Lions stalking Blue Wildebeest under the cover of sun-burnt savannah grasses. Desert elephants – smaller than most, and with unusually wide feet – adapted to the blowing sands of the Kalahari. Termite mounds as tall as my house, and people that throw incomprehensible pops and clicks into their speech at seemingly random times. This Namibia travel guide will help you plan your next vacation.
Fast Facts about Namibia Travel
- Namibia power voltage is 220V 50Hz; Plug D & M
- The Namibian currency is the Namibian dollar and is around 13 NAD to 1 USD.
- Beware of Chikungunya, a viral disease transmitted by the bite of infected mosquitoes. This outbreak continues to affect parts Africa. Symptoms can take up to 12 days to appear, but usually begin within 3-7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. Symptoms generally include fever and joint pain; other symptoms can include fatigue, headache, nausea, vomiting, muscle pain, and rash.
- Travelers spending a lot of time outdoors or visiting game parks have an increasedt risk of being bitten by a tsetse fly which can cause African Sleeping Sickness. Remember that these flies: bite during the day, are attracted to bright, dark colours and can bite through lightweight clothing.
- Namibia banks, as well as Wilderness camps, only accept US Dollars, GBP Sterling, Euro and South African Rand in cash. Travellers’ Cheques in any of the above currencies are also acceptable. MasterCard and Visa are usually accepted throughout Namibia.
- The water is not potable; drink only bottled water.
Top Packing Tips
The climate is typically semi-desert with hot days and cool nights. Midsummer temperatures may rise to over 40 degrees Celsius. Winter days are warm, but dawn temperatures may drop to freezing. The coast is cool with low rainfall and fog that prevails from late afternoon until mid-morning. The rainy season lasts from October to April. The rest of the year is dry and cloudless. Rejoice, Namibia averages 300 days of sunshine a year!
- Waterproof bag – the bag has two functions, protecting your stuff from the rain and also from the dust, especially if you're travelling to drier regions.
- Footwear – especially important if going you are heading on a safari! Pack a pair of lightweight, durable, waterproof and comfortable shoes and also a pair of flip-flops or sandals that you can change into after a long day of sightseeing.
- Protection from the elements – pack sunscreen, sunglasses, a hat, a loose sarong or wrap to cover yourself from the sun and bug-spray to prevent getting bitten by a mosquito (that might have malaria!)
- Layers – pack the basic tropical clothes and make sure to include long pants, long-sleeve tops and some warm clothes for those chilly nights. Make sure to pack parka and scarf / gloves for winter
- Avoid packing dark colored clothes – tsetse flies are drawn to dark colors, like blue and black clothing, and their bite can give you African Sleeping Sickness. Stick to light, neutral colors but avoid packing white clothes as they will get dirty and dusty pretty quickly.
- Pack for Humidity – for humid weather it is best to pack fabrics that breathe as much as possible and natural fabrics, like cotton, linen or rayon (avoiding silk, wool and polyester). Clothing should be loose and comfortable to encourage the flow of air and allow moisture to evaporate.