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Geological Fish River Canyon

ID: w206767 View large map

Located in Namibia :: South Namibia  :: Ai-Ais Area
Category: Attraction :: Geological

As well as being the largest canyon in Africa, the Fish River Canyon is one of the largest in the world, ranked just behind the Grand Canyon in North America. This wonder begins south of Seeheim and stretches some 161km south to the point where the Fish river joins the Orange, northwest of Aussenkehr. The Fish river is seasonal, flowing only after heavy rains; most commonly, from January to April.

The 90km Fish River Canyon Hiking Trail, stretches from Hobas down to Ai-Ais, where weary hikers can soothe their aching muscles in the resort’s hot springs. The hike is open in the cooler months, from May to September. One of the best places to view the Canyon is from the viewpoint near Hobas Restcamp.

Traveller Description

Ai-Ais is a popular resort and spa located at the southern end of the Fish River Canyon. Its name means ‘burning water’
and refers to the sulphurous hot springs that were found here in 1850 by a Nama shepherd. Besides the spa complex
(which boasts both indoors and open air pools) you’ll find chalets, rooms and camping.

This venue has been a very popular holiday destination since the 60s. Its fortunes have waxed and waned, on one occasion
almost the entire venue was destroyed by a flood. You can also enjoy a number of walks in the area, from mild to strenuous; there are lots of interesting rock formations to be seen. Plus, this is a great spot for stargazing as there’s almost no light pollution in this region. This is also a good spot if you’re keen on landscape photography.

Hobas is a recently-renovated rest camp 40km northeast of Ai-Ais, that enjoys some excellent views of the canyon. Both
Ai-Ais and Hobas are part of the Ai-Ais / Richtersveld Trans-frontier Park.

Address :  Ai-Ais, South Namibia, Namibia
Cellphone Reception :  Intermittent

Destination Information
Petrol Diesel Basic Food Supplies Lodging Camping Restaurant Tyre Repair

Travelling Information

Ai-Ais resort offers hot-water pools, chalets rooms and camping.
Hobas Restcamp has a swimming pool, self-catering chalets and a recently-renovated camping terrain.
Canyon Roadhouse Lodge is another popular stop in this region; here, visitors can view a collection of vintage vehicles.

While availability isn’t guaranteed, diesel and petrol is generally available at Ai-Ais, But be prepared to pay cash should the card machine be offline.
The Hobas Restcamp doesn’t have a fuel stop.
Although the Canyon Roadhouse Lodge accept credit cards, the fuel stop on the premises only accepts cash payments.

The last 10km of the access road, the C10, is badly corrugated and features a few sharp bends. Slow down and be on the lookout for oncoming vehicles cutting corners.

Shops & Services:
The Ais-Ais resort has a restaurant, bar, and small shop selling basic necessities. Hobas Restcamp also has a restaurant.
The Canyon Roadhouse Lodge offers good meals at their restaurant.

 Travel Tip!

If coming from South Africa, enter Namibia at the Sendelingsdrift border post about 20km from Rosh Pinah. This border crossing features a pontoon across the Orange River, and part of the route from here to Ai-Ais tracks the river along a very scenic gravel road.

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External Links Related to Fish River Canyon
Tracks4Africa Blog article on the Fish River Canyon Hike
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