The sooner the better. Not only to ensure we will be able to book everything you’ve asked for and we’ve recommended but so that you can start getting excited about your planned and confirmed travels. The best bet is to plan up to a year in advance. This sounds like a long time ahead of your holiday, but we know that time flies and the most popular destinations and lodges, especially those in desirable locations quickly get booked up. This doesn’t mean it won’t be possible on shorter notice, but the chances are much higher that we won’t be able to secure your chosen accommodations and itinerary especially during the peak season (usually from July through to October but even as early as May and into November can be challenging). Unlike in other countries where there are multiple accommodation options at each destination, in Namibia (part of what makes it so remote, is that you will only have sometimes three or four lodges to choose from in a particular area and with each lodge only having eight to twelve rooms, you can see how this can be limiting if not booked long in advance. So again, the sooner the better, but either way we’ll do our best to make your dream holiday a reality.
Yes, most lodges offer a laundry service either included or at a minimal additional cost. When planning to do laundry, it is best when staying at a lodge for 2 nights or more to allow for adequate time to get your laundry done and back to you. It’s best to check with reception on check in at each lodge should you wish to make use of the laundry service. Our advice, make a note of the items you give in for laundry to ensure you have them all back prior to your departure.
It’s always best to be up to date with all routine vaccinations when travelling to any country but Namibia does not require any specific vaccinations on entry. In any event, it is recommended to consult your local doctor and/or the closest Namibian authority to where you are for any updates. If you will be travelling via or through a yellow fever risk country then you will be required to carry the necessary vaccination certificates in this case.
For information with regards to the latest requirements on COVID-19: COVID-19 Updates or ask your consultant to advise.
Water in Namibia is in general clean and safe for consumption. Most lodges and camps throughout use borehole or purified water which is safe to drink. Most will also supply you with drinking water for the duration of your stay and they will also warn you if it’s best not to drink water directly from the taps. The best advice is to drink bottled water or the water they provide for you and if all else fails you can always grab another gin and tonic.
Yes definitely. In fact, it’s safe to say, more so now than ever, that this is an absolute must. Your personal insurance would be there to cover the tour/safari in case, for any reason, you cannot take part. For possible flight changes and delays, lost or stolen luggage or equipment as well as any necessary medical fees while on holiday. Obviously we would not want any of this to happen and we are on hand in-country to assist with anything, however it is important to make sure you are covered for unplanned events. The old adage “It’s better to be safe than sorry” rings true for this one. If you don’t need it, no problem, if you need it, at least you have it.
Excitement. A good sense of humour and an expectation to be exceeded. Your camera, a good pair of binoculars, a flashlight (torch), sunscreen, mosquito repellent and a comfortable pair of shoes (unless you are planning to do lots of hiking, keep them a comfortable sneaker type). Don’t forget your phone charger and bring along a USB or other with your music. It’s best to pack in shorts and short sleeved shirts for the warmer days and long sleeves and long pants for early mornings and evenings, a warm jacket and windbreaker for game drives. The key is to layer your clothing as the temperatures can vary during the day and while out and about on activities. Don’t forget a hat and most importantly your travel documents and passport or you won’t need any of the other stuff as you won’t be going anywhere in a hurry. We’ve got loads of advice, so if you still aren’t sure, contact your consultant for more information.
NTS is a reputable company that has been in business for 30 years. Listing our credentials we are founder members of TASA (Tour and Safari Association of Namibia) and full members of NTB (Namibia Tourism Board). Unfortunately Namibia does not have an equivalent of ABTA – The Travel Association and ATOL (Air Travel Organiser's Licence) and while TASA would be able to assist in light of something happening, we always recommended personal travel insurance as well for your own protection. We pride ourselves in being one of the most professional tour operators and ground handlers in Namibia, but you don’t have to take our word for it alone, check out our Trip Advisor reviews of clients that have actually travelled with us.
Large companies like Booking.com often reserve a few rooms in advance and/or the lodges hold rooms available to them. This means that while it may be available online, when your consultant checks availability to make a booking with the lodge direct, it shows they do not have rooms available. This means that closer to the requested date, these rooms are then released should they not be “sold”. In general many of the lodges no longer hold block bookings, but unfortunately for some larger booking platforms this is still allowed. Despite this, we always endeavor to get you the rooms necessary to make your itinerary possible, even if this means wait listing your booking or looking for alternatives. If you’ve seen rooms available elsewhere that we haven’t be able to secure, please let us know so that we can do our best to make your booking possible through us. In most cases we are able to get the rooms needed, it just requires a little patience and persistence.
