Although Walvis Bay had already been discovered by Diaz as early as 1487, it was only founded in 1793 by the Cape Dutch. Two years later, Walvis Bay became - like the entire Cape Colony - part of the South African Union.
The special attraction of Walvis Bay is the huge natural lagoon with its overwhelming abundance of seabirds. 120 000 birds were recently counted in the lagoon, innumerable flamingoes and pelicans among them. Every year they are joined by 200 000 migratory birds.
Also worth seeing in Walvis Bay, is the local museum in the Civic Centre, the Birdlife Information Centre and the wooden Rhenish mission church established in 1880. "Dune 7" at the outskirts of town is the highest sand dune in the area and once you have climbed to the top, you can enjoy a stunning view. The town has numerous good restaurants, cafes and bars as well as comfortable hotels and guest houses on offer.
A unique experience is the adventurous 48 km drive to Sandwich Harbour, a freshwater lagoon surrounded by dunes, and a favourite amongst anglers and ornithologists.
For this drive, a 4x4 is indispensable. In parts, the course of the road is difficult to identify, and long stretches lead through deep soft sand. The last stretch has to be done by foot.
Walvis Bay lies about 30 kilometres south of Swakopmund.