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Welcome traveler!

We're Andre & Lisa, adventurers and experienced budget travelers.

We have over two decades of travel experience and since 2018 have led a full-time nomadic lifestyle.

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Thank you for visiting and we hope you find value in our destination pages! ​We thoroughly research and curate all content ourselves and everything you find on this site is put together by only the two of us.

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NAMIBIA TRAVEL GUIDE

Few countries in Southern Africa can match Namibia's sheer natural and vast beauty. It's named after the world's oldest desert (the Namib) which offers some of the most incredible scenes and sights on the planet, from the sand sea and ancient dead-tree valleys near Sossusvlei to the other-worldliness of massive sand dunes plunging down to the sea along the Skeleton Coast. This vast country truly is a desert lover's dream - the beauty of its canyons, orange sand dunes, incredible wildlife, and friendly locals ticks every box. Namibia is the second least densely populated country in the world after Mongolia with only 2.6 people per square kilometre and if you plan your route off the beaten path you might find yourself alone for days or even weeks on end.

 

We absolutely love Namibia and take every opportunity to visit. Fortunately for us, Namibia's southern border is barely a day drive from Cape Town, and even if you only have limited time, the southern part of the country is more than diverse and vast to provide you with a glimpse of what may lie further north. To fully experience what Namibia has to offer you should ideally spend closer to a month self-driving yourself across from end to end. At some point, you will look around and wonder whether you've fallen off the end of the earth.

COUNTRY PAGE
  • Currency: The official currency of Namibia is the Namibian Dollar (N$), which is pegged 1:1 to the South African Rand (ZAR). Both currencies are legal tender in Namibia, though change will usually be given in Namibian Dollars. Current conversion rate here.

  • Electricity: 220-240V AC electricity. Power outlets are mostly round three-prong sockets (type M) and round two-prong sockets (type C).

  • Language: Nine different languages are spoken across the country but English is the official language and is widely spoken. Older Namibians in the South are more likely to speak Afrikaans or German.

  • Safety: Namibia a very safe, politically stable country. With its small population and low crime rate, it's one of Africa’s safer destinations for travel. If you are travelling on an organized trip and staying at lodges and camps, safety problems are very rare. For these kinds of trips always follow the instructions of your guide who is responsible for your safety. Driving at night is not recommended due to the proliferation of wild animals. As anywhere in the world, most crime occurs in cities where higher safety precautions are urged. The northern part of Namibia is in a malaria-risk zone, so consult a doctor before leaving your home country, and take appropriate malaria precautions when travelling in these areas. Namibia's water supply is usually safe to drink, except where labelled otherwise. Whatever you do, don’t travel without travel insurance! We would suggest checking out World Nomads or SafetyWing, for travel insurance as they have the best coverage for active travellers.

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POSTS ON NAMIBIA

SEASONS AT A GLANCE

Most destinations have different times of the year when they’re more or less popular with tourists. 

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Peak Season

Shoulder Season

Off Peak Season

JANUARY

HOT

COLD

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DRY

WET

FEBRUARY

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WET

MARCH

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APRIL

HOT

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WET

MAY

HOT

COLD

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WET

JUNE

HOT

COLD

MODERATE
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WET

JULY

HOT

COLD

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WET

AUGUST

HOT

COLD

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WET

SEPTEMBER

HOT

COLD

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WET

OCTOBER

HOT

COLD

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WET

NOVEMBER

HOT

COLD

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DECEMBER

HOT

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WET

Climate Chart with avergae monthly temperatues and rainfall

BEST TIME TO VISIT NAMIBIA

If seeing wildlife is your main objective, the absolute best time to visit Namibia is during September as it's warm and sunny with blue skies and not too cold at night. There are limited water sources so the game gathers around the waterholes, making for great game viewing.

 

May is the beginning of Namibia's winter. There is little to no rainfall during the winter and humidity is low. Wildlife will start to gather around the waterholes when rivers and other water sources dry up. From June nights are getting cold and temperatures can drop to below 10°C, while in the desert areas it can get to freezing. Daytime temperatures are pleasant, with blue skies and temperatures in the mid-20°Cs.

 

Generally speaking, the best time to visit Namibia is from July to October, with mild daytime temperatures and a low chance of rain. As can be expected, this is also the best time for wildlife viewing, making it peak travel season and you will need to plan well in advance.

 

However, Namibia is an incredibly scenic country and can be visited throughout the year. The colours will be most vibrant during and after the Wet season with the months of October to February unpleasantly hot during daytimes. We have on occasion spent a few weeks during December in the desert and if you can deal with the daytime heat it's a way to escape the busy coastal towns during the December holiday season.

BEST TIME FOR:

Although Namibia has a long coastline, the coast is not really suitable for a beach holiday. You will however find a few beaches at Swakopmund.

