From abundant Big Five viewing to breathtaking sights of desert rhino amidst spectacular sand dunes, Namibia’s safari parks are beyond compare.
Best time to visit Namibia
Go for the adventure, scenery, wonderful isolation, and stunning accommodation in some of the world’s remotest corners. As Namibia is so remote and wondrously off the well-worn tourist trail, it can often be difficult to plan a safari yourself, especially when considering which month to travel. Namibia starts to get uncomfortably hot from October, and game viewing is severely affected by the short yet violent rainy season from December to March. The best wildlife viewing is available in winter, from June to August. For a month-by-month breakdown of the best time to visit Namibia, please take a look at our guide below.
January - Mixed month to visit Namibia
- January in Namibia is a midsummer month, featuring clear mornings, rainy afternoons, and very high temperatures.
- With water available in the parks, wildlife tends to disperse, so it’s more difficult to spot on vehicle safaris.
- Availability of safari properties in early January can be low, as this is just after Christmas and New Year.
- From mid-month, rates are relatively low and there should be good availability.
- Vast flocks of flamingos congregate on the lagoons near Swakopmund in Walvis Bay.
Max temp 86 F
Mosquitoes are about
February - Mixed month to visit Namibia
- February is Namibia’s wettest month – but if you can tolerate the rain, there’s plenty to enjoy.
- Wildlife highlights this month include: calving season, lots of migratory birds, and baby meerkats in the country’s dune regions.
- Some travelers might not enjoy all the rain and it can feel very hot and humid in parts of the country.
- Vehicle safaris tend to yield fewer sightings this month than during the dry season – this is particularly true of Etosha National Park.
- It’s a great time for birders, featuring 450 species in the Caprivi Strip and the vast flocks of flamingo across Swakopmund’s scenic lagoons.
Max temp 86 F
Difficult to spot wildlife
March - Mixed month to visit Namibia
- Namibia in March enters the latter part of its wet season, with opportunities to see young animals and plenty of migratory birds.
- There tends to be less to see on game drives, as animals have no need to cluster around scarce water sources.
- March can be busy if Easter falls during the month.
- Young animals make for a beautiful subject for wildlife photographers.
- Availability of safari properties is generally good and rates are relatively low.
Max temp 87 F
High chance of rain
Great birding month
Good wildlife photo ops
Lots of mosquitoes
April - Good month to visit Namibia
- Emerging from the wet season, April in Namibia is teeming with life. This is when parks and reserves start to dry up a bit, so wildlife starts to cluster around water sources.
- If Easter falls this month, properties can get booked up pretty quickly.
- Desert regions look very scenic, with patches of flowers and greenery.
- Temperatures are moderate and comfortable on the whole – days are generally warm, and nights are becoming cooler.
- Some years can see heavy late rains.
Start of dry season
Max temp 79 F
Visit the Skeleton Coast
Lots of migratory birds
May - Good month to visit Namibia
- May in Namibia is a good month to visit – it’s characterized by a general drying-up of parks that makes for steady improvements in wildlife viewing.
- May is a shoulder season, becoming increasingly dry – days are pleasantly warm, but nights are a bit chilly.
- Landscapes appear lusher after the summer rains, and there are still a lot of flowers to enjoy.
- Availability can be tricky, with people booking very far in advance in order to benefit from the shoulder season rates and pleasant weather.
- The remaining greenery is a beautiful subject for photography, especially when captured on a hot air balloon ride.
Max temp 77 F
Small chance of rain
Peak wildlife viewing
June - Best month to visit Namibia
- June is a great month to visit Namibia, as it’s the beginning of the peak season for wildlife viewing.
- Towards the end of June, properties start to book up quickly as school holidays begin and it is the most expensive time to visit.
- It’s a great time of year to be on safari – wildlife clusters around water sources, which make for exceptionally good sightings.
- Great month for photography – if you’re looking for a particularly dramatic subject, you could consider the stark sands of Sossusvlei National Park.
- Stargazing is superb during Namibia’s dry season.
Max temp 23 C
Small chance of rain
Great month to visit Sossusvlei
Nights can be very cold
July - Best month to visit Namibia
- July in Namibia is wonderful for wildlife viewing – lots of species cluster around very few water sources, and lack of plant life makes for amazing visibility on vehicle and walking safaris.
- As it’s the dry and peak season, property prices are high and accommodations fill up quickly – so make sure to book well in advance.
- Namibia’s Etosha National Park is particularly good in July, with elephant, rhino, giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, ostrich, and other species gathering around the scarce waterholes.
