are lucky, you might even catch it cleaning its large eyes with its long tongue.

                      The Namaqua chameleon:

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                      A chameleon, on the prowl for lunch.

                      This large, squat champion of the desert is one of the fastest chameleons in the world.  It has an amazing colour range which goes from basic muted colours when it is angry or trying to attract heat, or brighter reflective colours when it is trying to reflect the sun in the heat of midday. The Namaqua chameleon, like other chameleons can also swivel its eyes in both directions at the same time.  

                       

                      The Sidewinder or Peringuey’s adder:

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                      The small adder making its way across a dune.

                      If you are luck you may just catch sight of one of the smallest adder species in the world, known as the “Dune Adder”. It has eyes strategically placed on top of it’s head, which allow the snake to conceal itself under the sand whilst still surveying the surroundings for prey. If you pay close attention on your trip you should catch a glimpse of its distinctive side-winding tracks on some of the dunes.

                      Honourable mention should also go to the shovel snouted lizard, Fitzsimon’s burrowing skink, the Dancing White Lady Spider and the wide variety of Tok Tokkie Beetles.


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                      The Dancing White Lady Spider who mesmerized us cartwheeling and karate-like moves.

                       

                      Some tips for the tour

                      • Bring along sunglasses and a hat- it is the desert after all!

                      • Have a camera ready if you’re a keen photographer. These tours are a great opportunity to capture some memorable “Little Five” photos.

                      • Remember that the tour is suitable for children too- the guides are especially good with getting younger kids involved and interested.

                         

                      The Importance of Ecosensitive Tours 

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                      The Living Desert Tour is all about education and sustainable tourism. Guides take great care to ensure that desert animals are returned unharmed to their environment and are undoubtedly sensitive to the delicate ecosystem of the Namib.

                      The final part of the tour includes a scenic dune drive, also conducted in an eco-sensitive way using dedicated paths and ensuring the area is minimally disturbed. 

                      If you’re interested in doing the Living Desert Adventure, you can get all the info you need to make a booking from the contacts listed below. It should be noted that this a popular activity and you should book in advance if you want to avoid disappointment.

                       

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                      Living Desert Adventures

                      www.livingdesertnamibia.com

                      +264 64 405 070

                      +264 81 127 5070

                      Click here for tours & rates

                       

                      More on this topic

                      The Great Family Escape: Adventure in Namibia 

                      Bizarre Desert Plants of Namibia

                      The Namib Sand Sea: A UNESCO Heritage Site

                      family holiday namibia

                      Welwitschia

                      Namib desert

                       

                       

                      Go Big Namibia Day 9 & 10: Sossusvlei & BIG DADDY

                        
                        
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                      Emeritta Lillo is on the road with the #GoBigNamibia tour. Each day she'll be sharing their adventures, so stay tuned for some handy travel tips and inspiration. Follow the team on Twitter @NamibiaHorizons #GoBigNamibia and Facebook for a chance to win

                       

                      Last stop for the Go Big Namibia adventure was Sossusvlei, surrounded by the magnificent dunes of the Namib-Naukluft National park. We arrived just in time to catch an amazing sunset at the Sesriem canyon, where we enjoyed sundowners, snacks and reminiscing over the good memories made over the last 10 days.

                      After dinner, David treated us to a star gazing session, teaching us how to spot constellations like the Southern Cross, Scorpio and Capricorn. We’d never seen so many stars and so clearly - no wonder Sossusvlei is renowned for having some of the world’s darkest skies.

                      The following morning we were up at 5am to see the sunrise against some of the highest dunes in the world. We climbed to the top of Big Daddy (the highest of the dunes) to watch as the rising sun forced the dune’s shadow to slowly reveal the fossilized trees of the Deadvlei pan down below. The early morning wake up was a small price to pay for what was an unforgettable moment on this trip.

                      To round off the perfect morning we were treated to an outdoor breakfast at the foot of the dunes. What a way to end our Namibian adventure!

                       

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                      Quiver trees and endless horizons on the drive from Swakopmund to Sossusvlei

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                      Due south: crossing the Tropic of Capricorn

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                      The mandatory stop at Solitaire for the town's famous apple pie

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                      Ees entertaining himself in the middle of the desert

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                      Spectaular views and top accommodation at the Sossus Dune Lodge

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                      Stargazing in some of the world's darkest skies

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                      The first rays of sun strike the dunes

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                      Oryx tracks are a reminder of the incredible animals and plants that survive in these extreme desert conditions

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                      The Go Big Namibia team takes on the highest dune in the world: Big Daddy

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                      And get to run all the way down...

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                      900 year old skeletons of camel thorn trees lie frozen in time at the bottom of Big Daddy

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                      The dry clay that covers the pan not only helps to preserve these old trees but is proof of the river that once ran through the barren desert

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                      Staff from Sossus Dune Lodge treat us to a feast at the foot of the dunes


                      Find out more about the #GoBigNamibia tour and start your own adventure

                         

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