Epic Flying Safari (Leg 1) Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia and Namibia

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Kenya

Resting in the magnificent Great Rift Valley and presided over by the majestic Mount Kilimanjaro, Kenya is characterised by hauntingly beautiful natural landscapes of forested hills, patchwork farms, wooded savanna and vast forests brimming with an extraordinary abundance of wildlife. The nation’s diverse range of traditional African cultures is influenced by over 70 unique ethnic groups from the Maasai, Samburu, Kikuyu, and Turkana tribes to the Arabs and Indians that settled on the coast. Add to this: an exquisite tropical coastline fringed with breathtaking golden sand beaches; gorgeous coral gardens providing excellent snorkeling and diving opportunities; and a slew of lively beach resorts, and it is easy to see why so many visitors flock here from around the world to experience a truly unique African adventure in one of the world’s most pristine safari destinations.

NOTE: Plastic bags are now banned in Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, and are likely to be confiscated by customs officials on arrival, whether in clients’ baggage or carried by hand. For example, Duty-Free bags


Banking and Currency

Currency

The currency of Kenya is the Kenyan Shilling (KES; symbol KSh) = 100 cents. Notes are in denominations of KSh1,000, 500, 200, 100 and 50. Coins are in denominations of KSh20, 10 and 5. Residents may import up to KES 500,000 and must declare if currencies exceeding US $10,000. Non-residents may import local and foreign currencies without restrictions but amounts exceeding US $10,000 must be declared.

Banking 

Banking hours: Monday -Friday 09h00-15h00, and Saturdays 09h00-12h00. Banks in Mombasa and the coastal areas open and close half an hour earlier. Banks in airports tend to open earlier and close later; typical hours are 07h00-19h00.

ATMs are common especially in major tourist destinations.

Mastercard and Visa Credit Cards are widely accepted; American Express and Diners Club less so. Major hotels accept payment by credit card, as do major safari companies, travel agencies and restaurants. 

Very few banks or foreign exchange bureaus accept travellers cheques; when they do, they charge high commissions.


Travel, Transport and Getting Around

Nairobi has two airports for domestic and regional flights: Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and Wilson Airport. Kenya has over 150 domestic airports and airstrips and there are daily flights to the most popular destinations. In addition to the scheduled airlines, several private charter companies operate out of Wilson Airport.

Kenya Airways, Air Kenya, Fly 540, Mombasa Air Safari, and Safarilink serve the most popular safari destinations, plus many others such as Lake Victoria. 

All other types of transport are good and efficient. Quality on trains can differ depending on which ‘class’ you buy. 

Drive on the left side of the road.

Road conditions vary, and are improving.



Food, Drink and Cuisine Advice

Meat in Kenya is generally outstandingly good, and ‘nyam achoma’ (barbecued meat) is ubiquitous at any major feasts or popular dining spots. Beef and chicken are readily available, but goat is the most-widely eaten among locals and certainly a must try for carnivorous visitors. Middle Eastern and Indian cuisine is also popular, as are fresh-water fish inland, and sea fish along the coast.

Drinking the tap water is not recommended as the supply is not reliable, but bottled water is available in most places. When buying bottled water, check the seal of the bottle is intact. Alternatively, bring your own reusable water bottle with a filter or use water purification tablets. Avoid ice and washed salads and fruit except in top hotels and restaurants. Milk is pasteurised and dairy products are safe for consumption. Food prepared by unlicensed vendors should be avoided at all times.

Tipping is optional. Most hotels and restaurants include a 10% service charge in the bill. If they don't, a small tip is customary for good service.


Climate and Weather

Kenya has three types of climate: temperate subtropical climate in the west and southwest highlands (where Nairobi is located), hot and humid along the coast, and hot and dry in the north and east.


Clothing and Dress Recommendations

For Nairobi and the coast: lightweight cotton and linens are advised. Warmer clothing is needed in June and July, while rainwear is advisable between March and June, and October and December.

For safari: loose-fitting and light neutral tones are recommended. If you are visiting a luxury lodge, pack a nice set of clothes for dinner is recommended.


Internet Availability

Wi-Fi is readily available in major cities and hotels, as well as in luxury game lodges.


