Friday, 3 December 2010

Making my way in Merrells through the perils of snowy London

Hi! Today i took one look out of the window at 6:30 and then refused to get out of bed for two hours ... I'm generally walking into work at 9am so you can imagine how rebellious my behaviour was! I just couldn't face it - the snow. Its so cold and tricky and i'm terrified I'll slip. When i eventually left the flat i was wearing my little black boots, the ones with the studs but one step into the snow was enough to see me turning tail and rushing back for my Merrell hiking shoes. Lots of grip here and the added surety of making it through treacherous terrain without any slippage. Yayyyy I love my Merrells. They're not exactly my most fashion forward footwear but they got me to and from work without a single mishap. mwah! xxx

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Hello world I’m pregnant

I’m going to be somebody’s mama. I still can’t quite believe it. I feel like I’ve waited all my life to be able to say those words and now that I can, I keep putting my fingers to my lips to stop myself from uttering them out loud for fear that saying them will wake me from a beautiful dream. But it isn’t a dream, it’s all real. It took a scan and the sight of a little baby wiggling its arms and legs and bouncing about in my womb to make it all sink in. To say that I am happy is the hugest understatement. I’m more than happy. I’m full of happiness and excitement and joy. Everything about being pregnant fascinates me. I’m utterly fascinated by my waist line, which for years I watched obsessively, now thicken and disappear. Fascinated by the little sleep I manage to squeeze out of a night though I’m spent and exhausted and in bed by 10. Fascinated by how my hair and nails seem to grow so fast, and my forehead suddenly begin to sprout fine spots. For so long I watched my friends and cousins and sister have children and each time I’d love the happiness being pregnant brought them and I’d love the little person they brought into the world, and I’d hope that one day it would be me. When Tom and I got married last year I wondered if I would be similarly blessed and now I have been. There is a little person inside of me … and come 10 June 2011, I am going to be its mommy.

Monday, 22 November 2010

My sisters

without doubt my absolute favourite people in the world are my two younger sisters Shakira and Zaytoon (Sharkie and Zucchi). I haven't seen them since May and wont see them until Christmas and I cant wait!!!! Just a few short weeks left and I'll be home home home. Right now I'm in London and they're in beautiful Cape Town where the sun almost always shines.

 Zaytoon, Shakira and I at Shakira's baby shower for her first baby, my gorgeous neice Ghanaan.

  Zaytoon and I on my wedding day

Myself, Shakira and a 3 month old Ghanaan on my wedding day

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Gossip Girl. Eeeeeeek!

What's got me seriously excited on this long slow Tuesday afternoon?

The knowledge that season 4 of Gossip Girl kicks off tomorrow evening on ITV2!!!!!

Ohhhh at long long last I am to have what I've longed for most - to be reunited with Chuck Bass and Blair Waldorf. Call me a sado but THIS is what it boils down to. I love my weekly fix of Manhattans upper elite and their going ons.

Do I live vicariously? Ohhhhhhh yes. Yes please :)

gossip girl

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Xfactor - Rebecca Ferguson singing 'A Change is Gonna Come'

Absolutely have to share this with you. Last night Tom and I watched xfactor and were blown away by the pure and gentle voice of once contestant. She sang Sam Cooke's A Change Is Gonna Come. I was so moved, my eyes filled up and fat tears rolled down my cheeks.

To listen, click Rebecca Ferguson singing A Change is Gonna Come on xfactor

Estee Lauder New Pure Colour inspired look

So I tried this look and ... yeah I haven't got it down pat just yet bu u ut... I do sort of like it. Its quite dramatic and definitely not my minimilistic everyday thing but come next big night out ... I reckon that i'll be rocking it :)

what dyou think? i know its not a very good pic and the lightings kind of dulled it down quite a it but can this work for me?

True Blue

loving Estee Lauder's new pure colour for eyes lips and nails! Will have a go and see if I come even close to achieving this look.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Porto Vecchio, Corsica

So excited to finally be going somewhere after what feels like 5 years in London. Its not really but i know you know what i mean.

