10. Half-Day Swakopmund Tour from Walvis Bay
Your day starts when you are collected from the port of Walvis Bay or your hotel where you will receive a short introduction and briefing from your guide. Swakopmund is situated 30km north of Walvis Bay and you will travel on the coastal road for approximately 30 minutes. On the way there, see the stark contrasts of the massive dunes and the Atlantic ocean. As you approach Swakopmund, you really get the feel of the town's adventurous side with various adventure sports facilities and tour operators in the area.
The first stop is at the Martin Luther Road Locomotive, a steam-driven tractor engine that has was abandoned in the Namib desert outside of town. The Road Locomotive was brought to German South-West Africa in early 1896 to use for freight services between Swakopmund and the interior of the country, in place of oxen. The locomotive weighs 14 metric tonnes and due to various setbacks and breakdowns, eventually came to a complete halt and was abandoned where it is at present. From here, travel to the Kristall Gallerie where you will be amazed by all the semi-precious stones and gems that have been mined from this area. You also have the opportunity to purchase some of these unique gemstones. Next, head over to the German Marine Memorial and Lighthouse. Also known as the Marine Denkmal, this memorial was commissioned in 1907 by the Marine Infantry in Kriel, Germany and designed by sculptor AM Wolff. It commemorates the German First Marine Expedition Corps during Herero uprising of 1904.
The Swakopmund Lighthouse was opened on July 1902, it is 21 years older than the Lighthouse at Pelican Point Peninsula in Walvis Bay. The lighthouse is still in operation and guides ships with its light seen as far as 35 nautical miles away. Here you also have the opportunity to visit a local market, selling a variety of hand made crafts. From the Lighthouse, travel south to the 1905 Jetty. With the silting up of the harbor near the mole, it was decided that a wooden landing jetty should be constructed for the purpose of off-loading the boats and rafts. On 25 October 1904 a team of sixty German engineers landed at Swakopmund with materials to build the jetty. It was a difficult task that the engineers faced, fighting with strong currents of the Atlantic as well as the race against time as the mole started silting up with sand. However, they pushed through and met their deadline and the jetty was finished on 25 April 1905. It was 275 meters long and 9 meters wide. In 1912 it was decided that a steel jetty was necessary and work soon began to build it. Today it also has a lovely restaurant that provides delicious food and a spectacular view over the Atlantic Ocean. Then it is time to return to port or your accomodation in Walvis Bay.