Electricity and Plug Standards

Electrical sockets in Kenya are of the ‘Type G (BS-1363)’. If your appliance's plug doesn't match the shape of these sockets, you will need a travel plug adapter in order to plug in. Travel plug adapters simply change the shape of your appliance's plug to match whatever type of socket you need to plug into. If it's crucial to be able to plug in no matter what, bring an adapter for all types.

Electrical sockets in Kenya usually supply electricity at 220-240 volts AC. If you're plugging in an appliance that was built for 220-240 volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need. If your appliance isn’t compatible with 220-240 volts, a voltage converter will be necessary.



Tanzania

The name Tanzania conjures up images of wildebeest stampeding across vast savannah, rain forests teeming with monkeys and birdlife, and great plains brimming with legions of game. All of these natural wonders and more are on offer in this exceptionally diverse African nation. Visitors typically visit Tanzania to partake in at least one of the four well known Tanzanian tourist experiences: a relaxing seaside vacation on the picturesque island paradise of Zanzibar, an underwater tour of some of the world’s most renowned dive sites around the gorgeous Spice Islands, a safari adventure in some of Africa’s most impressive game reserves, or a hiking excursion around Mount Kilimanjaro National Park. Whichever of these incredible holidays you choose, you will undoubtedly be welcomed by some fabulously friendly and peaceful inhabitants who, despite being divided into 120 different ethnic groups and cultures, live in harmony with one another and provide some of the most wonderfully exotic local cuisine you could imagine. With all of this diversity on offer, the most difficult part of your Tanzanian holiday experience is likely to be deciding where to go!

NOTE: Plastic bags are now banned in Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, and are likely to be confiscated by customs officials on arrival, whether in clients’ baggage or carried by hand. For example, Duty-Free bags


Entry Requirements

Government regulations change without notice, it is important to check regulations with the relevant authority prior to travel. This is a guideline only.

- Passports should be valid for at least six months, with at least 2 free pages, are required by all nationals referred to in the chart above.

- Visas are required by all nationals referred to in the chart above. Visas can be purchase on arrival at most airports but to avoid delays on arrival, you can apply for your visa in advance of arrival through the Tanzanian Consulate in your country or a visa service. Validity for single entry tourist visa is normally up to 3 months.

Costs currently are U$50 for most nationalities but a $100 for US citizens.


Banking and Currency

- The unit of currency is the Tanzanian shilling. Visitors may import an unlimited amount of foreign exchange.

- We recommend you change money at official bureaux de change, although some lodges and hotels may offer facilities which would often offer a less attractive rate of exchange.

- Take cash, not Travellers Cheques! Change some money into Tanzanian shillings soon after your arrival.

- Credit Cards can usually be used in the international hotels and in restaurants and shops of the main towns and tourist related businesses.

- However, it is always advisable to have some cash because frequently these credit card machines do not work or are down without connection.

- There are ATM cash machines in Arusha and Dar es Salaam, and at airports.

- Large notes (US$50-US$100) prior to 2000 are not normally accepted. Best make sure you have smaller denomination and notes which have been issued after 1999.


Travel, Transport and Getting Around

There are really only three ways for tourists to travel sensibly in Tanzania and in these cases dmAFRICA is the recognised expert:-

- By organised safari vehicles, usually commencing in Arusha or Nairobi.

- By light aircraft. Arusha is the hub airport in Tanzania, and there are charter and regular flights to all the main wildlife areas in East Africa as well as the islands. If you are flying from Kenya it is necessary to clear customs and immigration in Arusha, Mount Kilimanjaro or Dar es Salaam before proceeding to your lodge or camp.

- By private jet; most lodge/camp airstrips are not equipped to handle many of the more sophisticated private jets. It is normal to access Tanzania at Mount Kilimanjaro or Dar es Salaam or Zanzibar airports and travel onwards by light aircraft. Night flying in game parks is not normally permitted.


Health and Medical Information

- Malaria is endemic. You must consult your doctor before you travel to ensure that you are prescribed the correct type of tablet protection.

- Yellow fever inoculation is obligatory for entry into Tanzania if you have been to a country where yellow fever infection exists.

