Fish River Canyon
An enormous ravine of some 160km in length, and at times nearly 30km wide, Africa’s largest canyon (and the world’s second largest) is unlike anything else on the continent. The seasonal Fish River has spent a busy few hundred million years carving a meandering route through the stony arid plateau of southern Namibia. The result is awesome – rivalling Namibia’s spectacular dunes as the country’s premier natural miracle. A long-distance hiking route snakes through here, but a walk on the rim of the canyon is just as rewarding: the gorge s-bends in and out of sight, the rugged cliff walls rising abruptly over the river, hardy grass clumped here and there atop the plateau. Visit in the late afternoon light, when the cliffs become unforgettably saturated in sparkling colours: first a lingering gold, then deep shades of pink, and finally a deep blood red.