Most of the time the costs will be the same and we’re happy to give you a detailed quote if you wish to compare. In short, the lodges give us a discounted rate as a tour operator which means we can offer you the same rates that you would receive if booking direct. The value add? We do it all for you, offering personal service, knowledgeable advice and in-country support should something go wrong or you need us for anything while you are on the road.
We’ve been around for 30 years and that means we know the ins and outs. We aren’t only in the business of travel, we love to travel ourselves so we’ve been there and done that. We can give you the very best advice and service from first-hand experience. We spend loads of time visiting a range of lodges every year so that we are up to date and can give you the best options based on your personal preferences. We know which lodges actually look like their pictures and which are simply too far from the highlights of the area to make it worthwhile. We aren’t trying to sell every lodge to every guest, we know which ones will exceed your expectations. We work with a range of lodges throughout the country and have built up relationships with them over time, meaning that we can then often find the necessary rooms, sometimes even at a lower cost. We’re in-country to offer you support at all times and you won’t need to worry about individual bookings and payments to multiple suppliers. We will ensure everything is sorted from arrival to departure. We’ll welcome you with a friendly smile and you’ll leave a friend, smiling. Want to know more? Click here.
Meat, meat and more meat. Want vegetables? Sure. Here’s some chicken. Ask any Namibian and they’ll tell you that their diet is mostly meat, which makes perfect sense when the meat in the country is local and some of the best you’ll find around the world. If you’re a meat lover you’re in for a treat and if you aren’t, not to worry there are always vegetarian options too. Although many lodges are remote, there’s no shortage of fresh produce and with many lodges also eco-friendly, it’s likely from the garden. The menu is usually a la carte or buffet style. Either way there are always multiple options to choose from, so many in fact that you’ll be going back for seconds or even a third helping. (After all eating is as much an activity on holiday as is that game drive, nature walk or stargazing). If you have specific dietary requirements being a vegetarian, vegan, whether halal or kosher or even gluten intolerant, no problem just let your consultant know and we’ll notify the lodges in advance to prepare food especially for you.
Namibia may seem ‘on the other side of the world’ to you but using your credit card is not an ‘out of this world’ concept when in-country. Most lodges and fuel stations will accept credit cards for payments and most major towns also have ATM machines for drawing cash along the way. We always suggest you have some cash on hand (about N$2000 maximum should be enough) in case a particular place does not accept a card payment or “the lines are down”, after all when visiting Namibia you are likely going into a remote area where this is well, possible. If you are a fan of American Express or Diner’s Cards, we’re afraid you’re out of luck as Namibia is not.
The Namibia Dollar (N$ or NAD) is the local currency which is linked with the South African Rand (ZAR) and is exactly the same value/exchange rate (fixed at a rate of 1:1). South African Rands can be used freely throughout Namibia, however Namibian Dollars are not accepted in South Africa. Even though the US$ is widely used in many countries, most rural Namibians would not want to receive US$ currency as it can be a problem to exchange in the smaller towns. If you are also going to be visiting Botswana and Zimbabwe on your trip, be sure to have Botswana Pula (BWP) with you at the border crossing into Botswana and US$ for the rest as well as for use in Zimbabwe.
The answer here lies, first and foremost, in how long you have available to travel and secondly, in your interests. If it’s up to us, however, we’d definitely say to do the main highlights of Namibia and then visit the Okavango Delta and Chobe in Botswana with a visit to Victoria Falls to end, for sure. You’re coming all the way here, you’d might as well make the most of it. Right? Travel between Namibia and Botswana is relatively easy and therefore it’s always a wonderful option to combine them with the addition of Zimbabwe to include the mighty Victoria Falls. If you are thinking about including Botswana, the main areas to visit would be the wetlands of the Okavango Delta and Chobe National Park. Combining the three countries gives you an extensive range of areas, landscapes, wildlife and experiences. From desert sand dunes, the Skeleton Coast, ethnic people and the wildlife of Etosha against the dry pan, to the wetlands of the Delta and its true wilderness, the Chobe River front ecosystem and large herds of elephant with a visit to one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Victoria Falls.
A trip like this would require a bit more than two weeks, we recommend at least three weeks to make it a super itinerary without rushing about too much, but like all of our itineraries, we can tailor your route and itinerary to best suit what you have in mind. It’s also an option to do Namibia and then do Botswana and Zimbabwe or even Zambia or South Africa as an add-on extension to your tour by International flights. Options are limitless and experiences are endless. Whether you decide to visit one country and spend more time there or add all three, or even more, including only the main highlights of each, we’ll make sure you have the very best holiday. We already know you’ll be coming back again, so if you can’t add the destinations this time around, there’s always next time.
