Of all the ways to comprehend the vastness of the desert and marvel at the play of light on the dunes, it’s hard to beat the truly magical experience of witnessing sunrise over the Namib from a hot-air balloon. True, it doesn’t come cheap, but if you only splurge on one activity during your trip, this should be it. Though you’ll only spend around an hour in the air, the whole event lasts several hours, starting with a pick-up around an hour before dawn, followed by a safety briefing, then the balloon envelope is inflated, you clamber aboard and lift off. To the west the dune sea ripples away towards the coast while the Naukluft Mountains stand guard to the east. As you float upwards, you can clearly make out the shapes of the various inselbergs below and track herds of springbok or solitary gemsbok as they trek across the desert. On landing, you can enjoy a sumptuous champagne breakfast before being driven back to your lodgings.

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Namibia features

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Namibia from above: the world's most extreme landscape

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The Namib desert is one of the world’s most extreme environments. Covering 81,000 square kilometres, its vastness can only truly be appreciated from above. He…

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27 awe-inspiring pictures of Namibia

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