Updated: Oct 5
Beulah du Pont: Events Manager
From a rich landscape of culture and tradition to truly idyllic sunsets, if there was ever an image of Africa that could be shared around the world, Namibia would be its postcard. Whether aching for untamed savannah teeming with wildlife or sensory experience of patterns, sounds and flavors, the Land of the Brave is a wonderfully unique place to get truly lost in and explore.
Like most holiday destinations, Namibia is a seasonal country and there are preferred times to enjoy all she has to offer. December is an especially good time of the year to enjoy the Namibian-hot sunshine and chart new roads… or riverbeds… but be ready, a good portion of what is beautiful about this land is also sometimes inaccessible to mere sedans and requires special machinery to navigate its terrain. Here, owning, renting or having a friend with a 4×4 is almost a necessity and often the best way to truly see what’s out there.
The first decision you’ll have to answer when planning what to do during your Namibian December is which part of it would like to enjoy.
The Capital: Windhoek is typically quiet during December and what is usually a bustling metropolitan center winds down as the residents slowly start making their ways to the coast and beyond. While it can be very quiet, staying in the capital during this period is a great time to explore new restaurants with their festive menus, visit a Christmas market or join a fun run. There’s also the national museum available to experience some of the country’s rich history.
The North host’s cities such as Tsumeb, Omuthiya, Rundu and, most notably, Oshakati creating what is popularly known as simply “the North”. Up here, deeply-rooted traditions based on family values, longstanding friendships and universal love for celebration, call entire migrations of northern-born tribespeople. A trip to the North, as a result, can only be described as a true cultural experience filled with unique and flavourful pot dishes, conversations under trees, fairs and trade shows, weddings, and pap. So. Much. Pap.
The Coast, known for its heritage and festivities is formed by the three towns Swakopmund, Walvis Bay, and Henties Bay. This is the place for good music jovial spirit. Should you prefer a quiet life, fishing will soon be your ‘nerve-calming’ sport. Whether you are catching a tan at the beach, grabbing drinks at Tiger Reef, dune boarding, quad biking, camel riding, or simply pumping your fists at one of The Dome’s slamming summer parties, the coast is the best place to party and blow off the steam of the year.
Finally, possibly the best parts of Namibia are the ones found at the ends of roads less traveled, and finding new places is one of her greatest charms. What makes Namibia such a unique place is truly how much of her beauty is untouched. Take a drive an hour outside any city and you’ll feel like you’re lost in time, wandering some ancient land, eager to hear her stories. Pack the 4×4 and head out to one of the countless lodges stretching north-to-south for a classic bungalow and game drive getaway, or go camping for some awe-inspiring nights under endless streams of stars. Out here is where you learn about nature, life and even yourself.
Tucked away neatly into the South West edge of the African continent is a reasonably-sized, sparsely populated nation called Namibia. If you love wildlife, culture, and can stand the heat, you might just be made for a Namibian December. Just remember to wear your sunscreen… and arrange for a four-wheel-drive.