Let’s start off by saying that we always, where possible, include the extra daily fees to give you maximum cover on your vehicle hire. It’s better to be completely covered in the case of an incident. However,
It is very important to note that all insurance becomes null and void if there is a breach of contract. This rarely happens but does include instances like:
Contact us for more detail on your specific car rental and the insurance cover included.
Car hire rates are generally calculated per calendar day and we always try to add all possible extras automatically so that you don’t have any extra costs. We always recommend to include the maximum insurance cover, GPS, airport transfers and tyre and windscreen cover from the outset. Our car hire, as with all our itineraries, is tailor-made so if you want to change the “what is included” we will happily do so. If you’d like more information on the details of your car hire and the basis on which this has been booked along with what had been included, feel free to contact your consultant for more detail. If you haven't booked yet but you're looking for a suitable car hire, take a look at our fleet to get started. This also shows the basic list of what is included in the rates.
The answer although seemingly straight forward does not always mean the same thing at every lodge. Yes your stay is fully inclusive, but fully inclusive of what? In short, this usually means, by international standard, that all meals, local branded drinks and scheduled camp activities are included with any necessary park entry fees, however this can differ from place to place. Some lodges may even include services such as transfers and laundry, in other words, that from the moment you arrive your stay is fully inclusive of all costs. Since this can differ, it’s always best to check with your consultant by lodge to clarify what is indeed included on FI basis.
As a tourist you can indeed claim a VAT refund for goods bought while in Namibia, given the purchase amount exceeds N$250. You will need a valid tax invoice to present to the officials at the Customs & Excise Offices at the international airport. It is required that all documentation necessary be in order. You will need to fill in a VAT 16 claim form to be submitted along with the purchased goods and this is done at the VAT refund office (only at Hosea Kutako International Airport-in Windhoek). It’s not impossible, but on a good day will require some patience and time, so planning ahead is important if you wish to go this route.
Yes you can, but it’s always best to ask permission as a general rule. If you are visiting an open air museum or village, then in most cases you can snap away as you wish, however if you are visiting an authentic village, it’s always best to ask first. We always recommend visiting the authentic villages with a local guide. They know the ins and outs, the best times to visit and what is acceptable practice when it comes to photography. Usually the guides will take gifts of food products and supplies in exchange for images. It is not common practice to pay cash or give sweets etc. Your guide will know how this works and navigate this for you.
You can drive to Namibia from just about anywhere given you don’t have to cross the ocean, but if you’re thinking of driving from South Africa, sure you can and there are seven border posts through which you could enter, two of which are through Transfrontier parks. While this may be a good idea if there are specific areas between the two countries you wish to include, you may otherwise want to rethink it. Most routes from South Africa to Namibia take you on roads with little to see and require at least two long days of driving, on top of which you will have to look at the costs of the vehicle drop off fee. In most cases it works out better to fly from South Africa to Namibia, rent a vehicle on arrival and rather add these days to your time in Namibia instead.
Do we need to mention that you will be on holiday? Time to relax, unwind and take a break from technology? While this is the ideal, we know some people need to stay connected for business and in touch with family, so… Most of the lodges have internet connection or WiFi in the main areas, but not necessarily in the rooms. However not all the lodges have internet connection, so if this is a priority for you, please be sure to mention this to your consultant so that this can be checked and included as a prerequisite when choosing lodges for your itinerary.
What most people do not know is that in certain areas of Namibia, especially those well located to the highlights of the specified area, there are only a few lodges and in most cases these lodges are small and intimate with a limited number of rooms. This means that, especially during peak season, finding rooms available can be a challenge. When we are not able to find availability at a specific lodge, we will always look for a suitable alternative in the area or even turn the itinerary in reverse to look at other possible dates. We are also always happy to waitlist a lodge if it is your preference. We’ll do our best to try and make it possible and stay in touch with you as we go along to keep you updated.
This means that the lodge is fully booked. What they then do is add our reservation request to a waitlist, so that if a current booking should cancel or they have a change on their booking system, making our booking request possible, they will then allocate our booking as requested.
The most important thing to remember is to compare apples with apples in order to make sure that what you have been quoted by another company is the same as our quote. This means looking at the finer details, such as room type or standard, the meal basis at each accommodation, the inclusions of the vehicle rental and if any extras have been included. We’ll happily give you a detailed breakdown if you’d like to look at our quote in more detail or send us the other quote you’ve received so that we can cost compare for you. We’re happy to further tailor our quotes as you wish, you need only let us know.
