Swakopmund, Namibia is one of the top places in the world to go skydiving.
It’s easy to see why, when you have killer views of the sandy Namib Desert contrasted with the deep blues of the Atlantic Ocean.This was my first time skydiving, but surprisingly, I was not nervous at all. I credit this to the fact that I chose to jump tandem, where a licensed instructor was harnessed to me, ensuring a safe landing. All I had to do was enjoy the ride. 😀
Our group chose to skydive with the company, Ground Rush Adventures. From our hostel in Swakopmund, the company transported us to their tropical skydive hut in the middle of the Namib Desert.
My group had eight people, so we were split into four groups, since there were only two jumpers allowed in the plane at one time.
Each jumper went with both their instructor and a camera man, who would be filming the entire jump from start to finish.
Before we jumped, the crew went over some basic rules with everyone. The most important instruction was how to position our body for the jump and landing. For the jump you rest your hands on your shoulders, lean your head back, and arch your body, like a backwards banana, hooked onto the underbelly of the plane.
In contrast, for the landing, your knees are up, just like you’re sitting in an imaginary chair.
For the rest of the free fall you can spread your arms out, like you’re flying like a bird.When it was my turn to jump, I got geared up in a suit and harness, then headed for the plane. In the first ten minutes we enjoyed a scenic flight over the desert, where we saw sand dunes and a pink salt mine. Five minutes before jumping, my instructor harnessed our suits together and gave me a pair of glasses for the wind. When we were ready to jump, the camera man lifted up the plane hatch like a garage door and told me to scoot towards the edge.Honestly, everything happened so fast, I didn’t have time to second guess my decision to jump. Before I knew it, I was free-falling from 10,000 feet! The sensation was more like floating, and less like falling. I’m not a big fan of roller coasters, and this never gave me a gut-wrenching feeling. It was absolutely incredible! After a 35-second free fall, David opened the chute and we glided toward the ground. He even gave me the reins, and showed me how to make circles on our way down.Overall, one of the best experiences I’ve had so far. It should definitely be added to everyone’s bucket list. Here’s a video of my jump made by Ground Rush Adventures. The free fall is initially in slow motion, then shown in real time. Hope you enjoy. 🙂
Cost: 200 USD for tandem skydive, 70 USD for pictures and video
Anyway, after two weeks in Namibia, we were finally on our way to South Africa, the last country on this overland journey. Stay tuned to hear all about it. Until then. 🙂