For starters, Namibia is stunning. Not only are the people welcoming and warm, but the natural wonders found throughout the country are gorgeous and sometimes a bit mysterious. Fish River Canyon gives the Grand Canyon a run for its money and is an impressive sight from overhead or from one of several viewpoints. The Namib Desert is probably the most unique and truly awe-inspiring place in Namibia, with its trademark rust coloured dunes shifting and moving slowly and changing colours as the sun rises an sets. Come just before a full moon for truly spectacular views of the moonrise over the dunes against a dark blue sky – the perfect photo op.
Soussousvlei is arguably the most accessible part of the desert as well as the most unique in terms of sights. Check out the old skeletal looking trees that rise up from the cracked earth against the backdrop of orange dunes and blue sky. Etosha National Park is impressive in itself and surrounds the Etosha Salt Pan which is an interesting place to visit. Animals are attracted here due to it being a source of water, even in the drier months. For other wildlife viewing opportunities check out the Caprivi, Waterberg Plateau Park and Kaokoland.
For the most unique experience though, the Skeleton Coast is worth a look if you can get access – be careful here, much of the land is owned by mining companies, and so you’d be effectively trespassing if on the wrong bit of land. The name is taken from the multitude of old oil tanker which has been beached along the coast, with shipwrecks for miles. This is also a hot spot for surfing the notoriously huge Namibian waves, but be warned – pieces of old ship can lurk underneath the waves and pose hazards. Make sure your tetanus is up to date if going in the water here.
Despite Namibia being a fairly safe and friendly country, like anywhere there is a bit of a shady side. Women are advised not to travel in taxis alone after 9pm and men, after midnight in most major towns and cities. Using common sense will help you avoid any potentially upsetting and dangerous situations, and in fact many people travel through Namibia having had nothing but enjoyable experiences.
Banks in Namibia will exchange South African Rand with no charge and no hassle, so it’s a useful way to get your money changed up while avoiding bank fees. As with many cities across the world today, it’s advised to use ATM’s that are located physically within bank buildings to lessen the likelihood of ATM fraud and theft, which is a large issue throughout Namibia amongst other places.
Namibia has a bit of a reputation for its nightclubs and they are always packed with something going on. For a great night out check out some of the bars in Windhoek. Likewise, Windhoek is home to a number of local and international restaurants serving almost every form of food you could possibly want. Namibians typically eat a lot of meat, but vegetarian options are available with some fantastic options for fruits being commonplace.
Bus services throughout the country are good with decent buses serving passengers. Train services are limited and it’s no longer possible to get into or out of Namibia by train. As an added benefit to travelling in Namibia – if you have spent time in South Africa, Namibia is very similar and vice versa. Due to their relative close relationship with Namibia, it’s common that travellers do both South Africa and Namibia in one trip. Taxi services in major centres are typically one of the better ways to get around and long distance taxis are available to do intercity trips. Most of the travelling in Namibia is done by road, despite the relatively long distances.
Namibia has been inhabited essentially since the beginning of time by the San people, which were later known as the Bushmen. It was invaded by the Bantu and later colonised by the Germans. Many people in Namibia still speak German to this day as a throwback to colonial times. After the first world war, South Africa took over Namibia and made it an extension province of South Africa, a contested topic that resulted in a guerilla war for independence fro 1966, unsuccessful until 1990.
Due to the fact that Namibia was under control of South Africa throughout its period of apartheid, Namibia too experienced detrimental effects due to the system and continues to to this day as well. In this respect, Namibians have developed more reference in life to race and may refer to racial topics more commonly than in other places. Despite this though, Namibians of different races tend to live harmoniously and racial aggression and tensions are rarely an issue.
Namibia was also unfortunately somewhat involved in the Angola civil war with some of the fighting spilling over into north east Namibia, but when that came to an end in May of 2002 Namibia resumed its place as a peaceful, welcoming and friendly nation. It’s seen its fair share of foreigners, especially since the UN supervised their elections, so they are no stranger to visitors in the country and are quite happy to see foreigners enjoying Namibia.
