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Fish River Canyon

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Travel Guide Africa Namibia Fish River Canyon

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Introduction

Fish River Canyon

Fish River Canyon

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The scale of the Fish River Canyon is hard to describe. Whether it is or isn't the second largest canyon in the world is anyone's guess, but either way it's absolutely huge! Most travellers visiting will come just to see the canyon from the top, and the viewpoint near Hobas provides unparalleled vistas.

For the more adventurous, there is the epic 5-day 85-kilometre hike following the Fish River through the canyon. The trail runs from Hobas in the north to Ai-Ais in the south. This is only available between the 1st of May and the 30th of September because that is the dry and relatively cool season, but well worth doing if you can make it.

Unfortunately for all future visitors, the day-hikes into the Canyon are now forbidden ever since an unprepared hiker died attempting one.

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Opening Hours and Cost

The road and main viewpoint are open 24/7, although there is no point coming when it's dark. The main entrance is at Hobas, from where it's 10 kilometres to the main viewpoint. Adults pay N$80 per person, plus N$20 for the car. Children up to 16 years old can get in for free. There is a little shop at the entrance station as well.

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Getting There

It's a long drive from anywhere, and the roads aren't tarred. If you want to get the most out of your visit, it's recommended to stay in Hobas at the campsite. This is closest to the amazing viewpoint and the start of the hiking trail. There is also more comfortable accommodation nearby at the Canon Lodge and Canyon Roadhouse, and at end of the hiking trail at the hot springs of Ai-Ais.

By Car

Although it's not necessary, a high-clearence car (not being 4wd) is recommended for travellers as the roads are gravel and of varying quality. It is of course possible in a standard vehicle but journey times take a lot longer, and make sure you bring a spare tyre! Usually, the main access roads are in a good conditions and well maintained. The last section to the main viewpoint is of a lower quality though.
The main access road is the C12 which runs west from the B1 road near Grünau (between Keetmanshoop and the border with South Africa) and connects with the C37 towards the Fish River Canyon access road to the main viewpoint. The C12 also runs south from the B4 road between Keetmanshoop and Lüderitz.

By Bus

No public buses travel to the canyon but organised bus tours are available.

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Eat

Both Ai-Ais and the Canon Lodge/Roadhouse provide breakfast for a little extra, but they also have restaurants on site. Many travellers chose to self-cater and bring their own food and braai (BBQ) it. Be aware if you do this that the shops at Ai Ais and the Canyon lodges are quite limited.

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Sleep

Budget

There is a large and well-equipped campsite at Hobas. It's recommended to bring as many supplies as you can, though they do have a small shop on site. The Vogelstrausskluft Campground is a budget option near the lodge with the same name (see below).

Mid-Range

Ai-Ais hotsprings resort has both camping areas and large rooms based on B&B.

Upscale

The Canon Lodge and Roadhouse provide B&B accommodation near the viewpoint. They can also organise Canyon tours/flights/horse rides. Others include the Canyon Village and Canyon Mountain Camp. For more information visit the Namibweb site. The Vogelstrausskluft Lodge is another luxurious option.

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This is version 5. Last edited at 2:35 on Jun 16, 10 by dr.pepper. 1 article links to this page.

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