Home to Namibia’s elusive desert elephants, Damaraland is the country’s wildest and most dramatic collection of landscapes.
Sprawled on the eastern fringe of the Skeleton Coast National Park and just south of Etosha National Park, the red-rock mountains of Damaraland evoke a spirit of timelessness. The ancient is accessible here; San stories are preserved on a canvas of rock at Brandberg and etched on the cave walls at Twyfelfontein, while the Petrified Forest, which dates back millions of years, is a haunting landscape of towering fossilised trees.
Besides its pervading feeling of prehistory, this region is most famous for its desert-adapted megafauna. Untamed and seemingly barren, Damaraland supports a staggering array of wildlife. Rhino, gemsbok, kudu, springbok, zebra and lion inexplicably thrive between its rocky outcrops and scrubby plains. This combination of dramatic scenery, survival-hardened wild creatures and primordial atmosphere makes Damaraland one of Namibia’s most authentic places and a requisite dust-kicking destination for adventurers.
Best time to visit
Damaraland is a year-round destination but the dry season (May to October) is best for wildlife viewing.
Combine Damaraland with:
- Etosha National Park: famous for the enormous salt pan at its heart, Etosha is one of Africa’s largest and most spectacular game parks.
- Skeleton Coast: explore the stark beauty and haunting solitude of Namibia’s rugged Skeleton Coast.
- Southern Namib: see wild desert horses at Aus, experience the village-like vibe of Luderitz and explore the ghost town of Kolmanskop.
Despite its many attractions, Damaraland remains one of Namibia’s hidden gems.
This is one of the few places in Africa where wildlife can be found outside of national parks or private game reserves, co-existing with traditional villages and farms.
While Damaraland is a desert region with little annual rain, the whole area can transform into a green oasis during the rainy season (November to April).
Discover San rock art at Brandberg and Twyfelfontein.
Explore the region’s vivid and dramatic landscapes, including Spitzkoppe and the Petrified Forest.
While sightings are not guaranteed, rhino and elephant trekking safaris will give you the best chance to see these desert-adapted animals up close.
Damaraland on the Map
TOP TRAVEL TIP: Damaraland is one of Namibia's most remote and unique regions; make sure you stay on the safely designated and marked main roads to ensure you don’t miss its big highlights.