Mention Namibia and one instantly think of the world’s oldest towering sand dunes, great contrasts, vast open spaces and breathtaking scenery. Namibia is a self-driver’s dream with excellent infrastructure and easy navigable roads and easy-to-read road signs.

The Namib Naukluft National Park is home to the famous Sossusvlei with it’s large sand dunes and home to Dune 7, or “Big Daddy’, the largest dune in the area. Climbing up one of these dunes provides breathtaking views of the area, including Deadvlei, which is a dried up white clay pan with skeletons of ancient camelthorn trees (carbon dated between 500 – 600 years old) reaching to the sky. The best time to view Sossusvlei is close to sunrise or sunset, when the dunes refract spectacular colours, ranging from burnt orange, red and dark mauve – this area is truly a photographers heaven. Well loved luxury lodges close to the national park are the newly renovated andBeyond Sossusvlei Lodge and Wilderness Safaris’ Kulala & Little Kulula lodges.

Namibia has the highest dunes in the world

The Namib Rand Nature reserve is the largest private nature reserve in Southern Africa and shares a 62 mile border with the Namib Naukluft national park. Virtually all facets of the Namib desert are present in the reserve, from sand and gravel plains to stretches of savanna, mountain ranges and vegetated dune belts. The reserve also boasts a gold tier for one of the best places in the world to view the stars above and enjoy the fascinating night sky. This reserve is ideal for those looking for something more remote and unique, while still enjoying modern conveniences of luxury lodges, like the newly built Kwessi Lodge.

Namibia is one of the greatest self-drive destinations in Africa

Walvis bay is known as a birder’s paradise, as the wetland in and around Walvis bay is home to large numbers of migrant birds and more than half of Southern Africa’s flamingos. Further north lies the charming seaside town of Swakopmund, which is Namibia’s premier seaside resort and playground, with many activities on offer from ATV/Quad bikes, sand-boarding, sand-skiing, parasailing and other adrenaline activities.

Our next instalment will feature Namibia’s Damarland, Skeleton Coast and Etosha National Park