- Immunization against hepatitis, cholera and meningitis is recommended.

Please check the latest information with your medical practitioner

- There are privately owned pharmacies that can prescribe most medication should you

be sick. A few wildlife lodges and camps have a private nurse on duty and almost all have camp staff trained in basic first aid.


Safety Notices

- Unfortunately petty theft and more serious crime is a factor in East Africa. Take the same precautions as you would in any major city.

- Avoid walking alone in apparently deserted areas, especially in and around the cities.

- Avoid displaying expensive items, especially jewellery, in public areas.

- Use the safe boxes, and other security accessories, made available to you in hotels and lodges/camps.

- It is preferable and usually more enjoyable to walk with company or in groups.


Food, Drink and Cuisine Advice

- In general, the food served in hotels and lodges is European food. A full breakfast and lunch will be buffet style and dinner is usually a set menu. A few top of the range lodges offer limited a la carte menus.

- Agriculturally, Tanzania is virtually self sufficient with staple crops, and fine quality beef and other livestock. On safari, game meat is sometimes on the menu.

- Pineapple, mango, papaya, banana, avocado and coconut are all plentiful and inexpensive when in season.

- Freshwater fish from the abundant rivers and lakes is plentiful, especially trout from around Arusha and tilapia and Nile perch from Lakes Victoria and Tanganyika.

- Of course, at the coast the seafood from the Indian Ocean is included on all menus, with a variety and quality which is now legendary.

- Wine is imported from South Africa, Europe and the New World. There is also a red wine which is made by the monks near Dodoma; it is “challenging”, as is the locally made gin konyagi!

- Local beers are of the lager type and are good.


Climate and Weather

- Serengeti: All year round. The best time for migration river crossings is June and July and late September and October.

- Ndutu, Serengeti: December to March as this is when the migration is based in the area with most of the calves being born around February and March.

- Ngorongoro: All year round

- Lake Manyara: All year round

- Tarangire: July to November when it is dry elsewhere and the animals move to the Tarangire River.

- Arusha National Park: All year round

- Lake Natron & Lake Eyasi: Avoid April and May

- Kilimanjaro: All year round except April to May.

- Zanzibar, Pemba, Mafia and the Coast: All year except April and May

- Selous: June to November

- Ruaha: June to the end of February

- Mahale & Gombe: All year except April and May

- Lake Victoria: Almost year round.


Clothing and Dress Recommendations

- When meeting and parting, hands are always shaken; this applies throughout the country in both rural and urban areas. It is the convention to use the right hand, not the left, to shake hands or pass or receive anything.

- The dress code is casual, although most international hotels and restaurants prefer gentlemen to wear long trousers for dinner.

- Bright, light colours and white clothing is not advisable for safaris particularly for walking safaris as animals see mostly in black and white. Safari clothing should be in neutral or bush colours (please note that army camouflage or military uniform is not permitted in almost all African countries)

- Good manners and respect come naturally to Tanzanians, charming national traits which they look upon visitors to reciprocate.


Internet Availability

Tanzania has good Internet Service Providers with email and internet services offered by many hotels and lodges (free / paid). In most towns there are plenty of private business centres and cyber cafes offering email and internet access, although the speeds might be somewhat slower than what you are used to. 


Electricity and Plug Standards

- 230 volts AC, 50Hz.

- Plugs may be round or square three-pin, fused or un-fused.

- Power cuts can be common in the rainy season, though most hotels and businesses have back-up generators.

- In some safari lodges electricity is not available during the night.


Malawi

Dubbed 'The Warm Heart of Africa' due to the legendary welcome extended to all who visit, Malawi is a small country with a big heart and an even bigger range of incredible tourist activities! Lake Malawi’s vast size, its warm freshwater and its gorgeous surrounding beaches make it a mecca for those seeking a year-round location to swim, scuba dive, snorkel, water ski, sail, kayak, parasail or simply potter about in boats. Malawi also boasts plenty of national parks providing a haven for a wide variety of wildlife including crocodiles, lions, elephants, hippos and even leopard. Culture vultures are also well served by numerous fascinating historical and cultural sites as well as visits to traditional Malawian villages to meet some ever-smiling Malawians going about their daily lives. With all of this exceptional culture, natural scenery and friendliness on offer, this unique African country is enchanting enough to captivate even the most jaded traveller.


