by Emma Love, The Telegraph, January 3, 2020
It probably shouldn’t come as a surprise that the Namib Desert is out-of-this-world extraordinary. Before arriving I already know the basic facts: formed around 55 to 80 million years ago, it’s thought to be our oldest desert, the second driest on the planet, and has the highest dunes anywhere.
Yet in reality, when faced with the buttermilk yellow sand and gravel plains, dry river beds marked with wild greenhair trees, jagged granite and grey limestone hills, and rippled dunes that seem to shift from rich terracotta to salmon pink in the constantly changing light (one minute reminiscent of a Hockney painting, the next a Farrow & Ball colour chart), the drama of this vast landscape is still hard to compute. And it doesn’t get any less mind-bending during the few days I spend at the revamped &Beyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge, which is leading the way on a slew of new openings in the south of the country.