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NAMIBIA TRAVEL COSTS

Namibia is not a budget destination. Certain aspects, such as your transport and accommodation can be pricey, but on the other hand, dining out and luxury treatments can be good value for money. With the Namibian Dollar pegged to the South African Rand - foreign tourists can generally find good value in Namibia.

If you want to save money on accommodation, camping would be the cheapest option and probably the most enjoyable too. There's plenty of private and community-run camp-sites around and it could cost as little as $10 to spend the night at a basic campsite, many of which have pools, or about $30 to camp at some lodges. You may also find hostels in the larger centers like Windhoek and Swakopmund.

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TRAVEL TIPS FOR NAMIBIA

Getting Around Namibia

Namibia's roads are generally very good, with the main routes tarred, and secondary routes of well-graded gravel. During the holiday periods, gravel roads can deteriorate somewhat due to the increased traffic. An all-wheel-drive vehicle is not necessary except on tertiary roads and along the Skeleton Coast. Driving at night is very dangerous as there can be a lot of wildlife on the roads. Always check your spare wheel and inspect your tires often as Namibian roads are notorious for destroying tires. It's a good idea to purchase tire insurance that your rental car company might offer. Most importantly, if you do not have experience driving on gravel roads, SLOW DOWN! If you are on the back roads of Namibia, it's always wise to stop and add fuel to your tank whenever you see a service station. If possible carry at least 5L extra fuel in a container for an emergency. Plan to have some cash on hand in more rural areas as most fuel stations typically do not accept any form of payment other than cash.

A rental vehicle provides you with more freedom and flexibility during your travels, but there are some things which you should be aware of:

  • Budget class rental vehicles are available almost only with manual transmissions and if you specifically want an automatic vehicle, options available are often more expensive and in short supply.
  • Prior to renting the car, also make sure you understand any restrictions you might be under like, total distance, whether you are allowed to drive on dirt roads, or geographic limits.
  • Many rental agencies will also limit the waiver they provide on damage and you should inquire about this prior to signing any contract.

Skyscanner.com is a fantastic tool for finding great flight deals. Also, check Momondo for flight comparisons and car rental deals.

If self-driving Namibia isn’t quite your style, there are also a number of small group adventure tours we’d recommend taking through the country, including:

WONDERS OF NAMIBIA - This 10-day G Adventures tour takes in all the best Namibia highlights, including Sossusvlei and Deadvlei, Fish River Canyon, Swakopmund, and Etosha National Park. Search all G Adventures Namibia group tours here.


REGIONS & HIGHLIGHTS OF NAMIBIA

Namibia is a large and diverse country with much to see and do - from the nature lover to the historian and even for the adventurer. All that we can say for sure is that you will never have enough time in a single trip and you will most likely leave Namibia wanting to return.

  • Etosha National Park - Crouch by a water hole in one of the world's premier wildlife venues.
  • Sossusvlei - Watch the sun rise from the top of the fiery coloured dunes.
  • Fish River Canyon - Hike through one of Africa's greatest natural wonders.
  • Skeleton Coast - Get off the beaten track (and the tarred road) in the true African wilderness.
  • Waterberg Plateau - Hike to the top for breathtaking views, while keeping an eye out for rare sable and roan antelope.
  • Swakopmund - Get your adrenaline fix at Namibia's extreme-sport capital.
  • Damaraland - Track rhinos and desert elephants in a stunning landscape of red-bouldered mountains.

See the below map for more details and points of interest - or download KML / GPX

WHAT TO SEE AND DO IN NAMIBIA

Visit Etosha National Park

Dominated by the white salt flats of Etosha Pan, Etosha National Park is one of southern Africa’s great safari destinations. This 22 700 square kilometer wilderness area in Namibia is home to nearly 115 species of mammals, including four of the Big Five. You are more likely to spot animals here than other national parks due to its structure - the park is partially a massive salt pan and experiences low rainfall and visibility can be really good. Rent a vehicle or camper and camp at Okaukuejo camp within the park limits. The dry season is the best time for your Etosha safari, especially the months from May/June to October. Lack of rain means animals gather around the waterholes to drink, so these are the best places to park and wait for them to appear. July and August are also the busiest months, with lots of foreign visitors.

 

Explore Deadvlei

No visit to Sossusvlei, Namibia, would be complete without checking out the famous trees of Deadvlei. The clay pan is characterized by dark, dead camel thorn trees contrasted against the white pan floor. Formed when the Tsauchab River flooded, the abundance of water allowed camel thorn trees to grow in the pan. However, the climate changed and the sand dunes soon encroached on the pan, blocking the river from reaching the area.  The fossilized trees are estimated to be around 900 years old, however, they have not decomposed due to the intensely dry climate. While there you're sure not to miss "Big Daddy" - situated between Sossusvlei and Deadvlei and at 325 meters dwarfing all the other dunes.