A self-drive tour means you rent a vehicle and travel between your destinations driving yourself. A private guided tour means that you have a private guide with you for the duration of your tour and who will do the driving for you. A self-drive is cheaper as this only includes the rental vehicle and the accommodations you’ve booked for your itinerary. A private guided tour, includes the cost of the rental vehicle, your private guide’s daily rate and meal and his accommodation throughout as well as yours. It also includes all necessary park entry fees for the activities he can do with you, fuel for the duration of your trip and drinking water in the vehicle. So while a self-drive does seem much cheaper, if you add the cost of the fuel and the park entry fees as well as any activities you may wish to book with a lodge guide, all of which you will pay yourself while on tour, you will see that the cost difference is really only in the cost of the guide himself.
We are not affiliated with any particular charter flight company as it all depends on prices and availability at the time of quoting and booking. However, all charter companies in Namibia are strictly controlled by the Namibia Civil Aviation Authority to meet high standards. The companies that we often use would be Wings Over Africa, Scenic Air as well as Desert Air. Want to explore more about a fly-in safari in Namibia? Read more.
The international airports in Namibia do not have public facilities to store excess luggage. However, we are quite happy to assist you in storing excess luggage where possible. This will be at your own risk and although it is safe, we would not be able to insure or guarantee 100% safety. It is also recommended not to leave any valuables in your luggage. If you would like to store excess luggage, please contact us to see what would be possible based on your itinerary and your points of entry and exit. Where necessary we can also arrange for luggage to be transferred at additional costs.
The best would be to base luggage sizes and weights to that which is allowed on your international flight.
However, if you are doing a fly-in safari in Namibia, you will be restricted to a possible 10kg limit. This is due to the light aircrafts not having large luggage compartments as well as keeping the weight down as much as possible. Namibia being a hot country, has very thin air so an aircraft cannot be overloaded and private charter companies stick strictly to the weight allowances on board these flights. Keep in mind you are not only restricted by the weight of your luggage but the actual dimensions of your luggage needs to comply as well. The final luggage weights allowed are usually calculated on the individual passenger weights and therefore this can change. We always recommend to check this with your consultant. Packing light for most is never easy, but the good news is that most lodges offer laundry services so just pack the most important essentials and where necessary you can have them washed along the way. If the fly-in safari is only a portion of your travels and you’ll need to store excess luggage, speak to your consultant to discuss the possible options based on your itinerary.
A private guided safari means having a private guide with you for the whole duration or part of your tour. Welcome a walking, talking travel guide and Encyclopaedia on tour with you. It’s not just an option to consider for those too lazy to self-drive, since your guide will drive you between your destinations, but an option for anyone who would prefer to have someone on tour with them to guide them through the country. That’s right, to help you check in, make sure your dietary requirements are confirmed at each lodge, arrange for lunch packs on the road, show you all the best places to stop for photographs, help you spot that elusive desert adapted elephant and to point out the hidden treasures you might otherwise miss. Your private guide will do all activities with you. He knows the best times to be in the parks, the call of the Dune Lark and the best waterholes for wildlife sightings. He’ll ensure you make the most of your experience in Namibia while still being flexible to your time schedule. There’s no better way to discover a country than by travelling with someone who calls this his backyard. Still not sure why to use a private guide on your private tour of the country? Read our article: Why use a Private Guide? or meet Our Namibia Safari Guides.
All activities as can be done with your private guide and rented private vehicle are included in your itinerary, this includes all activities into the National Parks with the necessary park entry fees included. The only activities that won’t be included are the ones that are done on private reserves and have to be booked or done with the lodge and their guides. Unique activities are also not included and these would be additional such as hot air ballooning, kayaking, quad biking etc. These have to be booked with the relevant activity operators. We can arrange and add any of these activities for you if you wish to include these on your holiday.
No problem. We can book an automatic vehicle for you. If you can’t drive a manual vehicle, then we always recommend making sure with your consultant that the correct vehicle has been booked for you.
Well quite simply, it means exactly that. Namibia has a wide road network and it is not permitted to drive off road and create new tracks. Being mostly a desert, tracks left behind can stay there for many years, in some cases, decades. Driving off road also means possible vehicle damage, especially under carriage which is not covered in any insurance claim. In other words, stick to the designated roads and don’t wonder off into the wilderness. Dune driving is definitely not allowed either. Trust us, Namibia is enough of a “off the beaten track” destination as it is, so you won’t need to venture off in any case.
