Cape Cross is situated 53km north of Henties Bay. In 1486, the Portuguese seafarer and explorer, Diogo Cão, erected a padrâo, which is a stone pillar topped by a cross, establishing his country's claim to the territory. Today, the area is a popular tourist attraction and a reserve protecting a colony of Cape Fur Seals, said to be one of the largest in the world.
Its original purpose as a symbol of Portuguese triumph later became a necessary 15th century navigational landmark. The legend surrounding the Cape Cross is shrouded in mystery as no one is quite sure what happened to the man that put it there. Today, the original cross lies in Berlin while a replacement along with a replica stands in its stead.
The southern African coastline is renowned as the only place in the world inhabited by Cape fur seals and the inhabitants at Cape Cross are said to at times exceed 210 000 in number. A walkway gives visitors a great vantage point from which to observe the seals. The only accommodation in the area is the Cape Cross Lodge while the Cape Cross Seal Reserve is open from 10am until 5pm daily.
- This is a worthwhile destination for seal lovers or those interested in the history of the seafaring stories of old
- Home to Cape Cross Seal Reserve, the largest breeding colony of seals in the world
- Cape Cross (replicas) along with information and a colourful history can be seen here
- Can be done as a day trip from Swakopmund or Henties Bay
- Accommodation offered at Cape Cross Lodge that has good facilities
- Cape Cross Lodge also has a fascinating small museum and restaurant