I'll be in Corsica in France with bezzie friend Waheeda, Adiel, Suri my little flower, Warda the shopaholic, Razaan the sweet tooth and someone's mum from 23-28 September! yayyyyyy!!!! We'll be in Porto Vecchio and all our accommodation, flight, transport and schengen visa stuffs all sorted. now we just have to get there and let the holiday fun begin. so exciting.

anway so this is a pic of the beach we're really close to. like literally 5 minutes walk away! I'm never leaving it. Actually, you know how i do travel writing but haven't written anything at all in the longest time? well, i'm really keen to do a piece on Porto Vecchio and promise to publish here for your comments before i shoot it off to magazine editors.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Abubakr and Ghanaan

Cant get enough of my sisters' two - Abubakr (6months) and Ghanaan (a year and 8 months)

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Eid Mubarak. Wishing muslims everywhere great joy and peace as we prepare to celebrate this beautiful day.

coming back from tomorrow

what does that even mean? hell i dont know. today is a happy day. last night my husband came home with a savannah bag of south african goodies from the south african shop at london bridge and i love the bag and i love the Ouma Rusk and Nick Nacks (which we dont get here!) and Simba salt and vinegar my favourite flavour and tempo chocolates which are to die for and fruit dainties which immediately made me think of my mum who always has to have them on Eid. Sometimes I love him lots and lots. Do you have fruit dainties for tomorrow Mummy? I do! its Eid tomorrow! I'm making a pie and a cheese cake. And I've bought the most gorgeous vintage dress from River Island. Man sometimes I just love that shop! Have a look at my dress and tell me how fabulous you think it is.

Friday, 19 March 2010

Mixed Bag, now and then poems

Between forked paths

Between forked paths I stand and
Waver, presented with two equal choices
Undecided indecision, rife and stifling

I am the spider web, too many radii present too many choices
I am the math equation, numerous tangents, going no where?

And why?

Because you came close
And I, in a moment unguarded bid you enter
And you lingered just… a moment
…a moment and I am marked deep within, scorched by your fire
The flame that will not be subdued

And what would I rather,
why would I rather

A choice between adoration or struggle
What sense, this dive in perversity

This fly struggles in your web spun of silk
Memories of escape have faded yet it struggles still

And …hidden at heart, is the secret unspoken thrill

My friend

i thought of you, spoke of you, dreamt of you
and almost as if i had wished it, you came

And you coming,
was a blessing and a balm
and that is how it has always been with you

time and circumstance put distance between us
but it is a physical one
no wider than the space between two heartbeats

when i said you were my friend and you said i was yours
something happened. I do not know the words to explain it,
i only know what it feels like and it is always with me.


After everyone has gone
After the lights of the cars have winked out of sight from your driveway
After winding roads and adventure
After pursuance of every goal

Now perhaps, there is time for the afterthought

And that is what I have become
…the afterthought

Count the days slip quietly pass
No word
No nothing

And here then, presented is the moment
A reluctant murmur to remorseful response
and earnest pledges to change

And the afterthought is for a time a forethought,
but …
times change
memory fades
and so too
the priority, to sit forlorn

how to make you realize
all that could be lost at the sun’s next rising, at the moon’s next waning

how to make you realize all that could be yours were you to only see

That girl does not live here anymore

Whispered breath caressed your name,
Golden eyes worshipped your face,
A heart filled with wonder and giving
In a moment wrung of life thrown aside
…now an empty husk.

… too much given, too much taken.

But that was a different girl.
That was a different time.
And that girl does not live here anymore.

How much you mean to me

I wish I knew how to spurn out great words
that would tell you how much you mean to me.

Would that a poem could capture all that I feel.
But a poem is not enough...

Days when things were unbearable
you took me away and instead of tears,
I knew sunshine and it gave me courage
and bolstered me so I could face any upset.

