Blogs from Luderitz, Namibia, Africa


Africa » Namibia » Luderitz December 15th 2017

Kolmanskop is one of the most striking, unusual places I’ve visited on my travels. Beautiful, desolate and haunting, I have never seen anything else quite like it. In 1908, a German railway labourer uncovered some interesting stones while shovelling sand. Thus began the history of diamond mining in Namibia. To begin with, diamonds were so plentiful you could simply walk through the desert and scoop them up with your bare hands. On a clear night with a full moon, you could see them glinting in the sand. Or so the story goes. Kolmanskop was the town that sprung from nowhere to mine this treasure. Fuelled by the explosion of diamond wealth, it rapidly sprouted luxuries unimaginable for Namibia at the time. There was a ballroom, bowling alley, swimming pool, ice factory, hospital, sports hall, it even ... read more

Africa » Namibia » Luderitz December 14th 2017

When we suffered a varied and constantly escalating selection of car problems on our road trip through East Africa, there were always other people around to help. Usually a very large number of other people, giving advice of variable quality. We were towed (twice) by helpful strangers in Botswana, and push started on an almost daily basis through Malawi. When we opened the car bonnet on a Tanzanian highstreet, no fewer than 8 random men took it upon themselves to peer inside and offer their opinions. It was conflicting advice delivered for the most part in Swahili, but at least there were people around. The problem with roadtripping through Namibia, the second least populous country on earth, is the lack of other people. Of course this is also a large part of what makes the country ... read more
This roadsign says "SAND"
Africa's most redundant roadsign

Africa » Namibia » Luderitz December 14th 2017

About an hour outside of Luderitz, we stopped to try and find the Namibian wild desert horses. There are various colourful theories about their origin, involving shipwrecks and famous historical figures. They are the only population of wild horses in Africa, and are scientifically interesting because of how they have evolved, over a relatively short period of time, to survive in the desert. Despite being an invasive species they have been afforded protected status, I suppose due to their uniqueness and the length of time they have survived here. The population never expands beyond much beyond 150 animals due to the harsh environment, so the damage they could do is limited. Their only source of water is a man made borehole next to the viewing hide just off the main road, so the horses are usually ... read more
Namibian wild horses outside of Luderitz
Desert horses

Africa » Namibia » Luderitz August 10th 2016

We awoke to another fantastic sunrise on the edge of the Fish River Canyon. After breakfast we set off on the scenic road (as recommended by the manageress) towards the C13 to Aus. The road followed many dry riverbeds noticeable for being the only place where trees grow and one even had water in it; not the heart stopping river fording that we experienced in Iceland, although a cow had to move out of the way to let us through. We climbed to over 4,000ft and still there were hills around us. The C13 to Aus is a paved road, generally straight as a die, with little of note. We spent most of the journey climbing, topping out at over 5,000 feet above sea level. We stopped for coffee and a very generous slice of four-layer ... read more
Wild horses
Church on the rock
Church on the rock windows

Africa » Namibia » Luderitz September 27th 2015

Die Straße begann schlecht und verschlechterte sich dann.. Es gab eine Stelle mit ganz tiefem Sand - so ich mich sofort hinschmiß um zu spielen. Aber da ich kein Küberl und Schauferl dabei hatte, stand ich schnell wieder auf. In Helmeringhausen gab es ein sehr deutsches Hotel mit köstlichem gedeckten Apfelkuchen. Außerdem einem zahmen Springbock im Garten. Die letzten 40 km fanden alle anderen völlig grauenhaft, aber ich bin einfach zu dumm, um grauenhafte Straßenstücke zu erkennen. Also fuhr ich im 5. Gang sehr flott durch die Sandhaufen und fand das sogar noch schön. Aus ist ein kleines Kaff, an der Bahnlinie, die von Lüderitz herauf kommt. Sie scheint nicht mehr in Betrieb zu sein. Lüderitz war ein wichtiges Zentrum für den Diamantenabbau, jetzt gibt es da viele Geisterstädte. Die Zone, wo heute noch abgebaut wird, ... read more

Africa » Namibia » Luderitz November 18th 2013

At besøge Luderitz i den sydlige del af Namibia - var som at besøge "Lille Tyskland" og alle talte TYSK - hvad er det så lige man gør som Dansker??? Men under alle omstændigheder var byen skøn og vores lille pension var dejlig. Luderitz er særlig kendt for deres diamant spøgelsesby - Kolmanskoopf som er en gammel diamant by, hvor diamant arbejderne boede. Som i kan se af billederne var der nogle fantastiske scenarier - ensomt og smukt. Se lige det logo - hi! Så var der landskabet omkring Luderitz - vi var simpelthen saa bjergtagede - det er noget af det smukkeste vi endnu har set på vores rejse - farver, vilde heste, hyæener og øde landskaber.... read more

Africa » Namibia » Luderitz May 10th 2011

Photographs from various locations in the world. Photographs on the official Michel Piccaya website: read more

Africa » Namibia » Luderitz April 14th 2011

Thursday April 14th, 2011 At the Dock- Luderitz, Namibia Latitude 26 degrees 38 minutes’ south- Longitude 15 degrees 09 minutes’ east This area of the African continent is known as the Diamond Coast and this morning we made a stop in the small fishing and mining village of Luderitz. Originally founded by German explorers in 1883, it is now a quaint backwater filled with historic buildings that make it look like a Bavarian Village that has been transported to Africa. A boomtown when Diamonds were discovered in 1908, it is almost deserted now. The country of Namibia is the second least populated by land area in the world behind Mongolia. Diamond mining has become less productive since the 1940s when most local reserves dwindled and everyone moved further south around Johannesburg where a greater concentration of ... read more
Diamond Coast 080
Diamond Coast 086
Diamond Coast 079

Africa » Namibia » Luderitz March 6th 2011

March 8, 2011 Tuesday night, half way between luderitz and st. Helena (1300 miles between, about 670 there) So for recap: Feb 10th – arrived cape town Feb 11th – moved on board Feb 23rd – left cape town for luderitz, 8-12 watch Foggy, cold, damp passage Feb 27th – arrived to luderitz in fog 2 days off in luderitz, Worked a day March 3rd – left for st. Helena March 5th – traded time March 6th – dogged watches to change from 8-12 watch to 12-4 watch I am writing this entry en route to St. Helena, the island where Napoleon was exiled. I have learned that there is no airport there making the only way to/from is via ship. I am steadily getting acclimated to life on board. We work 4 hours on and ... read more

Africa » Namibia » Luderitz September 28th 2010

After the excitement of the desert we then headed to Luderitz, a small town sandwiched between the Namib Desert and the battered Atlantic Coast. There is little plant life here, just dry barren rocks and colourful German heritage buildings. We drove to Dias Point which is about 22km out of Luderitz. A huge lighthouse let us know that we had arrived at the barren point. Walking down to the shore we could see flamingoes and hear the seals on the nearby island. At the top of the hill overlooking the sea is a replica cross of the one that was erected by the Portuguese in 1488 on their return from the Cape of Good Hope. There was hardly any wind and the sea was calm apart from the surf that pounded the rocks. A real highlight ... read more
The prominent Evangelical Lutheran Church, Felsenkirche in Luderitz
Diaz point
The cross at Diaz Point, a replica of the one erected by the Portuguese in 1488

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