Banking and Currency

Currency

The local currency is known as Kwacha (MWK; symbol Mk) which is equal to 100 tambala. Notes come in denominations of Mk500, 200, 100, 50, 20, 10 and 5. Coins are in denominations of Mk1 as well as 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1 tambala.

The import of local currency is unlimited. The export of local currency is limited to K3,000.  The export of foreign currency must not exceed the amount imported and must be declared on departure.

Banking

Banking hours are from Mon-Fri 0800-1400.

Acceptance of credit and debit cards is very limited, although in Lilongwe and Blantyre and in main hotels, American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa can be used.

Traveller's cheques can be exchanged in banks, hotels and other institutions. In remote areas, the Treasury Office of Local District Commissioner's offices will cash traveller's cheques. To avoid additional exchange rate charges, travellers are advised to take traveller's cheques in US Dollars, Euros, British Pounds Sterling or South African Rand.

There are ATMs available in the major cities but it is advisable to check with your bank at home to find out if your card is compatible with Malawian ATMs. ATM services in more rural areas is extremely limited so plan accordingly.




Travel, Transport and Getting Around

Air Malawi (QM) is defunct as of 2013. Domestic flights are served by charter airline Ulendo Airlink (www.flyulendo.com) which serves destinations including Lilongwe, Chelinda and Likoma Island.

All major roads are tarmac and most secondary roads are in decent condition. Some roads in the more rural areas may be in bad condition particularly in rainy weather.

Car hire services are becoming increasingly available, with a number of companies offering a wide choice of vehicles. Standards do vary (even with the internationally franchised chains) so it is worth seeking a recommendation. Nonetheless, cars should be reserved well in advance as they are very much in demand. Chauffeur-driven cars are also available. Malawians drive on the left side of the road. Drivers will be required to hold an International Driving Permit. Be aware that, for some reason, Malawian drivers seem to believe that by not using their headlights will conserve the life of their car battery, so driving after dark can be dangerous.

There are bus services in all major cities but bus services in rural areas are limited.

Taxis are available in the main towns but they are in short supply and cannot be hailed on the street. Taxi drivers typically expect a tip.

Central East African Railways (tel: 01 640 844) operates the lines in the country. The main route connects Mchinji, Lilongwe, Salima, Chipoka, Blantyre, Limbe and Nsanje. Trains tend to be slow and crowded and are seldom used by tourists.

Cruises on Lake Malawi are available by local steamer. Food and cabins are available. For details contact a local travel bureaux.


Food, Drink and Cuisine Advice

All water should be regarded as being potentially contaminated. Water used for drinking, brushing teeth or making ice should have first been boiled or otherwise sterilised. Milk is unpasteurised and should be boiled. Powdered or tinned milk is available and is advised. Avoid dairy products which are likely to have been made from unboiled milk. Only eat well-cooked meat and fish, preferably served hot. Vegetables should be cooked and fruit peeled.

Hotel restaurants and many of those in the cities are of a good standard. They offer a wide choice of dishes including European, Korean and Chinese as well as authentic Malawi dishes and haute cuisine. Poultry and dairy produce are plentiful and tropical fruits are abundant in season.

Typical Malawian specialities include fresh fish from Lake Malawi.  Chambo (Tilapia fish) being the main lake delicacy.  There is also trout available from streams on the Zomba, Mulanje and Nyika plateaus. White maize is commonly eaten with vegetables and sometimes meat or fish. Nthochi bread (made with banana)is very popular with locals and travellers alike as are Mbatata cookies (made with sweet potato and cinnamon).

The local beer is very good and Malawi gin and tonic is well known and inexpensive, with almost cult status.

Tipping is generally not expected, but some employees who are very poorly paid might appreciate a small tip for good service.




Climate and Weather

Varies from cool in the highlands to warm around Lake Malawi. Winter (May to July) is dry and nights can be chilly, particularly in the highlands. The rainy season runs from November to March. Around Lake Malawi, in winter, the climate is particularly dry with pleasant cooling breezes.


