Lüderitz: a slice of German art nouveau in Namibia
When you think about Namibia, images of sweeping, dramatic coastlines and arid deserts stretching for miles may come to mind, but there’s a lot more to this dynamic country than plains and abandoned beaches. Namibia has a fascinating history, which contributes to a diverse culture that is influenced by both African and European traditions. If you’re visiting Lüderitz as part of a tailor-made Namibia holiday, you’ll see for yourself just how eclectic and interesting this country is.
Lüderitz is a coastal town, which is located in the Ilkaras region of South West Namibia. Although it is nestled on a largely unvisited stretch of coastline, this is a friendly, vibrant settlement, which is worlds away from the rugged dunes and crashing waves. Lüderitz is famed for its architecture and strong German influences and it is home to a dazzling array of art nouveau buildings and a big variety of different design influences. Located between the windswept Atlantic coast and the dust of the Namib Desert, this is a unique gem, which is definitely worth a visit and is all the better for being relatively unknown.
As you wander around Lüderitz, it’s hard to feel like you haven’t been catapulted back in time. This quaint town looks and feels like it hasn’t been touched by the modern day and this can be both refreshing and confusing for tourists. Some love the appeal of its old charm, while others may feel slightly disorientated by this step back in time into the Bavaria of old.
Sights and attractions
Felsenkirche: this Lutheran church occupies a spot on Diamond Hill overlooking the town and is often the first place tourists head when they land in Lüderitz. Designed by Albert Bause, construction work began in 1911 and was completed just 12 months later. The views are as spectacular as the building itself.
Lüderitz Museum: if you’re keen to know all about the history and development of Lüderitz, don’t miss out on the chance to visit Lüderitz Museum. You’ll find an impressive collection of exhibits and displays devoted to the town’s mining past and its cultural influences.
Goerke Haus: perhaps the most striking building in Lüderitz, Goerke Haus sits on Diamond Hill, effortlessly blending into the golden rock face. Designed by Otto Ertl, it was originally used by Lt. Hans Goerke. Over the years, the house has been sympathetically restored and it’s well worth a visit.