Activities at the coast
- Tandem Skydiving
- Dolphin Cruises
- Desert Tours
- Cape Cross Tours
- Bird Inspection Tours
- Scenic Flights
- Sandwich Harbour Tours
Activities at the coast
Many animals and reptiles that you might encounter are of dangerous nature. Attacks by any of these is very rare though. Up till today we have not had any such incident, but no safari in Africa can rule this out. Neither Namibia Tracks & Trails, nor their employees, tour operators and suppliers can be held liable for any injuries caused by the natural behaviour of animals.
RESPECT THE OUTDOORS
The official language is English. German and Afrikaans are also widely used and there are numerous African languages and dialects which fall into two main groups, namely Bantu and Khoisan. German is spoken widely in Swakopmund.
SIM cards for mobile phones are available in supermarkets, post offices and Teleshops (e.g. MTC or Telecom). You can make direct overseas calls from Namibia. The shipping time for airmail to Europe takes between 4 days to 2 weeks.
The winter months are typically mild to warm. In the evenings, at night and early mornings it can cool down pretty much, therefore a warm sweater or a jacket and long trousers are essential. The weather conditions on the coast can be very cold and windy, so warm clothing and a wind jacket is advisable too.
Cotton, which is cooler than synthetic material, is recommended for the Namibian summer and can be purchased in shops in Windhoek, which specialize in Safari clothing.
Southern Africa, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean, between Angola and South AfricaGeographic coordinates
22 00 S, 17 00 EArea
diamonds, copper, uranium, gold, silver, lead, tin, lithium, cadmium, tungsten, zinc, salt, hydropower, fish note: suspected deposits of oil, coal and iron oreUse of Land
Namibia is the second least densely populated country on earth. After Mongolia which is also a vast country, there are just over two million people living in a country which is half the size of Alaska.
The Namib desert, at 80 million years, is the world’s oldest desert. Namib means “open space”.
Stunning Fish River Canyon is the second largest canyon in the world, after the Grand Canyon – it is 161km long, up to 27km wide and 550m deep, formed about 500 million years ago. You can hike the canyon but only during the cooler months between May and September. The hike takes 5 days and there are no hotels along the way.
More than 300 days of sunshine per year.
Namibia has the
Sossusvlei are said to be the highest sand-dunes in the world.
The Namib and Damaraland offer remarkably clear skies for astronomers and keen star gazers.
The Namib-Naukluft Park is the largest conservation area in Namibia and one of the largest in the world.
Etosha National Park is one of Africa’s finest parks, both in size and diversity of wildlife – home to Africa’s tallest elephants, the endangered black rhino, and 91 other species of mammal. Etosha is especially popular with photographers in the dry season who flock to the waterholes (along with the wildlife).
Namibia’s national anthem “Namibia, Land of the Brave’ was composed by Axali Doeseb. The words of the first verse echo the country’s long struggle for independence: “Namibia, land of the brave, Freedom’s fight we have won, Glory to their bravery, whose blood waters our freedom”. The chorus is “Namibia our Country, Namibia our Motherland, we love thee”.
In the major centres, such as Windhoek and Swakopmund, many shops specialize in attractive local products such as diamonds, semi-precious stones, curios of all types including dolls dressed in the traditional Herero style (made by the local Herero woman), hand-carved wooden objects, beautifully fashioned jewellery, leather shoes, karosses rugs and popular woven Swakara garments. Shops are closed on Saturday- and Sunday afternoons, as well as all public holidays, with only a select few open on a Sunday morning./p>
All goods and services in Namibia are priced to include value added tax (VAT) of 15%.
Visitors to Namibia may reclaim VAT on their purchases at the Hosea Kutako International Airport, Eros Airport and Walvis Bay Airport. Further enquiries can be made through the Ministry of Finance - Telephone: +264 61 209 2405, Fax: +264 61 209 2001
A 30% luxury items tax is subtracted from the cost of such luxury items as jewellery or Swakara garments when tourists present their passport and air ticket at the time of purchase.
