Ruacana Things to Do
A WATERFALL WITH NO WATER
You will probably never get a chance to truly see what a major waterfall looks like – without any water. The Kunene River, which feeds the Ruacana Falls, was dammed twice by both Angola and Namibia in 1976. As the river flows south within Angola it builds up an amazing volume of water that generates an amazing amount of electricity for both countries. The integrated project is linked to the small town of Calueque in Angola, 20 km (12 mi) away. The hydro-power plant on the Namibian side is run by the Namibian power company, NAMPOWER, and is actually underground. Part of the project involves the diversion of water through a 300 km (190 mi) pipeline. So that's why you see lots of rocks and no water.
When Ruacana was in full flow it measured 120 meters (393ft) high and 700 meters (2296ft) high. From April to December you will only see the rocks. Having said that, it’s an amazing sight and one you will never see again.
Interestingly the dam on the Angolan side was bombed by Cuban aircraft in 1988, during the Angolan civil war.Related to:
- Road Trip