Namibia is renowned for its breathtaking landscapes, diverse wildlife, and rich cultural heritage. From the iconic red dunes of Sossusvlei to the vast plains of Etosha National Park, Namibia offers a tapestry of natural wonders waiting to be explored. Our travel advice will empower you to make informed decisions, allowing you to immerse yourself in the beauty and authenticity of this remarkable destination.
Safety is our utmost priority. We provide up-to-date information on travel advisories, health precautions, and local regulations to help you navigate Namibia confidently and safely. Our expert tips will guide you on the best practices for wildlife encounters, outdoor activities, and responsible tourism, ensuring your safety and preserving Namibia’s pristine environment.
Unlock the hidden gems of Namibia with our insider insights. Discover lesser-known attractions, off-the-beaten-path destinations, and local experiences that will add a unique touch to your journey. From cultural encounters with indigenous communities to thrilling adventures in the Namib Desert, our advice will help you create memories that will last a lifetime.
Whether planning a self-drive safari, a guided tour, or a combination of both, our Namibia travel advice caters to all types of explorers. We offer practical information on transportation options, accommodation recommendations, and itinerary suggestions to optimize your time and maximize your enjoyment.
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Money & Spending
Namibia’s national currency pegged to the South African Rand, is the Namibian Dollar. However, travellers who have combined South Africa with Namibia can use either currency in shops, lodges, markets and restaurants throughout the country. Note, however, that the Namibian Dollar is not accepted in South Africa.
Visa and Mastercard credit cards are generally accepted throughout Namibia though holders of other credit cards are advised to check whether their card is acceptable. Self-drivers should note that credit cards are not accepted at petrol stations.
Banking hours: 9 am to 3:30 pm Monday to Friday and 8 am to 11 am Saturday.
Tipping for good service is only expected in upmarket tourist establishments but is officially prohibited in national parks and reserves. A service charge is included in many restaurant bills – if not, and the service was satisfactory, a tip of 10% is standard.
For in-depth tipping guidelines, enquire with one of our Africa Safari Experts – they’d be happy to share their knowledge with you.
Average summer temperatures: 15°C to 40°C
Average winter temperatures: 0°C to 23°C
Rainy season: October/November to April
Refer to “best time to visit Namibia” for climate charts and details on the best wildlife-viewing times.
What to Pack
Temperatures in Namibia vary depending on the region and season. In general, days are hot, and nights can be unexpectedly chilly, so layering clothing is your best bet on a Namibia safari. Opt for cool cotton fabrics in neutral colours for the daytime and a fleece or jacket for morning and evening game drives. Comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots are a must.
For more on what to pack for a safari, refer to our Africa Safari Guide travel advice section.
Flights & Getting Around
Did you know you can book your flights through Go2Africa? For more information and frequently asked questions, please see our Flights section.
Hosea Kutako International Airport: Windhoek‘s major airport is the international gateway. However, to get to the country’s far-flung destinations by air, you’ll transfer to the capital’s second airport – Eros – for charter flights on light aircraft.
Transfers and game drives in Namibia are usually conducted in open-sided 4X4 vehicles.
The country’s good infrastructure means that many visitors to Namibia hire a car for a self-drive holiday, making for independent, flexible travel within the ambit of a pre-planned itinerary. Self-drivers at private reserves join the other guests for guided game drives in 4X4s.
Visa & Passport Requirements
Every visitor to Namibia must have a passport that is valid until six months after the initial date of travel; however, no visas are required for citizens of the USA, UK, most European countries (including France, Germany, Italy, Austria, Belgium, Spain and Switzerland), Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Malaysia, Japan and Singapore. Travellers receive entry for 90 days, and visas for onward travel can be obtained in Windhoek.
Please check with your nearest Namibian Consulate about obtaining a visa for visitors from other countries.
Watch this video: Product Manager Liesel van Zyl talks about Namibia on a local TV programme.
History & Economy
Namibia has a surprisingly diverse and complex history for a remote country dominated by bone-dry deserts and arid mountains. Settled first by San Bushmen and then by migrating African herders and farmers, European involvement only began in the late 1800s. A brief but influential episode under German colonial rule preceded 70 years of South African control. Namibia’s subsequent freedom struggle was set against the backdrop of the Cold War, and it was only in 1990 that the country won its independence.
Home to significant deposits of precious metals, uranium and diamonds, the mining industry dominates Namibia’s economy. It accounts for a quarter of its revenue though it is tourism, one of the country’s major employers, accounting for 18% of total employment. Offshore gas deposits are set to be exploited in the future.
People & Culture
Twice the size of Germany but home to only 2.1 million people, Namibia has the world’s second-lowest population density. Most Namibians are Ovambos, but significant minorities are present and include the Herero as well as San Bushmen, Germans and Afrikaners. The overwhelming majority consider themselves Christian though traditional beliefs still sway in rural areas.
English is Namibia’s official language, but German and Afrikaans speakers will be understood throughout the country. Much of Namibia’s modern culture is similar to South Africa’s. Still, the country is home to some of Africa’s best rock art and the traditional-living Himba people of the Kaokoveld, who still adorn their bodies in animal fat and natural pigments.
Landscape & Wildlife
Most of Namibia’s population lives on the relatively fertile central plateau, but the Kalahari and Namib Desert environments define the country. Running all the way to the icy Atlantic Ocean, the red-sand Namib is the world’s oldest desert and home to the famous dunes of Sossusvlei. Open woodlands and grassy savannahs are the main features of the more watered north. At the same time, extensive wetlands are found in the Caprivi Strip (newly renamed the Zambezi Region), an oddly shaped part of Namibia left over from the colonial era.
Environmental protection is constitutionally guaranteed, and some 15% of the country is given to parks and reserves. Wildlife is prolific, even in Namibia’s deserts, where familiar species such as elephants and lions have adapted to the demanding conditions. Still, the country’s flagship Etosha National Park delivers the country’s best game viewing. Home to a mix of both savannah and desert species, Etosha is particularly famous for its floodlit waterholes and as a stronghold for endangered creatures such as cheetahs and black rhinos.
Other wildlife highlights include the small but teeming Caprivi reserves offering fantastic bird watching, giant elephant and buffalo herds, and the unique Waterberg, an isolated plateau full of classic savannah animals.