The best time to visit Namibia is from June to October, which is the dry season. During this period, the temperatures are just above 20°C, and there is a low chance of rain, making it the peak travel season for wildlife viewing, especially in Etosha National Park.
Hiking is best reserved for the cooler winter months, which coincide with the northern hemisphere summer. With its good weather conditions, Namibia is a perfect destination for travellers looking to explore the beauty of nature.
You can also plan your visitation by September when it will be sunny and warm and with a favourable night atmosphere( not too cold).
Although you can also visit at any other time of the year, there is a likelihood of rainfall and unpleasant weather conditions for humans and wildlife. For example, the weather might be cloudy and followed by rain between December and March, while thunderstorms may occur in the afternoon.
During the wet/rainy season, animals look out for conducive areas; therefore, they scatter around the park, which might not allow you to view various wildlife.
After thorough research and interviews with travel experts and persons who have visited Namibia, here is a month-by-month guide for your journey to Namibia
Visiting Namibia in January means experiencing mid-summer in the country. With hot and humid weather, temperatures can reach 30°C to 35°C and up to 40°C (104°F) in the desert. Afternoon downpours may occur, but not daily, with clear mornings being typical.
January is also a popular holiday period for Namibians, leading to full accommodations in Swakopmund in the first half of the month.
However, this is a great time for birdwatching in the Caprivi Strip, where over 450 species of birds can be found, and for seeing thousands of flamingos gathered on lagoons in Swakopmund.
February is also a good month to visit if you’re looking for low-season accommodation rates and slightly discounted vehicle rental prices. The weather is quite similar to January, with hot and humid days, and occasional rainfall in the afternoons. This is an excellent time to go bird watching in the Caprivi Strip, where you can see over 450 species of birds and flamingos in Swakopmund.
While wildlife watching may be unreliable due to the rainy season, it’s an excellent time for birders as flamingos gather in abundance in Etosha National Park to breed.
The north of Namibia becomes greener during this time, and thousands of white and pink lilies bloom near the southern town of Maltahöhe after the heavy rains. You will love to take pictures in this area, and many travellers said the pictures taken here were evergreen.
March in Namibia is transitioning into the cooler and dryer season, with a drop in nighttime temperatures to around 15°C (59°F) and pleasant daytime temperatures around 30°C (86°F). Most of the country’s rainy season has ended, leaving behind green and vibrant landscapes.
March 21st marks Namibia’s Independence Day from South Africa, and celebrations in Windhoek are particularly impressive.
This is a great time to explore the country’s cultural events and historical landmarks while enjoying favourable weather conditions.
In April, the rainy season has subsided and the weather is comfortable, with daytime temperatures around 25°C and nighttime temperatures around 13°C, making for cooler nights. The desert areas of Namibia tend to have more moderate temperatures at night compared to other regions. April is a fantastic month to explore Namibia, with clear and dust-free skies.
The migration birds have departed, but you can view endemic species in Namibia during this period. There is an array of events to look out for, such as the Bank Windhoek Triennial Art Exhibition, organized with the National Art Gallery of Namibia, the Windhoek Karneval, and the African Mountain Bike Championships, which the Namibian Cycling Federation organizes.
May in Namibia is the time to see great and beautiful wildlife as it is the beginning of winter; the temperature is low (24°C) with frequent rainfall, and humidity is very low. The presence of rain makes the wildlife gather around wherever their water which they can survive on. During this period in Namibia, other water sources in the country dry up.
May is an important month in Namibia, with two significant events taking place. On May 4, Cassinga Day is observed to commemorate the victims of the 1978 Cassinga massacre. On May 25, Africa Day is celebrated to mark the founding of the Organisation of African Unity.
June is an excellent time to visit Namibia for wildlife watching, as it marks the start of the season. This period is characterized by heavy rainfall, which may make the desert areas freeze. Other areas may experience nighttime temperatures as low as 10°C, while the daytime temperature is in the mid-20°C range, making it comfortable and enjoyable.
