“Friesian Freshness” in Namibia … Swakopmund


Swakopmund as seen from the pier


Lighthouse, beach ... palms ... PALMS?? A bit "un-German" right!?


What we wrote about Namibia in our last posts shows how diverse this country is, so one should maybe not be too surprised to find a "real" German town here. Still, Swakopmund surprised us a bit.

It was founded in 1892 because the new German colony needed a harbor for trade with the "motherland". There were only two other options to construct a harbour along the coast of what is now Namibia, Walvis Bai (then British) and Angra Pequena, which today is Lüderitz. But Angra Pequena was separated from the habitable lands by a stretch of dry desert of more than 120km.


The "Woermann Haus" ... the company still is in family hands.


Today, 124 years later, in Swakopmund there is the strange feeling that suddenly, you are back in Germany, even though the German "Schutztruppe" in "Deutsch Südwestafrika" surrendered 101 years ago.


The "Altes Amtsgericht", the old court.


Looks a bit like Esens, a small town not far away from where we live.

Without the palm tree, this could easily be somewhere in Germany!

Just a small detail from the wall outside a shop reading "Imperial Customs Post Swakopmund"


Memorial for the "Herero Uprisal" ... No further explanation! What do modern day Herero think when they see this!?


This really is strange: this memorial is to remember the dead German soldiers from World War I AND World War II (when the ruling power in Namibia, South Africa, fought AGAINST the Germans) ...


Most shops have German shop signs, there are German memorials, German houses and a lot of German products in the shops (which especially our two daughters just love - homesickness cure!).

The "girls" back home at the North Sea??

Happy kids

For us parents this town is a bit like one of the towns on the mainland near our island ...


Germany, Denmark, The Netherlands?? No! Namibia!


... or it could be one of the small towns on the German Baltic Sea coast, or in Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands.

"Peter's Antiques" in Swakopmund really is a very interesting shop full of mysterious objects, masks, books, coins ... great!

This is "THE" shop for Mischa and Anouk ... they could spend ages here ... and an awful lot of money!

Still, it feels a bit too unreal here on the west coast of southern Africa. In a way, this town simply "doesn't fit". Also, it seems a bit too much "made" to fit the expectations of the tourists - most of which are, of course, German.


Wide and empty streets.


Really strange are the extremely wide (and empty!) streets.


The old pier ... and at the end there is "Pier 1905", one of our favorite restaurants ... great seafood at exceptionally reasonable prices!


The seawater aquarium ... not comparable to the one we have at our school, the "Nationalparkhaus Wittbülten"!


What a beautiful Land Rover!



A boat trip from Walvis Bai

Walvis Bai has an interesting history, being "discovered" by the Portuguese Bartholomeo Diaz, used by whalers since the 17hundreds and from 1795 being part of the British Empire. From 1884 on Walvis Bai was part of the Cape Colony ... so it remained in South African ownership until 1994 when it was handed over to Namibia.


We think this place is rather monotonous and without any "real flair" and just go here to go on a boat trip.

Seal colony


This guy has a rather "posh" look on his face!


This oil rig normally drills off the coast of Angola but the current low oil price simply makes drilling for more oil ineffective!


Mmh ... in Namibia we had the best fresh oysters ever! EVER!


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