Clothing and Dress Recommendations

Lightweight cotton clothing is recommended year round in the Lake Malawi area, with warmer clothes advised in the mountains, particularly during winter and on chilly evenings elsewhere. Visitors to Nyika and Zomba should note that the nights can be cold. Dark or 'natural' coloured clothing should be worn for game viewing. Sunscreen, a sun hat, sunglasses and good walking shoes are essential.


Internet Availability

Internet services are available in business centres in most upmarket hotels, and there are a few internet cafes in the main towns. Internet access in more rural areas is limited.


Electricity and Plug Standards

Electrical sockets (outlets) in Malawi are the "Type G " British BS-1363 type (three rectangular blade plug). If your appliance's plug doesn't match the shape of these sockets, you will need a travel plug adapter in order to plug in. Travel plug adapters simply change the shape of your appliance's plug to match whatever type of socket you need to plug into.

Electrical sockets (outlets) in Malawi (formerly Nyasaland) usually supply electricity at between 220 and 240 volts AC. If you're plugging in an appliance that was built for 220-240 volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need.

But travel plug adapters do not change the voltage, so the electricity coming through the adapter will still be the same 220-240 volts the socket is supplying. North American sockets supply electricity at between 110 and 120 volts, far lower than in most of the rest of the world. Consequently, North American appliances are generally built for 110-120 volts.


Zambia

This unique, peanut-shaped country, once known as Northern Rhodesia, offers visitors an authentic African experience complete with adrenalin pumping adventure sports, a variety of fascinating cultural activities, and an abundance of indigenous wildlife, which finds refuge in Zambia’s vast national parks. Spend your evenings enjoying the spectacular site of the world’s largest waterfall, the Victoria Falls, while sipping on sundowners after an exhilarating day of whitewater rafting down the rapids of the mighty Zambezi River. If that sounds a little too adventurous for your taste, take a houseboat cruise along the exquisite Lake Kariba while watching wild elephants drink at the riverbank as you try your hand at catching the elusive tiger fish. However you choose to spend your time in this unique country, you are bound to leave with a heavy heart and a desire to return again soon to this exceptionally beautiful Southern African country.


Entry Requirements

- The Zambia Tourism Agency (formerly Zambia Tourism Board) is pleased to announce that the Government of the Republic of Zambia through the Ministry of Home Affairs (Department of Immigration) launched the e-Visa facility on Wednesday, 14th October, 2015 at Mulungushi International Conference Centre in Lusaka which was officiated by the Minister of Home Affairs.

- The e-Visa facility is open to all foreign nationals who require visas to come to Zambia and can be accessed through the web portal indicated below:

http://e-Visa.zambiaimmigration.gov.zm/#/

What is an e-Visa?

- An e-Visa is an alternative to conventional visas issued by the Department of Immigration in Zambia (through Headquarters, Ports of Entry and Zambia Missions) permitting foreigners who require visas to enter Zambia. Applicants therefore, may obtain their e-Visa approval letter electronically after submitting required information and payment is made by Cash and Credit or Debit Card (Master or Visa) at the point of entry.

- The link to download your e-Visa is given on the final step where you will be informed that your application has been completed successfully. In addition, the same link to download your e-Visa will be emailed to you. Immigration Officers at Ports of Entry can verify your e-Visa on their system. However, you are advised to download and keep the hard copy of your e-Visa Approval Letter.

- As in the case with other visas, respective Zambian Officials at the Port of Entry reserve the right to deny entry into Zambia to a holder of an e-Visa Approval Letter without any explanation.

Eligibility

- All foreign nationals who require visas to come to Zambia are eligible to apply for an e-Visa.

e-Visa Fees

- The normal visa fees shall apply as follows:

§ Single Entry US$ 50

§ Double /Multiple Entry US$ 80

§ Transit US $50

§ Day Tripper US$ 20

- For regular updates, visit The Immigration website: www.zambiaimmigration.gov.zm

Validity

- Normal validity rules shall apply.

e-Visa processing time

- For nationals that may obtain visas at ports of entry, the e-Visa will take 3 working days to process and for nationals that require visas prior to travel to Zambia processing time will take a minimum of 5 working days.

