Last updated: 20/01/2017 [Design & Pictures by Simons Nature]
Namibia

Namibia

Namibia, the formerly German colony, is basically a very dry country with fascinating landscapes. The Namib Desert, from where the name originates, is an endless desert with a feature of morning fog pulling inland from the coast. Through this constellation, there is life, not only small insects, also reptiles like the unique Namib Gecko [Pachydactylus rangei] or the desert chameleon [Chamaeleo namaquensis]. Other species occur in slightly wetter area, for example, the Hartmann's Mountain Zebra [Equus zebra hartmannae] or the Angolan Giraffe [Giraffa camelopardalis angolensis]. Besides the unique wildlife, concentrated to see in Etosha National Park, the culture of the Himba and San is worth to discover. With the simplest means these people have learned to defy the harsh conditions of their country.
The Epupa Falls (also known as Monte Negro Falls in Angola) are created by the Kunene River on the border of Angola and Namibia, in the Kaokoland area of the Kunene Region. The river is 0.5 km wide and drops in a series of waterfalls spread over 1.5 km, with the greatest single drop being 37 m. The name "Epupa" is a Herero word for "foam", in reference to the foam created by the falling water.
Etosha National Park is a national park in northwestern Namibia. The park was proclaimed a game reserve on March 22, 1907 in Ordinance 88 by the Governor of German South West Africa, Dr. Friedrich von Lindequist. Etosha National Park spans an area of 22,270 square kilometres (8,600 sq mi) and gets its name from the large Etosha pan which is almost entirely within the park. The Etosha pan (4,760 square kilometres (1,840 sq mi)) covers 23% of the area of the total area of the Etosha National Park. The park is home to hundreds of species of mammals, birds and reptiles, including several threatened and endangered species such as the black rhinoceros.
The Himba (singular: OmuHimba, plural: OvaHimba) are indigenous peoples with an estimated population of about 50,000 people[1] living in northern Namibia, in the Kunene region (formerly Kaokoland) and on the other side of the Kunene River in Angola. There are also a few groups left of the Ovatwa, who are also OvaHimba, but are hunters and gatherers. The OvaHimba are a semi-nomadic, pastoral people, culturally distinguishable from the Herero people in northern Namibia and southern Angola, and speak OtjiHimba (a Herero language dialect), which belongs to the language family of the Bantu. The OvaHimba are considered the last (semi-) nomadic people of Namibia.
The Namib is a coastal desert in southern Africa. The name Namib is of Nama origin and means "vast place". According to the broadest definition, the Namib stretches for more than 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) along the Atlantic coasts of Angola, Namibia, and South Africa, extending southward from the Carunjamba River in Angola, through Namibia and to the Olifants River in Western Cape, South Africa.
The Skeleton Coast is the northern part of the Atlantic Ocean coast of Namibia and south of Angola from the Kunene River south to the Swakop River, although the name is sometimes used to describe the entire Namib Desert coast. The Bushmen of the Namibian interior called the region "The Land God Made in Anger", while Portuguese sailors once referred to it as "The Gates of Hell". The name Skeleton Coast was invented by John Henry Marsh as the title for the book he wrote chronicling the shipwreck of the Dunedin Star. Since the book was first published in 1944 it has become so well known that the coast is now generally referred to as Skeleton Coast and is given that as its official name on most maps today. On the coast the upwelling of the cold Benguela current gives rise to dense ocean fogs (called "cassimbo" by the Angolans) for much of the year. The winds blow from land to sea, rainfall rarely exceeds 10 millimetres (0.39 in) annually and the climate is highly inhospitable.
Sossusvlei (sometimes written Sossus Vlei) is a salt and clay pan surrounded by high red dunes, located in the southern part of the Namib Desert, in the Namib-Naukluft National Park of Namibia. The name "Sossusvlei" is often used in an extended meaning to refer to the surrounding area (including other neighbouring vleis such as Deadvlei and other high dunes), which is one of the major visitor attractions of Namibia. The name "Sossusvlei" is of mixed origin and roughly means "dead-end marsh". Vlei is the Afrikaans word for "marsh", while "sossus" is Nama for "no return" or "dead end". Sossusvlei owes this name to the fact that it is an endorheic drainage basin (i.e., a drainage basin without outflows) for the ephemeral Tsauchab River.
The Spitzkoppe (from German for "pointed dome"; also referred to as Spitzkop, Groot Spitzkop, or the "Matterhorn of Namibia"), is a group of bald granite peaks or bornhardts located between Usakos and Swakopmund in the Namib desert of Namibia. The granite is more than 120 million years old and the highest outcrop rises about 1,784 metres (5,853 ft) above sea level. The peaks stand out dramatically from the flat surrounding plains. The highest peak is about 700 m (2,300 ft) above the floor of the desert below.
Swakopmund (German for "Mouth of the Swakop") is a city on the coast of western Namibia, 280 km (170 mi) west of Windhoek, Namibia's capital. It is the capital of the Erongo administrative district. The town has 44,725 inhabitants and covers 193 square kilometres (75 sq mi) of land. The city is situated in the Namib desert and is the fourth largest population centre in Namibia.
Twyfelfontein (Afrikaans: uncertain spring), officially known as ǀUi-ǁAis (Damara/Nama: jumping waterhole), is a site of ancient rock engravings in the Kunene Region of north-western Namibia. It consists of a spring in a valley flanked by the slopes of a sandstone table mountain that receives very little rainfall and has a wide range of diurnal temperatures. The site has been inhabited for 6,000 years, first by hunter-gatherers and later by Khoikhoi herders. Both ethnic groups used it as a place of worship and a site to conduct shamanist rituals. In the process of these rituals at least 2,500 items of rock carvings have been created, as well as a few rock paintings.
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