And when I was indecisive you shook me
and made me wake up and sit up and DO
instead of lamenting lack of opportunities.
and I'm glad for that shake.

And you lifted a veil of mist and
made me see all that was around me
and I knew a world full of wonder and beauty

Then you showed me a world so
hungry for compassion and understanding
that I came to understand selflessness
and how giving washes away all past hurts
and cleanses one

And the tears we shed together
and the great sorrow we knew
and the comfort gave and got.

And that you loved me so, that you
desired for me what you desired for yourself...

And so I wish I knew how to spurn out those great words
that would tell you just how much you mean to me.


Death is not the cold body laid out on a mocking mortuary table,
It is not the smiling corpse encased in a glowing coffin
Nor the hollow shell laid to ground beneath tearful eulogies
Rather it is the broken heart shattered by lies, the lack of warmth in your eyes
This, the absence of your love, … this is death


Your image flashes before my eyes
and again I am torn apart.
But for my doubts and my half lies
I could still have had your heart.
Realizing too late what I had lost
I sought to beckon you in.

But the pain you knew was too high a cost,
now I suffer for my sin.
And I dread the day we meet again
and all affection is dead.
‘Cause in my heart I still retain
the love your heart has turned to lead.

So now I face our world you left
tired. cold. alone. … bereft.


To the palms of my hands, and to the soles of my feet
have you laid your lips to speak your devotion

and I am puzzled that you think me deserving,
and I am frightened for you, for I will seek what is not in my grasp

here you stand before me, your world in your eyes, your life my gift
and I am moved beyond all else, still, I do not know that it is enough.

what is this love that poets speak of, that they immortalize,
that the strong have fought for, the weak have withered for?

Have I now become the fool who gives up all, questing for love
When that love may be this fool’s dream but never this dreamers’ reality

You speak of it, love, as if you know it, as if you believe it

I am the recipient of a devotion that this poet would die for.
… how strange that you have you found such love in me.

Obscured in mist

So dense I would loose myself were I to navigate.
Unearthly beauty beckons.
As with all things most dangerous
you whisper coldly for me to follow, invite me within.
And I am drawn as upon weightless clouds to enter
into your midst, knowing well that despair must follow.

And you are temptation, ethereal whispers, snatches
of long ago songs, half glimpsed shadows, …surreal

In my stomach

To me they turned faces etched with sympathy
for what I had lost and for what I had fought.
And yes, I fought, I fought for you,
I breathed for you, my heart beat for you.
But a Greater Power needed you and you had to go.

But they of the faces etched with sympathy
knew not what I knew,
That you were with me… with ME
Inside of me, in my stomach

Was it not I who carried you like a mother does her unborn child in her stomach?
That’s where you lay, inside of me. To comfort and pacify me until I could be strong for them again.

And when they whispered and stared and called me unfeeling because I shed no tear for you,
I forgave their lack of understanding because you were with ME, inside of me, in my stomach.

Inside the cocoon

I have thought about it, about you and I and it is wrong.
You are not with me and I am with another,
sharing all that we shared but sharing nothing we shared.

I am dead, still I remain silent inside the cocoon.
He asks what I am thinking, I say nothing and the
betrayal is as real as if I had followed my thoughts and flown to you.

But he loves me like you never could,
…he loves me like I dreamt you would.
And I love him, not at all. He knows.

But he holds me softly, he holds me carefully.

And … it is wrong.

Like Spirit

Touch the petal, to watch breath bated as it unfolds
and within find worlds unimaginable, untold
breath captured and held, hearts humbled by purity of sense.
a meeting of like spirits, at once unwished for and at once desired.

Still, an urge to glimpse down paths much travelled,
to wonder at which spring bursts forth this feast of senses.
yet glimpse not too long backwards and perchance miss the golden sparkle.
No… harry forth, look onwards to bask within radiance and be warmed within
for joy and wonderment sublime is discovered in proximity to the sun.

