Solitaire town sign in Namibia

Interesting facts about namibia

Namibia, a land of diverse and remarkable landscapes, holds a rich tapestry of history and natural wonders. Once a German colony, remnants of this era endure in places like Swakopmund and Luderitz, where German architecture and language still echo today. Beyond its colonial past, Namibia boasts the world’s oldest desert, the Namib Desert, home to towering sand dunes and the surreal Deadvlei. Its UNESCO World Heritage Site, Twyfelfontein, showcases ancient rock engravings dating back thousands of years. Namibia’s vast expanses are home to the second lowest population density globally, juxtaposed by an abundance of wildlife, including desert-adapted elephants and Africa’s largest free-roaming black rhino population. From the eerie Skeleton Coast to the immense Fish River Canyon and the mysterious Dragon’s Breath Cave, Namibia beckons with its unparalleled natural beauty and cultural heritage.

Namibia has a lot to offer

German Colony

In the old days, Namibia was a German colony. When you go to Swakopmund, or you visit the town of Luderitz, you imagine yourself in a tropical Germany for a moment. Everywhere you look around you see German words and German architecture. Apart from that, you also hear a lot of German, there is a German radio station and most white people you meet are German-speaking but can speak perfect English.

The Namib Desert

From which the country takes its name , is the world’s oldest desert. It is thought to have existed for at least 55 million years.

UNESCO World Heritage Site

Namibia’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site, Twyfelfontein, has the largest known concentration of rock engravings in Africa. Over 5,000 individual figures between 2,000 and 6,000 years old have been recorded there.

Second Least Populated Country

Namibia is the second least densely populated sovereign country in the world. It has a population of 2.6 million living in an area of 825,615km2, with just 3.2 people per km2. Only Mongolia (and Denmark-administered Greenland) are more sparsely populated.

Highest Sand Dunes

Namibia has some of the highest sand dunes in the world. Due to their naturally shifting patterns, dune measurement is notoriously inaccurate. However, at 383m, Dune 7 near Walvis Bay is the highest in Namibia and one of the highest in the world. At 325m, the Big Daddy sand dune in Sossusvlei is smaller but far more famous and regularly climbed by tourists.


Nearby to Sossusvlei is the eerie scene of Deadvlei, a white clay pan where scores of dead camel thorn trees litter the ground. The desiccated trees are thought to be 600-700 years old but have not decomposed because the climate is too dry.

Largest Underground Lake

Earth’s largest (non-subglacial) underground lake is hidden beneath the Kalahari Desert in Dragon’s Breath Cave in Namibia. The lake is located at least 100m (330ft) below the surface.

Largest Meteorite Site

Discovered in 1920 near Grootfontein, the Hoba meteorite is the world’s largest. Weighing 54,000kg, it’s thought to have fallen to Earth around 80,000 years ago.

National Parks

Nearly 20% of the country is protected by national parks such as Etosha. When communal and freehold conservancies are included, 46.8% of Namibia is presently under some form of formal conservation management.


Namibia has Africa’s largest free-roaming population of black rhinos as well as the largest cheetah population in the world.

Desert Elephants

Namibia is one of only two countries (Mali being the other) that has desert-adapted elephants. Although not a different subspecies of savannah elephants, they have adapted to the desert environment.

Environment Protected By Constitution

Namibia was the first country in Africa and one of only a few in the world that incorporates environmental protection into its constitution.

Ghost Town

The ghost town of Kolmanskop in Namibia was once one of the wealthiest places in the world. The former diamond-mining town had the first X-ray unit in the southern hemisphere. However, after the diamonds dried up, the town was abandoned to the desert.

Skeleton Coast

The northern part of the Atlantic coast of Namibia is called the Skeleton Coast. Initially named because of the whale and seal skeletons from the former whaling industry that littered its shores, the coast is now home to several shipwrecks that fell foul of the region’s infamous ocean fog. Portuguese sailors called the area the ‘gates of hell’ and Namibia’s Bushmen refer to it as ‘the land God made in anger’.

Worlds Second Largest Canyon

Africa’s largest canyon, Fish River Canyon, is in Namibia. At 160km long, up to 27km wide and 550m (1804ft) deep, it is Africa’s longest canyon and, after the Grand Canyon in the US, the second largest in the world.

Seal Colony

The Cape Cross Seal Reserve in Namibia is the world’s largest breeding colony of Cape fur seals. During the breeding season in November and December, up to 210,000 seals can be found there.

Explore Namibia’s highlights, from the ancient Namib Desert and colonial remnants in Swakopmund to the wildlife-rich plains of Etosha and the breathtaking Fish River Canyon.