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Swakopmund:

South African Lighthouse No. 20


... Actually not a South African Lighthouse at all.


Swakopmund Lighthouse was opened in 1902, but since Namibia gained its in independence in 1990, this lighthouse cannot really be counted as one of South Africa's.

After Walvis Bay was occupied, the German colony realised that they needed a harbour of their own. One where incoming ships and its cargo would not be subject to the scrutiny of the British. On 4 August 1892, the crew on board the Hyäne ("Hyena") spotted a suitable location where they could gain access to the coast. This is where Swakopmund was founded, but despite the fact that they kept trying to rebuild the jetty (with wood twice, steel never completed due to World War I), it is no longer used as a harbour - just a very popular holiday destination.

When the lighthouse was originally built, it was only 11 metres tall (see lower brick portion?). By 1911 it had been raised twice, bringing it to its current height of 28 metres. The lighthouse is now such an integral part of the city that it is even featured on its municipal coat of arms.

Photo Credit: Afro-Nam Hren

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