Sossusvlei Scenic Flights


1. Sesriem Canyon
24°31'9.61"S , 15°47'15.87"E

The Tsauchab River has shaped the Canyon over millions of years and it is one of the few places in the area that holds water all year round.

The early Afrikaans explorers in the region named the canyon after the fact that they had to use six (“ses”) leather straps (“riem”) tied together to create a rope long enough to lower buckets into the canyon below, in order to fetch water.

2. Tsauchab Valley
24°34'39.51"S , 15°43'30.56"E

It is approximately 100 km (62 mi) long, and known especially for the portion in which it flows through the Sesriem Canyon.

Since it is in the Namib Desert, the Tsauchab carries water only during the rare times when rain falls in the Naukluft Mountains and runs off, since it cannot seep into the soil fast enough. During these rains, the Tsauchab becomes a rapid-running, strong river within a matter of hours.

As a result of the occasional rains, it has over the past two million years carved the Sesriem Canyon in sedimentary rock. Past the canyon, the Tsauchab flattens and grows broader, and is surrounded by a riparian forest as it slopes towards the Sossusvlei.

3. Dune 45
24°43'29.56"S ,15°28'18.18"E

Dune 45 is a star dune in the Sossusvlei area of the Namib Desert in Namibia. Its name comes from the fact that it is at the 45th kilometer of the road that connects the Sesriem gate and Sossusvlei. Standing over 170 m, it is composed of 5-million-year-old sand that is detritus accumulated by the Orange River from the Kalahari Desert and then blown here.

4. Some of the highest dunes in the world
24°42'16.79"S , 15°24'8.26"E

5. Sossusvlei
24°44'2.20"S , 15°17'27.87"E

Sossusvlei is a salt and clay pan surrounded by high red dunes, located in the southern part of the Namib Desert, in the Namib-Naukluft National Park of Namibia. The name "Sossusvlei" is often used in an extended meaning to refer to the surrounding area (including other neighboring vleis such as Deadvlei and other high dunes), which is one of the major visitor attractions of Namibia.

The name "Sossusvlei" is of mixed origin and roughly means "dead-end marsh". Vlei is the Afrikaans word for "marsh", while "sossus" is Nama for "no return" or "dead end". Sossusvlei owes this name to the fact that it is an endorheic drainage basin (i.e., a drainage basin without outflows) for the ephemeral Tsauchab River.

6. Deadvlei and Big Daddy Dune
24°45'50.19"S , 15°17'45.28"E

Dead Vlei has been claimed to be surrounded by the highest sand dunes in the world, the highest reaching 300–400 meters (350m on average, named "Big Daddy" or "Crazy Dune"), which rest on a sandstone terrace.

7. The White Mountain
24°50'19.95"S , 15°16'41.96"E

8. Dune Streets
24°54'59.02"S , 15° 7'54.95"E

9. Possible Wildlife
25° 0'19.00"S , 14°50'31.14"E

10. Long Wall (Also known as “Die Lange Wand”)
24°56'44.10"S , 14°48'34.29"E

Offers excellent photo opportunities!

11. More coastal wildlife
24°46'39.14"S , 14°48'14.72"E

12. Dunes changing colour
24°30'35.94"S , 14°58'33.64"E

Here the dunes begin to change from a red color to a yellow/white tint.

13. Black Crested Dunes
24°21'15.42"S , 14°47'7.06"E

The dunes begin to develop a black crest due to iron in the sand. Wind-erosion forces the iron to the top of the dune.

14. The Diamond Camps
24°12'7.41"S , 14°36'53.39"E

Consisting out of 3 main camps where the Germans use to mine diamonds. Today only some remnants of the activities are visible and are deteriorating at an alarming rate. There is a limited quantity of hand-operated mining equipment left, wooden houses, an old ox wagon and an old pipeline connecting the three camps. These camps offer some insights into the hardship endured by the Indigenous Namibians and early settlers to Namibia.

15. Small natural saltpans
24° 9'40.46"S , 14°32'56.30"E

16. Eduard Bohlen Shipwreck
23°58'33.62"S , 14°27'36.64"E

A ship that was wrecked on the Skeleton Coast of German Southwest Africa (now Namibia) on 5 September 1909 in a thick fog. The wreck currently lies in the sand a quarter mile (0.4 km) from the shoreline.

17. Conception Bay
23°55'7.98"S , 14°30'13.88"E

Conception Bay opens to the Atlantic Ocean in the northwest. There is a lagoon at the southern edge of its shoreline. The bay is in a desolate area. It is part of one of the coastal stretches of Namibia where diamonds are found.

18. Dune streets with possible wildlife (Oryx/Zebra/Ostrich)
24°15'5.84"S , 15°10'41.38"E

19. Ellem Dune
24°25'44.24"S , 15°41'22.83"E

A wonderful place for a sun downer with Sossusvlei Lodge!

20. Seal Colonies
24° 4'53.95" , 14°27'50.94"E