Namibia accepts most driving licenses throughout the world. You would only need an international driver’s license if your current license does not adhere to the following:
However, to obtain an International License is always recommended where possible. It's important to keep in mind that you check any requirements for any other countries you may visit cross border with the vehicle.
A good one. A reliable one. A comfortable one. The answer: a vehicle with 4x4. This is the only type of vehicle we recommend and book for our clients. It is also the only type of vehicles we have on our own fleet. This is for a number of reasons:
The roads can get bumpy and a sturdy vehicle will be much more comfortable, especially considering the distances you’ll be driving on average between destinations. Your safety is always a priority and we want you to travel safely and enjoy the journey. Take a look at Our Fleet and ask your consultant to advise on the best vehicle for you, whether a double cab, SUV or a safari-converted vehicle.
If you love a good road trip and all that goes with it, you’ll love a self-drive holiday in Namibia. Not only is Namibia self-drive friendly, Namibians themselves are a friendly bunch, which is good news if you’re thinking to stop and ask for directions. (They’ll likely invite you over for a barbecue too). A self-drive adventure in Namibia is exactly that – an adventure, since you will be travelling 'off the beaten track' on mostly easily navigable gravel roads to reach the main tourist areas. These roads are well signposted and maintained but don’t expect to travel without a little shake, rattle and roll and we aren’t referring to the hit blues song from Elvis. The roads can get bumpy here and there but it is all part of the adventure. Mind you, you’ll need only drive a little slower, which is an easy ask when the surrounding scenery offers much to take in. Add the fact of minimal traffic and an impressive low crime rate and it’s easy to see why Namibia is a popular self-drive destination. As an added benefit you'll have us for 24/7 support in country. It’s all about the journey, so hop into your rental vehicle, it’s time to explore. Discover more.
If it’s a flat tyre, you’ll need to change it. The car hire company will make sure you know how to do this when you collect the vehicle. They'll ensure you know where to find the spare and the tools you’ll need. If it’s a mechanical issue and your car has broken down, you will contact the car hire company or contact us and we’ll contact them for you. Since Namibia is a vast country and at times you can go a few hours without even seeing another vehicle on the road (part of its charm), we’ll usually try to get someone from the nearest lodge to assist if necessary and arrangements will be made to get you the help you need or a replacement vehicle sent to you. Arrangements are made on a case by case basis, but we’ll always do what we can to assist and get you back on the road again soonest.
Yes it’s as easy as it is to follow a map, the road signs along the way and the dusty road ahead of you. We’ll highlight your route on the map, give you driving directions and we’ll include a GPS with the lodges as favourites. Use all these tools along with some common sense and a little sense of adventure and you’ll easily find your way in Namibia. It’s all about the journey.
The short answer: No. The long answer: While you can, it is not advised. The reason for this is for your own safety due to animals found on the roads during this time and being dark there is little visibility. It is also for this reason that car hire insurance does not cover driving in the dark. Since you can’t travel during these times, why not rather enjoy watching the sun come up with a coffee or watching the sun set with a gin and tonic? That sounds far better to us anyway.
The right side of the road to drive on in Namibia is the left. Not to confuse you. The answer is on the left side of the road, the same as in South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Zambia.
Cell phone reception in Namibia for the most part is good, however it is a remote country and oftentimes when travelling between destinations, there are areas where there is little to no connectivity. A satellite phone is great to have in times of an emergency, but this is not a must.The daily rental fees are reasonable if you’d like to have one just in case. It’s only the call charges that become expensive. If you would like to rent a satellite phone for the duration of your trip, please let your consultant know to assist you in arranging this.
Doing activities by yourself gives you flexibility and a sense of own adventure. You need only pay the necessary park entry fees and off you go with your guide book in hand. Doing activities with a lodge guide means you will likely be joined by others (unless it’s booked on a private basis), times for the activities are usually set but your guide will ensure you are in the right place at the right time, give you information as you go along and make sure you don’t miss anything. In Etosha it is always great to do a first game drive with a lodge guide in an open safari vehicle and the rest you can then do yourself. In Damaraland, it’s best to do a guide nature drive with a lodge guide in search of the desert adapted elephants. Your chances of seeing them are much better as the guides know the areas the best. If you aren’t sure whether to do a specific activity yourself or with a lodge guide,speak to your consultant and they’ll be able to give you further information and advice.