Watch unfolded

delve into darkness
ring surrounds a questioning twilight
to watch unfolded the miracle,
see unveiled the oracle -
the orb to the moonlight.

to focus, breath bated
to freeze the essence,
to capture ...

... to possess

This Wedding Day (For my husband Tom)

May this wedding day it rain
A thousand blessed drops to shower
The earth and raise palms of
Dates and olive groves

May this wedding day the honey and halwa
Flow like a river in heaven its golden
Streams sweetening every word
drowning any hurt or tear

May this wedding day there be dancing again
Of wives and their husbands and memories
of a clear day on a clear hill and garlands
in her hair and promise in his eyes

May this wedding day fill with joy and kindness
And your eye lay soft on the curve of my cheek
The shape of my lip the look in my eye
And my breath whisper your name tease the hair
In your neck and kiss your mouth

May this day, our wedding day be
the song we sing, the circle that does not end

To God’s door

Above the clouds where angels sigh
Sunlight strokes our faces, is captured in light
And we alone wander amidst aching beauty
Almost undone by the otherworldliness of this place
Till our souls, transcendent, are awash with closeness
And beyond welcoming waters, obscured by earths hold
Yet clear to the unchained, eternity beckons.
Here is where questing has led us, to Gods door.

Awash with reverence, wondered sighs to the Cherisher,
And all I am capable of, all I am made of, is this moment.


Where do you go when the light dies
When the sky darkens and the land is silent
When the wind is still and your heart beats no more

We are left fighting the good fight through days like eternities
Dreaming of you forgetting that you have left us calling your name expecting a reply
Do you think of that where you sleep?

Where are you?
Where are you?

I love you

These words I repeat so often I worry may begin to lose their meaning
Yet I say them all the more because something must capture what you mean

So appreciative because life’s radiance had flown to brighter skies and happiness
seemed a luxury trapped behind the prison of my sad face

You came and slowly the ice in my ribcage melted beneath your warm eyes
And your heart so curious and welcoming graciously issued me an invitation
To enter and make myself at home.

And I did.

Table Mountain

I saw you burn, go up in flame
Wild winds raged, stoking your fires
Angry and immortal like the battles above great Olympus.
And no opposing force could stand in their path to diverge your destiny.

Nights and mornings untold rained down your black tears
Into hair homes dreams into every crevice
clogging all thought and slowing our steps.

And you in your palanquin of mist lay hidden while we watched scared,
waiting to see how you would end, dreading dying for
the charred husk, all that remained of your ravishment.

Noodle Bar

Noodles, slimy like the entrails of a three year relationship glint up at me,
winking beneath the harsh electric light above, clashing and glaring against an eastern sky.
How is it that you won’t go away when all is dead and buried and has been for years.
Am I what keeps you here, captive in the walls of my mind, with an anger that will not be appeased.

Sixty days

I am coming. I will be there soon. In sixty days.

In sixty days I will know your laugh again,
secretly steal breaths from you as you dream,
trace the history of your face with my fingertips
and give thanks for something that is real.

The start of a life with you, resuming a life with you. In sixty days.

Thursday, 28 January 2010

How to Ride an Ostrich

Of all the things you thought you'd get around to doing in Cape Town & the Western Cape ... riding an ostrich has got to rate as the strangest by far!

Oudtshoorn is the ostrich capital of the world producing 75% of all ostrich products worldwide. So if it’s riding an ostrich you’re after, then its Oudtshoorn you’re heading to.

Located in the Klein Karoo in the Western Cape and at little more than 4 hours out of Cape Town, Oudtshoorn is just enough off the beaten path to make you feel like you’ve found a secret place.

To ride an Ostrich, you’ll need to visit one of the 5 Ostrich Show Farms in Oudtshoorn where you can observe large flocks of ostriches, cuddle the chicks and hand feed them. Ostriches are the largest birds on earth and when fully grown, they easily weigh over 120kg pounds. This however, does absolutely nothing to hamper their speed, which can reach up to 70 km per hour. They may not be able to fly, but they sure can cover ground in a hurry!

