Southern Damaraland boasts many geological and historical attractions, including the impressive san rock art engravings at Twyfelfontein, now a World Heritage Site. Northern Damaraland has the greatest concentrations of game including Namibia’s unique game viewing attractions of desert elephants and rhino.
The area is divided into several enormous private game reserves, that support most species of Namibia’s large game and provide some of the best birding and wildlife experiences in the country. Remote eco friendly bush camps offer a true wilderness Damaraland experience where the opportunity to spot a black rhino, admire desert adapted species and spend nights star gazing in such an ancient landscape is truly awe inspiring!
The Skeleton Coast, to the west of Damaraland is one of Namibia’s most remote locations and one of the most beautiful and unique places in the world. Much the best way to see it is on a fly-in safari either on a scenic day flight or on a tour for several days to stay at fully equipped tented desert camps. Scenic aircraft flights will reveal fascinating bird’s-eye views of a coastline of bleached whalebones and rusted shipwrecks with adjoining roaring dunes. Further land exploration finds diverse and ever-changing geological formations, the refuges of desert-dwelling animals such as the endangered black rhino and desert-adapted elephant, the Cape Cross colony of cape fur seals, endemic bird species and encounters with the nomadic Himba people.
Photo Credit: Dana Allen
Damaraland and the Skeleton Coast boast several unique highlights that can’t be missed. The Skeleton Coast lies in the West and Damaraland falls between it and the Etosha National Park in the East. The Skeleton Coast and Damaraland have some of the most fascinating geology in the world which tends to mean magnificent landscapes and fantastic sunsets.
The Skeleton Coast where the Namib Desert meets the Atlantic Ocean in south-western Africa is named after the bleached bones and scattered remains of shipwrecks washed up on its shore. This coastline is one of the most desolate yet hauntingly beautiful places on earth. And while you may indeed encounter skeletons of all descriptions: ships, elephants, whales and tiny lizards, this vast and uncharted territory is home to many fascinating creatures and plants. And even more fascinating landscapes and bizarre juxtapositions of sand and sea, and life and death.
The name Damaraland is derived from the fact that the Damara people live in this area (they were relocated here as a result of the Odendaal Plan in the 1960’s). The name Damaraland is still commonly used in tourism circles, although the entire region has now been renamed; the southern section now lies in the Erongo region while the north forms part of the Kunene region. Damaraland is the home of the desert adapted where a wide range of lodges offer activities that include nature drives and walks during which guests can see species such as desert-adapted elephant, gemsbok, kudu and springbok, and black rhino as well as rare succulent plants
Highlights of the area include:
The Brandberg – Namibia’s highest mountain and home to the famous ‘White Lady’ Bushman Painting.
Twyfelfontein – a wonderful rocky outcrop with thousands of Bushman engravings.
Spitzkoppe – a typical pointed inselberg, and a place of great mystery to the ancient San people
The Petrified Forest – which is millions of years old.
The Vingerklip (finger rock) – a towering finger of limestone that rises 35m above its base.
Skeleton Coast – Stunning landscape
Ugab Rock Formations
Roaring Sand dunes
Cape Fur Seal Colonies
Every single month is worth a journey to Namibia. Most visitors prefer to travel during the months May to October. It hardly ever rains and the visitor can enjoy the uninterrupted sunshine, except at the foggy coast. The climate is moderate and during the day it does not get extremely hot. Nevertheless it can get very cold in the evenings.
January, February, March
These mid Summer months tend to be the wettest and hottest. This is the time when rainfall is expected. Temperatures can be 30-35degC peaking to over 40degC in the desert. This can make travel a little uncomfortable. Torrential downpours can occur in the mountains causing flash floods in the valleys. Once the rains start wildlife viewing in Etosha can be poor because of animal dispersals.
These are often lovely months in Namibia. Increasingly dry, with a real freshness in the air, and greenery in the landscape; at this time the air is clear and largely free from dust, allowing superb photography. Game viewing is getting better and travel gets easier as roads that may have been damaged during rainfall are repaired.
June, July, August
This is Namibia’s winter. Nights can become cold, incredibly dropping to below zero giving frosts in Etosha and the mountain regions. With the drying conditions the wildlife in the north starts heading towards the permanent water, so making for better wildlife viewing. It is peak season for game viewing with visitor numbers increasing.
Temperatures are rising and game-viewing in most areas is at its best, although there’s often a lot of dust around and the high temperatures are starting to take their toll on the vegetation
November can be a variable month for weather. Some years the hot dry weather continues and other times by early November rain clouds can be forming. If rains do occur this can be quite a dramatic experience.
