Namibia is home to both the Namib and Kalahari deserts, yet you’ll still find a safari here produces sightings of desert-adapted wildlife and lots of endemic species. The chalky white evaporation pans of Etosha are great for spotting animals at natural springs and waterholes – the area is home to a quarter of the world’s cheetahs as well as the last free-ranging black rhino population.
Moving over to the relentless surf of the Atlantic coast, you’ll find a string of wrecked ships which helped forge its nickname ‘The Skeleton Coast’. Scenic flights over this brutal stretch come highly recommended – you feel a real sense privileged to see something so remote.
The Sossusvlei dunes at sunrise are a photographers dream. They’re the highest in the world, but if you’re fit enough to take on the challenge, the humbling sense of insignificance you feel when you reach the summit makes the effort well worth it.
With its low light and air pollution, Namibia is also considered one of the best locations for stargazing. Turn your attention skywards on clear nights and take in the southern constellations as you’ve never seen them before.
When to go
Namibia is pretty much dry and warm all year round, but certain months are better suited to different activities. June to August brings cold nights and sees the desert dry up, so wildlife grouped at watering holes will be easier to spot. The temperature rises in September and October and the game-viewing is at its best (although the constant dryness does mean there’s a fair amount of dust around). April and May offer the best weather, making them ideal for exploring the landscape.