Sossusvlei.  We had never heard the name, either.  But we had seen the photos.  Towering sand dunes rising hundreds of feet into the sky, stretching for miles in every direction. In the Southern part of the Namib Desert, the iconic red dunes of Namibia cradle a dry riverbed that stretches roughly 50 miles into the heart of the desert.  Occasional floods bring a trickle of water into the desert, allowing plant life to survive in this narrow corridor.  Sometimes, dunes will block off a section of the riverbed, isolating a small area of scrub and dooming it to dehydration.  This iconic landscape was a perfect change of scene for the last stretch of our trip, and brought us full circle—desert to desert.

A brown hyena cruises along Sossusvlei, alone in the rolling landscape.

Sunrise over the dunes of Sossusvlei.

Climbing up Dune 45, supposedly the most photographed sand dune in the world, to catch sunrise.

And of course the easiest way back down is a good dune run.

Dunes and dunes as far as the eye can see.

An iconic Namibian sand dune, given its red hue by the iron content in the sands.


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