Day 143: Ai Ais and the thermal springs

Soutpiel Safari
John & Jenny
Sun 27 Mar 2011 17:52
Day 143: Sunday 27 March 2011. Ai Ais camp site, Namibia.  S22 54.988 E017 29.358 Distance driven 131 km.
We were up early and struck camp at dawn to be at the Fish River Canyon viewpoint to get the early morning light over the lip of the canyon. After entering the Park we drove the 10 km to the edge of the canyon.  Until you get right up to the edge you have no idea that the world's second largest canyon is right in front of you.  it is an awesome sight, especially with the early morning sun creeping into the lower depths of the canyon.
After visiting several of the view points we drove back to Hobas and then the 70 odd km to Ai Ais.  It was an incredibly hot day and as we progressed towards Ai Ais the vegetation disappeared completely and we were left with bare rock, almost a lunar landscape.
At Ai Ais, NWR (my favourites) have spent N$ 35 million re-vamping the facilities.  Although the rooms and central facilities look good, the camp site leaves a  lot to be desired. It is like a vast gravel car park with minimal shade.  It is well appointed with ablutions, braai stands, water, electricity etc but still resembles a car park. Today, a hot wind was blowing through it so we spent the afternoon around the spa pool, in the shade.