Most photographers have a “bucket list” of places they want to visit. Those iconic locations that are so breathtaking that they have to be captured or so unique that there’s nothing else like it anywhere else on earth. Namibia is one of those when it comes to travel photography. Here’s the best reasons regarding why Namibia for travel photography.
Where Is It?
Namibia is located on the west coast of Africa, further north than the South African cape area. It lies between the Atlantic coast and several African nations. The capital is Windhoek, but the majority of travel photography in Namibia takes place in the drylands outside the city since it is situated between two deserts and the sea.
There are five recognized geographical areas in Namibia – the Namib, the Central Plateau, The Kalahari Desert, the Bushveld and the Great Escarpment. One of the most popular areas for travel photography is in the central plateau called the Skeleton Coast, a highly inhospitable area where wrecks of ships and bones of animals lie side by side in an otherwise empty desert landscape. Much of the country is simple untouched open space with a population of just over 2 million and thanks to its unique desert ecosystem there really isn’t any other location like it on earth which makes it ideal for travel photography because it’s less likely you’ll be taking generic tourist images.
The razor-edged dunes are some of the most recognizable in travel photography because of the way the winds blow and there also rocky, alien landscapes in the Escarpment that look much like something from Star Wars and are also home to the world’s second largest canyon.
While there’s some appeal to traveling to turbulent regions the risks can often outweigh the rewards for photographers. Namibia has been independent since 1990 and while the northwestern tip is a small buffer zone along the Zambezi river the rest of the country is fairly settled. The country is a democracy with a predominantly Christian population with much of the culture remaining the same from the days of South African control. This is ideal for travel photography because most people speak English or German and towns are generally safe for tourists.
Despite being mostly desert the country has a variety of wildlife and ways to catch it. Much of the country’s industry outside of towns focus on travel photography with safaris and Jeep trips to capture locations and wildlife. Cheetahs, lions, elephants, giraffes and all the expected wildlife of Africa are found here as well as a selection of sea life off the coast. For those interested in more macabre travel photography you can also capture the bones of them on the skeleton coast.
Since the country is sparsely populated much of the original tribal structure remains intact. You can speed time in lodges, camps, and villages among the dunes that are home to unique groups of people making this an ideal choice for travel photography. (Photo editing company) For example, one tribal group covers themselves in head to toe with red clay and their entire appearance has a monochrome beauty to it which blends with the landscape around them.
Thanks to its location it’s far enough away from the equator that it’s not as unbearably hot as the Sahara. Timing your trip means you’ll experience daytime desert temperatures that are almost pleasant. Travel photography often means getting uncomfortable, but when you’re already dealing with sand everywhere, you don’t need to add scorching heat too.