Fish River Canyon

Tectonic forces tillted sediment layers of rock, cracking the earth's crust. In a huge rift valley the outer canyon formed.

Following its natural course, the Fish River meanders through the inner canyon, eroding and exposing dolerite dykes formed by intrusions of igneous material.

The 5 day 85 kay hiking trail through the sandy riverbed is open from mid April to mid September.

The ephemeral Fish drains about 20% of Namibia's surface, flash flooding the 170km long canyon in the rain season.

Large Barble catfish and Yellow fish dwell in the many remnant pools, surviving the dry season in the mud.

Fish River Canyon

This spectacular canyon and the hot mineral springs of Ai-Ais are situated in the Fish River National Park in the far south of Namibia. The best viewpoints and the start of the hiking trail are on the northern edge of the canyon. The river and trail exit the canyon near Ai-Ais hot springs where the trail ends. The Fish flows into the Orange River where the park overlaps with the Richtersveld National Park on the border to South Africa.

photo: Beate Baron