50 Fascinating Facts About Namibia

These natural treasures and breathtaking landscapes are just some of why Namibia is so popular with tourists from across the world. Namibia has various landscapes, from arid plains to dunes to lush wetland to deep winding gorges. Namibia has emerged from its violent colonial history as a hopeful and developing sovereign country with an increasingly bright future. It's no surprise that Namibia is on so many people's bucket lists because of its reputation as ``Africa for beginners.``

Fascinating Facts

1
Namibia became a sovereign state on March 21, 1990, making it one of the youngest nations in the world.
2
Celebrities Shiloh was born to Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie in Namibia in 2006. The Namibia Nature Reserve received a donation of US$2 million from the pair.
3
Approximately 1,218,234 foreign visitors from the United Kingdom, United States, or Germany visited Namibia in 2011. Nature Reserve received a donation of US$2 million from the pair.
4
4
They are the earliest hunter-gatherers on the planet. Most San children can recognise at least 200 varieties of plants by 12, whereas many adults can identify more than 300 different kinds of vegetation.
5
Basters, a Namibian ethnic group, adopted their name from the Dutch word for "crossbreed" or "bastard," which translates to "bastard." Basters, descendants of Cape Colony Dutch immigrants and indigenous African women, were ostracised by blacks and whites. They moved to Namibia in 1870 and established Rehoboth, the country's first permanent settlement.
6
As the first World Heritage Site in Namibia, Twyfelfontein has about 2,500 cave paintings and sculptures on more than 212 rock panels and 13 panels, some dating back to the early Neolithic era.
7
Women and girls in the Himba community are more likely to engage in physically demanding employment than boys and men.
8
Himba women in Namibia apply a combination of ocher, butter, plus resin from omuzumba plants to their skin to shield themselves from the sun.
9
The Hoba meteorite is the most giant known single meteorite in Namibia, measuring more than 119,050 pounds.
10
An incredible 9,610 square miles of meteorite fields have been uncovered in Gibeon, making it the most extensive meteorite field ever discovered. Over 150 meteorites were deposited in Namibia during the shower more than 600 million years ago. Thirty-three of the meteorites is currently on exhibit in Namibia's Post Street Mall, while the others are in museums throughout the globe.
11
Based on how the size is measured, Namibia's Fish River Canyon may or may not be the world's second-largest canyon behind Arizona's Grand Canyon. Compared to the Blue Nile Gorge in Ethiopia, which is 3,200 feet deep & 250 miles long, the Fish River Canyon is just 1,640 feet deep and 100 miles long.
12
An underground lake of this size has been discovered in Namibia's Dragon's Breath Cave for the first time. There are 215,178 square feet of water in the lake, which is 196 feet below the land's surface.
13
The Ombalantu Baobab Tree & Heritage Center in Namibia is an 800-year-old hollowed-out Baobab tree. Throughout history, the tree has been used as a church, post office, or jail.
14
This Namibian Otjihaenamaparero farm, which dates back 150 million to 200 million years, is home to preserved animal traces, including dinosaur footprints.
15
The shipwrecks, whale bones, or human skeletons that dot Namibia's Skeleton Coast inspired the name. Debris from ships washed ashore after being sunk by the deep fog that blanketed the shoreline.
16
Namibia is the most press-free country in Africa and the 17th most free country in the world. May 3 is recognised as World Press Freedom Day to honour Namibia's Windhoek Declaration for Global Press Freedom, which was signed on that date in 1991 and is a global milestone for press freedom.
17
About 50 petrified tree trunks make up Namibia's Petrified Forest. Silica from the sand likely swept into the area 260 million years ago and created petrification there.
18
The constitution of Namibia, adopted in 1990, was hailed as one of the most liberal in the world, with a Bill of Rights guaranteeing freedom of expression, press, assembly, association, and religion, among other rights.
19
It was only in Namibia that environmental protection was included in the country's constitution for the first time. More than 135,000 square kilometres (40 per cent) of Namibia's land under state or private protection.
20
The whole coastline of Namibia is nationally protected, making it unique among countries. The Dorob National Park protects the whole 1,570-kilometer coastline of the nation.
21
The Namib Desert is the inspiration for the country's name. Nama/word Damara's for "huge place" is "Namib."
22
114 mammal and 110 reptile species may be found at Etosha National Park in Namibia, home to over 340 bird species, making it one of the world's largest national parks. 'Great White Place,' or 'Place of Emptiness,' is what Etosha signifies.
23
The AfriCat Foundation in Namibia is the world's most extensive rescue-and-release programme for big cats, having saved over 1,000 of them in the last two decades.
