I read somewhere that the land of the Nama is a land of contrasts and blistering extremes, where indescribable beauty has been moulded by an unforgiving climate.
Into this setting each Spring the dormant arid winter lands come alive with a flamboyant spread of wildflowers, including many rare and unique species. This is where we were headed, to the succulent Karoo area know as Namaqualand, to see the brimming array of flowers that transform the lifeless area into an exquisite floral display of unsurpassed colourful beauty at this exact time of the year!
But wait, this is also the land of the unique quiver tree and elegant gemsbok and it was with great excitement that I spotted my first ever quiver tree as we arrived!
Back to the flowers … carpets of orange daisies spread as far as the eye can see in the Skilpad section of the Namaqualand National Park. In amongst them were white, yellow and purple flowers, clusters, rows, carpets of wildflowers looking up at the sun.
We stayed in two of the only four wonderful cottage chalets at Skilpad Rest Camp, and they stood on the edge of the flower covered hills overlooking the vast expanse of this park with its varied vistas of granite outcrops and rolling hills to the sea.
From there we spent our days walking amongst the carpets of flowers, driving the offroad dirt trails to spot birds, buck and flora and relaxing on our verandas taking in this spectacular landscape. At night, far from any light pollution, the Milky Way was as clear as the sun, with the stars bigger and brighter than ever against the inky sky. The rest of this story is best told in photos, which better capture the magnificence and magnitude of this beautiful place far better than words could!