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Namibia Facts

Political Climate
The Republic of Namibia attained its independence on 21 March 1990 and was established as a sovereign, secular, democratic and unitary State. In accordance with the doctrine of separation of powers, the government is divided into three branches: The Executive, The Legislative, The Judiciary each branch is responsible for a different function of the government. The legislative branch is responsible for making laws which are implemented by the executive and interpreted by the judiciary branch.

Geography
With an area of 824 268 square km, Namibia is situated in Southern Africa and borders on South Africa, Botswana, Angola and Zimbabwe. The country is divided into 13 constitutional regions, with four distinct topographical regions: the Namib, a long and narrow coastal desert; central plateau running from north to south with an altitude up to 2000 m above sea level; the eastern lowlands including Kalahari desert; the high rainfall areas of Okavango and Caprivi. The highest mountain in Namibia is the Brandberg with a height of 2 579 m above sea level and there are five perennial (permanent) rivers situated on the country's borders: Kunene, Okavango, Zambezi, and Kwando/Linyanti/Chobe rivers in the north and north-east and Orange river in the south.

Capital
The capital of Namibia is Windhoek with a population of approximately 200 000 inhabitants.

Languages
Setswana and English

Currency
The national currency of Namibia is the Namibian dollar (N$), divided into 100 cents. The South African Rand is also legal tender in the country and linked to Namibian dollar on 1:1 basis. Major foreign currencies and travellers cheques can be exchanged in any bank. Rates for travellers cheques are better than cash. When changing money, you can choose between Namibian dollars or South African rand; for changing leftover money after your trip, rand is better. It's worth noting that the rand and the Namibian dollar have equal value in Namibia, but the Namibian dollar drops to about 70% of the rand in South Africa. Credit cards are widely accepted in shops, restaurants and hotels.

Banks
The banks hours are from 9 am to 2:30pm on weekdays. Foreign currency exchange services offered in banks in all major towns in the country. Major credit cards widely accepted.

People & Population
About 1.8 million people share the vast spaces of Namibia, the country has one of the lowest population densities in the world with 1.5 people per square kilometer. The population of Namibia is not evenly distributed with about 60% of people living in the northern regions, while the southern and coastal areas are almost unpopulated. Namibia's population can be divided into (at least) 11 ethnic groups, the biggest group of which is the Owambo people. As a country Namibia is still trying to find a national identity, but each of the countries cultural groups has its own a rich heritage and traditions. The population is divided into the following groups: Owambo, Kavango, Herero, Himba, Damara, Nama, Topnaars, Rehoboth Baters, Coloureds, Caprivians, Bushman(san), Tswanas and Whites.

Climate & Best Time to Travel
In general the climate is dry with the exception of the high rainfall area in the far nother east. The summer day temperature can reach up to 42 degrees C, while night winter temperature can reach as low as -5 degrees C. Rain in Namibia usually falls in the summer. The dry winter season (May to October) is the most pleasant time to visit Namibia. Between December and March the heat can be extreme in Namib-Naukluft Park and Etosha National Park. Resort areas are busiest during both Namibian and South African school holidays, which usually take place from mid-December to mid-January, late-April to early June, and late-August to mid-September.

Entry Requirements
Valid passports are required by all foreign nationals to enter Namibia. Citizens of the following countries do not require visas to enter: Australia, New Zealand, France, Germany, the UK, Ireland, Canada and the US. Visitors must be able to prove that they have sufficient funds to cover their stay in the country. Air arrivals must have a valid return air-ticket.

Health
The northern part of the country is an endemic malaria area. We strongly recommend for all visitors to take necessary precautions.. Always consult your doctor on correct prophylaxis before entering the country. Polio is still present in the southern part of the country. Blood in Namibia is donated by unpaid volunteers and carefully checked by blood transfusion service for hepatitis and AIDS. Because of huge distances high costs are involved in the case of accident or injury so it is advisable for all visitors to carry comprehensive insurance.

Communications
Country Dial Code: 264. The phone system is good domestically especially in urban areas. Microwave radio relay links major towns, connections to other populated places are by open wire; 100% digital international: fiber-optic cable to South Africa, and thre are satellite earth stations.

Electricity
220V ,50Hz