 

Hike Fish River Canyon

The largest canyon in Africa (the second largest worldwide), it forms part of the state-run Ais-Ais Richtersveld Transfrontier Park.  The Fish River is the longest interior river in Namibia and over time managed to cut deep into the plateau - in total about 160 km long and up to 27 km wide and in places, almost 550 meters deep. The river itself flows intermittently, usually flooding in late summer; the rest of the year it becomes a chain of long narrow pools. Towards the lower end of the Fish River Canyon at the end of road C10, the hot springs resort of Ai-Ais is situated.

 

Kolmanskop Ghost Town

Kolmanskop grew out of the diamond boom. The region was administered by Germany at the beginning of the century and the town reflected this in its character. It was said of the Germans that only after they had finished building the pub and the skittle alley, their favourite form of relaxation, did they start looking for suitable plots to build their houses. During 1912, the area produced one million carats which were almost 12 percent of the world’s total diamond production for the year! The last people left the town around 50 years ago and since then, the desert has completely taken over the buildings.

 

HOT AIR BALLOONING OVER THE NAMIB DESERT

This is probably on a lot of people’s bucket lists somewhere, and for good reason! Taking off at dawn, we watched the sunrise over the dunes between Swakopmund and Walvisbay, flew towards the Naukluft Moonlandscape, over dunes that looked like play-dough and startled ant-like gemsbok. It’s definitely better seen than described – if you see the aerial images you’ll be tempted to book your flight right now. From Sossusvlei, it can be a pricey excursion but you can also do it from Swakopmund for substantially cheaper, albeit with a somewhat different scenery below.

WHAT TO EAT IN NAMIBIA

Food in Namibia, for the indigenous population at least, has mostly been more about survival rather than creating inspirational cuisine, and you're unlikely to encounter the basic food eaten by most Namibians on most tourist menus. Instead, you're more likely to find mainly international dishes, with some local variation or adaptation – German dishes (particularly cakes and pastries) are a highlight, as are the widely available game meats (eg eland, oryx or kudu). Local specialities worth sampling is Swakopmund green asparagus (September to April), Luderitz oysters (all year round), Kalahari truffles (May and June if they appear), and Omajowa, the large fleshy mushrooms that appear for a brief period at the foot of termite hills north of Okahandja shortly after the rains in February.

 

As Namibia’s cattle live entirely off savannah grasses and shrubs, local beef is entirely free from harmful residues, hormones and antibiotics, as is Namibian lamb. Venison has always been incredibly popular, especially ostrich, springbok, and gemsbok, while seafood such as kabeljou, rock lobster and oysters are highly regarded along the coast. Outdoor cooking is a big part of the Namibian way of life and the tradition of braaivleis (meat barbeque) is a popular meal, as is potjiekos, a spicy stew of meat, chicken or fish cooked in a cast iron, three-legged pot over an open fire. As you travel throughout the safari lodges in Namibia you will find that many of the lodges serve traditional braaivleis and potjiekos.

 

In Swakopmund, Luderitz and Windhoek you can indulge in traditional German-style confectionery including classics such as Schwarzwälder, Kirschtorte, and Apfelstrudel as well as the renowned Springer chocolates produced in Windhoek. A favourite breakfast or light lunch are crispy bread rolls, known as Brötchen, filled with cheese, eggs, meat or salad. Popular snacks include Southern African specialities such as biltong (spiced dried meat) and droewors (spicy dried sausage) as well as Ladjäger, a Southern German smoked port and beef sausage.

LGBTQ IN NAMIBIA

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WHERE TO STAY IN NAMIBIA

Namibia is not a budget destination and accommodation can be rather pricey. However, for such a large country, accommodation can be found just about anywhere, whether it be a sleepy roadside town in the middle of the desert or an incredible lodge in the heart of Etosha.

 

If you want to save on accommodation, camping would be the cheapest option and probably the most enjoyable too. There are plenty of private and community-run campsites around and it could cost as little as $10 to spend the night at a basic campsite, many of which have pools, or about $30 to camp at some lodges. you may also find hostels in the larger centers like Windhoek and Swakopmund.

 

When visiting Namibia for the first time, choosing where to stay is crucial for experiencing the diverse landscapes, wildlife, and cultural attractions that this Southern African country has to offer. From the iconic red dunes of Sossusvlei to the wildlife-rich Etosha National Park, Namibia promises unforgettable adventures and unique experiences for every traveler.


Where To Stay In Windhoek:

As the capital city of Namibia, Windhoek serves as the main gateway for exploring the country, offering a blend of urban amenities, cultural attractions, and historical landmarks.

