Most of Namibia is desert, so in general temperatures are hot during the day and nights can be anywhere from cool to below freezing in winter.
There is not a lot of rain. The rainy season is usually from December but somtimes as early as November and lasts until mid April. The Caprivi region in the North East gets most of the rain and the further down you go, the less rain you get.
On the coast you'll find a more moderate climate but mornings can be covered in a blanket of fog.
The national currency of Namibia is the Namibian Dollar (N$). The N$ is linked to the South African Rand (ZAR). Rand is legal tender in Namibia and acceped everywhere; you might get change in rand or N$. However, N$ are not accepted in South Africa.
Credit cards are widely accepted at supermarkets, restaurants and accommodations. Petrol stations do not accept creditcards. If you travel to more remote areas and rural settlements, take cash with you as credit cards are usually not accepted here. All cities and bigger towns have ATM facilities and there are banks and bureau the changes that can exchange traveller cheques and foreign currencies.
Bank opening times are 9.00AM-3.30PM on weekdays and 9.00AM-11AM on saturdays.
Namibia has a reliable electricity supply in the major town and cities. In the more rural and remote areas it is not as widespread, although most accommodations and a lot of campsites offer electricity through solar power or generators. Typically they provide the electricity when guests are in house, so not during the day when people are out on safari or other activities and not at night when everybody is asleep.
The voltage is 220v and most plugs have three round pins and some have 2 round pins. Adapters are best bought in Namibia as not all adapters bought elsewhere might work. In lots of hotels, powerpoints are suitable for european appliances or an adapter is provided.
Namibia is a pretty healthy country, and no vaccinations are compulsary. Although we do suggest you visit your local health clinic for up to date information.
Malaria is present in the North of Namibia, and especially in the wet summer months prophylaxis are advised. The best way to avoid catching malaria is avoid being bitten by mosquito's. The mozzies are active from sunset to sunrise so at these times, it is advised to cover up with long sleeves and pants, and to use good insect repellent. In malaria areas, most lodges have mosquito nets fitted, use them!
Should you be unlucky enough to have to spend time in a Namibian hospital, don't worry, Namibia's private hospitals are of a very good standard with clean and safe facilities. We strongly advise you take out suitable medical cover and travelinsurance, before you set out on your holiday, in case you need to be repatriated back home.
Most medical costs will need to be paid in cash first and can be claimed back through your travel Insurance later, so make sure you receive all necessary invoices.
There are almost 30 different languages and dialects spoken in Namibia. But since independence in 1990 English is the official language and Afrikaans , although not the offical language anymore is still widely spoken
Visitors to Namibia should have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months after the visit and should have at least 2 empty pages for entry and exit stamps. Children should have their own passports. For holiday purposes most nationalities don't need a visa, but please check visa requirements for your specific nationality prior to travel as requirements change all the time.
The cellphone coverage in Namibia is pretty good in most towns and villages and along most major roads. The more remote areas however, might nog have coverage yet. You can use your own simcard, but roaming can be very expensive. You can also buy a "pay as you go"simcard when you arrive in Namibia, this enables you to make phonecalls at the local rate. For more information visit www.mtc.com.na
Namibia is in the Western African Timezone (WAT) and is 1 hour ahead of GMT in wintertime and 2 hours ahead of GMT in summertime. Summertime starts on the first sunday in September when clocks go forward by one hour. On the 1st sunday in April clocks are turned backwards again.
Tipping in restaurants is usually at 10%, but can be increased if service was good. In bars, tipping is appreciated but not expected. Porters at lodges can be tipped with the loose change you have, and car guards in the parking lots are well worth investing 5N$ per hour in.
Water is very precious in a desert country like Namibia, and there is always a short supply. Tap water in the main cities and towns is drinkable usually but often treated and can taste of chlorine. The lodges in more remote areas get there water from boreholes and is safe to drink. Most tourists prefer to drink bottled water which is readily available at supermarkets.
Best travelling times
Namibia is good for travelling all year round as specific areas are best visited at specific times. Although the rainy season (nov-march) is good for birding, it can get pretty hot, wet and humid in this period. Also the rainy season is best for landscape photography as the clouds and the light make for some pretty dramatic skies. Most people however, prefer to travel in the drier winter months, when it is cooler with clear skies and when animals are easier to spot.