The currency in Namibia is the Namibian Dollar (N$), which is fixed to and therefore equivalent to the South African Rand (ZAR). Bank notes : N$ 200, N$ 100, N$ 50, N$ 20, N$ 10. Coins : N$ 10, N$ 5, N$ 1, 50 Cent, 10 Cent and 5 Cent. The Namibian Dollar and South African Rand are the only legal tender in Namibia and can be used freely to purchase goods and services. The Namibian Dollar, however, is not legal tender in South Africa.
Traveller’s cheques and foreign currency can be exchanged at any of the commercial banks, which are well represented throughout the country. Visitors may bring any amount of foreign currency into the country.
International Visa and MasterCard credit cards are generally accepted throughout Namibia. Holders of other cards are advised to clarify with a commercial bank whether their card is acceptable in Namibia. Visitors may bring any amount of foreign currency into the country. Further information and assistance can be obtained from any commercial bank in Namibia.
All visitors to Namibia must be in possession of a valid passport. Please check well in time before departure with your Consulate or embassy about your entry- and visa requirements. Tourists are granted a residence permit for 90 days. If necessary, a tourist visa may be requested at the Ministry of Home Affairs, as well as at the respective Namibian embassies.
Namibia has an excellent road network and very good paved roads. Some of the roads are however rough and bumpy and a minimum speed on tar roads of 120 km/h should not be exceeded. Also, there is a high volume of gravel roads in the country. These are usually well maintained, but every now and then one comes across "corrugated" tracks. Therefore, careful driving is mandatory, as the traction is reduced on gravel roads. Namibia Tracks & Trails will therefore not accept any liability, responsibility or claim for compensation, for any incident or accident involving you (the client), your vehicle and/or any third party.
Outlets for electrical shavers (250V) are available in all bigger hotels, as well as government rest camps. For travel in remote areas we recommend to take battery-powered or hand razors.
|Monday - Friday||08h00-17h00 or 19h00 (Supermarkets)|
|Saturday||08h00-13h00 and 10h00-19h00 (Shopping Centres)|
|Sunday||08h00-13h00 or 19h00 (Supermarkets)|
|Monday - Friday||08h30-17h00|
|urban areas - 60 km/h|
|tarred roads outside urban areas - 120 km/h|
|gravel roads outside urban areas - 80 km/h|
Please check in early at all airports (at least one hour prior for domestic flights, two hours for all flights to the USA and two hours for regional and other international flights) due to additional security which now affects international travel around the world.
Please be aware that during peak season, delays are often encountered on scheduled flights. Remember that you are on holiday... relax and enjoy the ambience, which sometimes has no sense of urgency at all!
Please ensure that your onward flights are reconfirmed, when applicable, at least 72 hours prior to flying.
Should your journey with us include any non-scheduled airline flights, please be advised that we offer two types of air transfer - either a sole use air transfer (where your party has exclusive use of the aircraft for that particular flight sector) or a shared air transfer (where your party share the aircraft with others). A brief description follows:1. Shared air transfers
Unless specifically requested to do otherwise, we will automatically book you onto the shared air transfer which may entail stopping at other airstrips en route for other guests to board/alight. It is possible that one party may be split up and have to travel on different aircraft to their destination, although all efforts will be made to avoid this.
When we package an itinerary using shared air transfers, we book the aircraft and pilot through licensed charter companies. This portion of your trip might therefore be sub-chartered. All the flight times between lodges are arranged a few days before the flights take place to avoid endless schedule changes. The lodge or camp where you are staying will be advised of your departure time the day before travel and will ensure that you are at the airstrip on time.
We cannot be more specific about the timings of these air transfers as the charter companies are compelled by safety regulations to service their aircraft every 100 hours which could result in arrangements having to be rescheduled at the last moment.
