By Fredrick Ngugi
WITH a unique ruggedness and extreme weather conditions, Namibia is one of the most popular travel destinations in Africa, especially for those who want to have a first-hand experience of life in a real African jungle.
The Southern African nation offers some of the most stunning sceneries and exciting holiday activities in the whole of Africa. Here are the top seven places to visit in Namibia.
Located in northern Namibia, Etosha National Park is popular for its extensive range of wildlife, including lions, elephants, giraffes, black rhinos, flamingos, and more. The park is estimated to cover 8 598 square miles and gets its name from the large Etosha Pan, a massive salt pan covering 1 840 square miles inside the park. Etosha National Park has a savanna desert climate, making it a perfect spot for people who love camping.
Ranked as the largest canyon in Africa, the Fish River Canyon is located in the II Karas region, south of Namibia, and is considered the second most-visited tourist attraction site in Namibia. The canyon is about 100 miles long and 27 kilometres wide. Some locations are estimated to be 550 meters deep, offering amazing sceneries for holiday photography.
The Fish River Canyon is made up of an upper canyon, where river erosion was inhibited by hard gneiss bedrocks, and a lower canyon formed after erosion had finally worn through the gneisses.
Located right in the southern part of the popular Namib Desert, Sossusvlei is a salt and clay pan surrounded by massive red sand dunes. These dunes, many of which measure taller than 200 metres, are considered to be among the tallest in the world.
The pan derives its name from the fact that it is an endorheic drainage basin (a drainage basin without outlets) for the seasonal Tsuchab River. Vlei is the Afrikaans word for marsh while sossus is a Nama word for ‘no return’ or ‘dead end’.
Located in Windhoek, Namibia’s capital, the Christ Church is a significant historic landmark originally known as the Church of Peace. The church was designed by architect Gottlieb Redecker, a German engineer in southwest Africa.
The church was built between 1907 and 1910, following deadly wars between German colonisers and Namibians, and was constructed from quartz sandstone extracted from the neighboring Avis Dam.
Located 10 kilometers south of the capital city Windhoek, Heroes’ Acre is an official war memorial site in Namibia opened on August 26, 2002, to foster the spirit of patriotism and nationalism as well as to pass on the legacy of Namibia to future generations.
The monument is a symmetric polygon with a marble obelisk and a bronze statue of the Unknown Soldier at its center. The site also has parade grounds, a grandstand for 5,000 people, and a burial site with 174 tombs.
Also referred to as the ‘Old Fortress’, the Alte Feste is a fortress and museum in Windhoek, which was built in 1890 to serve as the headquarters of the Imperial German Schutztruppe, a colonial military force.
The fortress is the oldest surviving building in Windhoek and is comprised of an inner courtyard with high walls and accommodation for troops on the inside as well as four tall security towers.
In 1935, Alte Feste was transformed into a hostel for the adjacent Windhoek High School. It was declared a national monument in 1957 and turned into a national museum in 1963.
Also known as Monte Negro Falls in Angola, Epupa Falls are located on the border of Namibia and Angola in the Kaokoland area of the Kunene region. The falls are on the Kunene River, which is 0.5 kilometers wide and drops in a sequence of waterfalls spread over 1.5 kilometers with the greatest drop being 37 meters. Epupa is a Herero word for “foam” in reference to the foam generated by the falling water. The Epupa Falls are featured in the popular British TV series ‘The Grand Tour’.
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