Professional multilingual guides take you on a conducted tour where you learn about the birds. Next there’s a chance to visit the restaurant and try out some ostrich steak which interestingly enough tastes more like beef than poultry. If you're a big group, you could even share an ostrich egg which easily feeds 20 people. Or try ostrich paté and biltong.

Finally if you’re really brave you can try sitting on an ostrich. Better yet, why not try riding it. Mounting one of these big birds is no easy feat, the ‘saddle’ is made of denim and the ostrich has no reins! Riders have to hold onto the ostrich’s wings for dear life and pray that they’ll last a few seconds once the guides let go. Then it’s all about trying to stay aboard a speeding bullet before the guides grab your arms at the end of a lap, and pull you off ! … the only way to dismount.

How's THAT for the ride of your life!

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Newbie blogger


Oh I am so excited. I haven't quite figured out everything just yet but i'm getting there. Still working on loading images. Very clueless about it indeed. HELP anyone? Any help/ pointers/ advice would be very appreciated.

I've just loaded some of my published travel pieces. Have a look and let me know what you think.

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Sunrise over Sossusvlei - Namib Naukluft Park, Namibia

"... this sheltering giant of desert and sky is like a world in which man seems to be such an unlikely visitor that he has no place. Yet he is beckoned and enchanted by the ghostly silence and surreal space of the Namib.", Jon Manchip White, author of "The Land God Made in Anger"

Sossusvlei, located in the Namib Naukluft Park – the largest conservation area in Africa measuring about 19,300 square miles (50,000 km²), and the fourth largest in the world, is a clay pan found in the park and is, with the exception of the wildlife in Etosha Park Namibia's chief attraction.

Known as the 'Gathering place of water' by the indigenous Nama of Namibia, Sossusvlei was formed by the Tsauchab River 60 000 years ago when it gave up its battle to meet the Atlantic Ocean and chose instead to drain away beneath the massive surrounding dunes. Thomas Smit, my resolute Namibian tour guide in a moment of unnatural cheerfulness, revealed that two years ago, “... this place was buzzing. It rained so heavy, the vlei filled with water and created a turquoise lake that lasted for months, and people came from all over to see it". No evidence of any lakes during my visit, but perhaps not so uncommon as it generally only occurs every five years when the Tsauchab floods its banks.

Dune 45

Having read every online review written about Sossusvlei, I still found myself largely unprepared for the size of Dune 45 which took my breath away, both literally and figuratively.

So named for easy referencing and not for its distance in kilometres from Sesriem Canyon, as is generally thought, it is the most popular and at 170 metres, most accessible dune in the Sossusvlei.

We’d somehow gotten really lucky and as the only two people around, had it all to ourselves on our  arrival before 5am in order to reach the summit in time for sunrise – reportedly the best time to view Sossusvlei as the air is still mercifully cool, few make it all the way to the top and the sunrises were said to be wonderful. 'Tell me you have seen anything more beautiful ... and I will say you are lying”, Thomas stated.  Too exhausted to utter a word I dropped in an ungainly heap at the spot where he’d been waiting for the past ten minutes, patiently watching my hour long, lungs bursting and chest exploding plod up the edge of the dune. I was ready to see what all the fuss was about.

Surreal sunrise

It soon became apparent. That high above the ground, there is a stillness so complete and endless and the landscape, so remote and filled with deep gulleys and shadows seemed like another planet. The desert cloaked in darkness was an eerie phenomenon until the moment the sun slowly flushed the sky with faint orange blooms and began to fire the sands of the Namib. Suddenly every laborious step up the dune was worth all the effort.

