Bordered by the Skeleton Coast in the west and Etosha National Park in the east, Damaraland offers a plethora of diverse experiences for Namibia safari-goers. Its petrified semi-desert landscape is a treasure trove of unique geology, archaeology, and ancient natural history.
The region is marked by vast gravel plains, rugged areas with flat-topped mountains, and clusters of granite of varying sizes. Brandberg is the largest of these granite ranges—some 8,400 feet at its highest point—and shelters an astounding number of rock engravings dating back as far as 6,000 years. Damaraland takes its name from the Damara peoples who, together with the San bushmen, are classified as the oldest original inhabitants of Namibia and creators of the rock art found on the massifs of the region. It is at Brandberg that you will find the White Lady, which continues to be one of the most highly-debated findings, posited to be a medicine man, the depiction of a ritual, and has even been suggested to originate from a Mediterranean culture.
More ancient rock engravings can be glimpsed at Twyfelfontein, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that dates back to the Stone Age. Twyfelfontein is noted for its more than 2,500 remarkably clear depictions of giraffes, cattle, rhinos, lions, and other animals alongside geometric markings, all estimated to be made by San bushmen as many as 2,500 years ago.
Pictographs of animals aren’t all you will see. Exploring the region on game drives will allow for sightings of steenbok, kudu, baboon, warthog, and even porcupine. You may also happen upon desert-adapted elephants and black rhino who thrive in Damaraland and are protected by its unique isolation. Hornbills, chats, and the occasional raptor can be seen as well. To the west, you can also discover the petrified forest amidst a bed of sandstone and examine the trees that experts claim are over 200 million years old.
Most safaris to Namibia begin south of the Damaraland region in Windhoek, the capital city at the center of the country. From this central jumping-off point, intrepid safari-goes have their pick of the landscapes of Namibia they wish to experience. Start your own safari through Namibia with the luxury travel consultants at Ker & Downey and create a custom journey through this enchanting country—contact us to get started.