The moderate daytime temperatures during June make it an ideal month for exploring the desert landscapes of Namib-Naukluft Park and other destinations in southern Namibia. You will enjoy the Swakopmund Karneval (Küska), a key event In Namibia that features a music festival, traditional dance competitions, and beer tasting.
July is the peak travel month in Namibia, it is also known as one of the coldest months, with daytime temperatures ranging from 21°C to 25°C and nighttime temperatures dropping to 7°C. In the desert areas, temperatures can even go below freezing point, making the country extremely cold. As a result, it is highly recommended to wear protective clothing when visiting Namibia during this time.
Despite the cold weather, July still presents an opportunity to explore Namibia. While sandstorms may occur along the coast, the overall weather conditions are favourable, and temperatures are perfect for scaling the enormous sand dunes in Namib-Naukluft Park. Additionally, the cooler temperatures make July one of the best months for hiking in the Fish River Canyon.
A notable event that takes place during this time is the Fish River Canyon Ultra Marathon.
July and August share similar weather, with freezing nights and daytime temperatures around 24°C. These two months are considered the coldest in Namibia. However, August is still a high-season travel month, characterized by warm, occasionally windy days, and dusty skies. Despite the cold nights, it remains an excellent time for wildlife watching.
Namibia’s Heroes Day is celebrated on August 26th, commemorating the beginning of the country’s war of independence, which started in Omugulugwombashe village in northern Namibia. Additionally, late August sees a significant gathering of the Red Flag Herero people in Otjiwarongo, approximately 250km (155 miles) north of Windhoek, to honor their slain chiefs.
Other notable events that take place in August are the KinoNamibia Film Festival and Red Flag Herero Day.
If you’re planning a trip to Namibia and wondering when to go, September is the optimal month to visit. The weather is pleasant, with temperatures around 26°C and low humidity. Additionally, there is no rainfall so the land dry, and the skies are clear. September is also a great time for wildlife enthusiasts and birdwatchers as migratory birds flock to Namibia.
In September, the Mafwe people of Namibia hold their annual Lusata Cultural Festival near Katima Mulilo in the Zambezi region. This lively event draws participants from Namibia, Botswana, and Zambia for singing and dancing performances.
If you will be travelling to Namibia for game viewing, the best time to travel is in October. The temperature during this period reaches up to 28° C. which makes the weather hot and dry. The vegetation during this period gradually fades from being green, and heat slowly comes in.
Several exciting cultural events take place in October in Namibia like the Oktoberfest. Our travel experts recommended Windhoek and Swakopmund as the best places to celebrate Oktoberfest, where you can enjoy traditional German food, music, and beer.
In Omaruru, the White Flag Herero people commemorate their slain chiefs in a unique and fascinating cultural celebration. This event provides a glimpse into Namibia’s indigenous people’s rich history and traditions.
Another exciting event is the /Ae //Gams Arts and Cultural Festival, which is a celebration of Namibia’s diverse cultural heritage. The festival features dancing, musical performances, and traditional art and crafts exhibitions.
In November, the heat which builds up in October becomes hotter though humidity is still low. The daytime temperatures sometimes can be over 86°F ( 30°C ).
There is a likelihood that there will be rain in the afternoon as clouds usually form in the sky. This time is also good for birdwatching and the great sight of Flamingos, and you can attend the major event, the Namib Desert Ultra Marathon, in November.
December marks the beginning of Namibia’s summer vacation season, coinciding with the annual school Christmas holidays. As a result, Windhoek becomes less crowded, while popular destinations like Etosha and the central coast fill up. Many Namibians enjoy braais (barbecues), time on the farm, and relaxation during this period.
While temperatures can be high inland, the weather on the coast is usually comfortable, and the rains are not too heavy. It is recommended that you book accommodations in advance for popular areas.
One of the key events in December is the Desert Dash Bicycle Race, which is a challenging and exciting race across the Namib Desert. The Jetty Mile Ocean Swim is another popular event that takes place during this month.