- For further information about entry requirements visit the website of the Zambia Department of Immigration


Banking and Currency

- Take cash, not Travellers Cheques!

- Visa Credit Cards can usually be used in the international hotels and the more internationally inclined restaurants and shops of the main cities and tourist related businesses. MasterCard and American Express are seldom accepted.

- However, the Zambian Ministry of Finance and National Planning has announced, for ease of payment of VISA and other fees, these payments can be done via bankcards with immediate effect at the following Zambia airports:

- 1. Kenneth Kaunda International Airport in Lusaka
2. Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula International Airport in Livingstone
3. Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe International Airport in Ndola

- The following bank cards will be accepted:

- VISA
MasterCard
Maestro and
American Express

- However, it is always advisable to have some cash because frequently these credit card machines do not work or are down without connection.

- There are ATM cash machines in the main cities.

- Western Union and/or Moneygram outlets, where cash can be transferred and accessed the same day, can be found in almost every main street throughout the country.


Travel, Transport and Getting Around

- There are many options for local transport by aircraft, bus, taxi or by hire car.

- Independent travel is a challenge. The country has a dilapidated infrastructure, crumbling roads and lack of signage.

- For some that can be off putting; for other, a good reason to come to Zambia!


Health and Medical Information

- Malaria is endemic. You must consult your doctor before you travel to ensure that you are prescribed the correct type of mefloquine and malarone tablet protection.

- It is with much delight that we share the exciting news of Yellow Fever certification being lifted (with immediate effect) for travel between Zambia and its regional neighbours, South Africa and Botswana. This follows the recent announcement by the World Health Organisation (WHO) of declaring Zambia yellow fever free.

- Immunization against hepatitis, cholera and meningitis is recommended.

- Please check the latest information with your medical practitioner

- There are privately owned pharmacies that can prescribe most medication should you become sick.

- Some safari lodges have a nurse and staff who are trained to deal with minor bush ailments


Safety Notices

- Armed robberies and vehicle hijackings happen across the country from time to time. Be vigilant at all times. Take particular care when approaching locked gateways at night. Don’t stop to give lifts to people at the roadside. Watch out for objects that have been placed to block the road.

- Bag snatching, pick pocketing and theft from parked cars are common at some restaurants and internet cafes in downtown areas, particularly near bus and railway stations and in some shopping areas. Keep large amounts of money, expensive jewellery, cameras and phones out of sight. Don’t change large sums of money in busy public areas. Thieves have followed people after they have withdrawn money from banks and later robbed them at gunpoint.

- Walking after dark, particularly in tourist or down town areas, can be dangerous. Violent robberies have occurred in the Cairo Road area of Lusaka, including Chachacha, Freedom Way and Lumumba Roads. Tourists have sometimes been attacked in remote places

- Keep valuables and originals of important documents in a safe place and carry a copy of your passport and immigration permit.

- Use reputable banks, bureaux de change or ATMs to exchange money as counterfeit US$100 and Zambian Kwacha 50,000 notes are in circulation.


Food, Drink and Cuisine Advice

- Most restaurants and hotels serve European style food such as steak, chicken or fish

- There are good Ethiopian, Indian, Korean, Chinese and Portuguese restaurants, and even better French and Italian

- However, the best food is normally supplied by the safari lodges and camps where the meals tend to be western or Asian based.

- There is a good local beer called Mosi

- South African wines, as well as those from the new and old world, are plentiful.


Climate and Weather

- Zambia has three main seasons

- May to August is dry and warm

- September and October is dry and hot

- November to April is the rainy season. It is also the time of the year when the animals produce their young, so game viewing is good.

- It is coolest in June and July, but this period is also the sunniest and driest.. During this time it can get literally freezing at night and in the early morning, particularly when on safari, so we would like to suggest that you pack accordingly – very warm clothing including an anorak/winter jacket, a beanie, scarf and gloves are recommended.

