Looking down over the Namib Dunes

Travel to Namib-Naukluft – Vast Desert Wilderness

The Namib-Naukluft is one of Namibia’s major tourist destinations. The vast wilderness of almost 50,000km contain key features such as Sossusvlei, Sesriem, the Welwitschia Trail, Sandwich Harbour and the Naukluft Mountains and Kuiseb Canyon.

Sand and stones, sun and mirages, blue sky – or stars as far as you can see. Tiny beetles like the Tok Tokkie which collects its supply of moisture by fog-basking. Antelope like the Oryx whose body can heat up to temperatures which no other living being would be able to survive with. Plants like the Welwitschia, some of which are already several hundred years old and still growing. The desert – so vast, so isolated, so inhospitable but nevertheless so diverse, so colourful and so much alive. Due to low rainfall the park basically consists of desert – whatever shape it may ultimately take.

Namib Naukluft Park is the largest nature conservation area in Africa, extending between the tarred road Aus-Lüderitz in the south and the Swakop River in the north, and from the Atlantic coast in the west to the highland in the east. The Park was first created in 1907 with subsequent additions bringing it to its current size in 1986.

Visitors have access to four sections of the park: the dunes of Sossusvlei in the so-called Dune Namib, the Naukluft Mountains, the gravel plains of the Namib between the seasonal Swakop and Kuiseb Rivers, as well as the dune area on the Atlantic coast around the lagoon at Sandwich Harbour.

The best way to experience the amazing sand dunes is to try to climb as high as possible – ‘dune 45’ is probably the most famous dune for climbing.

Keen hikers have several options ranging from a tough 120 km long circular route over eight days to a less strenuous 60 km circular four-day trail, demanding a high degree of fitness.

Why not try a hot-air balloon ride over the dunes.

Most roads within the park are gravel and it is possible to drive through in a normal car however 4×4 is recommended. If you travel away from the road a permit is required which can be obtained from the MET offices in Swakopmund or Windhoek.

  • Enjoy the solitude of this vast desert wilderness.
  • Climb the amazing sand dunes of Sossusvlei.
  • Hike in spectacular scenery.


Africa Travel Information