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Namibia Country Information

Namibia Info

The country of Namibia is a land of contrasts located between in the southern regions of Africa, with huge desert plains to the thirsty riverbeds, while the Etosha National Park is filled with wild animals gathering at waterholes, a destination that will calm one's soul and spirit. This beautiful destination is divided in diverse landscapes along with its own magnitude and tourist attractions.

Geography

  • The Namib Desert runs along the west coast consisting of immigrating sand dunes, dry riverbeds and canyons.
  • The Skeleton Coast forms part on the Namib desert located in Namibia's northern parts.
  • The Central Plateau is a region with towns and small villages between mountain ridges open sand plains.
  • The Kalahari to the east & north inland is a red sand desert with infrequent farming districts.
  • Kaokoland or Kaokoveld, is in the country's north-western corner in the Kunene Region, home to the Himba Tribes.
  • The Caprivi Strip & Kavango is a green wilderness with munificent rainy seasons.

Climate & Best time to visit Namibia

If you want to visit a country where you can be sure of seeing lots of that yellow thing up against the blue sky that we call the sun, then Namibia is awaiting you. Nearly 300 sunny days per year and cool nights due to a relatively high altitude (sometimes lower than 0° C) as well as nice warm days (tempreture between 22°C and 26°C) in the winter season with a very low humidity climate.

The climate in southern, eastern and central areas of Namibia have a winter temperature of between 18 and 25 C and up to 35 C in summer. The rainy season is October / November (not a lot though) and January / April (if not even less).
Night-time during winter is very cold though, even below freezing point. The coastal climate, temperatures vary from 15 to 25 C, but be warned of the chances of thick fog during the morning hours.
The northern Namibia is subtropical with temperatures from 26 C in to 43 C in summer with sometimes high humidity.

Quick Facts:

Namibia on the mapArea Size: 824 290 km² (317 880 sq miles)
Capital: Windhoek
Currency: Namibian Dollar, N$
Official language: English
Namibian People & Tribes: Ovambo, Kavango, Herero, Himba, Damara, Nama, Topnaars, Reboth Basters, Bushmen and Tswanas.
Other languages: Afrikaans, German, Herero and Owambo
Time: GMT +1 (Apr-Aug), GMT +2 (Sept-Mar)
Telephone country code: +264
Electricity: 220/240V uses 3-pin plug

Money Matters

1 Namibian dollar is equal to 100 cents.

The Namibian dollar (N$) is the official currency with denominations of 10, 50, 100 and 200 Namibian Dollar bills. It is strongly linked to the ZAR and is exchanged on a 1 to 1 basis. The Rand is acceptable as payment throughout the country, but Namibian Dollars are not accepted outside the Namibian borders, therefore one should try to exchange it in South African Rand or a foreign currency of the country one plans to enter next.

The import and export of local currency is limited to N$20,000. Declaration of money is not always required at the ports of entry. Visa and MasterCard are excepted throughout the country and Diners Club and American Express to a lesser extent. It is not possible to buy fuel with credit cards.

Travellers are advised to take travellers cheques in US Dollars, although all major foreign exchange is accepted.

Accommodation and food

Throughout the easy accessible parts of the country the quality is high and sometimes on par with European standard. Local delicacies include biltong (dried strips of meat), droëwors (dried sausage), rauchfleisch (smoked meat) and venison (game meat) prepared in various ways. Accommodation range from numerous luxurious hotels and lodges (with exceptionally good facilities and service) to basic camping sites.

Social Behaviour

Western customs prevail in Namibia and normal courtesies should be shown when visiting country and local homesteads. 10% is customary for tipping.

What to Wear

The best advice regarding clothes - wear sunblock as you would normal clothes (always) and bring both hot and cold clothes during summer and winter months - cotton is well recommended. Shoes are essential against the warm ground temperatures.

Health and Safety

Namibia has a very peaceful attitude and the crime rate is low. It has been noted that petty crime in Windhoek is increasing dramatically and extra care should be taken in this city especially in deserted areas and at night. The motto here is - be vigilant. The government does react very swiftly against criminality aimed against tourists and police are generally very helpful and friendly. Always keep the vehicle locked with no visible articles in unattended vehicles. Be careful of bag snatchers, pickpockets and con-artists with all kinds of sad stories or too-good-to-be-true stories. In addition to health insurance, normal travel insurance is advisable.

Entry Requirements

Entry requirements, all foreign visitors must be in possession of a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the intended period of stay. Most nationalities don't need a visa.

Useful addresses, there are some diplomatic representation in certain countries of the world including

France, embassy of the Republic of Namibia
80 Avenue Foch - 17
Square de l'avenue Foch
Paris
Tel: +33 1 44173265
Fax: +33 1 44173273

USA, Embassy of the republic of Namibia
1605 New Hampshire avenue, N.W., Washington D.C. 20009
Tel: +1 202 9860540
Fax: +1 202 9860443

England, Embassy of the republic of Namibia
Avenue de Tavuren 454,
B1150 Bruxelles
Tel: +32 2 7711410
Fax: +32 2 7719689

Namibia attractions & activities

One has to search very far to find a country that has such a spectacular variety of scenery, cultures, good weather, wildlife and above all a hospitality that is intoxicating. The western part consists mainly of desert, but a desert that constantly changes - from rocky moon landscapes to red sand dunes that towers many hundreds of metres above sea-level. The north-east is thick bushveld where the biggest part of the population lives. The south is grassy savannah which can become barren in times of draughts.

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