Kalahari Desert

Kalahari, Namibia / Image via Adobe Stock

Kalahari Desert featured on National Geographic’s 2020 travel list

Find out all of the mentions on National Geographic’s list of trips to take in 2020, including the Kalahari Desert in southern Africa.

Kalahari Desert

Kalahari, Namibia / Image via Adobe Stock

National Geographic have compiled a list of extraordinary worldly destinations to inspire you to travel more. As they put it: ‘The world awaits. Where will you go next?’

Visiting the Kalahari Desert

The Kalahari Desert, situated in Southern Africa, is the perfect place to for star gazing. It is considered as one of the darkest spots you can visit on the planet and is officially noted as one of the world’s few International Dark Sky Sanctuaries. It’s no wonder this magical part of the world made it to National Geographic’s list.

Sunset in the Kalahari Desert via Adobe Stock.

The !Ae!Hai Kalahari Heritage Park spans over a vast area of 120 000 acres, stretching between South Africa, Namibia and Botswana. The park scored an almost perfect score on the Sky Quality Meter, which is a scale of darkness. 

The area is measured in dunes and has stable temperatures all year round. Visitors can expect extremely low humidity, virtually zero light- or sound-pollution, and lack of cloud cover. 

There is accommodation on offer inside the park at the 12-chalet !Xaus Lodge, staffed and co-owned by the ‡Khomani San and Mier communities. Guests can make use of the telescopes on deck to observe the night skies, seeing star constellations unique to the Southern Hemisphere. As day breaks, guests can follow Bushman trackers on guided walks and at sunset, there are game drives which will take you on a journey into the night, looking and listening out for creatures of the night.

Starry sky and Milky Way arc, with details of its colorful core, outstandingly bright, captured from the Namib desert in Namibia, Africa. The Small Magellanic Cloud on the left hand side. Image via Adobe Stock

National Geographic’s places to visit list 

The list was curated by editors and explorers at National Geographic, who were tasked with picking the planet’s 25 most exciting destinations for 2020. 

The Best Trips list is released annually ahead of the following year. This year, the team collaborated with the editorial teams of National Geographic Traveler’s 17 international editions and with their own globe-trotting experts to report on the essential and sustainable sites to see in 2020.

National Geographic’s trips to take in 2020

  • Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina: Join in the celebrations marking 25 years of peace
  • Guizhou Province, China: Step into villages seemingly untouched by time
  • Tohoku, Japan: A chance to escape the Olympic crowds 
  • National Blue Trail, Hungary: Hike along the lesser known routes of Europe
  • Telč, Czechia: Be charmed by the fairytale-style setting
  • Magdalen Islands, Canada: See a beautiful, diminishing world of ice and the harp seals that depend on it
  • Wales Way, United Kingdom: Follow far-reaching routes that get the blood pumping
  • Abu Simbel, Egypt: Enjoy a private audience with Ramses II
  • Fort Kochi, India: Track artistry trends in creative Kerala
  • Zakouma National Park, Chad: Help out at an African elephant haven
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Rediscover an American classic
  • Puebla, Mexico: Find out why baroque is back
  • Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona: See a geological wonderland eons in the making
  • Maldives: Explore the islands that are on the front lines of conservation efforts regarding climate change
  • Tasmania, Australia: Venture to an epic isle that’s wild and beautiful, faraway yet familiar
  • Asturias, Spain: Relish an Iberian province capped with snowy summits and steeped in tradition
  • Göbekli Tepe, Turkey: Feel your paradigms shift at the world’s oldest known temple complex
  • Mendoza Province, Argentina: Drink a mighty Malbec and delve into the roots of its flavour
  • Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia: Where you can jump through the Ring of Fire
  • Guatemala: Meet the Maya, both past and present
  • Parma, Italy: Salivate and savour over a multi-sensory feast
  • Canary Islands, Spain: Reach an end of the world
  • Białowieża Forest, Belarus/Poland: Discover one of Europe’s last true wild places
  • Grossglockner High Alpine Road, Austria: Drive to views that were once only accessible to mountaineers

Feeling inspired by National Geographic list of trips to take? What will you be adding to your bucket list for the decade?