At certain times of the year it may be necessary (for safety reasons) to transfer you during the cooler times of the day, in early morning or late afternoon only. Any changes requested or made by the travellers will be at a considerable extra cost.2. Sole Use air transfers
If specifically requested, sole use air transfers will be booked for your trip at an additional cost. This service means that you and your party are the only passengers on that specific flight transfer leg. This could allow more flexibility on luggage restrictions depending on the number of guests and the size of the aircraft – please clarify this with your agent.
Sole Use air transfers also allow for more flexibility of flight timings which are to be arranged at the time of booking. Please note that late changes to the timings at the request of the party cannot always be accommodated. The original arranged flight times can not be guaranteed. This is as a result of unforeseeable delays such as scheduled flight delays etc. Aircraft used for Sole Use transfers are also used to carry guests before and after your flight.
Please note that if combining shared and sole use air transfers, then the specified luggage restriction for shared transfers will apply.
Scheduled airlines in southern Africa generally carry a weight restriction of 20kg per economy class traveller, and 30kg for business class. Please ensure that you comply with the applicable restrictions (further details regarding number of luggage pieces and exact dimensions, for the particular carrier can be obtained from your ticketing agent).
Please note when combining scheduled airline flights and air transfers (as specified below), then the smaller restriction of the two will apply unless alternative arrangements have been made for the storage or separate transfer of excess luggage.
It is very important that you do not put anything of high value (personal or financial value) in your checked-in baggage as luggage can be tampered with and valuables removed. This includes, but is not limited to, jewellery, cameras, video equipment, reading / sunglasses, laptops or other computer/electronic equipment, medication (especially chronic medication) etc. Please also lock your luggage with a suitable lock to deter opportunistic theft.
In the event of your luggage being delayed or going missing, we would like to recommend that you pack a change of underwear, a clean T-shirt or similar, plus essential toiletries and medication into your carry-on/hand luggage to minimise the inconvenience experienced by this loss or delay.
There are strict weight restrictions in place on any itinerary which includes light aircraft transfers for the following reasons:
Some important issues must please be noted for air transfers with Sefofane:
These luggage restrictions appear minimal however please bear in mind the following:
As no formal clothes are needed throughout most of southern Africa, we recommend that you limit your luggage to the basics. More formal attire is usually required only when staying in the more prestigious city hotel establishments or on any of the luxury trains. On a wildlife safari, casual clothing is the order of the day. We have included a suggested packing list in our documentation for your reference.
If your itinerary includes light aircraft sectors and you need to bring more luggage than the stipulated allowance, please consult us for details on the excess luggage options that are available at an additional cost.
If you do not require the excess luggage to accompany you on your trip and you arrive/depart via Windhoek, we can make storage arrangements. The luggage can then be returned to you either at your hotel in Windhoek (if you are staying overnight) or by baggage transfer to the airport. This service, which is normally the most economical method of handling excess luggage in Namibia, is charged for at a nominal rate and you are advised to pre-book it through your agent prior to travel.
Namibia Tracks & Trails and its’ staff will not accept responsibility for luggage kept in any of the offices on behalf of our guests. We do not anticipate any problems with stored luggage being damaged or stolen, but guests must ensure that they are in possession of full travel insurance including luggage cover.
Luggage that goes missing on scheduled flights is beyond the control of Namibia Tracks & Trails, and/or the airline concerned. The airport controls what happens to passengers’ luggage from when it is checked in/out until it is put on/taken off the aircraft.
We suggest that you take the following precautionary action: pack a small bag with your essentials including any life sustaining medication, which can be carried with you as hand luggage. If your luggage goes missing, you will still have your essential items on hand to see you through the first couple of days while we try and recover your lost baggage.
Namibia Tracks & Trails, or its agents and associates cannot be held responsible or liable for loss, damage, or theft of personal luggage and belongings, nor can they be held liable for personal injury, accident or illness. Please ensure that you have yourself and your belongings adequately insured before your departure.