You might have taken a look at your route on a map and calculated the driving times based on the distances, but don’t forget to take the road types into account and also the fact that you will stop along the way for pictures, to enjoy the scenery and to stretch your legs. As a rule of thumb, it’s best to calculate your travel times by taking the distance and dividing it by 80 km per hour (for tarred roads) and 60 km per hour (for gravel roads). As an example, Sossusvlei to Swakopmund is about 350 km and you can expect to travel this distance in roughly 5 to 6 hours. It’s usually about a half day travelling between destinations throughout the country and while this may seem like a lot of driving, Namibia is a beautifully scenic country with much to do and see along the way. It’s often more about the journey than the destination itself.
You can bring a drone into Namibia subject to Namibia Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) regulations. If you are planning on bringing a drone with you there are special considerations for foreigners flying drones. It is also good idea to check with the international flight carrier you will be flying with as to whether there are any specific requirements that need to be met.
In order to fly and operate a drone within Namibia you must obtain written authorization from:
Note: Foreign nationals to Namibia must submit applications for permission to fly recreationally at least 60 calendar days before and commercially at least 120 days before the intended flight.
NB: Remember there are rules that must be adhered to when flying or operating a drone as follows:
For more information on who to contact and how to register, click here.
Yes indeed. The roads inside and through the park are relatively good and if you purchase a map of Etosha at the shop inside the park gates where you also pay your entry fees, you will be able to go explore the park and go to the various waterholes on your own. We always recommend doing at least one, preferably your first game drive with the lodge and their guide in order to see how it is done and gain some experience. The guides know the park like the back of their hand. They know where the best places are to go and how to look out for the animals in the bush. They’ll give you some insight, tips and tricks, but this is not necessary.
Let’s start by explaining that to reach these highlights, once entering the Sesriem Gate, you will have to drive roughly 60km on tarred roads inside the park. It’s only the last 4-5 kilometres into the dunes that requires driving in really heavy sand for which you will need a 4x4. If you are confident in driving in deep sand, by 4-wheel-drive, then by all means go ahead, if not, you can leave your car safely in the parking area and take the shuttle in and back again. Walking is an option too if you're up for it. It's quite a stroll. Alternatively, why not make the most of your experience and join a guided Sossusvlei excursion with the lodge. Not only will you not have to worry about getting stuck in any sand, but you’ll also receive first-hand knowledge from the guide, peace of mind on where to go and you’ll be shown the best places you don’t want to miss.
Namibia and neighbouring countries all work on 220 Volts so please make sure that anything to be charged will be compatible.
All electrical plug points in Namibia are the same as in South Africa, the 3-pronged plugs with round pins (type D and M), similar to those in the UK with a difference where those in the UK are square. Sometimes plug points are also used which have 2 smaller round pins (type C and N). Adaptors are available at most airports and shops. Most lodges have universal plug points, however if they do not, then some will also supply the necessary adaptors to be used while staying with them. If you’d like to have an adaptor of your own, the best would be a type D adaptor. We can even help in arranging this for you in advance if you like. Just let us know.
Most towns throughout the country have well stocked supermarkets for food, snacks and drinks. Some of the very small towns are rather limited so it is recommended to plan in advance. The bigger towns like Windhoek, Swakopmund and Tsumeb for example have multiple grocery stores, clothing stores as well as curio shops with more options and you will also find numerous banks. Throughout the country there are local craft markets and many of the lodges will also have curio shops as well. If you are doing a camping safari or self-catering for meals, it's best to plan where and when to stock up on groceries and supplies in advance according to your route as some areas have restrictions on movement of food and fresh produce over veterinary cordon fences. We'll make sure we assist with this on arrival when you do your meet and greet or you can ask your consultant if you have any questions.
A wide range of countries do not need to apply for a VISA in advance. On completing your entry form at the immigration desk on arrival, your “holiday VISA” is dated in your passport, however there are some countries where VISA arrangements must be done well in advance. In these cases you would normally be requested to supply a copy of your itinerary, a letter of proof that you are visiting Namibia as well as proof that the holiday has been paid in full in advance. The tricky thing is that not all countries have a Namibian Embassy or Consulate so you might need to travel to another country to obtain the necessary documents or in some cases this can be done online. One should also keep in mind that the VISA requirements are often based on your nationality along with your country of residence (where you will be travelling from). As laws and rules change quite often, we strongly recommend you check on the internet to see if you need to arrange a VISA in advance. We do not arrange visas, however if you need any documentation in order to get your visa, we will gladly assist with this where possible when booking a tour with us. Want to know what your visa requirements are? Click here.
