12-day road trip South Africa – Namibia. Day 4-6: Lüderitz, Namibia
Lüderitz is a coastal town in southwestern Namibia and has a port developed around Robert Harbour and Shark Island. It’s known for its many German colonial buildings as well as the art nouveau Goerke Haus, which was built into the rock face on Diamond Hill. Nearby you will also find Felsenkirche is a hilltop church with beautiful panoramic bay views that stretch around to Robert Harbor.
There is much to be discovered in Lüderitz and its surroundings, especially if you have an interest in diamond history or out-of-the-ordinary places. This unique blend of history and desert characterise the town.
Lüderitz gained economic importance in 1908 when a black worker, Zacharias Lewala found a diamond during his work at the narrow-gauge railway. As the chief railway foreman, August Stauch suspected diamonds in the area and he instructed his workers to look out for shiny and unusual stones. After the find Stauch bought, together with his partner Soenke Nissen, bought claims for the area. The commencement of the diamond rush did not only result in an increasing number of adventurers travelling to Lüderitz, but it also turned Lüderitz into a very wealthy town.
The Lüderitz area is home to a wide variety of aquatic birds with a large numbers of flamingos, cormorants and seagulls inhabiting the shallow lagoonsand when sailing in the bay you may see seals and dolphins playing in the water. Halifax Island is a small rocky island about 100 m (330 ft) from the mainland, near Lüderitz, and is the third most important breeding site for African penguins in Namibia.
Kolmanskoop, Ghost Town – is a former German mining town which was abandoned almost entirely prior to 1950. Amazingly, the town had electricity, big houses, a bowling alley, theatre, big hospital, swimming pools, etc, but now, since the town is in the middle of the desert, it has been completely consumed by sand.
Important to remember: on Sundays most of the restaurants and cafes are closed thus leaving tourist with a little choice. The Penguin Restaurant of the Nest Hotel Lüderitz is however open where you will find good service and good food, but is slightly overpriced.
To make a long story short – we did really enjoyed our 3-night stay in Lüderitz but now the Namib Desert is calling us and we are back on the road again for the next 5 hours to continue our Namibian Adventure.
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