‘The beauty of the desert in Namibia took my breath away’ Jenny Zarins, photographer

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This photograph, taken in the Namib desert in 2018, captures a sense of freedom for me, that feeling of vastness we get from spending extended time in the wild. I was on a horse-riding safari: 11 days of being outside all day and sleeping beneath the stars. We covered 300km; it was extraordinary.

I’d never been to Namibia and although I’d been told about the breathtaking landscape, it still did exactly that … took my breath away. You think of riding through the desert and imagine it will be all sand – but every day the scenery was so diverse – from the plains along the edge of the Namib sand sea in Sossusvlei to mountains and the dramatic, deep Kuiseb Canyon and Gaub Pass. We rode through the Welwitschia plains, Moon valley and along the Swakop River.

My favourite part was sleeping under the stars. Tents were available but there was such magic without them

We were a small group of riders on an adventure with Namibia Horse Safari Company, which always took along a few spare horses, so that any animal that needed a rest could have a day off. In this picture, Telane Greyling, horsewoman extraordinaire, is riding alongside two loose horses. They would just run along with us, sometimes playing around and slaloming with the riders.

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