Namibia has got a very pleasant climate with over 300 days of sunshine per year and can be visited all year round. The summer months from October to April are warm and day temperatures in the inland vary from 20 – 34°C. Temperatures above 35°C may occur in the southern and northern parts of Namibia during summer. During winter, from May to September, days are pleasantly warm, but nights may get very cold, often below 0°C. The climate at the coast is influenced by the cold Benguela current and mist might occur during the night, but usually it clears during the morning.
Most of the country’s rainfall occurs between January and April. But even this time of the year is suitable to travel because rain usually falls in the afternoons as thunderstorms which soon pass over. Visitors should bring adequate clothing – light clothing for the day and warm clothing for the night. Miscellaneous items not to be forgotten including a hat, sunglasses and sun cream.
Most urban areas and areas close to towns have cell phone coverage. International cell phone networks have agreements with Namibian providers, so roaming is possible. Alternatively, pre-paid SIM cards can be purchased locally. GSM – 3G/4G technology is available, conveniently giving you global networking access.
Namibia has an excellent telecommunications system, with direct dialing to over 200 international destinations. The international country code for overseas calls to Namibia is +264, while area codes in the country are preceded by a 0. When calling from outside Namibia, the 0 of the area codes must be submitted.
Major credit cards such as Master Card and Visa Card are accepted throughout the country. However, vendors in remote areas and some petrol stations only accept cash.
The Namibian Dollar (N$) and the South African Rand (ZAR) are the only legal tender in Namibia. Both are equivalent in exchange rate to foreign currencies. The Namibian dollar is, however, not accepted in South Africa and other southern African countries. It is therefore important to convert Namibian Dollars to foreign currency before leaving the country. All foreign currencies can be exchanged at banks or exchange bureaus.
Tap water in towns is purified and you need have no hesitation in drinking it. Water obtained from boreholes is very often brackish and can taste unpleasant but is by no means a health risk. However, in rural communal areas caution should be exercised. Bottled mineral water and ice cubes are available at most shops and filling stations. Always take several bottles of water along when traveling.
All appliances run on 220/240 volts. Outlets are of the round 3 –pin, 15-amps type. Adaptors for European type plugs can be bought in local supermarkets.
Surface area: 824.268 km2
Nature Reserves: 15% of Namibia’s surface area (105.559 km2)
Capital City: Windhoek
Democracy & freedom of religion
Time Zone: GMT + 2 hours
English is the official language of Namibia and travelers should generally have little difficulty communicating, except in some of the remote rural areas. German and Afrikaans are also widely spoken. In total 16 languages and dialects are spoken by 13 ethnic cultures. Oshiwambo is the most widely spoken of Namibia’s indigenous languages.
mémé – respectful form of address for an adult female;
táté – respectful form of address for a male.
Try to learn a few local words. Here are some key phrases in some of the local languages.
Afrikaans: Asseblief = Please ; Dankie = Thank you ; Totsiens = Goodbye
Owambo: Wa lelepo nawa? = Did you sleep well? ; Eee! = Yes! ; Nawa! = Well! ; Kalapa nawa = Goodbye
Herero: Okuhepa = Thank you ; Kara nawa = Goodbye
Nama/Damara: Matisa? = How are you? ; Ayo = Thank you ; Moro = Good morning
It is advisable to take out insurance to cover medical emergencies. In Namibia’s larger towns, especially in Windhoek, all kinds of medical services are available. Although the country is virtually free of tropical diseases, visitors to the northern regions must be aware of Malaria. Please consult your doctor or pharmacist regarding Malaria-prophylaxis. We recommend making use of provided mosquito nets and using mosquito repellent such as Tabard or Peaceful Sleep, which can be bought in almost every supermarket in Namibia.
Minors younger than 18 years traveling to Namibia must have an unabridged birth certificate and present a valid passport.
In addition, when travelling with a (one) parent: an affidavit from the other parent giving consent for the minor to travel is required. A death certificate should be provided if one parent is deceased.
Please respect the customs and traditions of your host. Please support local people and their products by spending your money within the local economy and bargain fairly. Even though Namibia is a developing country, hotels and lodges are graded according to international standards, hence prices will be more or less tally with international prices.
Namibia is a safe destination but keep an eye on your belongings. Do not display expensive jewellery, cameras, cell phones or cash. Rather leave electronic equipment, tickets, passports and excess cash safely at your hotel when sightseeing. Exercise caution by keeping your vehicle locked. Even if you park in an area where car guards look after vehicles, it is wise not to leave valuables in view.
Foreign nationals must carry a passport that is valid for at least six months after date of departure from Namibia and has at least 2 empty pages. They need to produce proof of return or onwards travel. Children must have their own passport. All visitors require visas except nationals of countries with which Namibia has the necessary visa abolition agreement. Nationals from the following countries do not need a visa to enter Namibia for touristic purposes: France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States of America and more. Please contact the nearest Namibian Embassy for the latest visa requirements for Namibia. Holidaymakers are welcome to remain in the country for a maximum of 90 days. Immigration officials are authorized to grant duration of stay based on the information provided on the arrival form. Please check your passport and documentation to ensure that the visa granted match the duration of stay intended. If it is not correct, please claim immediately.
You will not be able to obtain the Namibian national currency (Namibia Dollar) abroad.
However, after entering the country, you can withdraw cash with your EC or credit card at an ATM in Namibia (please ask your bank in advance whether you will be able to use your card abroad).
The aforementioned temperature clearly dictates the type of clothing required. During summer (day and night) light clothing – cotton shirts, shorts or skirts – is necessary. Long-sleeved shirts and long cotton trousers are a good idea if your skin is sensitive to the sun, and also keep mosquitoes at bay after sunset. This clothing is also adequate for winter daywear, but for early mornings, evenings and nights warm trousers, jerseys, track suits, balaclava, gloves and warm socks should be included.
Miscellaneous items not to be forgotten include a wide brimmed sun hat, sunscreen cream, insect repellant, sunglasses, binoculars, sturdy walking shoes and a bathing costume.