Namibia

Very much a desert country, Namibia offers contrasting landscapes. The Namib Desert is a vast expanse of high dunes and desolate plains with an awe-inspiring sense of space. The thorn bush savannah and rugged mountains of the central plateau give way to the majestic Fish River Canyon in the south.

In the north, landscapes range from the dense bush and open plains of the great Etosha Pan, to woodland savannah and lush vegetation. Etosha National Park, the third largest in Africa, owes its unique landscape to the Etosha Pan, a vast shallow depression edged by waterholes to the south which guarantee rewarding game viewing.

Waterberg Plateau Park, Namibia`s only mountain game park, has striking red sandstone cliffs, and harbours many rare and endangered animal and plant species. Hiking trails of one to three hours have been mapped out and are well signposted

At Sossusvlei, you can climb some of the world`s highest sand dunes. There`s a good campsite nearby at Sesriem Gate, close to the point at which the Tsauchab River disappears down a deep gorge, leaving pools of water where many animals come to drink.

The delightful little German-style seaside resort of Swakopmund is surrounded by desert that is great for adrenaline sports such as quad-biking, dune buggy racing and sand-boarding. Windhoek, the capital, is a cosmopolitan city with excellent hotels and restaurants.

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