December temperatures are high averaging 30 degC, some days may be humid with localized thunderstorms usually in the afternoon especially in the center and east of the country. Desert regions remain dry.
The closer one gets to the Atlantic coast the less the rainfall. Here the climate differentiates drastically from the rest of the country. Due to the cold Benguela Current along the Atlantic coast the temperatures drop strongly compared to other areas of the country. The prevailing southwest wind is cooled down by the Benguela Current to the extent that no cloud formation can take place at this altitude. Yet a fog bank develops over the Atlantic which lingers along the coastal belt for about 200 days annually and which may also infiltrate several kilometres inland.
Due to the constant south-westerly wind the fluctuation in temperature during summer and winter months is moderate. Thus the average temperature in Swakopmund in January lies at 20 °C, whilst in August an average of 16°C is measured. During the winter month and especially when foggy it can be uncomfortably cold. Except for the days where the so-called east wind weather prevails and warm winds from the Namib Desert heat up the coast. Nevertheless, Namibia is not a country for the typical beach holiday as the water temperatures of the Atlantic rarely rise above 19° C and if they do then only during January – March.
In a land of 2.2 million people with 13 ethnic tribes, it is the nomadic Himba numbering only ...read more
In a land of 2.2 million people with 13 ethnic tribes, it is the nomadic Himba numbering only 12,000 who are perhaps the most visually distinctive. Our guests have the opportunity to learn about their lifestyle through respectful meetings and interactions.
To comprehend the enormity of this landscape, take a hot air balloon flight or even a Skeleton ...read more
To comprehend the enormity of this landscape, take a hot air balloon flight or even a Skeleton Coast Scenic flight from Swakopmund to get a bird’s eye view of The Skeleton Coast with dunes, canyons, mountains and along the shore of the Atlantic Ocean.
It’s worth taking a look at the ancient Welwitschia plant, which may live up to hundreds of years.read more
Don't miss the opportunity to visit the Organ Pipes which is a mass of perpendicular dolerite ...read more
Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Organ Pipes which is a mass of perpendicular dolerite pillars located down the river bed. Formed by the intrusion of volcanic rock dolerite about 120 million years ago.
The World Heritage Site of Twyfelfontein is one of the most important prehistoric rock art sites in ...read more
The World Heritage Site of Twyfelfontein is one of the most important prehistoric rock art sites in southern Africa, and features well preserved 2000 year old Bushmen engravings.
Environmentally sustainable lodges are dotted around in the Namib desert. This is Mowani Mountain ...read more
Namibia is one of the top destinations in the world for stargazing. Its dark and clear night skies ...read more
Namibia is one of the top destinations in the world for stargazing. Its dark and clear night skies are amongst some of the most pristine in the world. Ask us about Namibian properties with “star” platforms, dramatic skylights over the bed and resident astronomers.
Normally associated with famous shipwrecks, the name came from the bones that lined the beaches ...read more
Normally associated with famous shipwrecks, the name came from the bones that lined the beaches from whaling operations and seal hunts – these can be accessed by a fascinating drive or scenic flight.
Unique desert-adapted wildlife exists in the Namib Desert with species including black rhino, ...read more
Unique desert-adapted wildlife exists in the Namib Desert with species including black rhino, elephant, Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra, as well as a fascinating number of insects and reptiles that survive these parched environments.
Camp Kipwe is an eco friendly lodge set within the Twyfelfontein Conservancy in Damaraland. It's sister camp is Mowani Mountain ... Read More
Damaraland Adventurer Camp is located in a special place in the heart of the rocky desert of Damaraland, an ancient, starkly beautiful landscape. ... Read More
Damaraland Camp is situated in the Huab River Valley in one of the best wilderness areas in Namibia, offering endless vistas across stark ... Read More
An original and exclusive wilderness experience, Desert Rhino Camp lies within the 450,000 hectare private Palmwag Concession in northern Damaraland, ... Read More
Doro Nawas lies in the 407,300 hectare Doro Nawas Conservancy on the slopes of a small hill on the edge of the dry Aba-Huab River, overlooking ... Read More
In a remote area of the Kaokoveld, in a land of bare mountains, gravel-strewn plains and dry riverbeds that draw fascinating wildlife, lies Hoanib ... Read More
The Big 5 Safari company is a supporter of the The Zambezi Society and support its vital conservation work and anti-poaching patrols.Discover