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Swakopmund Destinations

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Swakopmund is situated on the coast of Namibia, between Sossusvlei to the South and the Skeleton Coast to the North.  It has always been considered the jewel of Namibia’s coastline, and in recent years has gained a reputation as Namibia’s adventure capital. The Namib dunes surrounding Swakopmund are some of the highest in the world. The infamous Dune 7 measures an incredible ± 383m. Palm-lined streets, seaside promenades, fine accommodation, a pleasant summer climate and decent beaches make Swakopmund a popular destination.

For those interested in adventure activities Swakopmund offers sandboarding, quad biking, dune carting, parachuting, hot air ballooning, shark fishing, deep sea fishing and beach angling. For the more sedentary there are restaurants, cafes, art galleries, the Swakopmund Museum, a snake park and aquarium.  Visitors can also enjoy a boat trip to “Cape Cross” Seal colony.

The general ambiance of Swakopmund is laid back. Namibia’s links with its former colonial power, Germany, are very apparent in Swakopmund.  The architecture has the feel of a small German village, and the town is sometimes dubbed “Little Bavaria”.  The town’s most iconic symbol is the Swakopmund jetty, which was initially used as mooring for ships and later became a popular area for anglers and walkers.

Walvis Bay is situated less than 35km south of Swakopmund.  Although the bay and natural harbour was discovered by the explorer Bartolomeu Dias in 1487, the town of Walvis Bay was only founded in 1793 by the Cape Dutch.  The harbour’s value in relation to the sea route around the Cape of Good Hope immediately caught the attention of world powers and two years later it was annexed by the British. It was incorporated into Britain’s Cape Colony (now part of South Africa) in 1884, the same year in which Germany established the colony of South West Africa.  By the Act of Union (1910) Walvis Bay was included in the newly united South Africa and it remained a South African enclave until 1994, when South Africa transferred sovereignty to Namibia.  The Walvis Bay Lagoon is the main reason for visiting the town.  The lagoon, salt pans and the bird sanctuary which form the Walvis Bay Wetlands are rightly heralded as the single most important coastal wetlands of Southern Africa. Over 150 000 migrant birds spend the summer months in Walvis Bay and non-breeding palearctic and intra-African species dominate. Over 150 species of bird have been recorded in this region, including huge flocks of Great White Pelicans and Greater and Lesser Flamingos.



Vanessa Langner
Vanessa Langner
Tour Documentation Coordinator

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