The Namibian coastline is an area of harsh contrasts. Here the fertile and icy Benguela current meets the hot sand of the Namib Desert. While the coastal towns of Swakopmund and Walvis Bay are popular tourist destinations, the stretch from the Ugab River to the Angolan border is a barren wilderness where only the hardiest creatures survive. Adventurous nature lovers are drawn to the desolate Skeleton Coast and anglers brave the rough conditions of the Namibian coastline to cast their rod into the pristine Atlantic waters.
Swakopmund and Walvis Bay
The cooler coastal climate makes Swakopmund and Walvis Bay popular holiday destination with Namibians and overseas visitors alike. While the combination of desert landscapes and the blue Atlantic is still essential to the appeal of these coastal towns, tour operators have created a wide range of tours and activities to draw tourists and adrenaline junkies to Namibia’s coastal strip. Especially Swakopmund is building a reputation as the countries extreme sport capital. The desert town offers anything from quad bike safaris in the dunes to skydiving and sandboarding. With a good variety of restaurants, some unique museums and many historical buildings Swakopmund can entertain visitors from any walk of life.
The Skeleton Coast
The hostile and rugged coastline north of the Ugab River has an intrigue that can only be understood by those who love witnessing the force of nature, desolate landscapes and the complete absence of civilization. The Skeleton Coast has a long history of shipwrecked vessels many of which can still be seen scattered along the coast along with bleached whale bones. Anglers love these cold and dangerous waters because the fishing here is exceptional. The Skeleton Coast is a pristine destination with unique desert adapted species that hold many rewards for those willing to venture off the beaten track.
The Namibian coastline is protected by the Skeleton Coast Park in the north, the Dorob National Park between Swakopmund and the Ugab River and the Namib-Naukluft Park and the Sperrgebiet further south. The Namibian government is now planning to turn the entire coastal stretch into a conservation area that will run from the Orange to the Kunene River. The Namib-Skeleton Coast National Park will make Namibia the only continental country to protect its entire coastline, which covers a distance of 1570 km.