The word 'Namibia' literally translates as ‘big emptiness’, a hauntingly beautiful, profoundly silent landscape that is simply awe-inspiring. At eighty-million years old, the Namib Desert is the planet's oldest and home to some of the world's highest sand dunes. Covering almost 50,000km², the Namib-Naukluft National Park is one of the largest conservation areas in Africa; viewed from the air (either by balloon or private charter flight), the rich colours and lunar-like landscapes are truly inspiring.
Etosha National Park
The Namib is home to a wealth of desert-adapted wildlife, however, the greatest variety of wildlife can be found in Etosha National Park. Etosha National Park lies in a vast, arid landscape in northern
Namibia and is an important wildlife sanctuary that provides
excellent game-viewing opportunities, especially in the dry
season from June to November, when thousands of animals converge to drink at the waterholes.
The park takes its name from
the world-famous salt pans, which are flat areas formed by
the wind, and most of the time the area is dry, but following a
good deluge of rain, the pans can attract over a million
flamingoes to their salty water. Due to the high levels of salt,
there is a distinct lack of vegetation across them, but around
the edges reside broad swathes of mopane, canopies of tall
trees, shrub savannah and acacia-strewn plains. While here,
you can expect to encounter elephants, giraffes, White
Rhinos, lions, antelopes and, if you’re lucky, leopards and
cheetahs. The park has one of the largest concentrations of
the rare Black Rhino in the world, while its birdlife is fantastic
and encompasses species blessed with such wonderful
names as the Crimson-breasted Shrike (Namibia’s national
bird), Bare-cheeked Babbler and the Sociable Weaver.
Residing on the lush banks of the Kunene River,
in the Hartmann Valley, is Serra Cafema. In this part of Namibia the luna-like terrain
comprises rugged mountains, the sand dunes of the Namib
Desert and Albida trees dotted along the riverbank. In this
region, you will come across Nile Crocodiles, oryxs, gemsbok,
springbok, Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra, Desert Chameleons
and some characteristic bird species, including the Benguela
Long-billed Lark. Additionally, the famous nomadic Himba
tribe makes this area their home and you may have the
opportunity to visit them in their village, should they be in the
locale during your stay.
The Kulala Wilderness Reserve, bordering
Namib Naukluft Park in Sossusvlei, is an extremely
special retreat that nestles in isolated desert splendour. Amongst
the landscape, you’ll discover sand dunes that are precisely
sculpted by the elements, along with evocatively named vleis
and desert-adapted wildlife that makes the landscape its home, including ostriches, hyaenas, Bat-eared Foxes and
Anchieta’s Dune Lizard.
Etosha National Park
This is the best place to encounter Namibia’s animals. You can take part in wildlife viewing drives and white rhino tracking on foot, both with an experienced guide.
The Kunene River offers the opportunity for cruises in search of crocodiles, while quad-biking through the pristine terrain can be arranged − where you might catch sight of an Oryx if you’re lucky.
Outside the parks there is plenty more to explore, from the exquisite San rock art to the fascinating lifestyle of the Himba, one of the last truly nomadic people in Africa.
The surrounding scenery is very impressive and includes a series of sand dunes including ‘Big Daddy’ which can be climbed up and sand-surfed down, while there are fabulous photo opportunities at Dead Vlei – an ancient and dried-out lake bed of white clay in which a number of petrified acacia trees have been trapped, which is edged by bright orange sand.
Our Travel Consultants can advise on, arrange and pre-book many things to enhance your holiday. This includes everything from spa reservations and dinner reservations, to a range of special experiences available in our featured resorts that you may not know about.
Sleep Beneath The Stars
At Little Kulala the staff will set up a mattress and duvet out there and you can literally fall asleep under the stars.
Botswana & South Africa
One of the world’s most beautiful and dramatic
desert regions, Namibia partners wonderfully well with
Botswana (which offers a contrasting, water-based
safari experience) and also Cape Town, in adjacent
South Africa, which offers a mixture of cosmopolitan city, history, coastal splendour and fabulous Cape cuisine and wine. Why not combine your stay in Namibia with one or both of these destinations, for a multifaceted African adventure?
Namibia enjoys an average, three-hundred days of sunshine a year. Whilst the winter months (from July to September) are cooler and the most popular time to visit is generally between April and June, it's worth bearing in mind that during the summer (from November to February) the country bursts into life with vibrant floral displays and many wildlife and bird species giving birth to their young during this time. Rainfall isn’t as much of a concern as you might think, and with fewer travellers you'll often enjoy more intimate experiences.
These figures show monthly average maximum temperatures and monthly average rainfall for Namibia.
British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and South African Airways direct from London Heathrow to Johannesburg.
Via Dubai with Emirates from London Heathrow, London Gatwick, Manchester, Birmingham, Newcastle and Glasgow.
Onward connecting flights with South African Airways and Air Namibia to Windhoek.
From London Heathrow to Johannesburg: 10 hours, 50 minutes.
Onward connecting flight from Johannesburg to Windhoek: 2 hours.
Travelling With Children or Without an Adult
Children travelling without both parents should be aware that some countries require documentary evidence of parental responsibility before allowing lone parents to enter the country (for example, South Africa) or, in some cases, before permitting the children to leave the country. Please contact the relevant Embassy for the county you are travelling to for further information.
Visa and Advance Passenger Information
All passengers must ensure they have a valid, acceptable passport, any required visa and any other documentation for both the final destination and any stop-off points en route. Please make sure that Advance Passenger Information is submitted in advance to travel for all destinations. Failure to hold correct documentation or submitting incorrect details with Advance Passenger Information or Visa applications may result in refusal of carriage or entry into a country. Please check with the relevant Embassy regarding visa requirements well in advance of your travel date. Charges may apply for some visas.
Although British nationals can enter Namibia for a holiday or private visit of up to 90 days without a visa, there are cases where, on arrival, visitors have only been given permission to stay for periods much shorter than 90 days, some as short as only seven or ten days. Before leaving the Immigration Desk in the Airport Arrivals Hall, we recommend you check that you have been given a correctly dated entry stampp by Namibian Immigration officials, as this will be checked on departure.
Passengers not travelling on a British Passport are advised to contact their relevant Foreign & Commonwealth office for individual Visa requirements.
For up-to-date resort information, visit www.fco.gov.uk
Health facilities, hygiene and disease risks vary worldwide and you should take health advice about your specific needs from your general practitioner or a specialist clinic as early as possible before travel. Those planning to become pregnant should discuss their travel plans with their healthcare provider to assess their risk of infection with Zika. For information about Zika, other mosquito-borne diseases (such as Dengue fever and Chikungunya), Lyme Disease (caused by tick bites), and to receive advice on mosquito bite avoidance measures, please visit http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/insect-tick-bite-avoidance/
In addition, we highly recommend that you seek specialist advice from your doctor and, where recommended, obtain vaccinations or tablets for protection against, for example: Malaria, Hepatitis A, Polio and Typhoid. In some cases, treatments for Malaria should begin well in advance of travel. Travellers may also be required to show Yellow Fever Certificates on arrival in certain destinations ie, some African countries. Please note that you are strongly advised against scuba-diving for 24 hours before travelling by air. We would also like to draw your attention to the risk of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) and recommend that you consult with your doctor before travelling.
Visit the FCO website and select your destination country for the very latest travel advice: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
Additional sources of information include: www.hpa.org.uk, http://nathnac.net,
www.fco.gov.uk, www.hpa.org.uk and www.nathnac.org, your General Practitioner or a specialised clinic.