Tips for the perfect road trip in Namibia (incl. VIDEO)

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If you like road trips you’ll love Namibia. It’s the perfect road trip destination! But there are a few things you need to know when planning your road trip in Namibia.

Watch the video to see how a perfect road trip can look like in Namibia and afterwards I will tell you all my ultimate tips! (Including some funny stories from our road trip…)

My tips for the perfect road trip in Namibia:
  • In Namibia you’re driving on the left! But don’t be scared, even for newbie left-hand-drivers Namibia is easy to handle. Outside of the cities there’s not much traffic. In fact you often probably won’t see another car for hours or even days.
  • If you really want to see all the beautiful places in Namibia you definitely need a four-by-four. Many roads aren’t asphalt and sometimes without a 4×4 you can’t drive on. (But don’t worry, if you don’t know how to engage the 4×4 gear, there’s a lovely ranger in Sossusvlei who told us how to do it)

road trip in namibia

  • When driving on sand (and now I’m just quoting the ranger in Sossusvlei): Never drive faster than 30km/h. And never slower. Yes, this reminds pretty much of the movie “Speed” and also feels like it. But it works.
  • It’s helpful to know how to change a tyre. We’ve seen many (a great many) burst tyres on the side of the road. And also met a lot of people changing a tyre at the very moment. We were lucky enough our tyre didn’t burst till we arrived Swakopmund (as we had no idea how to change it and just called a car repair shop to help us).
  • You don’t really need a GPS in Namibia. Turn-by-turn directions in Namibia sound like this: 300 kilometers straight, then turn left, drive another 170 kilometers and then you’ve reached your destination. Sounds easy and is really easy. But better take a map with you, just in case…

road trip in Namibia

  • Bring enough water and a food emergency reserve. Just in case even the spare tyre bursts or something unexpected happens it sometimes can’t take hours until help arrives. (And in some regions of Namibia you have no chance without a satellite phone to call someone, so please check where you’re going and if you need a satellite phone there)
  • It can be very cold in the desert at night. Or in Swakopmund it feels more like North Sea climate than desert climate. So please bring proper clothes!
  • IF a places doesn’t look like a gas station and you’re thinking: oh, well I guess the “real” gas station is on the way… please do yourself a favor and stop and ask. On some routes there aren’t that many gas stations and you really don’t want to strand in the desert without gas. Emergency tip: most lodges do have an own gas tank and if you ask friendly they might even sell you some gas. (The fact is we drove by Solitaire as we thought THIS CAN’T BE THE REAL PLACE… well, shit happens… lucky us we found a lodge – just in time – where we could buy some gas!
  • Besides this you only have to think about one thing: the perfect Road Trip Playlist!
Any other tips for the perfect road trip in Namibia? Did I forget something?

Disclosure: Thanks to Namibia Tourism Board and Dertour for inviting me on this trip.

Hi, I'm Yvonne. Travel addict. Guilty as charged. Right now I'm probably falling off a camel somewhere in a desert, getting a new tattoo from a monk in Thailand or am carrying my luggage through a river in the jungle. But just as well I could be sitting on my sofa in Berlin, in my pyjamas. Good girls to to heaven, bad girls go everywhere. Everywhere sounds much more promising. So be travelous and follow me!

Discussion13 Comments

  1. Loved this video. We took a 3 week road trip in Namibia a few years ago and would add bring 2 spare tires just in case. If you’re putting the luggage in the back of a pick up truck toss a blanket over it for all the sand that will cover it. Oh, and bring lots of film cards.

    And it’s so true about Swakopmund. How can a place so close to the desert be so chilly?

    Cheers,

    Michael

  2. Thanks for sharing this great post! We will be visiting Namibia in a couple of weeks as part of our ‘Around the World’ trip and we cant wait. We’re planning to rent a vehicle and take our own road trip, so this post is really helpful!

    • Yvonne

      Have fun in Namibia, Danielle! I’m pretty sure you’ll love it! If you have the time stop by at Trixi’s Coffee Shop in Windhoek and say hi from me! 😀

  3. Oh, yes – Namibia is amazing for road trips! Too sad we just had one week for the country 🙁

    Just some additional infos:
    – Don’t drive too fast! And most Germans do it. The roads asphalt roads are really made for driving too fast. But in case of an accident, the liability insurance normally won’t pay for it. So you have to pay the whole car or (if you’re lucky) just the repair by your own. You have to pay it directly in Namibia otherwise you are not allowed to leave the country 😉

    – Slow down in settled areas. Sometimes there are just some smaller farmer villages with tents or houses along the streets. There are a lot of free animals around there. I just killed a dog, running over the street 🙁

    – I was happy about the navigation system from Tracks4Africa. There is an iPhone and Android app available for it. And you always know, how far the next fuel station is away. But you will loose some adventure feeling for it.

  4. Wow, your video is amazing! Watching it, I got lost in the moment and found myself wanting to visit Namibia as soon as possible! I thought your tips were great, and definitely helpful for anybody considering a road trip in Namibia. Great post!

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