Namibia is one of the most exquisite countries on the African continent, and not only is it a thrill to the senses, but it offers unparalleled experiences. If you’re considering a trip to Namibia, you’re obviously a traveler who enjoys adventure; loves nature and gets a kick out of broadening their horizons, and let me tell you, you’ll get more than you bargained for in beautiful Namibia!
While there is plenty to do and see, and many incredible places to visit in the country; there are a few you cannot afford to miss! If you’re eager to leave knowing you made the absolute most of your Namibian adventure, then take a look at our ultimate guide to exploring Namibia.
#1. Visit Swakopmund
You need to do yourself a favor and stay in Swakopmund for a few days during your Namibian trip. This quaint coastal town situated west of the capital, Windhoek, will certainly teach you a thing or two about Namibia’s fascinating history; dating back to when it was still a German colony. The many monuments, museums, landmarks and even the names of some of the places will give you a clear indication of the strong German influence that can still be recognized today. The experience will also give you insight into how the locals live; and you may even get the chance to enjoy some thrilling activities such as sky diving!
#2. Hike the sand dunes of Sossusvlei
This is without a doubt a must-do when visiting Namibia! Most travelers visit this incredible corner of Africa because of the diverse landscapes. On one side of the country you’ll find vast grasslands, and on another you’ll find a desert dreamland better known as the Namib desert. Sossusvlei is located in the southern part of the Namib desert and is best known for its incredible sand dunes. We highly recommend you hike Dune 45, specifically – not just because it’s the favorite to hike, but also because it’s situated next to one of the world’s most beautiful salt pans, known as Deadvlei. Deadvlei is one of Namibia’s most visited and most photographed locations, so even more reason not to miss it!
#3. Take a scenic flight over the Skeleton Coast
The Skeleton Coast is where the desert dunes meet the Atlantic Ocean. It is breathtaking – arguably the most fascinating landscape in the world. The Skeleton Coast also has its fair share of interesting stories, which let you in on the meaning behind its name. The area is known for its heavy mist and sometimes rough seas; which, back in the day, spelled danger for the passing ships. Many ships would run aground on the Skeleton Coast, and due to the harsh conditions sailors would lose their lives. This is of course how the area got its name, the ‘Skeleton Coast’.
#4. Go on a safari in Etosha National Park
You see? Namibia really is diverse – you’re even able to enjoy a wildlife safari, which is an authentic African experience that you shouldn’t pass up, especially while in Africa! Etosha National Park is one of the only locations in the country that’s home to a vast number of wildlife species. From the big five to cheetahs, giraffes and various mammals and gazelle; it is a park filled with life! This is also the area with the highest cheetah population in southern Africa – a coveted wildlife species which is mesmerizing to see – especially when they’re darting across the tundra at top speed!
#5. Stand on the Tropic of Capricorn
If this isn’t epic, then I don’t know what is! The Tropic of Capricorn passes through Namibia and can be located between Walvis Bay and Swakopmund. Many travelers make their way to the sign which clearly states you are standing on the Tropic of Capricorn; and may we add, it certainly makes for an awesome photo especially because the backdrop is desert-like terrain – a true Namibian landscape!
#6. Visit a real-life ‘ghost town’ – Kolmanskop
Namibia is filled with extraordinary places, people and experiences and this is definitely one of them. This, however, is not just extraordinary but incredibly fascinating and a little eerie too! Kolmanskop was once a mining town, and the abandoned homes you’re now able to visit were once built for the miners and their families. When the miners were relocated a few decades ago, the homes were left bare and empty.
Since then the desert sands have reclaimed its land, which is why the homes are filled with sand and the streets are non-existent. It’s not a ‘real’ ghost town but it certainly looks and feels that way – and let me tell you, the style of the houses even looks a little like ghost houses! It’s an interesting locale in the country and photographers swarm to this area because it’s that beautiful in its own, unique way.