LUDERITZ TO ORANGE RIVER – NAMIBIA

Wild Oryx, Namibia

Luderitz to Orange River – Namibia: Travel Blog. Our Oasis Overland ‘Accra to Cape Town’ trip continued to Kolmanskop, Luderitz and down to Orange River.

From Windhoek, we headed to Luderitz, a small coastal town on the south-west coast. It took two and a half days driving to reach Luderitz. The first night was spent a bush camp on the side of a very quiet desert road. The second days’ drive was one of the most scenic drives we had experienced with a constantly changing environment. Starting as we travelled through the beautiful mountain range.

namibia landscape

As we left the mountains there was a drastic change of landscape as moved into semi-arid scenery. We stopped at Baron Captain Heinrich Von Wolf’s extraordinary and pseudomedieval Duwisib Castle, built in 1909.

Duwisib Castle

Continuing on the scenery reverted back to the dry barren land we’d become accustomed to. Our second night was spent at a very quiet, remote campsite.

Camping Namibia

Despite gale-force winds blowing throughout the afternoon, it eventually eased as we watched the sun slowly set. Followed by a perfectly clear night sky.

fence sunset
namibia night

Kolmanskop

We arrived in Kolmanskop just before lunch. The former rich mining village was occupied by the Germans before being completely abandoned by 1954.

Kolmanskop sand

Currently, a ghost town slowly being reclaimed by the sand dunes, it was interesting learning about the history of the village through a guided tour and then having some time to explore the old buildings.

Kolmanskop Ghost Town

Luderitz Peninsular

We were happy to be sleeping in beds again, instead of our tent. We had a day and a half to explore the small but quaint town.

Luderitz street

There wasn’t a huge amount to see or do here, heading up Diamond Hill to the Felsenkirche (Rock Church) Lüderitz was our highlight. We witnessed yet another beautiful sunset overlooking the coast.

Sunset at Felsenkirche (Rock Church) Lüderitz.

The road out of Luderitz took us along the peninsular. Stopping at Diaz Point first for its its lighthouse and Atlantic Ocean views. From here we wandered across the ‘walkway’ to the Diaz Cross. This was erected on the spot where Portuguese explorer and navigator Bartholomew Diaz landed on July 25, 1488. From here we went to the nearby Cape Fur Seal Colony where we found both Flamingo’s and the Fur Seals. Next was Halifax island home to some African Penguins, albeit in the distance. Our last stop on the peninsular was Grosse Bucht (Bag Bay) where we found more Flamingo’s who come here to feed in its pools and its little shipwreck.

Flamingo's on the Luderitz Peninsular
3 Flamingo's at Big Bay (Grosse Bucht)

The next stint of the journey took us past a man-made watering hole at Garub on the eastern fringe of the Namib Desert. This was built to aid the 150 or so rare Namib desert horses that roam a 350 square kilometres stretch of the desert. And, it wasn’t just the horses that flocked from far and wide for a drink.

Namib desert horses of Garub

After a day of driving, we found a campsite not too far from the Fish River Canyon. Visiting the canyon was not on our itinerary, however, we had been trying to find a way to squeeze in a visit independently, with no success. We were so excited when our tour leader told us that the following day, we would make our way to the canyon for a few hours en-route to Orange River, close to the border of South Africa. That evening, another storm was brewing around us with a spectacular lighting show on offer.

namibia Lightning

I was cooking dinner for the group and we were all about to start eating when a freak gust of wind lifted the kitchen tarp up so high in the air, that the centre pole holding the tarp up, became lose and fell straight onto my head. Long story short, we had to pack up camp, travel 140kms to the nearest hospital in Keetmanshoop, where I received three stitches and sexy haircut! The hospital was very basic, to say the least. The toilets and showers were out of order, there were no bandages for my head and the group had to camp in the hospital carpark, including me! Nope, no beds available either!!

Imbi stitches

As we had backtracked so far to reach the hospital, we were unable to reach Fish River Canyon after all which was so disappointing, but couldnt be helped. Instead, Chris and I spent a night in a very nice hotel in Keetmanshoop while the group camped nearby. I was in a reasonable amount of pain with an ongoing headache and ridiculous bandage wrapped around my head. So a comfortable bed for the day and night was very welcomed! We didn’t leave the hotel room and were happy to leave the following day.

Orange River

We spent our final two nights in Namibia at a beautiful campsite on the Orange River.

Orange River

Still not feeling fabulous, I took it very easy for the next few days, while Chris went off exploring. As usual, he was happy camera in hand chasing birds and insects around. Reporting back with his findings every now and then, with his favourite finds being some Orange River White-eyes and Swallow-tailed Bee-eaters.

dragon reflection
heron on the orange river

Namibia served us up one final colourful evening sky to finish off an amazing few weeks exploring arguably, our favourite country. We loved getting ‘a little off track’ and seeing the more remote and less-visited areas of this incredibly diverse and beautiful country.

We then drove down to Cape Town where we left the group and rented a car, exploring South Africa on our own!


Our Oasis Overland Expedition

We travelled with Oasis Overland on the 12 week Accra-Cape Town section of their 42 Week UK-Cairo Trans Africa expedition. Doing an Overland expedition was an epic way to travel through this big and beautiful continent. It took the hassle out of travelling independently through some of most remote parts of the world. Yet, it still provided the challenges and adventures that we as well-travelled backpackers wanted. From free-camping under the stars to sweltering in the dense jungles and driving for days along dusty desolate tracks to haggling in the busy and bustling markets, this expedition had it all. We really did get a little off track!

Oasis Overland - Accra to Cape Town Map

Other countries visited on the Accra to Cape Town trip

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