April 2, 2023
This is our last port in Namibia and our second time here. The coastline here is very rocky and there isn’t a huge harbor. Here are some pictures from our sail in. We arrived at 10 AM, so I took these while on my deck walk.
We booked a walking tour today and it started at 12:15, so we had a very quick lunch and joined our guide, Maureen, on the dock.
Lüderitz is known for its colonial architecture, much of which looks German or Dutch. The town is named after Adolf Lüderitz, founder of the German South West Africa colony. It began as a trading post for whaling, seal hunting and fishing and was founded in 1883. The town has between 15,000 and 30,000 inhabitants depending on the season. People do come here on holiday. The main occupations are fishing and mining. The mining is mostly for diamonds.
The town is spotlessly clean and also quite deserted on a Sunday – Palm Sunday. So most of the shops were closed and just a couple of restaurants were open. We were able to easily get into the museum and the Goerke Haus.
Maureen pointed out the buildings as we walked and she talked about all of the uses over the years. There is historic preservation here so the outsides of the buildings must remain the same. Many had markers indicating that they date back to the early 1900s.
Our first stop was the museum which was mostly in German, but there were small signs in English on many exhibits. The museum highlighted the history of Lüderitz and there were also exhibits about the wildlife.
Pangolins are endangered here and there is a huge fine if they are taken, hurt or killed. They were one of the animals first suspected of spreading COVID in China, but that was ruled out.
Ostriches really don’t stick their heads in the sand for no reason. They actually bury their eggs in the sand since they can’t fly and build nests in trees. They make a sort of sand nest and what looks like they are burying their heads is really them rotating the position of the eggs to be sure they are uniformly heating.
We visited the German Church, an impressive building on a hill.
We walked uphill passing lots more colorful buildings to reach the Goerke Haus. This was originally the home of Hans Goerke, the manager and co-owner of the German era diamond mining company. It was constructed in 1910 at the top of Diamond Hill. The inside has elements of Art Nouveau design. It is one of the best preserved buildings in the town.
The view from one of the balconies was wonderful.
We walked down past the railway station and the former police headquarters which was preserved when a new building was constructed and houses city offices now.
A couple of noteworthy signs…
On our way back to the ship, a young man was on the street telling us about his barber shop. Norm was planning to make a haircut appointment, so we decided this would be a good place to have a haircut! The price was $10 and Norm gave him $20 – he was thrilled!
After our day here we set sail for Cape Town, We have a day at sea and on Tuesday we will have an around the world event – an afternoon at Boschendal Winery.
good haircut Norm