The main airports in Namibia for arrival and departure of international flights is Hosea Kutako International Airport (WDH) in the capital, Windhoek and Walvis Bay International Airport (WVB) in Walvis Bay on the coast. However most towns and even lodges have smaller airports or airstrips of their own. While you will likely use either of the international airports, private charters can depart from any airstrip or airport within the country, keeping in mind you may need to stop en-route to clear immigration where necessary.
Whatever your route, we’ll be able to advise you on the best possible flight schedule and ports of entry.
Yes, Namibia is one of the safest countries in Africa. Great news, but if you have no idea how safe the rest of Africa is, then that doesn’t mean much does it? To give it to you simply, Namibia has a low crime rate in comparison and is in general safe throughout, however as in all countries there will always be some level of crime (mostly petty crime in Namibia) and therefore we always recommend being careful, taking all necessary precautions and being alert and aware at all times. The general rules apply:
Put it this way, if you take the above into account, your biggest concern while travelling need not be your safety but rather whether you applied enough sunscreen or whether you got the perfect shot of that sunset and the amount of gin in your tonic.
Namibia works on Central African Time (CAT),which is Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) + 2 hours. Namibia does not work on any seasonal time changes. Although we did in the past, this changed in 2019. Note however that if your tour takes you along the Caprivi and into Botswana, you may well need to note a change in time zones as some areas do still work on daylight savings time in the winter months between April to September.
Yes definitely! In fact, it’s one of the destinations in Namibia that you don’t want to miss. Great, so now the question is: where is the Skeleton Coast?
The whole Namibian coastline is generally known as the Skeleton Coast stretching from as far south as Luderitz all the way up to the Angolan Border in the north of which a large portion is the Skeleton Coast National Park.
This name has a number of meanings from the whale skeletons left on the beaches centuries ago, to the actual shipwrecks found along the coast, but wherever you are on this coastline, you are actually on the Skeleton Coast. However, we always advise including specific areas and activities to give you a real Skeleton Coast experience:
The Skeleton Coast National Park is largely closed off to the public, but when most people refer to the Skeleton Coast they are referring to this area. There is only one lodge actually inside the park – Shipwreck Lodge and another in the area, with selected activities into the park - Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp.
Speak to a consultant about what you wish to experience on the Skeleton Coast so that we can recommend how best to include this into your tailor-made itinerary.
No Namibia is not malaria free however, no need to panic! The good news is that Namibia is mostly a dry country and only in the very north, during and just after the rainy season, is there a possibility of contracting malaria, when you are most likely to experience mosquitos (November through to June). Looking at a map, roughly Latitude 19°, the southern border of Etosha, would be the limit, everywhere south is not really of concern. This means that if you are looking to include Etosha National Park, areas of Kaokoland up towards the Angolan border and east along the Caprivi you’d best look to take a prophylaxis and we also always recommend consulting your local doctor. Having said that, it is important to note that only the Anopheles mosquito (specifically the female)can carry the virus and that it is usually only a real concern after a heavy rain season, which would result in stagnant water to draw the mosquitos to the areas in the first place. The great news is that the dry season is also the best time for game viewing and during these months malaria is not really a concern.
Asking “how long do I need for travel in Namibia?” is as good as asking “how long is a piece of string”? It all depends on how many days you have available, what you want to include and see and also your mode of transport from destination to destination. Namibia is a vast country and one can come for a few days and just see a few of the main highlights, like Sossusvlei, to see the oldest desert in the world or Etosha National Park, for incredible game viewing, or come for a few weeks and do almost the entire country. Options are limitless but that’s why we are here. We’ll help you navigate the best possible itinerary and route given the time you have available for travel to ensure you have the most amazing experience and get the most out of your holiday and budget.
It comes down to you deciding how long you have available and we’ll design a route specifically for you. From three days to three weeks or more, our speciality is tailor-made itineraries so we’ll work it out for you. Not sure how long you have to travel? Begin by browsing some of our most popular itineraries to give you an idea of what we recommend and what our clients have booked over the years for their holidays: Tours & Safaris.
