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Practical information about Namibia

On this page you will find answers to frequently asked questions about Namibia. Read about weather, visa, language and much more. See also our selection of Namibia Holidays.

1. The following are not included in our package trip prices

  • Meals
  • Cancellation and travel insurance
  • Gratuities
  • Visas
  • Vaccinations

2. The climate in Namibia

With an average of 300 days of sun per year, Namibia is one of the sunniest countries in the world. The climate is generally dry, and even after rainfall the humidity remains low. However, there are large differences in climate from area to area. In the central plateau around the capital, Windhoek, at an altitude of about 1,700 m, the summer temperature in January is about 30 °C during the day and 17 °C at night. In the winter in July, expect 20 °C in the daytime and 7 °C at night. Annual precipitation is only about 370 mm, most of which falls during the period from January to May. In the Namib and Kalahari desert areas the summer temperatures exceed 40 °C, in winter falling to 20–25 °C. At night the temperature can fall to below freezing. The climate along the coast is somewhat different from that of the rest of the country: the prevailing winds and particular currents along the Atlantic coast mean that on about 200 days of the year there is a blanket of sea fog, which can reach some way inland. The average temperature in Swakopmund is about 20 °C in summer in January, and about 16 °C in winter in August. The fog can make it feel really cold.

Brief summary of the seasons and weather:

  • December to March: warm, with thundery showers from January; vegetation becomes lush and green
  • April to May: rain eases off and temperatures fall
  • June to September: winter; temperatures comfortable (although on the cool side in some areas) with no rainfall; nights are cold, with frosts in the deserts; vegetation turns brown
  • October and November: temperatures rise and heat makes itself felt again; some showers; vegetation starts to become green

The best safari months in Etosha are from May to November: the plains dry out and the animals have to go to the waterholes to drink.

3. Form of travel

On our trips, excursions and transfers are in small international groups with English-speaking guides. Groups may have up to 16 members. On self-drive trips, you are left to your own devices on a route with planned overnight accommodation.

4. When is it best to travel to Namibia?

Namibia is a year-round destination, one of the best in Africa!

The weather and seasons:

  • December to March: warm, with thundery showers from January; vegetation becomes lush and green
  • April to May: rain eases off and temperatures fall
  • June to September: winter: temperatures comfortable (although on the cool side in some areas) with no rainfall; nights are cold, with frosts in the deserts; vegetation turns brown
  • October and November: temperatures rise and heat makes itself felt again; some showers; vegetation starts to become green

5. Terms and conditions of travel

Please read our booking terms and conditions carefully. These terms and conditions constitute the basis of your package purchased from africasafari.co.uk. Click here to read our terms and conditions.

All the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you pay you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it. Please see our booking conditions for further information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOLCertificate

6. Assistance with taking out travel insurance

We are an ATOL protected agency giving you complete peace of mind. It is a condition of booking that the sole responsibility lies with the guest to ensure that they carry the correct comprehensive travel and medical insurance to cover themselves, as well as any dependants/traveling companions for the duration of their trip.

In cooperation with our partner we can offer advantageous travel insurances. Learn more here.

7. Language

The official language is English. German and Afrikaans are widely spoken (by 32 per cent and 60 per cent of the population respectively), as Namibia was first a German and then a South-African colony for many years. However, Namibia is made up of many ethnic groups and a large number of languages are spoken, such as Oshiwambo, spoken by 48 per cent of the population, and Herero (10 per cent). The languages of the San people, such as Naro, !Xóõ, Kung-ekoka and ǂKxʼauǁʼein (all of which feature click sounds), are also spoken in Namibia.

8. Vaccination

The authorities do not require you to get vaccinated, unless you have visited areas with yellow fever within the last six months. We recommend that you contact a medical specialist, your GP or an authorised vaccination clinic. Visit nhs.co.uk for more information about vaccinations and Namibia.

9. Visas

British citizens can travel to Namibia without a visa for trips of up to 90 days. You must bring a valid passport, which must not expire for at least six months after the date of your return from Namibia.

10. Currency

The currency in Namibia is the Namibian dollar. Visit www.xe.com/currencyconverter to see the current exchange rate in both US dollars, GBP and South African rand. Standard credit cards such as Visa and MasterCard are generally accepted, and there are cash machines (ATMs) in all cities. You can use credit cards in hotels, restaurants and shops, but not in small local markets.

11. Driving distances

Namibia is a very large country, more than twice the size of Germany, and travelling around therefore involves covering long distances. On the round trip “Highlights of Namibia” the driving schedule is as shown below:

Day 2: 100 km

Day 3: 350 km

Day 4: 250 km

Day 5: 530 km, including safari in Etosha. From lodge to lodge it is about 380 km

Day 6: 150 km safari in Etosha

Day 7: 150 km safari in Etosha

Day 8: 340 km

Day 9: 50 km

Day 10: 350 km

Day 11: 90 km

Day 12: 450 km

Day 13: 130 km

Day 14: 310 km

Day 15: 100 km

12. Vehicles

The round trip “Highlights of Namibia” involves road travel in the following vehicles:

Groups of up to 6: Toyota Quantum minibus.
Groups of 6–10: 10-seater Mercedes-Benz Sprinter minibus.
Groups of 10–13: extended Mercedes-Benz Sprinter minibus.
Groups of 13–16: 20-seater Oryx midibus or Fuso bus.

toyota-quantum1 bil-1 bil-2b bil-3b

13. Tipping

Tipping is appreciated and usual practice. It is generally accepted that the tip you leave corresponds to the service you have received. The following suggestions are indicative only:

  • Guide: NAD 30–50 per person per day
  • Local guide: NAD 10–20 per person for a half-day trip; NAD 30–50 per person for a full-day trip
  • Hotels/lodges: There is a “tips” box in reception. All amounts placed in the box will be equally distributed among all service staff (excluding safari and activity guides)
  • Restaurants: A service charge is not included unless clearly stated on the bill. If you are happy with the service and no service charge has been added to the bill, a tip of 10 per cent should be added.

14. Time difference

The time difference between the UK and Namibia depends on the time of year, due to Summer Time arrangements in both countries. From April to mid September, there is no time difference. (The exact date of time change in September changes each year.) From October to March Namibia is 2 hours ahead.

15. Electricity: charging mobile phones, cameras, etc.

The electricity supply in Namibia is 220 V. The plugs have three round pins – one thick one and two narrower ones. Therefore, make sure to bring a travel adapter with you if you will need to recharge your laptop, phone or camera.

16. Telephone and Internet

The international dialling code for Namibia is +264. It can be expensive to make or receive calls while you are in Namibia. Check with your mobile service provider about coverage and call charges. Wi-Fi is available in most hotels. Due to the long distances, the connection can sometimes be poor or non-existent. Twyfelfontein Country Lodge does not offer Wi-Fi.

17. Food and drink

Namibian cuisine is strongly influenced by German and South-African cooking. Game is often served, as is beef, which is of very high quality here. Thanks to the many herbs and spices used, local dishes are very flavourful, although rarely “hot”. There are also a number of tribal specialities, such as mielie pap (maize porridge) and mopane worms. Beer is brewed locally – try a Hansa or a Camelthorn. Only small amounts of wine are produced in Namibia, so most wine available comes from South Africa.