Skeleton Coast and Kaokoland
The remote Skeleton Coast
There are a few truly isolated landscapes left in the world that captivates the imagination, filled with the atmosphere of the bizarre and at the same time can deem itself remarkable. Although exuding the essence of a barren yet eerie wilderness, Skeleton Coast is such an extraordinarily beautiful landscape. Situated on the western edge of Namibia and spanning almost 500km, Skeleton Coast’s magnificence revolves around its remote grave-like appeal.
The treacherous fog covered coastline has caused the demise of many foiled explorations and the numerous rustic shipwrecks are all that remain rested along the seashore. Bleached skeletal bones litters the white sanded beaches and harbours the memories of a bygone era when mighty whales and frolicking seals where hunted along the coastline.
Adjacent to Skeleton Coast lays the equally dramatic, mountainous landscape known as Kaokaland. This ancient land is home to the nomadic Himba tribe who still live according to their traditional values passed down from their ancestors. Tall and statuesque, the Himba tribe may be seen covered in a mixture of red ochre and animal fat which causes a red copper tone which is applied to both their hair and skin as treatment and protection from the harsh African desert sun.
Visit the areas of Skeleton Coast and Kaokaland, and experience a land that is undoubtedly filled with the solitude of the wilderness, mysterious rustic relics, ancient culture and barren splendour.
Best season to visit
Skeleton Coast and Kaokoland both experience the harsh arid climate of the Namibian desert. Summer months are from October to May with a few light rain showers. Winter is generally from May to September and during this time, the area is covered in afternoon fog which lasts until the morning hours. During this time, nights become very cold.
Descendents of the Herero Herders, the Himba tribes are seen as traditional, maintaining their ancient believe and ways of life. Adorned in nothing but goatskins and jewellery fashioned from leather, metal and shells; the Himba tribe’s people have been referred to as the most beautiful in sub-Saharan Africa. Visit their nomadic villages and experience the ancient culture of the Himba tribe.
Advice from Safari Russ:
“Due to the vast distances to reach the area and the almost inaccessible landscape which challenge even the most experienced 4×4 driver and his vehicle, flying in is highly recommended. To experience the desert-adapted wildlife, breath-taking valleys, dry riverbeds, the crocodile-infested Cunene River and Skeleton Coast is one of life’s greatest journeys.”
The Skeleton Coast Experience
The relentless and dramatic coastline stretching 500 km north of Swakopmund is littered with the eerie wrecks of numerous ships, the ghostly skeletal remains of whales and other sea life from the bygone days of whaling and seal hunting.
Most of the area can only be reached by flying in by light aircraft, an experience that provides breathtaking views of this expansive landscape. Anyone attempting to drive into the area needs to be highly experienced and properly equipped, usually accompanied by a local guide as there is a great danger of getting lost and stranded.
Animals to look out for along Skeleton Coast include the spotted hyena, the elusive Brown Hyena and black-backed jackals scavenging on anything that gets washed onto the beach. In the Kaokoland area particularly, travelers can view the desert elephant and desert rhino and well as observing Oryx (gembok) around the Hartmanns Valley and Marienfluss.
From Skeleton Coast Camp, guests explore the area by landrover, discovering the seal colonies, exploring ancient canyons, finding wildlife and enjoying picnic lunches. Travelers will also be able to have a cultural interaction when encountering the nomadic Himba tribesmen who adorn themselves with red ocre mixed with animal fats. In the nortern regions of Kaokoland along the Kunene river, travelers can do boat trips in the crocodile infested rivers, go fishing or have fun quad biking over towering dunes and rocky outcrops.
Greenlife Safaris Testimonials
"Greenlife Safaris has helped us plan three life changing trips through Southern Africa. What sets them apart is that they were by our side, just a call away and helped us with a few things like when we blew out 2 tires on the rental car out in the bush and when we left some valuables in a hotel safe."
"Greenlife organized our safari and we couldn't be more happy with the way things worked out. From the initial planning stages when Russ responded immediately to all my questions about our personal requirements and how we were going to keep it within my budget".
“Best Safari company, very professional, passionate team who cares about you and the environment and makes your safari dreams come true.”
– Safari Russ –
African Travel Expert
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