If you’re asking us, well our answer is… always! We know why you simply have to travel to Namibia and what you’re missing if you never do. The best time totravel really depends on your reason for travel and your interests, but in general Namibia is in effect, an all year round destination. Yes, we do have a rainy season but being mostly desert, rain is sporadic with heavy rainfall only really experienced in the north and north-east of the country (usually from December through April). The dry season (May-November) is better for viewing wildlife as animals congregate at waterholes and the bush is less dense. The rest of the year is great for scenery, bird watching and general photography as well as wildlife sightings. It’s hot in the summer (December to February) and cooler the rest of the year. Either way, you just have to experience it, so be sure to pack a hat, sunblock and a warm jacket and don’t forget your camera. If you're still not sure, read our more detailed article: The Best Time to Visit Namibia.
Despite being one of the safest countries in Africa and we’re a friendly bunch who speak English, Namibia really is a country of diversity and a great destination for travel all year round. We know though that you’ve read that before, so here’s what you may not know:
Namibia is home to the world’s oldest desert with some of the world's highest dunes. We have the largest population of free-roaming cheetahs and black rhinos. Namibia is one of only two countries in which you can see desert adapted elephants. Namibia has over 600 species of bird, some of which are endemic and we have the Big 5. We have 13 ethnic groups and 30 official languages even though Namibia is also the second least densely populated country in the world. Talk about wide open spaces and landscapes for days.
We could go on forever, but we want to leave it for you to discover. Don’t just take our word for it, come see for yourself. So really, the question is not why travel to Namibia? You should be asking yourself: When are we going? Trust us, there really is no reason not to. Read more
Yes you can, but it’s best to keep in mind that there are a number of rules, restrictions and requirements in place that need to be adhered to with regards to bringing the drone into the country, where it can be flown and what permission is needed. This information changes regularly so it’s best to check and make sure with the DCA (Directorate of Civil Aviation) in Namibia.
There are certain areas and parks that require a photography permit in order to allow for special arrangements to be made, such as to photograph the quiver trees at night or to visit Kolmanskop Ghost Town for photos on a private basis. If you have any specific photography interests or requests, speak to your consultant to find out more information about what is possible.
In Namibia roughly 30 different languages are spoken, though you need not worry as the official language is English. Whether asking for directions or chatting with the locals, you are unlikely to come across someone on your travels that does not speak English or does not understand it.
The typical peak season in terms of tourist traffic in Namibia is from July to October, but Namibia is a popular destination for travel year round and these days it’s even known to be as busy from as early as April through to December, with the quieter months being January through to March. In terms of rates, the high season prices kick in from July through to December with most lodges sticking to low season rates from January through to June and some also including November. If you want to dodge the masses and still make the most of a good time to travel in terms of wildlife and weather whilst still scoring on low season rates, our tip is to travel in May or June.
If you’re thinking that you might come face to face with a lion in the streets of any town in Namibia, this is not likely by a long shot. Namibia is wild but not primitive. This said, you will see animals along the road while travelling throughout the country so be on the lookout. As if the scenery in itself was not enough? You will definitely see antelope, plenty of birds and even possibly zebra or giraffe and since we have the largest population of free roaming cheetah, who knows, you may just be lucky. Anything is possible, but the likelihood of meeting a lion in the streets is slim to none. Thank goodness for that. As for the wilderness, we can’t say the same.
Unfortunately not. If staying at a lodge or camp outside the park gates, you will not have access at night to the floodlit waterholes at the camps inside the park. You are welcome to visit these waterholes during the day when inside the park. The park entrance gates open at sunrise and close at sunset, so unless you are staying at one of the camps inside the park with a waterhole inside the park, you will not be able to view these waterholes at night. Keep in mind though that many lodges outside the park gates are on private reserves and may also have their own private floodlit waterholes and special hides.
Namibia is friendly. Point. If you have kids in tow, no problem, Namibia is a wonderful family destination for travel. Most lodges are well equipped for children of all ages and offer specific activities for the kids to keep them entertained. We’ll always recommend lodges with a pool or play area and we’ll keep in mind the driving distances as well as add a child or booster seat to your vehicle rental where necessary. We’ll quote you on the child rates at each lodge and advise if the lodges have any restrictions on activities due to the children’s ages. There’s plenty to do and see in Namibia for children and the ‘young at heart’. Wondering where to visit in Namibia and the best time for travelling with the kids? You can read more here. Don’t forget to make sure you have all the necessary travel documents with you when travelling with minors. If you need any information or assistance, please let your consultant know.
Namibia is a desert, so you can imagine that it gets really hot during the day and often very cold at night. You can expect hot days in summer and cold nights in winter. Sounds pretty straight forward right? Namibia is a year round destination, and although temperatures do change throughout the year, it’s always a good time to travel to Namibia. If you have specific dates in mind or a preference with regards to the weather and climate, you can read about this in more detail here.