Insurance is compulsory for all our trips.. Please contact your broker or your travel agent or us for details. We cannot be held liable for any losses or damages incurred.
Before you travel anywhere it is advisable to have fully comprehensive medical and accident insurance, which covers you while you are away for everything, including emergency evacuation and repatriation.
You might have to cancel your safari due to unforeseen circumstances, If you cancel a trip close to the departure date for any reason, you will lose all that the safari was going to cost you. Dependent on the reason, cancellation insurance should cover you for this eventuality.
Airline liabilities with respect to your baggage is limited. It is advisable to take out insurance if you are carrying expensive and valuable camera equipment. You should always carry such equipment as ‘carry-on’ luggage. Do not put anything of value in your checked baggage!
Hotels in the Namibia towns and cities generally have a check in time of 14h00 and a check out time of 10h00, though many lodges and hotels will try to be accommodating and flexible if they are not too fully booked the preceding night. Otherwise we recommend you book a day room in advance to secure a longer stay in your room.
The dates of certain public holidays change from year to year – refer below. If a public holiday falls on a Sunday, then the Monday is also declared a public holiday. During this time, most shops are closed or only some grocery shops are open for limited hours. We recommend you avoid staying in the cities over long weekends or public holidays.
|01 January||New Year’s Day|
|21 March||Independence Day|
|01 May||Worker’s Day|
|04 May||Cassinga Day|
|25 May||Africa Day|
|26 August||Heroes’ Day|
|10 December||International Human Rights Day|
|25 December||Christmas Day|
|26 December||Boxing Day|
Namibia operates on daylight saving time as follows:
Summer: From the first Sunday in September to the first Sunday in April - two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)
Winter: From the first Sunday in April to the first Sunday in September - one hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)
There are a few basic health matters that require care and attention. The following points are recommended guidelines only. Please consult your doctor and also check with your health department prior to departure for any changes in health regulations.1. Malaria
Malaria within Namibia is encountered mainly in northern Namibia:
Malaria prophylactic recommendations for travellers:
Expert opinion differs regarding the best approach to malaria prophylaxis. It is important to bear in mind that malaria may be contracted despite chemoprophylaxis, especially in areas where chloroquine resistance has been reported. Both chloroquine-resistant and normal strains of malaria are prevalent in Africa.
Please remember that the best precaution is the preventative kind:
Malaria is transmitted by a very small percentage of female Anopheles mosquitoes. They are mainly active in the early evening and throughout the night. Malaria transmission is at its highest during the warmer and wetter months of November through to April. From May through to October the risks of acquiring malaria are reduced. There is also less prevalence in remote areas where our camps are situated; nonetheless, you need to consider taking preventative measures.
There is a six to seven day minimum incubation period before symptoms present themselves. If you become ill on your return, while still on prophylaxis or even once you have stopped taking them, ensure that your doctor does everything to establish that your illness is not malaria. Malaria can be prevented if you are sensible and take basic precautions. There have been very few cases of our guests contracting malaria in our more than 20 years of operation. It is inadvisable for pregnant woman to visit malarial areas as malaria infection during pregnancy can be detrimental.2. Water
It is very important that you drink plenty of water especially during the warmer months. It is generally recommended that guests drink at least 2 to 3 litres of water per day to limit the effects of dehydration. This excludes tea, coffee and alcoholic beverages, which act as diuretics and therefore can actually contribute to dehydration.
Generally, water throughout Namibia is safe to drink directly from the tap. However, bottled water is readily available, so please do not allow yourself to become dehydrated.
For those guests with specific dietary requirements please ensure Namibia Tracks & Trails is notified prior to arrival. We can accommodate most reasonable requests.4. Medical Conditions
You need to notify Namibia Tracks & Trails of any medical condition you may have prior to your arrival. This includes any allergies e.g. bee stings, nuts, shell fish etc.