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DAMARALAND :: ETOSHA NATIONAL PARK AREA :: SOSSUSVLEI :: SWAKOPMUND :: WINDHOEK
Known for its wealth of arid-adapted wildlife, Damaraland offers the classic African safari experience. Here, desert-adapted elephant roam the dry land in search of water, and the area is home to the largest free-roaming population of black rhino. Also keep your eyes out for giraffe, leopard, cheetah, spotted hyena, black-faced impala, springbok, and many species of birds. The local people—the Himba—are mostly semi-nomadic, pastoral people. They wear minimal clothing and apply red ochre and fat to their bodies to protect their skin from the sun. The blend leaves a reddish tinge on their skins.
Located in Northern Namibia, Etosha National Park is home to over 100 mammal species, including some rare and endangered species such as black rhino and cheetah. Its black rhino population is the world’s largest, and it is not uncommon to see large herds of elephant sauntering down the middle of the road, giving visitors an exhilarating experience. Other animals include the black-faced impala, mountain and plains zebra, hyena, lion, kudu, giraffe, eland, Damara dik-dik, honey badger, warthog, and more. Many of the animals congregate at a series of waterholes, making for excellent game viewing. Etosha is also a joy for bird lovers with its 340 species of bird (one-third of them are migratory).
Sossusvlei is situated within the Namib Desert, the oldest desert in the world. It is most famous for the giant, red sand dunes, which are said to be the world's highest sand dunes. The tallest is 984 feet! These dunes have developed over millions of years and are a spectacular sight, especially at sunrise! Although the sand dunes are the highlight, look for animals that have adapted to this harsh landscape, as even in this arid environment, an ecosystem exists. There is life living around and underneath the dunes.
Founded in 1892 during German rule, Swakopmund is a small coastal town and premier holiday destination for Namibians fleeing the heat of the country’s interior. Resembling a small German village, it offers seaside promenades, beaches, palm-lined streets, and many activities. Adventure seekers enjoy sandboarding, quad-biking, parasailing, deep-sea fishing, sea kayaking, hot air ballooning, and more. Those wanting less adrenaline enjoy the town’s relaxed atmosphere with its restaurants, cafés, old German colonial buildings, art galleries, and museums.
The capital of Namibia, Windhoek boasts a continental atmosphere due to its history as a Germany colony. It has a harmonious blend of African and European cultures combining the sounds and rhythm of a modern African city with German architecture, lively shops, and restaurants serving traditional German cuisine. Popular attractions include Post Street Mall, a pedestrian zone offering many boutiques and a great venue for vendors selling rural art, African artifacts, and African-style clothing; Christuskirche, the oldest Evangelical Lutheran Church completed in 1910; Alte Feste, a fort built from 1890-1893 with flat stones from the area; and much more.
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