Explore through the lens of leading photographers
Nude Africa: Top 10 social nudity destinations
Perhaps it may come as a little surprising that there are now quite a few places for nudists to enjoy stripping down as nature intended in Africa, being that most of Africa is rather [...]
African Tribes: meet the most popular tribes in Africa
Courtesy of Carsten ten Brink/flickr African Tribe: Ashanti The Ashanti also commonly go by the name Asante. They are found in Western Sub-Saharan Africa, in modern-day Ghana and Ivory Coast. Perhaps [...]
25 African natural wonders for your bucket list
Courtesy of ER Bauer/Flickr African Natural Wonder: Sossusvlei, Namibia With its iconic red sand dunes, that are constantly moulded into different shapes and patterns by the wind, Sossuvlei is one of [...]
Magnificent African waterfalls, rivers and lakes
Courtesy of Max R - ooyooy/Flickr African River: Niger River The Niger is the third largest river in Africa, only behind the Nile and the Congo rivers, at 4,180km. Its source [...]
Top African national parks and game reserves to visit
Our planet is home to some of the most beautiful and magical locations you could ever hope to clasp eyes on, yet many of us will sadly never get to see them for one [...]
Seven of the most romantic African hideouts
Everybody deserves the chance to get away and escape the hustle and bustle of modern society, and for some of us, getting away from it all can do us, and our relationships, a whole [...]
Top African golf courses that will amaze you
Africa is widely known for its exciting activities such as safaris or tribal village visits, but there is so much more to do there than just kick back on safari all day. For those [...]
Top wedding venues in Africa to get married in style
Weddings in Africa can be beautiful, amazing, and breathtaking at all once. Imagine an intimate wedding on an Enchanted Island in Seychelles or romancing to the thunderous sound of the Victoria Falling or enjoying [...]
Top African beauty product websites
Courtesy of africanfairtradesociety.com African Beauty Products: African Fair Trade Society As the name suggests, the company is 100% fair trade, and the product line here specialises in organic shea butter, entirely [...]
Luxury African brands to watch
As African wealth rises, so does the consumer demand for luxury goods. Many small African brands and businesses are springing up all over the continent to capture this untapped demand. Local artisans are crafting [...]
The wildest African campsites
Africa undoubtedly conjures up images of wilderness and adventure – and what better way to really get into the thick of it than by enjoying your African experience hands-on through camping. African campsite locations [...]
Beautiful African Landscapes You Should See
Africa is known as one of the vast and most expansive continents in the world, filled with a myriad of African landscapes, sounds, activities, and experiences. Perhaps one of the most well-known and most-sought-after [...]
Extreme Sports Activities in Africa
Without a doubt, Africa has some of the best wildlife safaris in the world, and along with popular beach destinations such as Morocco in the north and islands like the Seychelles and Mauritius in [...]
African Delicacies You Should Try
When you head abroad to any country that isn't your home, one of the things that you must do is try some of the local delicacies. Delicacies mean different things to different people and [...]
Great African Leaders and Warriors
When thinking of African leaders, most people may think of the Zulu tribal fighters of centuries past taking on colonial powers such as the British. While this is true, it's only one very small [...]
African TV Shows and Comedy to Watch
Many people would probably react to this title with a question: So, why should I watch African TV shows? Well, for one thing, it's always interesting to watch films about countries you are planning [...]
African Style and Attire That Inspires Everyone
African attire and style has long been admired not only by people with African heritage but by anyone with a flair for colors and patterns as well as interesting folds and fabrics. With the [...]
Unique Safari Experiences You Shouldn’t Miss
Arguably, the most typical and popular reason tourists come to Africa is for a safari experience. However, some sights - such as the Serengeti in Tanzania – are becoming increasingly overcrowded, making them feel [...]
Astonishingly beautiful African Islands to visit
With pristine sand and hidden coves to explore, African islands are a highlight of this wonderful, diverse continent. Turquoise waters at relaxing temperatures, coupled with sea breezes make the many African islands off the [...]