From Windhoek To L├╝deritz In Just One Hour

7 Aug 2023

Those who want to experience the ghost town of Kolmanskop or the species-rich Succulent Karoo on their Namibia trip have a new time-saving option to choose from. The private Namibian airline FlyNamibia started flying back and forth between Windhoek and Lüderitz five times a week. Compared to an eight-hour drive by car, the flight takes only one hour.

From Lüderitz you can make excursions to Kolmanskop (13.3 km) with its abandoned houses and tours to the Tsau ăüKhaeb National Park [] southeast of the port city. The park protects a 26,000 km² area of the Succulent Karoo. It is considered one of the last barely touched areas in the world because it was a restricted area (Sperrgebiet) due to the diamond mining for more than a hundred years.

Besides Lüderitz, five places are on FlyNamibia's flight schedule Ondangwa, Rundu and Katima Mulilo in northern Namibia, Oranjemund in the south of the country and Cape Town as a destination in neighbouring South Africa. The 'Safari' offer with connections between Sossusvlei, Swakopmund, Twyfelfontein and Etosha National Park is aimed specifically at Namibia holidaymakers.

Test phase in partnership with TotalEnergies


New destination of FlyNamibia: The Namibian harbour town Lüderitz with its landmark, the Felsenkirche (church).
Photo: SkyPixel, Wikipedia


However, the new Windhoek-Lüderitz route is only secondarily aimed at holidaymakers, as the mayor of the harbour town, Benjamin Ronnie Mckay, indicated in his speech at the opening event. According to the media release, Mckay welcomed the connection "as a momentous milestone for the Lüderitz community and the wider business sector. The new FlyNamibia route is expected to break barriers in trade, boost tourism, and attract further international investments."

The route primarily serves the oil company TotalEnergies, which has found oil in the seabed in the so-called Orange Basin 350 km off the coast. In the coming months, it wants to test whether exploiting the deposits is economically viable (see report by the online business news magazine The Brief).

"Four months of subsidies from TotalEnergies will allow the airline to test the route's viability", the Country Director of TotalEnergies Namibia, Laurent Roche, is quoted as saying in the media release. At the same time, Roche stressed that the test phase will "have a positive impact on Namibia's development, regardless of the outcome of offshore exploration."

The Managing Director of FlyNamibia, André Compion, recognised "the importance of TotalEnergies as a key partner in making the reintroduction of scheduled air travel to Lüderitz possible. Their support allowed FlyNamibia to offer discounted fares."

The flight connection should also be interesting for the company Hyphen Hydrogen Energy. The German-British joint venture, which is registered in Namibia, is planning a multi-billion dollar project to produce green hydrogen in the area south-east of Lüderitz (see Hyphen's website).

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