While the Namib Desert is without question a harsh and unforgiving environment, it also has such an irresistible bad-boy allure scenery-wise, that thousands of admirers literally throw themselves at it every year.
This spectacularly arid spot, with haphazardly-shaped red dunes which rise up to meet an impossibly clear blue sky, is considered one of the best places on earth to fling yourself out of an aeroplane at 10 000 ft.
Most skydiving in Namibia takes place at Swakopmund, on the Namibian Coastline, so spend a few days in your Windhoek accommodation to acclimatise and gather your nerves before heading out on the 3-hour drive to this adventure-laden destination.
There are three ways to experience the Namib’s eye-popping panoramas from the air – namely free-fall, static line and tandem jumps.
This is skydiving in the true sense of the word, where you leap out of your aircraft at a great height and sail gracefully down to earth, landing nimbly on the desert sand many thousands of feet below. Naturally, this skill can only be mastered by thousands of hours of repetition and careful instruction.
Once you have completed the relevant courses, you are free to free fall in Namibia to your heart’s content. Be warned – this otherworldly experience is like nothing on earth and extremely addictive.
Static Line Jump
The next best thing to going it alone out in the atmosphere is a static line jump, where your ‘chute opens as soon as you leave the plane, adding (slightly) more security to the undertaking. All you need to take part in a static line jump is a full day of on-the-ground training, after which you will participate in a solo static line jump from 3 000 ft. To obtain your static line A-licence, you need to complete an intensive 21 day course.
By far the most popular and safest way to jump from a plane over Namibia is the tandem jump. No licence is required to fly through the air while strapped to a qualified instructor.
You can even embark on sunrise and sunset jumps as well as safaris for a bird’s eye view of the desert elephants, and a range of photographic packages are available for you to record your ‘air-time’ for ever.
While soaring above the desert at a great height may seem like it’s ‘for the birds’, skydiving has a remarkably good safety record and is an unforgettable way to experience the full beauty of Namibia’s incredible landscapes.
Book your trip to Windhoek today, and start your great air-borne adventure.