The history of this land can be found carved into rock paintings found to the south and in Twyfelfontein, some dating back to 26,000 B.C. A long lineage of various groups including San Bushmen, Bantu herdsmen and finally the Himba, Herero and Nama tribes among others have been making this rugged land home for thousands of years.
Namibia is truly unique, influenced by various cultures during colonization and now reborn from the shadows of Apartheid in 1990. What has emerged is a true sense of unity in diversity, the coming together of at least 11 major ethnic groups, each celebrating their past while working together toward the future. You will notice this in dress, language, art, music, sport, food and religion. There exists a wonderful collage, but first and foremost, Namibians are proud to be Namibian. And for good reason.
The ruggedness of the Namibian landscape has obviously done nothing to deter both flora and fauna from adapting and thriving. Here, the very act of survival can sometimes be an art. The shear abundance and variety of wildlife of all sizes is staggering.
Namibians are deeply committed to protecting our natural resources and the country’s richness of wildlife can be attributed in large part to this commitment to conservation. Namibians are committed to living side by side with wildlife, including predators and large mammals. Namibia is the only country in the world where large numbers of rare and endangered wildlife are translocated from national parks to open communal land. This commitment to protecting wildlife is especially important given the country’s remarkable diversity of species and high level of endemism.
Namibia is home to approximately 4,350 species and subspecies of vascular plants, of which 17% are endemic. Six hundred and seventy-six bird species have been recorded, of which over 90 are endemic to Southern Africa and 13 to Namibia. Furthermore, 217 species of mammals are found in Namibia, 26 of which are endemic, including unique desert-dwelling rhino and elephants. This high level of endemism gives Namibia’s conservation of biodiversity a global significance. This is Africa and the climate reflects it. But just as Namibia is filled with contrasting geography, equivalent climactic differences do apply depending on your location.
Partially covered by the Namib, one of the world’s driest deserts, Namibia’s climate is generally very dry and pleasant. The cold Benguella current keeps the coast cool, damp and free of rain for most of the year. Inland, all the rain falls in summer (November to April). January and February are hot, when daytime temperatures in the interior can exceed 40ºC (104ºF), but nights are usually cool. Winter nights can be fairly cold, but days are generally warm and quite nice. The bottom line: Namibia is a year-round destination. Just pack accordingly.
The „Damaraland“ is part of the Kunene Region in the north-west of Namibia and is located between the Brandberg and the little village of Sesfontein. The Damaraland is characterised by its rocky and rugged landscapes of rough, fascinating beauty. The breath-taking mountainous region of Damaraland is home to an assortment of desert-adapted wildlife such as elephant, rhino, zebra and lion, which eke out an existence in this near-barren landscape. Check Gallery
The Etosha Pan is a vast, bare, open expanse of shimmering green and white that covers around 4,800km², almost a quarter of the beautiful Etosha National Park. At 130 km’s long and up to 50km’s wide in places, it is comfortably the largest salt pan in Africa and is the park’s most distinctive and dramatic feature, visible even from space. The pan was originally a lake but over time the earth’s climate forced the rivers that once fed the lake to change course and flow into the Atlantic Ocean. If one were to try find where the lake once lay today, only the dry baked alkaline clay marks would give you a clue. Check Gallery
Kaokoland is a safari destination for the truly adventurous. The vast and sparsely populated landscape is punctuated by dry river beds, drought-hardy grass plains, and scattered kopjes that spring up at random as if flung from the nearby mountain ranges. The Kunene River runs through the very north of the region to form a natural border between Namibia and Angola, while to the south the seasonal Hoanib River divides the area from Damaraland. Discover the wonders of a Kaokoland, Namibia safari with Ker & Downey. Check Gallery
Namib-Naukluft National Park is located on the western side of Namibia just south of the midway point. The park lies between the shoreline of the Atlantic Ocean through to the beginning of the Great Escarpment which extends into South Africa. It borders the neighboring Dorob National Park to the north. The park covers an area of 19,216 square miles (49,768 sq km) creating the largest national park in Africa and the fourth largest in the world. It is a renowned park featuring the splendor of the Namib Desert. Check Gallery
Sandwiched between Atlantic rollers and the Namib Desert, Swakopmund is one of those great traveller way stations along the African road. At once Namibia’s adventure capital and a surreal colonial remnant, part destination in its own right and part launch pad for an exploration of the Skeleton Coast and Namib Desert, this is a city with as much personality as it has sea frontage. Like Lüderitz on the south coast, with its half-timbered German architecture, seaside promenades and pervasive Gemütlichkeit (a distinctively German appreciation of comfort and hospitality), Swakopmund, especially out of season, can feel like a holiday town along Germany’s North Sea and Baltic coasts transplanted onto African soil. But the city is also thoroughly African and its multidimensional appeal means that most people end up staying longer than they planned. Check Gallery