Namib Desert And Dunes
“Watching the sunrise over the red dunes is an iconic highlight of any trip to Namibia and this morning we rise before the sun to capture this magnificent moment. A brisk climb up Dune 45 offers us the perfect vantage point to marvel at the changing colours of the desert sunrise. Once satisfied we descend this famous dune and enjoy a hearty breakfast before catching a 4x4 transfer into Sossusvlei, here we will spend time on foot visiting the pans at Sossusvlei and Deadvlei. A last stop at the Sesriem Canyon may end our visit to the dune fields, but our day in the desert continues this afternoon as we join a local expert for an educational desert excursion. Tonight we empty the red sand from our shoes and spend the night under the magnificent desert stars, knowing that we have spent a full day enjoying the wonders of this harsh land.”
There's a great chance the first picture you see of Namibia online is one taken in the Namib desert and most likely in front of “big daddy” or the dead trees in Sossusvlei. This area of the country is a photographer’s dream and if you manage to shoot less than 500 photos then you really have self-control.
The day started really early for us as we stayed an hour away from the entrance to the National Park and so to beat the queue we left around 4.30 am. We watched the sunrise over the dunes on our drive in and it was spectacular, nonetheless. As you can imagine it was freezing at that time of the morning but after the climb up dune 45 (Ignore the brisk climb description; the climb will kill your legs.) and with the sun out, it warmed up. The position of the sun also affects the colour of the dunes with them starting off a deep shade of orange at dawn and getting lighter as the sun climbed higher.
By the time we got to Sossusvlei at noon, it was unbearably hot and closer to 40 degrees. It was so hot I turned down the walk at Sesriem canyon to keep cool in the truck with Chris.
We stayed overnight in a desert camp and had an early morning walk with a local guide who taught us everything from the history of the desert to local folklore and how to survive days with little food or water. He was an amazing guide and captivating storyteller who kept the group fully engaged despite the early start and cold.
Below are my favourite images from the desert.