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A post indicating the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern region of Namibia
A post indicating the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern region of Namibia | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip
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When Is the Best Time of the Year to Visit Namibia?

Picture of Netumbo Nekomba
Journalist
Updated: 16 April 2018
Depending on which region you’re in, Namibia boasts unique weather all year round and deserves a visit. Whether you’re battling the sun in the north during summer, or chilling with the cold and calm by the coast, there’s no telling what you’ll experience (rainfall days are too unpredictable). But to prepare your journey, here are a few things to keep in mind.

January

Welcome to the rainy season! Often, the northern regions such as Oshana, Zambezi, Kavango East and Kavango West experience the heaviest rainfall, but do pack some sunscreen—the sun can be harsh during this time of the year. But if you’re a nature lover, it’s one of the best times to travel—the greenery in the north is something to see, especially if you’re on the road.

Rainfall: 121mm

Temperature: 88.3°F (31.3°C)

January
An elephant grazing along a road in the Zambezi region | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

February

There’s more rain during this season, so do pack an umbrella, mosquito repellent, and relax if your plan is to head up north. Various clinics offer medication to protect you from malaria and other nasty diseases, so visit one before you set out. Down south, the heat can be unbearable for some, so make sure you stay as hydrated as possible. Head over to coastal towns such as Swakopmund, Walvis Bay or Henties Bay for dune climbing, camel riding, or sailing. The Atlantic is cold all year round though, so grab a coat and boots just in case.

Rainfall: 106mm

Temperature: 86.3°F (30.2°C)

February
A post indicating the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern region of Namibia | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

March

Around this time, the sun isn’t burning as bright and Namibia is in the spirit of Independence, which means loads of local parties and a good time. Rain often appears during this season, and though there’s not as much rainfall as in February, do prepare for scattered thunderstorms or the occasional cool, cloudy day. It’s also a good time for a road trip. Glance at the quiver trees in the forest, visit the mysterious fairy circles, or witness the beauty of the Fish River Canyon, the largest canyon in Africa with a ravine carving through the landscape.

Rainfall: 100.2mm

Temperature: 83.3°F (28.5°C)

March
The Fish River Canyon in the Kharas region | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

April

Get your blankets ready and prepare for awfully cold nights at the end of the month. Although Namibia doesn’t officially have an ‘autumn’ season, if you notice the cold creeping in and plants fading to brown, you’ll know that winter is coming. The sun still looms, though you should expect rainfall. Just be prepared for the humid, cold, and cloudy weather, and enjoy outdoor activities as much as you can. Love entertainment? The Namibia Annual Music Awards shift from town to town at the end of the month, so do pop by and check out the who’s who of the Namibian music industry. One of the most notable holidays is Easter, where various churches hold special services in the morning.

Rainfall: 47mm

Temperature: 80.4°F (26.9°C)

May
The Wenela border post is situated near the border of Namibia, Angola, Botswana, and Zambia | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

May

As the clouds slowly but surely drift away to another part of the world, it starts getting chilly during May. At the beginning of the month, Namibians celebrate Worker’s Day, commemorate Cassinga Day—a day when hundreds were massacred in 1978—and thereafter enjoy the biblical Ascension Day. Because there are a lot of public holidays during this time, the roads are quite busy, so stay as safe as you can.

Rainfall: 10.4mm

Temperature: 77°F (25°C)

June
Animals graze around a waterhole at Andersson’s Camp | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

June

Considered a dry month, June gets pretty cold—its temperatures can drop below freezing, depending on where you are in the country. Windhoek, the capital city, is wedged between mountains and is built on higher ground, so it experiences slightly colder weather. And the nights are no better. So if you love staying indoors and drinking hot beverages with a view, it’s your time to shine. However, the cold also makes it easier to go on safaris because the animals love to sunbathe and relax around the waterholes. Etosha National Park is a good place for that, or the many other private game farms that allow visitors.

Rainfall: 1.7mm

Temperature: 72.6°F (22.6°C)

July
Warm up with a hot beverage during winter | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

July

During this time of the year, you’re in full-blown winter. Trees are bare (besides the evergreens), and everyone is huddled up in bed because going outside is a total no-no. If you’ve experienced snow before, you won’t necessarily feel the cold—most people say Namibian weather is rather ‘refreshing’. But surprisingly enough, accommodation prices get fairly cheap during this period. Take advantage of it. Just don’t go camping!

Rainfall: 0.0mm

Temperature: 71.4°F (21.9°C)

August
The baobab tree is common in Namibia | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

August

August is no different to July. The desert areas are cold and the nights seem long. But it’s a perfect time to stargaze. It gets quite windy in the central regions, so make sure you keep your hair tied! If you’re someone who experiences a lot of allergies, it’s best to sit this month out or pack your medication if you’re willing to take the risk. There’s nothing fun about sneezing all day when you’re trying to have a good holiday! In August, Namibians celebrate Heroes’ Day on August 26 to commemorate those who died fighting against the South African Defense Force at Ongulumbashe in 1966, one of the first battles of the Border War. Visitors can see the Heroes Acre Memorial a few miles outside Windhoek and have lunch there or check out the museums around the country for more history.

Rainfall: 0.3mm

Temperature: 78.6°F (25.9°C)

September
The Zambezi region boasts luscious flora thanks to the rains | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

September

It’s blooming season! And that’s how you know, spring has begun. The warmth slowly but surely returns and experts say that it’s a good time to go game-viewing. However, the wind doesn’t always have mercy. But remember to pack some insect repellents as well—the mosquitoes love a sweet mix of sun and the sound of summer. One of the biggest parties that takes place in September is the Spring Fiesta which usually happens at Umti Lodge. Party goers are required to wear all white and enjoy an award-winning festival of a lifetime.

Rainfall: 5.7mm

Temperature: 85.4°F (29.7°C)

October
The weather is perfect for a boat ride at the coast when the tides are low | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

October

The weather is usually unpredictable in this season, but it’s basically the start of summer. This is also a good time to travel because the roads can be quiet. Start your day afresh and enjoy the activities planned out for you as much as you can. Whether you’re wind sailing at the coast, camping in the desert or exploring a hiking trail, there’s always something to do and the weather is perfect for it. The Dolphin and Seal Catamaran Cruise from Walvis Bay offers great deals on boat rides where you can gaze at the coastline.

Rainfall: 7.9mm

Temperature: 89°F (31.7°C)

November
Namibian rains are a sight to see | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

November

Once again, you’ll experience unpredictable weather. The sun is relentless during November—but it’s also a great time to witness the rain again after months of cold. There’s nothing like a Namibian thunderstorm—photographers would love to take shots of these! But with the showers, mosquitoes also like to come out to play.

Rainfall: 22.1mm

Temperature: 89°F (31.7°C)

December
Dancers perform at an event in the capital city | © Netumbo Nekomba / Culture Trip

December

Namibians love December because it’s holiday season, and you can definitely feel it in the air. A bevy of pool parties and activities take place during this month, and the spirit of travel is rife. However, accommodation and flight tickets are high, so if you’re going to head over, make sure you book early before your dream holiday is sold out. It’s the best time to get your bikinis out and rock your shades. If you find yourself anywhere in the country at midnight, the main celebration takes place in Windhoek, or you can watch the festivities on the national broadcaster.

Rainfall: 38.7mm

Temperature: 89°F (32.1°C)