Namibia is a vast and beautiful country located in Southern Africa. It is mainly known for its wildlife, stunning natural landscapes, ‘skeleton coast’ and spectacular red dunes. Around 80% of Namibia is made up of desert, giving it a very important role in the Namibian landscape. The largest part of the desert biome is located in the southern part of Namibia, which is where you can find the Namib and the Khalahari desert.
When driving on the dust roads through the vast and arid landscape, one can enjoy some of the most spectacular views of the desert. Rocky outcrops, sand dunes, a great variation in colours, amazing wildlife and a lot of open space are an important part of the Namibian scenery.
Vintage cars in the desert of Namibia
One of the things you would least expect to see in the area are rusty vintage car wrecks. So guess what, you can see them in various places in the desert, when driving around to visit tourist attractions like the red dunes in Sossusvlei or the spectacular Fish River Canyon. Old rusty vintage cars from a bygone era, some covered with bullet holes, decorate the barren landscape.
Cañon Road House
Canyon Roadhouse is an ‘out-of-the-ordinary’ lodge (or institution as they sometimes call it themselves) in close proximity to the Fish River Canyon. They have an impressive collection of original vintage cars like Chevy’s and Fords. It’s really worth a detour to visit this great and beautiful collection of memorabilia.
Solitaire is not only famous for its apple pie, it also has a great collection of vintage cars. They are strategically placed to offer some amazing views over the spectacular surrounding landscapes. Especially at sunrise and sunset, walking between those old car wrecks is just amazing with breathtaking views as the sun colours up the mountains and desert. It gives such a nostalgic feel to the area, taking you back in time.
At Klein Aus Vista, on your way to Kolmanskop and Lüderitz, you can see the remains of an old Hudson car, riddled with bullet holes. Legend has it that diamond smugglers were chased all the way from the coast of Lüderitz, a mere 120 km, before they were caught by the police. The rusty car wreck has apparently been left, on purpose, exactly where it got shot at by the police, leaving a dramatic impression in the barren desert.
Other uses for a vintage car
Yuri camp has a very special and particuliar use for an old car wreck. They cut off the back part of the car and converted it into a toilet. I must say, it has some of the most spectacular views over the surrounding area and the desert. You could say that it really is a ‘bog with a view‘.
What peculiar items have you ever found in the desert or out of the way places? Share your experiences with us in the comments!
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Ahhh… love it. We’ve been to Canon Roadhouse and we also have seen the one in Klein Aus Vista. Thanks for the throwback. Namibia is such an amazing country.
So glad we brought you back to Namibia with this post. Do you have any plans in visiting Namibia again?
Cant wait to go to Namibia. Best toilet Ive seen yet!
That toilet is really awesome, so creative how they have reused this old car 🙂
Wow. These vintage cars became tourist spots in the desert. Hope to visit this country someday. Thanks for sharing.
They are really tourist spots in the desert and they are so beautiful during sunrise and sunset when the light is great!
I adored the photographs in this! Such a rustic, vintage, strangely “Mad Max” aesthetic. I half expected mutant humans to be playing rock guitar in the sand! (You’ll only get that reference if you’ve seen “Mad Max”, but alas, I cannot be bothered to hit the backspace. Haha.) Fantastic shots though. If I were allowed, I’d create a little barbecue grill shack out of one of the cars!
Haha, I know what you refer to about Mad Max. Actually the new movie was filmed in Namibia 🙂 And the barbecue is a great idea, never thought of that!
Love this post – and Namibia. Where exactly is Yuri Camp? It’s the only one I haven’t visited. See my take on the Canyon Roadhouse here:http://www.roxannereid.co.za/blog/fun-at-the-old-canyon-roadhouse-namibia
Thanks! Yuri camp is just outside Solitaire on the way to Walvisbay. It’s not easy to find and most people will just drive past it. The only ‘sign’ to find it has been a pair of shoes dangling from a post at the gate. We haven’t been there for a while, so we don’t know what ‘sign’ there is now.
I find this to be a fascinating view into another culture and way of life. In my country (Canada), if a vehicle sits on the road without a valid registration, someone usually reports it and then the bylaw enforcement officers come by, ticket the car, and you have 72 hours to move it or lose it (i.e. it will be towed away).
I find it fascinating that one car, riddled with bullets, was left as if a warning to other wouldbe criminals. And I like the idea of repurposing a car.
I had the thought as I was looking at most of the pictures that it looked almost like a car graveyard. Really interesting post!
To be honest, that bullet ridden car is now on private property, that of Klein-Aus-Vista. What the status of that area was way back when I’m not quite sure. Either way, it has, according to legend, been left on purpose. The other reason old wrecks in Namibia might just be left is that the nearest ‘town’ can be +200km away. No one could be bothered to remove them. As time goes by, having frequently travelled Namibia, I’ve noticed abandoned vehicles slowly disappearing, piece by piece. Perhaps in the more remote parts of Canada, such as The Yukon Territory, abandoned vehicles might also just be left?
This is so bizarre! It’s like someone left the cars and ran away.
The self-engineered toilet is my favorite, though.
That car toilet was my favourite too 😉
This cars can be a good background for any music video 🙂
It would indeed be a great background. These vintage cars together with the desert are just stunning to see.