6 reasons your next trip should be to Namibia

From the first glimpse of the desert out of the plane window of the barren terrain, flat and scarred with straight lines like an artist’s cutting board, to the last glimpse of the blood-red sunset over the cold Atlantic, Namibia had me hooked.

Here are six reasons I recommend you make this arid, beautiful country your next travel destination:

1. Space

Walvis Bay dunes. Image credit: Francis Gersbach

In a visually-overloaded world, the Namib desert provides few visual markers and feels like a pause for the senses. Namib translates as ‘vast place’ and is considered the oldest desert in the world. The Namib allows you a glimpse into a sacred space, and journey into a space within.

2. Natural diversity

Deserted copper mine in the Khan Riverbed. Image credit: Louise Topping

Landscapes morph very quickly from the fog of the coast, the sharp dune ridges, the striking outlines of grouped mountain peaks – Namibia’s ancient landmarks – the green belts of mopane woodland, dry riverbeds, and arid salt plains scattered with pink flamingoes. The country presents an awe-inspiring variety.

3. People

Omaruru people selling crystals on the roadside. Image credit: Louise Topping

Nambia has the second-lowest population density in the world (after Mongolia), with an average of just 1.5 people per square kilometre. That isn’t very many, and it’s true that you can drive for vast distances without seeing another person. Despite this, it’s home to people of at least 11 different ethnic origins and we felt only warmth and welcome from all the people we met.

Also read: Touring Namibia in a BMW X3

4. Straight lines

Big blue skies over Tsaobis Nature Reserve. Image credit: Louise Topping

If you like straight, uncluttered lines, you’ll find plenty in Namibia. Roads seem to stretch unbroken into infinity, the architectural style is clean, and even some of the horizons appear linear and orderly.

5. Wildlife

Erindi Private Nature Reserve was full of wonderful surprises. Image credit: Louise Topping

Apart from the national parks like Etosha, more than 40% of the country is managed under environmental protection laws, creating huge pockets of conservation and an incredible wildlife diversity. Namibia is also home to half of the world’s black rhino population.

6. Adventure

Driving through the Khan Riverbed. Image credit: Louise Topping

Namibia offers an off-the-beaten-track experience – dirt roads and dry river beds, not to mention the desert dunes, are easily accessible with almost any 4×4. From quad-biking to sand-boarding and the never-ending open roads, Namibia is a serious adventure destination.

Text: Louise Topping

 

Also read: Have the perfect day in Sossusvlei

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