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Ais Ais

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The /Ai/Ais-Richtersveld Transfrontier Park measures 5 920 km² and spans some of the most spectacular arid and desert mountain scenery in southern Africa. This harsh environment is a surprising treasure-chest containing the world’s richest desert flora. Miniature rock gardens, perfectly designed by nature, cling precariously to cliff faces. Tiny succulents, mere pinpoints against a backdrop of surreal rock formations, revel in the moisture brought by the early morning fog rolling in from the cold Atlantic Ocean.

Powerful and overwhelming in presence, this is a great place to head for if you're finishing or starting a trip, or wanting a base to explore the Fish River Canyon.

The transfrontier park also features the Fish River Canyon, which is the second largest canyon in the world and the largest in Africa. It features a gigantic ravine, in total about 100 miles (160 km) long, up to 27 km wide and in places almost 550 metres deep.

The hot springs (Ai Ais means very hot in the Nama) are littered with impossibly huge chunks of raw Quartz. These sulphurous thermal hot water springs are situated at the base of the mountain peaks at the southern end of Fish River Canyon, in the Karas Region of southern Namibia and forms part of the Ai-Ais/Richtersveld Transfrontier Park.