Namibia

Driving Directions Namibia

NAMIBIA is situated on the Atlantic coast of southwest Africa. This vast country shares borders with Angola and Zambia to the north, Botswana to the east, and South Africa to the east and south.

Driving Directions


There are three central regions in the country: the Namib Desert running down the entire Atlantic coastline, a central plateau of mountains, rugged out­crops, sandy valleys, and sparse grasslands the east of the Namib; and further east and north, the Kalahari Desert. Also in the north of the coun­try is the Etosha Pan.

The largest of Namibia’s salt lakes, the Etosha Pan, is surrounded by bush containing large numbers of Namibia’s varied wildlife. The larger species include elephant zebra, giraffe, and lion.

Namibia has poor rainfall. Windhoek, the capital, has the highest amount of rain, but even here, it only amounts to 200-250 millimeters or 8-10 inches per year.

Namibia is mostly a stock-rearing country where sheep, cattle, and goats are raised. Namibia’s economy reflects the split often seen in African countries: the bulk of the population involved in subsistence farming and fighting a losing battle against the encroaching desert. In contrast, the country possesses some of the world’s largest and richest diamond fields.

Copper, uranium (Namibia has the world’s largest uranium mine), tungsten, and silver are among other minerals produced. One of Africa’s most fertile fishing grounds lies off the coast of Namibia. Mackerel, anchovies, and pilchards were exported, although production has dropped in recent years due to overfishing.

Google maps™ Namibia

Namibia is primarily a large desert and semidesert plateau with an average elevation of 1,080 meters (3,543 feet). There are four distinct topographical regions in Namibia: the coastal Namib Desert, the central plateau, the southeastern Kalahari Desert, and the northeastern woodland savannah. Extending from the northeast corner of the country is the Caprivi Strip, a narrow panhandle extending between Angola and Zambia on the north and Botswana on the south. Namibia lies on the African Tectonic Plate.

Namibia has a western coastline on the Atlantic Ocean. The cold Benguela ocean current, which flows from Antarctica north along the west coast of Africa, contributes to Namibia’s overall climate and causes the dense fog that almost always hangs over much of the coast, especially in the north.

Did you know about Namibia?

1. Namibia is the first country in the world to include protection of the environment and sustainable utilization of wildlife in its government’s constitution. About 15.5 percent of the country’s land has been set aside as national parks.

2. The elephant herds that roam northwest Namibia dwell in the desert. They seem to have adapted to the dry, sandy conditions by having larger feet and smaller bodies than other elephants. There are only two countries in the world where elephants live in desert conditions: Namibia and Mali. Most elephants inhabit savannah (grassland) or forest regions.

3. Namibia is one of the world’s leading producers of gem-quality diamonds. The most significant diamond mine areas are in the southwest and belong jointly to the De Beers Consolidated Diamond Mines and the Namibian government. Under the name Namdeb, they mine about half of the world’s diamonds. In the Oranjemund Mine, located on the country’s southern coast, diamond deposits are found under the beachfront soils and the coastal seafloor.

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