24
Namibia is home to the world's most enormous cheetah population, with around 25% of the world's cheetahs and 40% of Africa's cheetahs. Farmland accounts for around 90 per cent of Namibia's 2,500 to 3,000 cheetahs.
25
One-third of the world's succulent species may be found in Namibia's Succulent Karoo in the Kalahari Desert.
26
Walvis Bay Lagoon in Namibia is home to almost 90% of all South African flamingos throughout the winter.
27
There is no specific conservation status for Namibia's desert black rhino population, which is unique in the world.
28
A colony of desert-adapted elephants exists in Namibia, one of only two in the world. The elephants can endure more extended periods without water because they have more giant feet and long legs.
29
The Namib Desert in Namibia, between 55 million and 80 million years old, is the world's oldest and driest desert. Moreover, half of the nation is covered by the desert.
30
For its ever-changing dunes, the Namib Sand Sea is called. A coastal fog affects the dune fields, making it the only coastal desert with indigenous vegetation and animals inside the world.
31
Due to its generally clear sky and lack of artificial light & air pollution, Namibia is ranked third for stargazing.
32
Reusing residential sewage for drinking water was pioneered by Namibia's Goreangab Water Reclamation Plant.
33
And that less than 10% of Namibians are fluent in English. It is the country's official language. Choosing English over a native language would have exacerbated tensions between the United States and other nations. German is spoken by around one-third of Namibians.
34
There are ten indigenous languages spoken in Namibia, as well as three Indo-European languages are spoken there. Most Namibians are fluent in at least two languages.
35
More than 60,000 to 80,000 Herero died during the colonial wars of resistance (1904 to 1910) in warfare or internment camps. The UN Whitaker Report on Genocide described the slaughter carried out by German colonists as one of the early cases of the genocide of the twentieth century.
36
The Namib Desert's wild horses are the last remaining desert-dwelling horses in the world. As far as we know, the animals are descended from either an escaped farm herd, German cavalry horses, or a 1909 herd at Duwisib Castle, which was abandoned in 1909. They're likely a combination of these and other horses from the South African army that were never found.
37
German colonists are also thought to have killed between 35 and 50 per cent of Namibia's Nama population during a colonial conflict in the early 20th century. A precise count of the number of indigenous perished is impossible because there were no reliable records of the total.
38
HIV and AIDS affect 14.3% of Namibia's adult population, according to the country's Ministry of Health. AIDS claimed the lives of 6,600 Namibians in 2013 and left 96,000 children orphaned.
39
The income distribution of Namibia is among the most uneven in the world. Over two-thirds of Namibians live on less than $2 a day, with a poverty rate of 28.7 per cent.
40
There are 13.2 per cent fewer than five-year-olds in Namibia who are considered underweight.
41
The Namib Desert, which bears the country's name, is the oldest in the world. It has been around for at least 55 million years, according to current estimates.
42
Electronic voting was introduced in Namibia's presidential elections in 2014.
43
Black rhinos and cheetahs are the largest free-roaming populations in Africa and the world, respectively, in Namibia.
44
The Herero are polygamists, although the first woman can select the additional women for her husband.
45
Herero women's skimpy dress was a scandal to European missionaries who arrived in Namibia in the early 1800s and advised them to cover themselves. Many Herero women still dress in the Victorian-style gowns and headdresses introduced by the missionaries even in modern times.
46
At 2.2 million inhabitants, Namibia is the second-largest country in Africa. Namibia is the second least populous country globally, with a population density of about 2.7 persons per square kilometre.
47
Thousands of Herero people were slaughtered by German colonial control, and in 2001, the Herero Folk's Reparation Corporation was sued by the German government for $4 billion. The German government offered a formal apology in 2004 when the case was rejected.
48
South Africa formed Bantustans in 1923, which were black homelands aimed to expel black Namibians & create white-designated land. The Native Reserves Commission relocated 90% of Namibia's black people to an area little over 7,700 square miles in size.
49
Owambaland, less than 10 per cent of Namibia's total land area, is home to one million people, or slightly under half of Namibia's population.
50
200,000-year-old human bones discovered in Namibia are the oldest evidence of human activity in Africa. It is thought that the artefacts belonged to a precursor of Homo sapiens, Homo erectus.

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