Damaraland is located in the northwest of Namibia and is part of the Kunene region. It is the area between the small town of Sesfontein in the north and the Brandberg massif in the south. The landscape ranges from wide hilly landscapes with unusual and rugged rock formations to fine sandy dunes. Another characteristic of the Damaraland are the many dry rivers (including the Aba-Huab and the Hoanib) that cross it for many kilometres. The Damaraland got its name from the Damara tribe living here.
The climate in Damaraland in is dry and hot. Especially in the Namibian summer (November – March), temperatures can easily reach 40 ° C. The precipitation is very low all year round. Sometimes there are even areas where it has not rained at all for several years. If it does rain, the already mentioned dry rivers turn into torrential torrents for a few hours.
Can life even be possible in this dry and hot environment? It can! Because the flora and fauna have adapted perfectly to these sometimes-adverse climatic conditions. In Damaraland, for example, you can find the rare desert elephants. For instance, they often hike through the river beds for kilometres in search of water. With wider soles and longer legs, they have adapted perfectly to the difficult circumstances in the course of evolution. Above all, with a bit of luck you can find the desert lions, which are critically endangered.
The main attractions of Damaraland is about 100 km west of the city. Here you find the famous rock engravings by Twyfelfontein, declared a UNSECO World Heritage Site in 2007. Twyfelfontein is considered to be one of the richest rock engravings in Africa. Some of this work dates back to 3,300 BC. You can admire over 2,000 rock engravings by the Bushmen.
Other attractions in the region include the collection of up to 5 meters high basalt columns, known as “organ pipes”. Also worth seeing is the “Petrified Forest”. Here you can admire the petrified remains of tree trunks that are around 280 million years old.
A few kilometres further, the “Burnt Mountain” is another geological delicacy waiting for the visitor. The Damara Living Museum near Twyfelfontein is particularly recommended. In this open-air museum you will get an insight into the traditional way of life of the Damara and learn a lot about the culture of this fascinating people.