Namibia:The Cheetah Capital of the World

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Namibia:The Cheetah Capital of the World:table of contents

Namibia lies in the Southern part of the African continent, bordering Zambia and Angola. Namibia is home to the great Namib and Kalahari deserts, deepest canyons of Africa and the wooded African Savannah. Namibia is also richly endowed with wildlife including a significant cheetah population and has established parks and reserves to protect it. These are the top sightseeing attractions in Namibia that we are sure will quench your thirst for the ultimate African adventure.

1. Etosha National Park (Windhoek)

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Namibia is not densely populated, and where there are no humans, wildlife survives. Therefore, Namibia is one of the countries where wildlife roams freely unrestricted by humans. Etosha National park in the northwestern part of Namibia is one of the best wildlife sightseeing venues that are easily accessible, and animals can be seen around floodlit waterholes. Compared to other game parks that you have gone to, this is the easiest to sight wildlife. The park covers more than 20,000 sq. Km and has over 100 animal species including the Big Five. Another notable feature of the park is the Etosha pan which covers about one-quarter of the park. The park just like most other parts of Namibia is almost an all-year sightseeing destination with about eight months of peak viewing from May to December. To view the animals in large herds, go sightseeing at midday when it is hot, as that is when most of them trek to the water points.

2. Fish River Canyon (Southern region)

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The Fish River Canyon in the southern part of Namibia is the most extensive canyon in Africa and the second globally. It is the second most visited sightseeing attraction in Namibia after Etosha National Park. The river is 550m deep, 27km wide and 160km long. Fish River Canyon is dry with small connected pools for the better part of the year, but when it rains as from December, it becomes a fascinating and immense sight. The river can be explored by air, a hike or by a car drive. A walk to the river can take multiple days, but it will be an unforgettable one. Temperatures from May to August range between 20 and 25ºC and are the most favorable for a hike.

3. Cheetah Conservation Fund (Otjiwarongo)

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Namibia gained its nickname, the cheetah capital of the world for a reason- it is the country with the most remaining wild cheetah population. The Cheetah Conservation Fund in Namibia sits on a 7, 000ha piece of land in Otjiwarongo part of Namibia. It has a cheetah museum, a gift shop and a cheetah café. Visitors have the opportunity to feed the cheetahs, experience the thrill of seeing them running close-up and even take videos of them hunting and take a drive through the center to take photos of them in the wild. For a personalized sightseeing tour, we recommend that you book in advance.

4. Skeleton Coast National Park (Nothern region)

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If you are the hardcore traveler, then the Skeleton Coast on the northwestern part of Namibia is the place for you. The park is divided into two parts, the northern and southern parts. The northern part can be explored using a four-wheel drive while the southern part would best be sightseen on a plane safari. October to March are the best months for such a safari when the skies are clear. Notable features not to be missed at the park are clay castles of the Hoarisib, the Agate mountain and the seal colony at Cape Fria.

5. Brandberg Mountain (Erongo)

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Brandberg Mountain is the highest mountain in Namibia, standing at 8442ft tall. The mountain prides itself as the place with the largest collection of ancient rock paintings. The paintings were created by the Namibian bushmen more than ten thousand years ago, and still, the paintings are well-preserved. Most of them focus on wildlife and myths passed down through generations. The rocks also form fascinating colors especially at sunrise, so a trip to Brandberg is worth rising early, not to miss these sights and to take an exceptional photo. The mountain is also a favorite for hikers and climber. A climb to the peak can take about 2-3 days.

6. Sossusvlei (Namib)

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If you have seen a photo of a dune from Africa, the highest probability is that it was taken in Sossusvlei, in Namibia. Sossusvlei is in the Namib desert, one of the oldest deserts in Africa. The area is characterized by massive dunes, some of them reaching up to 400 meters in height. The largest one is known as Big Daddy, and it is the most challenging to climb. Tourists love Sossusvlei especially at sunrise or sunset, to take photos of the reflection of light on the dunes. The dunes are actually, are one of the most photographed sightseeing areas in Namibia and globally.

7. Cape Cross (Skeleton Coast)

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Cape Cross is a must-visit if you are in Namibia, especially between November and December, the breeding season of seals. Cape Cross is on the west coast of Namibia, and it has about 23 colonies of Cape Fur seals. In the breeding season, there are over 150, 000 seals in the area. The reserve is a protected area but there are wooden pathways that allow you to get close to the seals. Also, do not miss to see the seal stone with engravings of caravel and the coat of arms of the Namibia national monuments council. There is also an information point at the desk that you can visit to learn more about this area that was once a center of the guano industry.

8. Caprivi Strip (Kavango)

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Most of the area in Namibia is arid, but the Caprivi Strip is a sharp contrast. It is the wettest part of Namibia and consists mostly extensive wetlands, impressive floodplains, woodlands, and rivers. The area also sustains a large variety of plant species, animals and a spectacular draw of bird varieties. At the strip region, there is the Mahango Game reserve and Mamili National Park that you can view herds of elephants, buffalos, five-meter long crocodiles and hippopotami. Another sightseeing attraction in the region not to be missed is the Popa Falls.

9. Kalahari (Southeastern Namibia)

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A sightseeing tour in Namibia is not complete if you have not visited either the Kalahari Desert or Namib desert. Contrary to the belief that no life survives in the Kalahari Desert, you will be surprised to find that it is well vegetated with thousands of plant species which are endemic to Namibia. At Kalahari, you will not only enjoy the solitude and the allure of the desert, but you will also get a chance to interact with the San Bushmen of Namibia and get to learn about their traditions and knowledge of Kalahari. The rainy season is the best for viewing wildlife as that is when the animals concentrate on the valleys to feed. In the dry season, they disperse further into the desert in larger territories thus can be difficult to spot.

10. National Art Gallery Of Namibia (Windhoek)

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National Art Gallery of Namibia is in the capital city of Namibia, Windhoek. It was established in 1990 and today, it is a national museum that houses the best of artwork from Namibia and hosts temporary exhibitions by local and international artists. The gallery has about 300 artworks organized into three main collections spread to three sections. Most of the works focus on the history, culture and the communism concept in Namibia. From the top floor of the gallery, you can also have a good view of the parliament buildings. The gallery has free admissions and is open every day except on weekends and public holidays.

◎ Closing

Namibia will change your view of holidays in the remote and dry areas of the continent. The area is arid but still inviting and easy to travel. It is a very special sightseeing destination with the most photographed areas in the tourism industry. If not for the dramatic deserts, then visit Namibia for the wildlife and the relaxed and friendly locals.

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