- September and October can be very hot and very dry, and game viewing is limited to areas where there is permanent water like along the Zambezi and Chobe rivers. Game viewing at waterholes is excellent at this time

- Statistically the rainy season is from late November to March, although rainfall is relatively lower than in other tropical parts of the region.

- The Victoria Falls/Zambezi River experiences low water levels between August and January (subject to rainfall). At this time it is definitely better to stay on the Zimbabwe side rather than the Zambian side of the Victoria Falls.


Clothing and Dress Recommendations

- Generally the dress code is casual, although most international hotels and restaurants require gentlemen to wear long trousers for dinner, and occasionally a jacket and tie.

- Zambia earlier set a fashion trend with the “Kenneth Kaunda” safari suit, the forerunner of African smart casual business attire.


Internet Availability

Most hotels offer internet and/or Wi-Fi (free or paid) to their guests. Internet cafes are springing up in Zambia, but connections can be erratic and slow. 


Electricity and Plug Standards

- Most camps are situated in remote areas and have to generate their own electricity. Generators are used as a main power source, whilst in some camps solar units charge the batteries located at each tented room, providing good 12V lights all night (if used sensibly).

- There are only 220V power points in camp. If you have an item that runs on 110V, please bring a converter. Batteries are charged in the main area or office while you are out on an activity so please bring spare batteries for use.

- Electrical plug outlets are not available in most tented camps and therefore it is not possible to use appliances such as hairdryers or electric shavers during your stay there.

- In major cities, electrical appliances run on 220/240V AC accessible via 14-amp, British type 3 square-pinned plugs. While some camps may be able to supply adaptors (3-prong round, 3-prong square, 2-prong round, 2-prong flat) it is advisable that you carry your own.

- Remember also to bring the appropriate phone, ipad and other appliance adaptors.


Namibia

With its well-developed infrastructure, some of the best tourist facilities in Africa and an impressive list of breath taking natural wonders, touring Namibia is truly a pleasure. Visit the capital of Windhoek and the lovely coastal town of Swakopmund to discover remnants of the country’s German influence, reflected in the architecture, culture, cuisine and the annual Oktoberfest celebrations. To properly appreciate this extraordinary country, you will have to venture out of the cities to explore the remarkable natural landscapes Namibia has to offer. These include: the impressive Fish River Canyon Park; the vast Etosha National Park teeming with local subspecies, such as desert lions, desert elephants and the Hartmann's Mountain Zebra; the hauntingly beautiful Kalahari Desert; and of course the Namib Desert stretching for nearly 1000 km along the magnificent Atlantic coastline. Namibia is an ideal destination for travellers seeking an unforgettable African experience in a uniquely beautiful untamed wilderness.


Banking and Currency

Currency

The currency of Namibia is The Namibian Dollar (NAD; symbol N$) is in note denominations of N$200, 100, 50, 20 and 10. Coins are in denominations of N$5, N$1, 50 cents, 10 cents and 5 cents. It is linked to the South African Rand (R) on a 1:1 basis (South African Rand = 100 cents). The South African Rand is also acceptable as currency in Namibia.

The import and export of local currency is limited to N$50,000. The import of foreign currency is unlimited, provided sums equal to or exceeding NAD5,000 are declared on arrival. Export of foreign currency is unlimited up to the amount imported and declared.

Banking

Banking hours: Monday - Friday 09h00 to 15h30 and Satuday 08h30 to 11h00

Banks are found in most towns, with most being closed on Sundays and public holidays. Most of them offer foreign exchange services - with cash, bank and credit cards as well as travellers  cheques. 

American Express, Diners Club, Mastercard and Visa are accepted. Credit cards are not usually accepted at petrol stations, so bear this in mind when you visit the ATM. Setting aside an emergency petrol cash fund is a good idea if you’re planning to drive.

You can also obtain cash from many of the ATMs. Several international banks have branches in main city centres. Always advise your bank that you are travelling outside of the country as they might block your purchases if they have not been informed. 

To avoid additional exchange rate charges, take traveller's cheques in US Dollars or South African Rand. In general, you can expect a better exchange rate for traveller’s cheques than for cash.


