Walvis Bay, The Bay of Whales, Namibia

Early seafarers from Holland travelling to the east in search of spices, stopped at a perennial spring here to fill their water casks. The surrounding Atlantic Ocean teemed with countless southern right whales and humpbacks, because commercial fishing had not yet begun. They found the coastal and inland lagoons teeming with greater and lesser flamingos. This awesome vision continues to this day. If you’re visiting the area, here are some of the best things to do in Walvis Bay Namibia.

Things to Do in Walvis Bay Namibia: Flamingos
Flamingos on Walvis Bay Lagoon: D Convertini / CC BY-SA 2.0

Walvis Bay Namibia Flamingoes, Whales

Nature’s Day Tours Around Walvis Bay Namibia

Exploring its natural wonders is one of the best things to do in Walvis Bay Namibia. The inshore waters and desert hinterland are part of the Namib-Naukluft National Park. This features the world’s oldest and purest desert, the 300 meter / 1,000 foot high razor sharp dunes at Sossusvlei, and an abandoned whaling station at Sandwich Harbour where 100 meter / 300 foot high dunes fall directly down into the sea.

Things to Do in Walvis Bay Namibia: Sandwich Bay Harbour
Sandwich Bay Harbour: Sergio Conti / CC BY-SA 2.0

Ocean and Desert Cruises

Fast speedboats and luxurious catamarans depart Walvis Bay Waterfront quite early on most mornings, and head for Sandwich Harbour some 80 kilometres / 50 miles to the south. They may stop at Pelican Point beneath the shadow of a lighthouse for guests to kayak among thousands of seals. Then they follow pelagic gulls, pelicans, gannets, cormorants and albatross across the water, while deeper out to sea giant whales and orcas may steal the show in season.

Things to Do in Walvis Bay Namibia: Orcas off Walvis Bay
Orcas off Walvis Bay: Tscherno / CC BY 2.0

Upon reaching Sandwich Harbour guests land among tall sand dunes, where they discover birds nesting on the edge of a shallow lagoon that was once the harbour. The only man-made items are abandoned Russian whaling boats, and the sparkling wines, fresh local oysters, seafood and meat snacks, and mouth-watering canapes their hosts serve them alfresco in the desert.

Then it is time to join the patient 4 X 4’s waiting quietly in the background, and head for our cruise ship or hotel in Walvis Bay through the harsh and unforgiving Namib Desert. Best book ahead, facilities here are not what you might expect.

Things to Do in Walvis Bay Namibia: Namib-Naukluft National Park
Namib-Naukluft National Park: Sergio Conti / CC BY-SA 2.0

About Richard Farrell

Richard FarrellI tripped over a shrinking bank balance and fell into the writing gig unintentionally. This was after I escaped the corporate world and searched in vain for ways to become rich on the internet by doing nothing. Despite the fact that writing is no recipe for wealth, I rather enjoy it. I will deny I am obsessed with it when I have the time.My base is Umtentweni in South Africa on the Kwazulu-Natal South Coast (30.7167° S, 30.4667° E). I work from home where I ponder on the future of the planet, and what lies beyond in the great hereafter. Sometimes I step out of my computer into the silent riverine forests, and empty golden beaches for which the area is renowned.

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2 Responses

  1. Western Sahara - Day Eleven on the Queen Mary | Go 4 Travel Blog

    […] days had passed at sea since we steamed out of Walvis Bay, Namibia. We were heading northwest to Gran Canaria where we moored at Las Palmas early the following […]

  2. Life on Board Ship: Day Two on the Queen Mary | Go 4 Travel Blog

    […] of rail space to lean on and contemplate the endless ocean. We were still in coastal waters and heading for Walvis Bay. Thanks to massive stabilisers and smart engineering, there was not even a hint of a pitch or roll. […]


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