Namibia had been on my travel list for a long time before I finally got there last year. Promising unparalleled adventure, red sand dunes and desert heat, I longed for the kind of road trip you would talk about for years to come. Before you plan a trip to Namibia, there are a few things you should know. From deciding your itinerary to do’s and don’ts, this is your complete guide to plan a trip to Namibia.
The Essentials to know before you go
The official language of Namibia is English, however Arfikaans and German are also widely spoken.
Many nationalities such as the USA, Australia and UK are issued a 90 day tourist visa on arrival. Passports must be valid for at least six months on arrival.
The Namibian Dollar is the official currency of Namibia, however South African Rand is also widely accepted. ATMs are available in the airport as you land as well as in cities and shopping centres.
Namibia enjoys great weather year round. April and May are our favoured months, when the air is clear and there is less dust. June, July and August are on the colder side, however still pleasant. September and October are warmer and this is when you have the best chance at game-viewing.
It is not required or expected to tip in Namibia, though if you are staying at a lodge do note that the guides and trackers rely on gratuities.
Planning your Itinerary
Driving in Namibia
Driving is the most popular way to get around Namibia and as long as you have a well equipped vehicle (such as a 4wd) you will be fine driving on the many dirt roads Namibia is known for. We hired a volkswagen golf and somehow lived to tell the tale, though I certainly wouldn’t recommend it!
Flying around Namibia
Small aircraft are a great way to get around the country if you are short on time or plan to visit remote destinations like Shipwreck lodge on the Skeleton Coast. You can also choose to fly to Sossusvlei Desert if you’d prefer to skip the long drive.
Namibian Bucket List
While planning your trip to Namibia, there are some really incredible destinations to visit beyond the highly anticipated Sossusvlei Desert. However it is important to know these locations are often extremely far apart and the roads in Namibia can be challenging without a four wheel drive.
The top places to visit in Namibia
Sossusvlei Dunes – This is undeniably one of the most beautiful parts of the country and hands down the most popular drawcard for visitors to Namibia.
Skeleton Coast – If you’re looking for isolation , look no further than the Skeleton Coast of Namibia.
Etosha National Park – You don’t come to Namibia for the game viewing alone, but if you want to see animals then Etosha is the place to go.
Fish River Canyon – For adventure travellers, Fish River Canyon is the perfect spot for hiking and day time adventures.
The best experiences to have in Namibia
Game Drives – Although you don’t come to Namibia if you want to see wildlife alone, there are still some really unique game viewing opportunities to be had in Namibia.
Climbing the Dunes – The Sossusvlei Desert is the most popular tourist destination in Namibia for good reason. One of the best ways to get full perspective on the size of the dunes is to climb them and in particular, to make the pilgrimage to the peak of Big Daddy.
Namib Desert Hot air Ballooning – If you’re after a more romantic way to experience the desert, a hot air balloon is over the Namib desert is one of the most surreal experiences to be had.