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Swakopmund & Walvis Bay

Why visit Swakopmund & Walvis Bay?

Swakopmund, sandwiched between the sands of the Namib desert and the chilly Benguela current of the Atlantic ocean makes a refreshing change to the hot and dusty desert landscapes of the rest of Namibia.  It is also known as the adventure capital of Namibia, there are plenty of adrenalin sports on hand.  It is a quaint Germanic seaside town, with colonial architecture, palm tree lined streets and an atmosphere of timelessness.  It is an ideal stopover to break up your journey of discovery between south and north Namibia.  Walvis Bay is perfect for birders and also the place to take a catamaran trip out to explore the marine life in the area, particularly the seals.
Reasons to visit Swakopmund & Walvis Bay include: 

  • Explore the coast on a kayak trip out to Pelican Point near Walvis Bay and enjoy the spectacle of Cape fur seals playing and swimming around you. 
  • Get your heart pumping with quad biking or sand surfing in the rolling sand dunes.If you are a real adrenalin junkie, parachute jumps or go-karting can be arranged.
  • Fresh mussels and oysters are abundant here, as is fresh seafood in general. There are many popular restaurants in Swakopmund serving excellent fare. 
  • Wander around this quaint (some would say old-fashioned) seaside town and explore the local boutiques, pubs and restaurants.
  • A scenic flight is a lovely way to see the coast line and surrounding area from a different perspective.

When to visit Swakopmund & Walvis Bay.

Any time of year is fine for visiting the coastal regions of Namibia.  It does provide relief from searing heat in the summer months with cool coastal breezes off the Atlantic.  Winter months can see occasional storms and the days may start with fog rolling in from the sea but this generally clears mid-morning.  As the sea is chilly here year round, it’s more the atmosphere and activities that attract visitors, rather than a beach experience, so, like much of Namibia, it can be a year round destination.

How to do it

Swakopmund makes a great contrast to the hot and dusty desert areas, it also forms part of a nice self-drive circuit taking in the central highlands, and Etosha and/or Damaraland and Kunene.  It's also possible to fly here in small aircraft.

Accommodation in Swakopmund

There are small hotels, quirky guesthouses, beachfront properties and upmarket self-catering apartments. Swakopmund has something for all tastes. If you want to be near the sea, Stiltz is a good option.

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Swakopmund & Walvis Bay accommodation

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facts and information

Time: GMT +2 hours

Flight time:

Flights from UK to Windhoek are usually via Johannesburg or Frankfurt and take about 12.5 hours. Windhoek International Airport is 60km from the city centre.

Language: Namibia’s official language is English. Afrikaans, Dama/Nama, German, Herero, Oshiwambo, Sukwangali, Setswana and Silozi are also recognised.

Visas:

Visas are not required British citizens for stays of up to 90 days.

Health:

Malaria is present in Namibia. Certain areas are more high risk. A yellow fever vaccination is required for travellers arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission; this includes transiting through a yellow fever risk country; make sure you have a valid yellow fever certificate with you.  

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