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Climbing Dune 7 no longer free

2022-11-14  Eveline de Klerk

Climbing Dune 7 no longer free

WALVIS BAY – Famous around the world, Dune 7 is one of the most popular coastal tourist attraction sites. Situated in the Dorob National Park, Dune 7 is a must-do activity for any coastal visitor. It has witnessed thousands of people scaling its steep sandy wall, measured at over 1 256 feet, much to the enjoyment of both those climbing and those looking on.

It has been free to access all these years, but come 1 December 2022, a fee to enter the area will be required. 

In accordance with the approved park entry fees, Namibians under the age of 16 will enter at no charge, and visitors who are from SADC countries and over the age of 8 years but not exceeding 16 years, will be charged N$50. International visitors over 8 years but not exceeding 16 years will pay N$100.

Namibian adults will be charged N$50, SADC adults N$100, and international visiting adults N$150.

The environment and tourism ministry said in a statement issued on Friday that the management of this recreational area has been difficult for them due to vandalism and litter being the main problems. 

Ministry spokesperson Romeo Muyunda said the ablution facilities and other infrastructure at the recreational area were vandalised to such an extent that they are non-functional, and became costly for the ministry in terms of repairs.

He indicated that the ministry, with the assistance of the Game Products Trust Fund, is currently renovating the existing ablution facilities and constructing two new ones, while renovating and upgrading the braai facilities.

“We are also constructing five new ones (braai facilities) and are erecting a cable fence, entrance gate and a reception area for Dune 7,” he noted.

Muyunda said the upgrade of the facility and infrastructure will enable the ministry to charge park entry fees at Dune 7, as approved and gazetted in 2021. 

The approved park entry fees have undergone a comprehensive consultative process and implementing them, particularly for the Dorob National Park, has been pending.

“The envisaged fee will assist in ensuring that the standards of the much-admired recreational facility are maintained and the experience of the visitors enhanced.”

The ministry will be managing Dune 7 until the concession of the site is finalised.

Muyunda said in the long-term, the ministry will offer the recreational area as a tourism concession in accordance with the Tourism Development Plan for the Dorob National Park.

“Through this concession, more tourism products and services will be developed, not only to ensure acceptable standards of the area, but also to enhance the visitors’ experience.  Hence, we urge visitors to the Dune 7 recreation area to cooperate and work with the ministry in ensuring that the new facilities are looked after and not vandalised,” he appealed.

Many people are not happy with the new directive.

Evaristu M January said Namibians are already paying taxes to help the government to maintain all public facilities and infrastructure, and now they are charged entry fees at a free, existing natural place.

Donely N Young Katukula said only foreigners should pay, not Namibians to pay for something that belongs to Namibians.

Khandas Thimotheus Mutumbulwa reasoned that people should only be charged for using the toilets, as charging entry fees will chase them away, unless they make it N$5 per person and N$ 10 per car.




Photo: Dune 7


2022-11-14  Eveline de Klerk

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