For South Africans tourists in search of a world class adventure destination, reasonably priced, close to home and offering a wide array of tourism activities, look no further than Namibia! Affectionately known as the land of contrasts, this African gem provides more adventure options than the grains of sand in its famous deserts and provides the perfect holiday destination for a variety of inquisitive adventure seekers and their travelling companions.
Hold onto your seats as we get ready to explore a range of nail-biting options….from the famous Fish River Canyon Hike in the south to great open plains of Etosha in the north, that are teeming with abundant wildlife and picturesque views. The great thing about the activities is that they are spread throughout the country and options include land, sand, sky and water.
Always remember, not matter what the adventure or activity, remember to carry a good amount of water, have on a high factor sunblock and a hat – Namibia is a beautiful country but its heat can be unforgiving so don’t be caught unawares!
For those who prefer keeping their feet firmly on terra firma, Namibia still have a wide range of adventure activities to partake in. From gentle adventure activities such as stargazing, photography, geology exploration to nail biting adventures such as 4×4’ing, climbing, horseback riding, hiking, caving and even endurance races!
Land adventures are spread throughout Namibia, ensuring that no matter where you travel, they are sure to be able to participate in a variety of adventure activities.
Some tips for land adventures:
- Namibia’s largely cloudless night skies, low artificial light contamination as well as minimal pollution have it highly rated by both professional and amateur astrologists as a stargazing site to enjoy. Sossusvlei is widely believed to have some of the best stargazing conditions worldwide;
- There are more than 120 caves scattered throughout Namibia which can be explored. The longest tourist cave in Namibia is Arnhem Cave, more than 4800m in length and intersecting groundwater. Arnhem Cave is the only “tourist” cave as it possesses a variety of onsite facilities, including overnight accommodation options;
- Namibia has been proven to be a photographers’ dream so whether you are a professional photographer or just likes to take a time out and enjoys taking some “happy-snappy” shots, they are sure to be impressed! The best times to shoot are early morning or late afternoon, when the light is less harsh and the colours glow beautifully.
Namibia’s famous Namib Desert plays host to great adventure options, namely quad biking and dune and sand boarding. These options can be enjoyed in and around Swakopmund and Walvis Bay, with your sand boarding escapade seeing you reach up to 80kph – a speed not to be laughed at when you are facedown careering down some of the tallest dunes worldwide!
Some client tips for sand adventures:
- Remember, especially during the quad bike trails, that the desert is a living and conserved environment and stick to the recommended trails;
- Sunblock, water and sunglasses – three must-haves for this adventure;
- For further information visit Namibia Tourism.
For adventure seekers who do not start hyperventilating when you mention heights, Namibia’s playground provides many opportunities to test their guts and glory, including flying, gliding, hot air ballooning, paragliding and skydiving.
Insider tips to make the best of the sky opportunities:
- A popular flying location is the Bitterwasser Lodge, situated between Hoachanas and Uhlenhorst, on the edge of the Kalahari Desert. The local Bitterwasser saltpan with its 3km diameter provides a perfect runway;
- There are two very different but beautiful options for hot air ballooning – an early morning sunrise trip over the world-famous Sossusvlei dunes where the sun-kissed dunes’ colours range from a gorgeous light orange to deeper red in places; or the Skeleton Coast where you can witness the harsh conditions of the West coast and view the ship’s graveyard of battered wrecks;
- The premiere drop zone for skydiving is Namibia’s adventure playground capital, Swakopmund.
Although Namibia is renowned worldwide for its ginormous deserts and its arid conditions, there are still a number of water options available to visitors in the area, including canoeing, kayaking, rafting, diving, windsurfing, kite surfing, dolphin cruises and catamaran rides.
With most of the activities available in and around Swakopmund and Walvis Bay, Namibia’s coast provides a magnitude of options.
- Some of the best angling options available for would be fishermen include places with interesting names such as Mile 8, Mile 14 Beach Resort, Die Drom (north of Wlotzkasbaken), Henties Bay, Sarah se Gat, Mile 72 and Mile 108.
- Popular areas for angling further north, within the Skeleton Coast Park, are Torra Bay and Terrace Bay;
- Remember too that Namibia has a strict code of conduct and regulations that need to be adhered to when practicing marine or fresh water angling. These are not only to limit and record annual fishing limits but are to ensure the conservation and regeneration of Namibia’s natural aquatic species.
Whether you get your kicks on land, in sand, in water or high above, Namibia is sure the meet – and exceed – your expectations in terms of adventure. For further information on the adventure options available in Namibia, contact the Namibia Tourism Board (NTB) on (021) 422 3298. Like NTB on Facebook or follow them on Twitter.