After visiting the breathtaking vleis, we headed to the Eastern coast of Namibia, Walvis Bay and Swakopmund and afterwards headed to the North of Namibia over Spitzkoppe Natural Park.
Following the appealing photos of the travel bloggers, we were searching for the pink see next to the Walvis Bay. What we found was the Salt Holdings, the largest sea salt refiner in sub-Saharan Africa. The salt pools on the posters looked exactly the same as on the photos we have seen before and had the same intense pink color.
Unfortunately, after finally reaching the reception after crossing the checkpoint and breathing into the alcohol breath tester, we didn’t receive a clear answer if there were any public excursions through the colorful pools.
However, if you take a way around and turn right about two hundred meters before reaching the production area checkpoint, you will be able to drive along a narrow road and see several colorful pools on your left. In fact, this is the plankton, which procreates in salt water and is responsible for the coloring of the water at these salt mining lakes in all red and pink tones you can imagine. By the way, we have even seen a light-green colored lake!
Swakopmund is a coastal city in the West of Namibia and a beach resort. Founded in 1892, this city is a good example for the German colonial architecture.
In Swakopmund, we tried the best oysters of my life in The Tug restaurant. Frankly speaking, first we were heading to another restaurant, the famous Jetty 1905 (http://www.jetty1905.com/). However, we underestimated the power of the good rating on Tripadvisor and Google maps: the restaurant was full and reservations were taken days in advance. Besides, while walking along the bridge in flip-flops and shorts, we realized that we were completely underdressed for this restaurant: this was confirmed by the note at the door, “smart casual”. We turned around, crossed the bridge and landed in the Captain’s Cabin in The Tug, and never regretted that! For more information and for online reservation visit their website: http://the-tug.com/.
Spitzkoppe Natural Park
On our way from Swakopmund to Otjiwarongo we made a detour to visit the Spitzkoppe Natural Park. There you can drive through the park with your car and get on the exciting mountain formations. The stone composition reminded me of granite, therefore walking and climbing the mountains was easy. The highest peak of this formation is Groß Spitzkoppe (1728 m above the sea level or 700 m above the floor of the desert below); it is followed by the Pontok Mountains (1629 m) and Sugarloaf (1285 m). At the park reception, we were told that only couple of formations are open for the tourists without a guide: the Bridge and the Rock pool. However, you can drive all around the area if your car allows for it.
The entrance fee to the park is 55 N$ per person and for the car you pay 65 N$. The speed limit for driving inside the park is 30 km/h.
At the entrance to the park, we met several locals selling self-made decoration staff and minerals (prices start from 10 N$). By the way, if you are interested in minerals, there is a bigger market on the road to Otjiwarongo. At the stand where we stopped, two little boys were first looking skeptically at us and then asked for something to eat. When we gave them something from our resources, broad smiles appeared on their faces.