Watching the sun climb and rise over majestic sand dunes, some of which at a height of 300 metres are the highest in the world, was magical. Their beauty is undeniable, so simple and stark yet so evocative. The shadowy dunes seemed to cast aside darkness, transforming into shimmering mirages of deep orange, reds and mauves against a sky so blue, it was almost too bright to capture. Sossusvlei brings out the creative photographer in everyone. Surreal shapes, colours, textures and landscapes are accentuated by the ancient trees and desert-adapted wildlife like gemsbok, springbok and ostrich.

Heart in my throat, utterly spellbound by the mystery unfolding before me, I was lost in the moment but as the sun continued to rise I was faced with a harsh reality. Within an hour, the sand would be impossibly hot to walk on and possible wind storms could make life very uncomfortable. It was time to leave the wonder behind and return to reality.

Coming down from the top of Dune 45 proved much easier on the legs, and the lungs, and where its ascent required a full hour, the descent – shrieking with laughter as I tobogganed down its side on my towel lasted a mere five, fun-filled minutes.

Sunrise over Sossusvlei? ... Sublime.

Where to stay

Visitors have the option of staying at luxury lodges in the area or choosing more economical accommodation in the tiny village of Solitaire or Sesriem camping grounds which are 60kms from Sossusvlei.

The gate from Sesriem to Sossusvlei opens in time for campers to drive to Sossusvlei before sunrise. To protect the fragile wilderness, only day trips are allowed into Sossusvlei and due to the opening time of the national park gates the only way to be on the dunes in time for sunrise is to either camp at

Solitaire or Sesriem or stay at Sossusvlei Wilderness Camp, Kulala Lodge, Little Kulala or Kulala Wilderness Camp.

Wanting the best of both worlds we cheekily tried out one of each option:

Sesriem Campsite

To start with, we spent two laidback economical nights at Sesriem camping grounds where on the first night, we struck up friendships with fellow travellers Jane and Scot Ireland from Wales, and shared travel experiences and laughs at the lively bar late into the night. Situated just 4kms from Sesriem Canyon, the views from the camp site are brilliant and if you’re on the west side of the campsite which we were fortunate enough to be, chances of seeing springbok, gemsbok and mongoose strolling through your camping area are pretty good.

The campsite which has a general store, petrol station, dipping pools and plenty of hot and cold showers is managed by NWR (Namibia Wildlife Resorts) and reservations must be made in advance at the Central Reservations Office in Windhoek.

Sossusvlei Mountain Lodge

Having read that Sossusvlei Mountain Lodge had been featured as one of the world's top 20 new lodges in Condé Nast Traveller UK, we had no choice but to check in on our final night in Sossusvlei.

The lodge and the excellent service provided by its helpful and attentive staff were amazing. No request went unattended and everyone’s friendliness made us feel very welcome and at home. The large suites, made up almost entirely of glass are wonderfully designed so that regardless of where you are, you’d still have a perfect view over the plains. I loved the outside shower, a wonderful treat in the afternoon and the king-sized bed in the bedroom, raced with skylight above it, made for perfect star gazing. Furnishings were both luxurious yet comfortable enough to make you feel utterly pampered and relaxed. A personal favourite of mine was the lodge’s swimming pool which was an absolute delight. Acting as a massive birdbath it draws many different species of birds, which presented great photo opportunities. I could happily have snapped away for hours had we not arranged a guided night drive with the resident astronomer. Sossusvlei Mountain Lodge is the perfect mix of luxury, excellence and friendliness. I was loathe to move on the next morning but our stay was over and the real world was waiting. 

Wining and dining.

There are no restaurants so if you are camping you will either cook or eat at the lodge where you are camping. Campgrounds usually have barbeque facilities.

Lodges offer three meals a day. Breakfast comes with your room but lunch and dinner are extra. Meals at Sossusvlei Mountain Lodge were a study in gastronomy and worth every penny. Our meals prepared by master chef Hugo Hayes were sumptuous affairs. On the whole, the cost of meals are reasonable and packed lunches can be ordered the night before. Dinner is generally a buffet or a barbeque set off with a fine selection of excellent South African wines.

