The Fish River Canyon is the largest canyon in Africa, and one of the most touristed places in Namibia. The immense ravine, carved over millions of years by the Fish River, is nearly one hundred miles long. The canyon is located in theAi-Ais Richtersveld Transfrontier Park which encompasses the border region of Namibia and South Africa.
Human activity in the canyon can be traced back for thousands of years, though the area was never more than sparsely populated throughout history. During the colonial era it was part of a no-man’s land between the German and British territories. The area was not fully explored until after World War I. It was incorporated into the Ai-Ais Richtersveld Transfrontier Park in 2003, the South African portions of which are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Fish River Canyon formed in stages over hundreds of millions of years, and includes both narrow-walled gorges and wide, sandy areas abounding with scrub plantlife. The canyon is almost completely undeveloped except for a few trails that are minimally maintained, keeping the canyon in an exceptionally pristine state.
The Fish River Canyon is located in an isolated area at the very southern end of Namibia, and despite its local popularity is off the beaten path and not heavily touristed. There is a main trail that runs for about nine miles through the park, passing some of the most beautiful points. Web: www.nwr.com.na (official website).