Just outside Luderitz, about 15 km into the desert you will find what is probably one of the most photographed locations in Namibia after the Death Vlei; Kolamanskuppe or Kolmanskop. It is the old Diamond village built right at the entrance of the mines and named after a transporter Johnny Coleman who got lost in that area during a heavy sandstorm and was found in the dunes.
Sometime around 1908, a railway worker, Zacharias Lewala, who was cleaning the rails of sand between Luderitz and Keetmanshoop found a shinny stone and took it to his German chief, August Stauch. He confirmed that it was a diamond and the rush to Kolmanskoppe began. The village was flourishing and had everything you can imagine. There was a casino, bowling alley, ballroom, library and the hospital had the first X-ray machine in the southern hemisphere! About fifty years later, the diamonds dried out and in 1954 the last residents left town. Since then the desert has been taking over and almost all the buildings are now knee-deep in sand.