We want to start the week by moving to one of the most incredible corners of the planet, a cemetery of trees that have been maintained for thousands of years. Yes! Yes! Just as you are legends! We are referring to Dead Vlei, an enigmatic place that is located in the Namib-Naukluft Park of Namibia, or what is the same, which is considered the largest conservation area in the entire African continent. And we are talking about 50,000 square kilometers of extension where the highest dunes on the planet are found.
This park is located in the desert of Namib, considered the oldest desert in the world, since it existed in the Tertiary Era, the period in which dinosaurs became extinct. Do you want to know more about this spooky place? Well then, don't miss anything we tell you below!
The Meaning of Dead Vlei
Before we explain all the details about this spectacular tree cemetery, we want you to know the meaning of its name. If you have notions of English, you already know that "dead" means "dead" but what do you think "vleid" means? The truth is, it doesn't take much thought to figure out what it can mean. And is that in Afrikaans this word means "swamp" or "lake". Of course, it must be taken into account that in Africa this place is known for Dooie Vlei, which comes to mean the same.
A tremendously beautiful but dramatic place
As you can see for yourself in the images that we offer you in our gallery, Dead Vlei attracts attention due to the presence of the petrified trees that, apparently, populated the area thousands of years ago, although they died some 900 years ago. The curious thing is that these specimens, belonging to the species acai eriolobaAlso known as "camel thorn" or "giraffe thorn", they have kept their shape due to the extreme dryness of the place, which makes decomposition impossible. Of course, they have acquired a blackish tone due to the sun rays they receive. The result is a really beautiful place but very dramatic and spooky.
In addition to finding petrified trees, in Dead Vlei you can find dunes formed by red sand and a sandy clay surface of reddish tones due to the iron oxide present in the area. Logically, it is very difficult to find plant life. And just 55 kilometers away a river runs dry. Its about Tsauchab. It is also important to note that this tree cemetery is surrounded by the highest dunes on the planet. And it is that they measure from 300 to 400 meters high. Therefore, it is not surprising that this place has served as the setting to record some movies.
Desertification of the area
Although at the moment it is hard to believe, the truth is that torrential rains took place in this corner of the planet, which caused the Tsauchab river to flood and form lakes and lagoons, and, as a consequence, the environment was filled with vegetation. However, the climate changed drastically, causing the desertification of the place and making any form of life impossible. In fact, Dead Vlei is kind of like a pot to Pressure dry and very hot in which it hardly ever rains and in which some of the highest temperatures on the planet have been recorded.
Then we leave you with our Gallery, where you will find more images of this incredible place located in Namibia. Without a doubt, it is an essential visit if one day you have the opportunity to travel to Namibia.
The Surreal World of Frans Lanting | Nat Geo Live (August 2020)