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Rocks & Minerals | Namibia

Introduction: Harder than Ray Winstone in an East London back alley, drunken, gang fist-fight at 3 o' clock on a Saturday morning, the magical name diamond comes from the Greek word adamas, meaning 'invincible'. Diamond jewellery is normally colourless but there are many variations from yellow, pink, brown, blue, red, green, grey, black and yellow to name but a lot. Their crystal systems take many forms other than octahedron including spherical stone and dodecahedrons. Namibia exploits alluvial and marine diamonds.

Although diamonds were first discovered in Namibia in 1898 in southern Namibia, discoveries were found to be minimal. It was in the surface desert sands at a railway station 10km south-east of Luderitz that started an unbelievable frenzy for diamonds. The town of Kolmanskop became a thriving town with many modern amenities until the diamonds became a not so glittering demand of the past. Nowadays, the ghost town at Kolmanskop is a major tourist attraction.

Distribution: Economic deposits occur along the Orange River and the Atlantic seaboard.

Composition: Native element.

Crystal system: Cubic.

Lustre: Adamantine, greasy.

Streak: White.

Hardness: 10.

Cape Cross Lodge

Wonderfully situated remote lodge - directly on the beach near the Cape Cross seal colony

Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp

An upmarket lodge on the Skeleton Coast - only visit-able as part of a fly in safari.

Terrace Bay

Accommodation in the Skeleton Coast, really catering for fisherman but hardened visitors who absolutely have to spend a few nights inside the Skeleton Coast Park may choose to stay here

Torra Bay

A campsite in the Skeleton Coast Park, popular with fisherman during the summer holidays

Hotels in Luderitz