2: Namib Rand, Namibia
Wolwedans, Namibia (Charlie Waite)
The Namib Rand in Namibia is lovely, especially a place called Wolwedans. The Namib Rand is a huge desert that looks as if nothing happens there but everything does. You just have to be with your ‘antennae’, really alert and switched on, and be what I call visually agile. The moment you are receptive to what appears to be nothing actually happening, you find out that an enormous amount is actually happening. It’s just happening over a million years.
What is especially good is it’s incredibly deceptive. There was a girl from Yorkshire who looked after a particular dune lodge. She’d been there for 20 years. I said: “Could you take me to your favourite view in Namibia?’ She said: “I’ll take you to my favourite view in all of Africa.” She took me to a spot in the dark and we got there.
As dawn came up, I virtually had to change my underwear. It was absolutely extraordinary. “Can you see that distance from Point A to Point B?”, she said. I said, “Yes, it looks like a mile.” “Well, its ten miles,” she said.
Namibia does make you think about your own existence. It makes you think about the planet going round and round and so on. It’s a very, very enriching experience, a visual experience with a massive emotional tug.