- The dramatic dunes of the Skeleton Coast and Sossusvlei National Park provide superb photography opportunities.
- Stargazing is amazing during the dry season – Namibia’s south even boasts a Dark Sky Reserve, one of just two worldwide.
Max temp 68 F
Desert nights can be cold
August - Best month to visit Namibia
- August in Namibia is one of the best times to visit, as it’s the middle of the dry, peak season.
- Opportunities for wildlife photography are excellent throughout the month.
- Wildlife viewing is at its peak, especially in Etosha National Park, which can feel crowded, as it’s a very popular safari destination during this time of year.
- It’s bracing during early morning, evening, and night, so we recommend long layers and cozy nightwear.
- It’s well worth booking in advance to make sure you get your first-choice accommodation.
Max temp 73F
YZ favorite month
Cold mornings and evenings
Hardly any mosquitoes
September - Best month to visit Namibia
- During this dry season month in Namibia, September sees temperatures begin to rise, while wildlife viewing remains excellent.
- Etosha National Park can be busy during the first week of the month, but the crowds ease off once the school holidays end.
- September’s clear skies provide excellent conditions for wildlife viewing and it is a great month for wildlife photography.
- It’s warm enough for light layers, but snug nightwear is often necessary at the beginning of the month.
- There are very few mosquitoes and bugs this month.
Max temp 81 F
Excellent wildlife viewing
Outstanding photography conditions
Rates can be high
October - Best month to visit Namibia
- October is the final month of Namibia’s dry season – wildlife viewing is superb, and trips to the coast for whale watching and dolphin cruises are highly recommended.
- With water in short supply, vast concentrations of wildlife cluster around dwindling sources – lion are particularly prevalent at this time.
- Access is good for all areas – from Windhoek to Swakopmund to flying safaris over the Skeleton Coast, and more.
- As the skies are so clear, October is ideal for stargazing.
- The hotter temperatures and lack of water bring a lot of dust, which can make for uncomfortable game drives.
Max temp 86 F
Visit the coast for sea life
Very few mosquitoes
November - Good month to visit Namibia
- November is a shoulder season month, characterized by changeable weather – clear skies, cloudy skies, and even thunderstorms.
- There are still some excellent wildlife highlights, such as desert elephant and rhino in Damaraland and vast flocks of flamingo gathering in Walvis Bay until February.
- Where temperatures can soar over 30 degrees, it might feel too hot for some travelers
- Before the rains come, animals cluster around scarce water sources – and as vegetation remains sparse, there’s good visibility of many animals.
- Availability of properties is better than in earlier months and prices drop following the dry season.
Max temp 86 F
Rains bring mosquitoes
Shoulder season rates
December - Mixed month to visit Namibia
- December in Namibia heads towards the wet season, with clear mornings followed by rainy afternoons.
- With more water available, animals no longer cluster around water sources, and game densities can be low.
- It’s a great month for bird photography – vast flocks of flamingo can be viewed in Walvis Bay’s lagoons, while birdwatching on the Caprivi Strip is brilliant.
- Availability of safari properties is good overall, while rates are lower than during dry season.
- It is Namibian school summer vacation and there are many shop closures, as people take their summer break
Max temp 86 F
Great birding month
Wildlife can be hard to spot
The top national parks to explore on your Namibia safari
Namibia’s most iconic region, Sossusvlei draws in photographers and adventurers alike to climb the sand dunes that rise as high as skyscrapers.
Damaraland is a wild and unique landscape that is home to a surprising density of desert-dwelling game, including desert elephant and rhino.
Etosha National Park
Etosha is Namibia’s most famous safari park. Big game is abundant here, with it being one of the finest places in Africa to view the Big Five.
Namibia luxury safari lodges and camps
Our portfolio includes some of the best lodges in Namibia, ranging from good value to classic to luxury, for you to explore.
Wilderness Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp
Wilderness Hoanib Skeleton Coast has a great location in the northern part of the Palmwag Concession – it sits in a valley where two tributaries of the dry Hoanib River meet.
Wilderness Serra Cafema
Wilderness Serra Cafema is situated in the far north of Namibia on the Angolan border. It is one of the finest lodges in the country and one of our favorites in Africa.
Sossusvlei Desert Lodge
Desert Lodge is a fabulous base from which to explore Sossusvlei. As an &Beyond property, it has retained its reputation as the most stylish and luxurious lodge in Namibia.
Top safari trips in Namibia
All of our Namibia vacations are tailor-made, designed entirely to suit your needs and budgets. The sample trips below are intended to give you inspiration of what is possible for your safari vacation.
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