Luderitz lies on the crystalline rocks of the Namaqualand Metamorphic complex. Some of these ancient rocks, erosion products of the first mainland areas on earth, were washed into the shallow waters of the ocean that once existed here. Lava sqeezed out through submarine volcanic activity onto the ocean floor and formed a basalt bed interlayered with sediment.
Another prominent landmark on Diamantberg is Goerke House with its turreted red roofs., Wilhelminische sundial and its distinctive blue exterior. Built in 1910/11 for Hans Goerke who was manager of the Emiliental diamond company at the time, it is an excellent example of the "diamond palaces" built during the boom years of the diamond era.
With its regular coastline and with relatively few large sheltered bays and rocky promontories, the Namibian coast offered little comfort to the early Portuguese navigators searching for a sea route to India. One such exception was a rocky inlet where strong southerly winds forced Bartholomeu Dias to lie at anchor for five days in December 1487. It was named Angra das Voltas or the Bay of Tacks because of the number of tacks necessary to enter it. On his return journey Dias was accompanied by the explorer Pacheto Pereira who described Angras das Voltas as having "....... a large mouth facing the nort-west and ... enters within the land a good league and a half, where a hunderd vessels can anchor in ten or twelve fathoms,secure in all weathers. This bay is a legue or more across; and it has within it some rocky islets, and there is much fishing here." Dias raised a padrao (cross) on a rocky point to the west of the bay on 24 July 1488 and dedicated it to sao Tiago Zebedeu, St James