Sossusvlei is located in the coastal desert of Namibia, part of the Naukluft National Park. It is the largest protected area in Africa, south of the Namib Desert, and the only desert located close to the sea. This is a natural paradise, home to the tallest dunes in the world, home to scenes that anyone would think existed only on paintings or colorful fantasy movies about a distant planet. somewhere outside of this Earth. However, coming to Sossusvlei is a real and unique coastal desert landscape.
Sossusvlei comes from South Africa, “Sossus” means no return while “Vlei” means swamp. Sossusvlei roughly translates as a swamp of death. Sossusvlei is located in the drainage basin of the Tsauchab River, but due to the extreme and dry weather conditions in the Namib Desert, the river rarely flows into Sossusvlei, making it a truly “dead” place.
Sossusvlei is one of the rare places in the world where visitors can witness a breathtaking spectacle: rumbling waves crashing underfoot and lofty desert dunes. It is always outstanding and brilliant, the warm red dunes stretching endlessly to the sky, each grain of sand forming high dunes with an estimated lifespan of five million years.
Besides, visitors can experience the feeling of off-road driving with unexpected turns on the lofty desert. Flying to the top of the sandhill and plunging the creepy vertical sand slopes, “diving deep” into the giant desert, and leaving wheel trails on the sand. Occasionally through the car door, visitors can see a herd of jackals, a deer walking leisurely in the bushes, or seals frolicking on the sand.
Moreover, visitors can also try to drink champagne in the vast sandy sea, while the sea in front of you constantly waves. Along with the high sand hills form deep basins, the most famous is the Deadvlei White Clay Basin. Amid the towering red dunes, the valley of Deadvlei appears haunting: no water, a harsh climate, and trees die.
However, they do not disappear over time, instead of decomposing, the desert sun burns the trees into black bones. Leafless branches of trees are trapped for hundreds of years in the black and white clay swamps in the heat of the desert. As the sun rose out of the dunes, winding like a silk strip in the distance, the dead bodies of the trees in Deadvlei had been standing there for hundreds of years and were beautifully beautiful. And underfoot are streaks of hard white mud, overhead is a blue sky and surrounded by sand hills are transforming into a miraculous light strip.