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Namibia's name was derived from Namib desert, which is believed to be the oldest desert in the world. This unique geological feature is renowned for the pristine and haunting quality of its landscape. It's this feature that characterises the country most, and is home to some of the country's top tourist destinations, notably Sossusvlei, Sandwich Harbour and the Skeleton Coast Park.

Far from being lifeless and barren, the desert features an unusual variety of desert-adapted flora and fauna, including a large number of endemic plant, bird, reptile and insect species. Many of these species are of particular scientific interest and attract scientists from all over the world. read more

Highlights

Far from being lifeless and barren, the desert features an unusual variety of desert-adapted flora and fauna, including a large number of endemic plant, bird, reptile and insect species. Many of these species are of particular scientific interest and attract scientists from all over the world.

Windhoek

The capital; a small, bustling city with a 'continental' atmosphere; many sights including the Gibeon Meteorite Fountain, National Art Gallery of Namibia, Tintenpalast, Namibia Craft Centre and National Botanical Garden; shopping.

Fish River Canyon

One of Namibia's most spectacular geological phenomena; contains Ai-Ais Hot Springs, rugged mountain land, Fish River Canyon (second largest gorge in Africa) and Huns Mountains with isolated and otherworldly landscape and wealth of interesting xerophytic plants; seasoned hikers regard the 4-5 day trail as one of southern Africa's major challenges

Sossusvlei

Namib Naukluft Park Monumental dunes lie at the end of an erosional trough formed by the Tsauchab River; they are star-shaped.

Etosha National Park

Namibia's first conservation area and one of the largest game reserves in Africa; its definitive feature is the Etosha Pan, a vast shallow depression of approx. 5000 km²; elephants here are reputed to be of the largest in Africa; of the 114 mammal species found in the park, several are rare and endangered; bird life is interesting during rainy season.

Skeleton Coast Park

An aura of mystery and impenetrability surrounds this park with its many shipwrecks, dense coastal fogs and cold sea breezes; of special interest are the clay castles of the Hoarusib, the salt pans near Agate Mountain, the seal colony at Cape Frio and the remains of shipwrecks along the coast.

Caprivi Strip

Lush riverine forests and seasonal flood plains; some of southern Africa's top birding spots, especially the Caprivi Game Park; known also for its arts and crafts e.g. pots and baskets with their distinctive beauty and symmetry; shop at Lizauli Traditional Village and variety of craft centres; other activities include angling e.g. tiger fishing and game viewing on boat cruises.

Luderitz-Kolmanskop

Namibia's most famous Ghost Town, situated in the Sperrgebiet approximately 10 km from Lüderitz; the museum recounts the history of this abandoned mining community.

Swakopmund

Popular because of its old-world charm and relaxed atmosphere; distinct German colonial character; historical buildings and modern aquarium; renowned for kudu leather shoes.

Cape Cross Seal Colony

Home to the biggest and the best-known of the 223 colonies of Cape fur seals which breed along the coast of South Africa and Namibia; during Nov/Dec breeding season as many as 150,000 seals gather here; off the coast are protected bird islands.

Epupa Falls

One of Namibia's prime tourist spots; a series of cascades where the Kunene River drops 60m over a distance of about 1,5 km, dividing into a multitude of channels and forming a myriad rock pools; it is possible to swim in these pools, but keep a lookout for crocodiles.