A World Away – The Skeleton Coast
Come away with us to the Skeleton Coast of Namibia which is perhaps best illustrated by majestic, mountain-like sand dunes colliding with cold, inhospitable Atlantic Ocean waves. This one of a kind experience invites adventure lovers and tranquility seekers alike to explore an untouched world of desolate beauty.
True to its name, the bones of whales and seals can be distinguished, previously dispersed along the coastline along with numerous shipwrecks that were claimed by the treasonable seas and are now fading into the oldest desert in the world. Be transported to a thrilling escape where haunting fog seeps over the road comprised of salt and sand leading to the Skeleton Coast National Park.
Relax in a world that pays no homage to time and enjoy the raw nature by camping in Terrace Bay or reserve an exclusive site at Torra Bay which is only open during the months of December and January. Angling pressure is reduced along these bays and they offer for a great fishing location as well as a fantastic spot to sit back and relax with a sundowner and watch the sky fill with colour as the sun sets behind the ocean.
Bring your binoculars as the Skeleton Coast is alive with exotic wildlife. At the sea you are bound to see cape-fur seals which are plentiful during certain times of the year. You might even catch a brief sight of the rare Heaviside’s dolphin. On the sands look out for the cunning black-backed jackal and the shaggy brown hyena. Further inland presents opportunities to spot ostriches and different types of buck such as the oryx, springbok and kudu. On the rarest of occasions you might see an elephant, black rhino or even a lion in a riverbed. The Skeleton Coast is also home to more than 247 species of birds. Any plant life growing in such harsh conditions needs to be resilient to survive. Namibia’s national plant, the Welwitschia mirabilis, the !Nara plant and the colorful lichen fields are all flora which have adapted and can be seen on your travels.
The shipwrecks scattered along the coast account for breathtaking and photogenic opportunities. Due to the tides and fog the rough coast has been claiming ships for centuries up until as recent as March, 2018, when the Fukuseku Maru, a Japanese fishing vessel, was stranded on rocks south of the Ugab river mouth. One must-see shipwreck is called the Eduard Bohlen which ran ashore in 1907. The fascination of this wreck is that it seems to be stranded in the middle of the desert now a testament to the receding shoreline and age of the desert. Other remains worth visiting are the wreck of the British tugboat, The Dunedin Star (1942), and the remains of a venture bomber aircraft that strangely enough crashed after bringing the liner survivors supplies.
For those with more to spend an extraordinary fly-in safari can be arranged to witness shipwrecks from the sky and venture over some of the inaccessible regions of the park. Gliding over the mountainous terrains, scenic dunes and blue water in a light aircraft is truly a surreal and unforgettable experience.
Far away from the city and crowds, the Skeleton Coast provides a timeless expanse for you to escape the hustle and bustle and reconnect with nature in its rarest, isolated and most free form. It might be just what you’re looking for weather it be an adventure, a history lesson, a rest, a family holiday, a fishing trip or just a dip in the cold Atlantic Ocean.