ALONG the west coast of Southern Africa is Namibia, one of the continent's most hauntingly beautiful countries with wide open spaces, deserts, wildlife and friendly people.
The great diversity of habitat - including the Namib Desert, the desolate Skeleton Coast and the game rich plains of Etosha Pan - is what lures many travelers to this beautiful land, famous also for its wealth of minerals and natural resources and the charming influence of German settlers.
South of Windhoek lies the magnificent Namib Desert, with its towering dune landscape, from where the traveler may embark on a memorable hot air balloon flight over this sandy wilderness, or watch one of earth's most mystical and vivid sunsets. In the desert, when there is not even a slight breeze to shift the sands, the traveler may experience the unique sense of total silence, making this one of life's most memorable discoveries.
Where the desert meets the sea is the delightful coastal resort of Swakopmund, brimming with German architecture, cuisine and culture. From there, when one flies northwards along the coastline, the traveler enters the barren, desolate and aptly named Skeleton Coast.
Inland again is the strangely beautiful area of Damaraland, and northwards lies Namibia's renowned Etosha Pan National Park. Also of significant beauty is the narrow strip of Namibian soil wedged between Angola and Botswana, known as the Caprivi Strip, which winds its way along the Kunene River.
Where the Caprivi ends in the east at Katima Mulilo, the traveler is within a stone's throw of the mighty Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe and on the doorstep of the Okavango Delta in Botswana. Wedged between two great deserts - the Kalahari Desert in the east and the Namib in the west - the country is well worth a visit to explore all its natural grandeur, or to include a portion of it with a wildlife safari in Botswana or South Africa.
NAMIBIA TRAVEL: FACTS & FIGURES
Full Name: Republic of Namibia
Area: 825,418 sq km (318,696 sq miles)
Language: English (official, but spoken by a small percentage of population), Afrikaans (the most widely spoken). German, Herero and Nama are other local languages. English spoken in all main safari regions.
Currency: Namibia Dollar
Best Travel Currency: USD, Euro, South Africa Rand
Namibia Travel Seasons: The winter season between May and October is best, with warm days and cold nights. December to March can have extreme heat, with very little rain to cool the air. November and April are between the two extremes.
For political, geographic, economic and other info on Namibia, we suggest
Namibia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia