Friday, January 22, 2016

Namibia: Sesriem Canyon and Coastal Flight to Swakopmund

Other Posts: Trip Overview, Little Kulala Lodge, Sossusvlei and Deadvlei

Our days were typically spent doing a morning activity and evening activity. The trip to Sossusvlei to see the dunes was our morning excursion and our afternoon trip was a visit to Sesriem Canyon. Our guide Eddie said we'd hike the canyon. We were thinking Grand Canyon hiking and could not conceive going through all that effort in this heat. Sesriem Canyon is actually not very daunting. The canyon's name means "six belts" in Afrikaans, a reference to how many belts were tied together to dip a bucket in to fetch water (a long time ago). Nowadays the canyon is pretty dry with a small patch of stagnant water tucked in a corner.

Our trip took us back to the the small asphalt road that led to the dunes earlier today, except we turned the other direction. In our car was Judith (from Portugal) and now Sabrina, an employee of Wilderness Safaris from Cape Town. We arrived at the canyon at 5pm and the temperature was tolerable. The canyon was deep, but nothing that would strike you with awe.

"Does anyone want to see the water?" was Eddie's question. He told us we have to climb and squeeze a bit between some rocks. Initially we declined, but then Sabrina shamed us into changing our minds. It wasn't much effort, but also not really worth it. Lots of flies and strange odors.

"Look up and take that picture. It's Africa." Dave was not impressed.

We ran into this snake. Someone asked if it was poisonous. Eddie's response: Slightly. We steered clear and moved along.

There's really not much to say about the canyon other than it was pretty and the late afternoon was a nice time to visit.

It took us about an hour to get to the canyon, but maybe only 30 minutes to get back to the general camp area. We could not imagine how this was possible. We had an extra long sundowner period this evening.

The next morning we had an early flight to our next destination. We were flying to the coastal city of Swakopmund where we'd be spending two nights at the Swakopmund Hotel and Entertainment Complex (and Casino). We were lucky to have excellent weather conditions for the scenic flight route with Wilderness Air. We flew mostly along the coast and could make out tiny dots of seals and large flocks of flamingos. We were able to see one shipwreck that was way beyond the current water line. What was most amazing was watching the sand turn from red to yellow-white and to see just pure cliffs of sand plunging into the water. Here are some dirty airplane window photos:

Remember when Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt had their baby in Namibia? She didn't deliver out in the bush. She gave birth in this swanky little high-end development just outside Walvis Bay.

Swakopmund was a cute little town and we had enough time for lunch and to explore a bit before our scheduled afternoon excursion: sandboarding.

Video Sossusvlei Area and Flight to Swakopmund


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