If you like meat you and love adventure, then you will not be disappointed. Prepare yourself for game as the meat is usually a choice of kudu, oryx or eland. Some lodges will have beef, pork, and lamb and sometimes even ostrich or crocodile.

What to See                                                                            

  • Big Daddy - Highest dune in the world - Wait 30 million years and you get Big Daddy, one of the oldest sand dunes on the planet and thought to be the biggest. Sossusvlei’s ziggurat of red sand, Big Daddy rises 325m from the parched African earth of the Namib Desert. 
  • Sesriem Canyon – Ses is six in Afrikaans and riem means thong – six thongs. Sesriem derives its name from the time when early pioneers tied six lengths of rawhide thongs together to draw water from the pools. The canyon is a narrow gorge 30m deep and 1km long and is evidence of shallow seas and wet periods of days gone by. The canyon is usually filled with pools of water good for a refreshing dip. Walk along the dry riverbed or watch the amazing sunsets from this superb point. The canyon is only a few kilometres from the campsite. 
  • Dead Vlei a short drive from Dune 45, is a pure white, 1km long salt pan. Due to the lack of water, petrified camel thorn trees carbon dated to 900 years old, though dead, have been nearly perfectly preserved for centuries. 
  • !Nara Vlei – a salt pan which has a number of endemic !Nara bushes eking an existence from the scarce water that occasionally makes it down from the Naukluft Mountains; and Hidden Vlei which is a barren amphitheatre some distance beyond Dead vlei. 
  • Wildlife in the area includes antelope, mountain zebra, springbuck, hyena, Cape fox, aardwolf, black-backed jackals and bat-eared foxes and the elusive leopard. Great bird watching opportunity abounds with several species to view. 
  • Fauna and flora - a fascinating variety of dune-adapted reptiles and beetles as well as unique desert plants are the dominant life form in this desiccated realm. 
  • Namib - Oldest desert in the world - Stretching 1,600 km along the Atlantic Ocean coast of Namibia, the Namib, having endured arid or semi-arid conditions for at least 80 million years, is the oldest desert in the world. The startling red colouring of the sand is an indication of its age. Slow iron oxidization and fragments of garnets cause the colour change: The older the dune, the brighter its colour.

What to Do

  • Ballooning – go hot air ballooning over the Namib’s Great Sand Sea for an excellent perspective of the expanse of dunes. 
  • Scenic Desert Flights – take to the skies on a 40 minute to an hour flight in a light aircraft.
  • Eco Quad Biking – most lodges offer exhilarating yet eco-friendly, fixed quad biking trials which have been meticulously laid out so as not to interfere with the area’ s indigenous plant and animal life. 
  • 4x4 Guided Nature Drives – as with the eco quad biking, most lodges offer relaxing drives through pristine nature where Oryx and springbok wander freely. 
  • Elim Dune which is about 5km from Sesriem, makes for a worthy climb and excellent photographs.

Getting There

Pretty easy when like us, it’s as simple as hopping onto a two hour flight from Cape Town to Windhoek, and then sitting pretty for 5 hours in a air conditioned 4x4 to Sossusvlei.


There are several airlines flying to Namibia from Europe, America, the Far East and other destinations.

 Some flights are direct, though most connect from Johannesburg via British Airways and South African Airways and fly overnight so you can fall asleep on the plane and wake in southern Africa, ready to explore.

* Air Namibia offers direct services to Windhoek from Frankfurt, Cape Town and Johannesburg.


Flying:              Scheduled charter flights and light aircraft operate to Sossusvlei

Driving:              Sossusvlei can also be reached by two wheel drive vehicle on good gravel roads. The travelling distance is 380 km (235 miles) from Swakopmund and 360 km (220 miles) from Windhoek. The drive is approximately 5 hours long.

Tour operators:  Most tour companies operate tours from Windhoek and Swakopmund to Sossusvlei.