Fish River Canyon
The Fish River Canyon is located in the south of Namibia. It is the largest canyon in Africa, as well as the second most visited tourist attraction in Namibia. It features a gigantic ravine, in total about 100 miles (160 km) long, up to 27 km wide and in places almost 550 meters deep.
The Fish River is the longest interior river in Namibia. It cuts deep into the plateau which is today dry, stony and sparsely covered with hardy drought-resistant plants. At the lower end of the Fish River Canyon, the hot springs resort of Ai-Ais is situated. Public view points are near Hobas, a camp site 70 km north of Ai-Ais.
Etosha National Park
Etosha National Park is a national park in northwestern Namibia. The park spans an area of 22,270 square kilometres (8,600 sq mi) and gets its name from the large Etosha pan which is almost entirely within the park. The Etosha pan (4,760 square kilometres (1,840 sq mi)) covers 23% of the area of the total area of the Etosha National Park. The park is home to hundreds of species of mammals, birds and reptiles, including several threatened and endangered species such as the black rhinoceros.
The name Etosha (spelled Etotha in early literature) comes from Oshindonga word meaning Great White Place referring to the Etosha pan. The pan is also known as Chums which refers to the noise made by a person’s feet when walking on the clay of the pan.
The park is located in the Kunene region and shares boundaries with the regions of Oshana, Oshikoto and Otjozondjupa.
The Spitzkoppe is a group of bald granite peaks or inselbergs located between Usakos and Swakopmund in the Namib desert of Namibia. The granite is more than 120 million years old and the highest outcrop rises about 1,784 metres (5,853 ft) above sea level. The peaks stand out dramatically from the flat surrounding plains.
Many examples of Bushmen artwork can be seen painted on the rock in the Spitzkoppe area.
Swakopmund is a city on the coast of western Namibia, 352 km (219 miles) west of the Namibian capital Windhoek. The city is situated in the Namib Desert and is the fourth largest population centre in Namibia. Swakopmund is a beach resort and an example of German colonial architecture. It was founded in 1892 as the main harbour for German South West Africa, and a small part of its population is still German-speaking today.
Attractions in Swakopmund include a Swakopmund Museum, the National Marine Aquarium, a crystal gallery and spectacular sand dunes near Langstrand south of the Swakop River. Outside the city, the Rossmund Desert Golf Course is one of only five all-grass desert golf courses in the world. Nearby is a farm that offers camel rides to tourists and the Martin Luther steam locomotive, dating from 1896 and abandoned in the desert. The city’s colonial landmarks include the Swakopmund Lighthouse and the Mole, an old sea wall.
The Namib Desert is a coastal desert in southern Africa. According to the broadest definition, the Namib stretches for more than 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) along the Atlantic coasts of Angola, Namibia, and South Africa. The desert geology consists of sand seas near the coast, while gravel plains and scattered mountain outcrops occur further inland. The sand dunes, some of which are 300 metres (980 ft) high and span 32 kilometres (20 miles) long, are the second largest in the world.
The Namib is almost completely uninhabited by humans except for several small settlements and indigenous pastoral groups, including the Ovahimba and Obatjimba Herero in the north, and the Topnaar Nama in the central region.
Further inland, the Namib-Naukluft National Park, the largest game park in Africa, supports populations of African Bush Elephants, Mountain Zebras, and other large mammals.
Sossusvlei / Deadvlei
Deadvlei is a white clay pan located near the more famous salt pan of Sossusvlei, inside the Namib-Naukluft Park in Namibia.
Dead Vlei has been claimed to be surrounded by the highest sand dunes in the world, the highest reaching 300–400 meters (350m on average, named “Big Daddy” or “Crazy Dune”), which rest on a sandstone terrace.
The clay pan was formed after rainfall, when the Tsauchab river flooded, creating temporary shallow pools where the abundance of water allowed camel thorn trees to grow. When the climate changed, drought hit the area, and sand dunes encroached on the pan, which blocked the river from the area.
The trees died, as there no longer was enough water to survive. There are some species of plants remaining, such as salsola and clumps of nara, adapted to surviving off the morning mist and very rare rainfall. The remaining skeletons of the trees, which are believed to have died 600–700 years ago (ca. 1340-1430), are now black because the intense sun has scorched them. Though not petrified, the wood does not decompose because it is so dry.
Windhoek is the capital and largest city in Namibia. It is located in central Namibia in the Khomas Highland plateau area, at around 1,700 metres (5,600 ft) above sea level, almost exactly at the country’s geographical centre. The population of Windhoek in 2016 was 325,858, growing continually due to an influx from all over Namibia.
This area in the Northern part of Namibia is one of the wildest and least populated areas in Namibia, with a population density of one person every 2 km². The most represented ethnic group is the Himba people, who account for about 5,000 of the overall 16,000 inhabitants of Kaokoland. The main settlement in Kaokoland was the city of Opuwo.
The land is generally dry and rocky, especially to the south, where it borders on the Namib Desert; nevertheless, it has several rivers as well as falls. The most notable falls in Kaokoland are the Ruacana Falls (120 m high, 700 m wide) and the Epupa Falls, both formed by the Kunene river. The northern part of Kaokoland is greener, with vegetation thriving valleys such as the Marienfluss and Hartmann Valley.