Updated: Jan 28
If given the choice of a holiday on a tropical island or in the desert, I‘m guessing many of you would choose the tropical island. Turquoise waters, schools of yellow fish, coconut drinks with little bright umbrellas popping out...
But wait! Before you dust off the latter, I want you to imagine yourself relaxing in a beautiful lodge in the world's oldest desert.
andBeyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge
The Namib is a whopping 55 million years old and also one of the largest coastal deserts in the world. It is here where you will find the striking red dunes of Sossusvlei, a unique paradise that offers a different take on the white sands and palm trees that may still be swimming around your mind.
Over the years the winds have shaped this area to look like an ocean of waves and these are surfed by adventurous travelers who dare to climb their peaks. The views from the top stretch for miles and provide a glimpse of the desert’s massive surface that covers parts of South Africa and Angola as well. It also explains the meaning of the name Namib, which aptly translates to ‘open space’.
I guess what I am trying to say here is you couldn't be more socially distanced if you tried!
There are a number of national parks within the Namib desert that serve to protect the region and one of the well-known ones is the Namib-Naukluft National Park where you will find these towering dunes. But it is the sights and experiences you will encounter along the way that make this trip pretty exceptional.
Nature drives, helicopter rides, hiking, quad biking, hot air ballooning and scenic flights are some of the many ways you can explore the mysteries of the Namib, and each activity offers a different perspective of this expansive land. You will also discover the photographic opportunities are endless and this is one of the reasons why we created our Namibia Photographic Expedition tour package (have a squiz to find out what it's about).
Namib Sky Balloon Safaris
Most of the lodges and camps are situated just outside of the Namib-Naukluft National Park and this allows you time to enjoy the dunes as the sun rises. As mentioned previously, many travelers opt to climb the dunes, whether it is the popular Dune 45 or the more challenging 'Big Daddy', which overlooks the astonishing location, Deadvlei - a peculiar white clay pan sprinkled with dead trees.
Photograph of Deadvlei
From the unusual wildlife to the extraordinary starry night skies, the desert doesn't disappoint and Namibia is most definitely a bucket list destination. The best part is, despite the heat there is always something a little refreshing waiting for you back at the lodge!
So, pack your swimming costume and your sunblock and join us in the Namib. Besides, tropical islands are so last season, right?!