EUROPEAN ODDITY MEETS CHEETAH
Walvis Bay is a strange yet unique coastal town with a very different atmosphere to its surrounding harsh desert interior.
Bizarrely as you travel towards the Namibian town from Sossusvlei you pass signs highlighting uranium mining taking place in the area. But all you can see is the flat uninhabited desert.
Walvis Bay is the adventure capital of the country.
Of particular interest is the quad biking. Several operators take guided tours – more fun than onerous, with your guide setting the pace.
The town of Walvis Bay is a mix of industrial shipping ports and buildings, coastal frontage and holiday homes, and then desert and dunes.
It is quite a contrast to see locals walking dogs on the beachfront parade after all the desert sand of the interior.
It is a laid-back and low-key place with several restaurants and eateries to choose from. You can even spot flamingos and seals on specialty tours.
Drive further north and you will come across Swakopmund which confounds one’s cultural radar as it is distinctly European in flavour with cobblestone footpaths, timber outdoor bars and dining venues and great sea frontage views.
The colonial throwback has enormous personality and charm and you half expect to see snow falling. But a few cheetah paintings and the blistering midday sun remind you that you are still in Africa.