Travel to Twyfelfontein – Ancient Rock Art

Twyfelfontein remains one of the country’s main attractions and since June 2007 enjoys the status of being Namibia’s first World Heritage Site, securely tucked away between the granites of an ancient, arid region.

Its name when translated directly means “doubtful fountain” still has most people “doubtful” on the true purpose of the rock art. Most guides will tell you that it is presumed that the rock illustrations were possibly meant to teach the children: which animals were good to eat, which were dangerous and what their spoor looked like. Some experts are even sure that when the drawings are less good, it was possibly children practising. Others have written that it must have had some sort of religious/cultural significance, though to date it is not clearly known what the objective really was. In any case, the site is unusual in Africa as it has both carvings (petroglyphs) and paintings (pictograms).

Numerous rock engravings are set in a U-shaped valley of unusual red sandstone formations.

There are various options of visiting the site and includes: a short walk of about half an hour, or a longer scramble of an hour, or a much longer tour for the really dedicated scholar. Whichever option you choose, you have to take a guide, because there has been some vandalism, damaging some of the art. Guides are available at the sites and are well informed and also members of the local community.

Many accommodation establishments are situated in the nearby areas and cater for all types of travellers, giving you the option to take a whole day to explore the area.


Africa Travel Information