what to see / Namib Desert


Nicknamed the world’s oldest desert, the Namib stretches along the coast of Namibia to form one of the most spectacular and richest deserts in the world. Gently sloping toward the Atlantic Ocean, it is patterned by a sea of giant red sand dunes, some that reach 1000 feet (305 m) high. Stretching 1,200 miles in length, but averaging a width of only 70 miles, the Namib Desert is home to the highest sand dunes in the world. Because of its long, stable climate over time, a number of species boast ancient origins. Others have evolved unusual adaptations to survive in the extremely harsh environment. Although annual rainfall is limited to only .2 to 3 inches (5 to 76 mm) per year, thick fog from the Atlantic often blankets the dunes to create enough moisture for many species to survive. A tenebrionid beetle adopts a head-down position to allow condensing fog to trickle down into its mouth. Another beetle, Lepidochora discoidalis, is known to build trenches to trap fog. Even the... read more  Read More


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