  • Budget: Chameleon Backpackers & Guesthouse provides budget-friendly accommodation with dormitory rooms, a communal kitchen, and a central location, making it ideal for budget-conscious travelers in Windhoek.

  • Mid-range: Hotel Thule offers mid-range accommodations with comfortable rooms, stunning views of the city, and excellent dining options, providing a relaxing stay with easy access to Windhoek's attractions.

  • Luxury: The Olive Exclusive All-Suite Hotel provides luxurious accommodations with spacious suites, personalized service, and upscale amenities, ensuring a lavish experience in the heart of Windhoek.


Where To Stay In Swakopmund:

Located along the Atlantic coast, Swakopmund offers a charming seaside retreat with opportunities for adventure activities, cultural experiences, and exploring the nearby Namib Desert.

  • Budget: Skeleton Beach Backpackers provides budget-friendly accommodation with dormitory rooms, a communal lounge, and a central location near Swakopmund's attractions, catering to budget travelers seeking affordability and convenience.

  • Mid-range: Desert Breeze Lodge offers mid-range accommodations with stylish chalets, desert views, and a tranquil atmosphere, providing a comfortable stay just minutes away from Swakopmund's beaches and activities.

  • Luxury: Strand Hotel Swakopmund provides luxurious accommodations with elegant rooms, oceanfront views, and world-class amenities, ensuring a sophisticated retreat in this coastal town.


Where To Stay In Sossusvlei (Sesriem):

Sossusvlei is home to some of Namibia's most iconic landscapes, including towering red sand dunes and the mesmerizing salt and clay pans. Staying near Sossusvlei allows for easy access to explore these natural wonders and witness breathtaking sunrise and sunset scenes.

  • Budget: Desert Quiver Camp offers budget-friendly self-catering accommodation in stylish chalets, providing a comfortable base for exploring Sossusvlei and the surrounding desert landscapes. Additionally, campsites are available for those seeking a more rustic experience.

  • Mid-range: Sossusvlei Lodge provides mid-range accommodations with comfortable rooms, a swimming pool, and guided excursions to Sossusvlei and Deadvlei, ensuring a convenient and enjoyable stay amid the desert scenery.

  • Luxury: Little Kulala Lodge offers luxurious accommodations with exclusive villas, private plunge pools, and panoramic views of the desert landscape. With gourmet dining options and personalized service, it provides a luxurious retreat in the heart of Sossusvlei.


Tips for visiting Sossuvlei:

  • Guided Tours: Consider booking guided tours or excursions to Sossusvlei and Deadvlei to make the most of your visit and gain insights into the area's geological and cultural significance.

  • Sunrise Visit: Plan to visit Sossusvlei at sunrise for the best lighting conditions and to avoid the heat of the day. The early morning light casts dramatic shadows on the dunes, creating stunning photographic opportunities.

  • Park Entry: Be aware of the park entry fees and regulations when visiting Sossusvlei. Entry gates open early in the morning, so plan to arrive early to avoid crowds and make the most of your time in this spectacular natural wonder.


Where To Stay In Etosha National Park:

Etosha National Park is a premier wildlife destination in Namibia, renowned for its abundant wildlife, including elephants, lions, and rhinos, as well as the vast Etosha Pan.

  • Budget: Etosha Safari Camp offers budget-friendly accommodation with comfortable tents, a swimming pool, and guided safari tours, providing an affordable safari experience within close proximity to Etosha National Park.

  • Mid-range: Mokuti Etosha Lodge offers mid-range accommodations with spacious rooms, safari activities, and excellent dining options, ensuring a comfortable stay near the eastern entrance of Etosha National Park.

  • Luxury: Ongava Lodge provides luxurious accommodations with exclusive chalets, private game drives, and wildlife encounters, offering an unforgettable safari experience in a private reserve adjacent to Etosha National Park.



Accommodation Tips For Namibia:

Consider visiting during the shoulder seasons (March to June and September to October) to find better rates and fewer crowds.


For hassle-free bookings, use platforms like Booking.com for competitive rates or Holiday Swap for unique homes worldwide. Ensure to book in advance, especially during peak seasons, and align your preferences with nearby activities such as surfing, snorkeling, or cultural exploration.

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Booking.com is our number one resource for researching and booking accommodation. In addition to Booking.com, we have found Agoda.com to consistently returns the cheapest rates in Southeast Asia. For longer stays, find unique homes worldwide on Holiday Swap, the most affordable travel platform that allows you to book homes anytime, anywhere in only a few clicks.

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DiscoverCars.com is a leader in online car rental bookings; we compare car rental deals from many companies so that you can choose which is best for your trip. 12Go connects the world door-to-door, from transfers to flights, under the same user-friendly ticket.

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