If you’re planning your holiday in Namibia or if you’re just driving through: be sure to spend a night at a Spitzkoppe campsite. It’s a magical place in the middle of the Namib Desert with some astonishing scenery around it. It’s definitely one of our favorite spots in Namibia.
Matterhorn of Africa
Spitzkoppe consists of several bald granite peaks in a shape that is unique in the world. The rock formation was created after the collapse of a huge volcano 700 million years ago. When you drive towards Spitzkoppe these formations rise out of nowhere which makes it extra special. The highest peak is 1784 meters above sea level. Next to Spitkoppe itself, the Klein Spitzkoppe (1572 meter) and Pondok Mountains can be found here. Spitzkoppe is also referred to as the Matterhorn of Africa due to its resemblance to the famous Swiss mountain.
Location of Spitzkoppe
Spitzkoppe is situated in the eastern part of Namibia in the Kunene region. It’s about a three-hour drive out of Windhoek and about 140 kilometers from Swakopmund. Most people combine Spitzkoppe with a visit to Brandberg or they are on their way to Etosha National Park.
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Rock paintings by the San
We’re not the first generation that is attracted to Spitzkoppe. Thousands of years ago the San people lived in nearby caves and made hundreds of rock paintings. There are at least 37 sites where these paintings can be found and there are several hikes you can make to get here. You’ll have to go with a guide which you can book at the reception.
Spitzkoppe might be even prettier after sunset. First you have the opportunity to climb a nearby rock and watch an amazing sunset. As the sun sets the last rays of the sun turn the surrounding rocks into a red coloured spectacle. After that, you’ll start noticing the first stars in the sky. Since there’s no artificial lighting you might even see the milky way.
Waking up with some Klipspringers
After such a wonderful sunset and pretty night you might think it doesn’t get any better than that. Well think again. Often times your morning starts in the shade of the Spitzkoppe. As time progresses the sun slowly start to rise above the peaks of the rock formations. We were lucky enough to see two klipspringers as soon as we got out of our tent. They looked at us and decided to climb the rocks.
Talking about climbing Spitzkoppe: It was 1946 when they first climbed the western section of this rock formation. You can still climb Spitzkoppe today if you’re accompanied by a professional guide. There are several routes you can take depending on how fit you are.
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A truly amazing experience is how you can describe camping in Spitzkoppe. There’s a community Spitzkoppe campsite in the park with 30 spots that you can’t book in advance. After you’ve sorted out your registration and payment at the reception you can pick any of the available spots on the Spitzkoppe campsite. There’s a long drop toilet nearby and a trash can at every site. That’s pretty much it. There is a shower available but only near the reception (which is pretty far from most campsites) so I suggest taking a camping shower (bag) with you.
Park fees and campsite rates
|Per person||N$ 60.00|
|Per child (6-12 yrs)||N$ 30.00|
|Per vehicle (less than 9 pax)||N$ 80.00|
|Per vehicle (more than 9 pax)||N$ 100.00|
|Per motorcycle||N$ 45.00|
|Per person per day||N$ 170.00|
|Per child (2-12 yrs) per day||N$ 120.00|
Looking for a more luxurious way of spending the night? A wonderful place to stay is the Spitzkoppen Lodge. This lodge is owned by the Barnard family and is located right between the granite rock formations and face the Brandberg and Erongo Mountains. There are 15 chalets available with a nice wooden deck. After you return from a hike or a horse ride you can relax in or near the pool with a cocktail in your hand.
When to go to Spitzkoppe
You can visit Spitzkoppe throughout the year. Do note that the temperature can rise to 40 degrees Celsius in summer. If you want to climb Spitzkoppe I recommend going in ‘winter’ (June, July & August).