Travel, Transport and Getting Around

Public transport in Namibia is geared towards the needs of the local populace, and is confined to main roads between major population centres. Although cheap and reliable, it is of little use to the traveller as most of Namibia’s tourist attractions lie off the beaten track.

It is easy to travel around Namibia by car, and a 2WD vehicle is perfectly adaquate for most journeys. However, long distances, poor mobile phone coverage outside of main towns and infrequent petrol stations that only accept cash mean that planning ahead is vital.

There are major airlines that fly into Windhoek and Swakopmund. Other destinations are reachable by car or charter flight. 

Namibians drive on the left and all signposts are in English. Seat belts must be worn at all times and talking in a mobile phone while driving is prohibited. The general speed limit is 120km/h on tarred roads outside of towns and 100km/h on gravel roads. In built up areas, the speed limit is 60km/h.


Food, Drink and Cuisine Advice

Traditional Namibian cuisine is rarely served and so the food at restaurants tends to be European in style and is, generally, of a very high standard. 

Namibia is very meat-orientated, and many menu options will feature steaks from various animals. However, there is usually a vegetarian and seafood section offered by most camps and restaurants.

In the supermarkets you'll find pre-wrapped fresh fruit and vegetables (though the more remote the areas you visit, the smaller your choice), and plenty of canned foods, pasta, rice, bread, etc. Most of this is imported from South Africa.

The water in Namibia's main towns is generally safe to drink, though it may taste a little metallic if it has been piped for miles. Natural sources should usually be purified, though water from underground springs and dry riverbeds seldom causes any problems. However, filtered and bottled water are readily available in most towns and all camps, lodges and hotels.


Climate and Weather

Partially covered by the Namib Desert, one of the world's driest deserts, Namibia's climate is generally very dry and pleasant – it's fine to visit all year round. Namibia only receives a fraction of the rain experienced by countries further east. Between about December to March some days will be humid and rain may follow, often in localised, afternoon thunderstorms. These are more common in the centre and east of the country, and more unusual in the desert.

April and especially May are often lovely months in Namibia. Increasingly dry, with a real freshness in the air, and much greenery in the landscape; at this time the air is clear and largely free from dust.

From June to August Namibia cools down and dries out more; nights can become cold, dropping below freezing in some desert areas. As the landscape dries so the game in the north of the country gravitates more to waterholes, and is more easily seen by visitors. By September and October it warms up again; game-viewing in most areas is at its best, although there's often a lot of dust around and the vegetation has lost its vibrancy.

November is a highly variable month. Sometimes the hot, dry weather will continue, at other times the sky will fill with clouds and threaten to rain – but if you're lucky enough to witness the first rains of the season, you'll never forget the drama.


Clothing and Dress Recommendations

Namibians have a somewhat relaxed attitude to dress codes. A jacket and tie is very unusual. In fact, long trousers and a shirt with buttons are often quite adequate for a formal occasion or work wear. A pair of sensible shoes, jeans and a t-shirt is recommended. 

During the day it is generally hot, so pack light weight loose fitting clothes in natural fabrics, such linen or cotton, that will keep you cool and are easy to wash and dry. 

Avoid blue clothing - the tsetse flies are drawn to the colour blue, and their bite can give you African Sleeping Sickness. 

Long sleeved shirts and long trousers will protect your against mosquitoes at night. 


Internet Availability

Telecom Namibia offers a service called wi-space. You purchase a wi-space voucher that allows you to connect to WiFi wherever you see the wi-space logo (about 40 locations in Namibia). 

Alternatively good WiFi access is available at most holiday accommodation venues across the country (free / paid). 


Electricity and Plug Standards

Electrical sockets in Namibia are Type M (SABS-1661). If your appliance's plug doesn't match the shape of these sockets, you will need a travel plug adapter in order to plug in. Travel plug adapters simply change the shape of your appliance's plug to match whatever type of socket you need to plug into. If it's crucial to be able to plug in no matter what, bring an adapter for all types.

Electrical sockets in Namibia usually supply electricity at 230 volts AC / 50 Hz frequency. If you're plugging in an appliance that was built for 230 volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need. If your appliance isn’t compatible with 230 volts, a voltage converter will be necessary.


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