Groot Spitzkop © Judith Duk
Located between Usakos and Swakopmund in the Namib Desert, the natural beauty of the Spitzkoppe, or Spitzkop, is spectacular; an island of bald granite peaks situated in an endless grassy plain that is visible for miles around. Groot Spitzkop is often referred to as the 'Matterhorn of Africa' because of its similarity in shape, and it is one of Namibia's most famous mountains. Nearby are the Little Spitzkoppe and the Pontok Mountains. The enormous granite rocks were formed hundreds of millions of years ago due to volcanic activity, and subsequent erosion has resulted in fascinating rock formations and memorable outlines, which should not go unexplored.
The area is a paradise for climbers, although only those with a lot of experience and the correct equipment should attempt to climb the Spitzkoppe itself. Many San (Bushmen) rock paintings can be found in the Spitzkoppe area and these ancient artworks are thrilling to seek out; however, many of the prehistoric rock paintings have tragically been destroyed. 'Rhino Rock', at the foot of Groot Spitzkop, boasts some of the best surviving examples. The area is also renowned for its breathtaking sunrises, which turn the rocks from pale orange to flaming gold. Don't forget the camera!