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Fish River Canyon, seen from Three Sisters
Within Fish River Canyon, seen from Three Sisters. The Fish River Canyon in southern Namibia is the largest canyon in Africa and a popular tourist attraction.
Image: Rudi Bosbouer
Namibia Flag
Flag of Namibia

Location of Namibia in Africa. Where in Africa is Namibia?
Location of Namibia in Africa

A virtual guide to Namibia, a nation in southwestern Africa, with a coastline on the Atlantic Ocean.The country is bordered by Botswana, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. The Orange River to the south marks the southern border of Namibia to South Africa. The Kunene River and the Okavango River form partly the nations northern border with Angola.

Only on 21 March 1990, Namibia gained independence from South Africa. The country's name is derived from the Namib Desert.

With an area of 824,292 km² (318,260 sq. mi.), Namibia is 1.5 times the size of France, or about half the size of the U.S. state of Alaska.

The country has a population of 2.3 million people, it is the second least densely populated country in the world (after Mongolia). Capital and largest city is Windhoek, situated in the country’s central highlands. Spoken languages are English and Afrikaans.

Republic of Namibia

Country Profile

The Republic of Namibia is a vast, sparsely populated country situated along the south Atlantic coast of Africa. It is the first country in the world that has incorporated the protection of the environment into its constitution.

South Africa occupied the Germany colony of Süd-West Afrika during World War I and administered it as a mandate until after World War II when it annexed the territory.
In 1966 the Marxist South-West Africa People's Organization (SWAPO) guerrilla group launched a war of independence for the area that was soon named Namibia, but it was not until 1988 that South Africa agreed to end its administration in accordance with a UN peace plan for the entire region. Independence came in 1990.

Official Name:
Republic of Namibia
short form: Namibia
formerly: German Southwest Africa, South West Africa (SWA)

ISO Country Code: na

Local Time = UTC +1 in Summer (September to April) +2h
Actual Time: Wed-Sept-26  05:59

Country Calling Code: +264

Capital City: Windhoek (pop. 240 000)

Other Cities: Grootfontein, Katima Mulilo, Keetmanshoop, Luderitz, Ondangwa, Oranjemund, Oshakati, Otjiwarongo, Swakopmund, Tsumeb, Walvis Bay.

Type: Republic.
Independence: 21 March 1990 (from South African mandate).

Location: West Southern Africa, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean, between Angola and South Africa.
Area: 824,292 km² (318,260 sq. mi.)
Terrain: Varies from coastal desert to semiarid mountains and plateau.
Highest point: Konigstein 2 606 m

Climate: hot, varies from hyper-arid and semi-arid to subtropical.

Nationality: Namibian(s).
Population: 2.1 million (2011, UN estimate)
Ethnic groups: Black 87%; white 6%; mixed race 7%. About 50% of the population belong to Ovambo ethnic group, and 9% to the Kavango ethnic group. Other ethnic groups are: Herero 7%, Damara 7%, Nama 5%, Caprivian 4%, San 3%, Baster 2%, and Tswana 0.5%.
Religions: Predominantly Christian; 10% indigenous beliefs.
Languages: English (official; 7%); Afrikaans (lingua franca), German.
Indigenous languages: Setswana, Lozi, Oshiwambo, Otjiherero, Rukwangali, Damara.
Literacy: 65% of total population, Female 31% Male 45%.

Natural resources: Diamonds, copper, gold, uranium, lead, tin, zinc, salt, vanadium, fisheries, and wildlife; suspected deposits of oil, coal, and iron ore.

Agriculture products: Livestock, millet, fish and fish products, grapes, wool.

Industries: Meatpacking, fish processing, dairy products; mining.

Exports - commodities: Diamonds, copper, gold, zinc, lead, uranium; cattle, white fish and mollusks

Exports partners: South Africa (27% of total), United Kingdom (17%), USA, Angola, Netherlands and Spain.

Imports - commodities: foodstuffs; petroleum products and fuel, machinery and equipment, chemicals

Imports partners: South Africa, Switzerland, China, United Kingdom, Germany, Botswana.

Currency: Namibian Dollar (NAD); South African Rand (ZAR)


Political system
The Republic of Namibia is a sovereign, secular, democratic and unitary State. Its government is divided into the usual three powers: Executive, Legislative, and the Judiciary. Head of State and government is the President. He is elected in a national election every five years.

Official Sites of Namibia

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Republic of Namibia
The Government of Namibia online.

Office of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Namibia
Official website of the Prime Minister.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs
MOFA Namibia.

Diplomatic Missions
Permanent Mission of the Republic of Namibia to the UN
Namibia's Permanent Mission to the United Nations.
Namibian Embassies Abroad
Address list of Namibian Embassies Abroad.


Map of Namibia
Political Map of Namibia.
Administrative Map of Namibia
Map of Namibia showing the country's administrative regions.

Atlas of Namibia
The atlas provides basic reference material on the geography of Namibia , including social, demographic, economic, infrastructural, physical, climatic and biological features of Namibia.

Google Earth Google Earth Namibia
Searchable satellite view of Namibia.
Google Earth Google Earth Windhoek
Searchable satellite view of Namibia's capital city.

Political Map of Africa
The 54 countries of Africa.
Map of Africa
A Relief Map of Africa.

Parliament Gardens in Windhoek, Namibia
Windhoek, view of Parliament Gardens from the steps of the Tintenpalast (German for "Ink Palace"), seat of the Parliament of Namibia. Christ Church (Christus Kirche), Windhoek's historic landmarkin background.
Image: Damien du Toit


Namibia News

Allgemeine Zeitung Namibia
Namibia news. (in German)

The Namibian Newspaper
Namibia's independent daily newspaper (in English and Oshiwambo).

Die Republikein
Namibia news (in Afrikaans)

The Economist
News and views from Namibia's weekly independent business newspaper.

Mail & Guardian
Leading newspaper from South Africa, covers all Africa with current information.

Namibian Broadcasting Corporation
Radio, TV, News.


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Arts & Culture

National Library
Namibia's National Library.

National Museum of Namibia
Namibia's National Museum.
Rockpainting near Khauxanas, Warmfontein
Rockpainting near Khauxanas, Warmfontein
Photo: Dr. Klaus Dierks


Business & Economy

Namibia's economy is heavily dependent on the extraction and processing of minerals for export. Mining accounts for 11.5% of GDP, but provides more than 50% of foreign exchange earnings. Rich alluvial diamond deposits make Namibia a primary source for gem-quality diamonds. The country is also the world's fourth-largest producer of uranium.

Namibia normally imports about 50% of its cereal requirements; in drought years food shortages are a major problem in rural areas.

Bank of Namibia
The central bank of Namibia, located in the capital city of Windhoek.

The Namibian Stock Exchange
The Namibian Stock Exchange is based in Windhoek, it is the only stock exchange in the country.

First National Bank of Namibia (FNB)
First National Bank is one of South Africa's "big four" banks.
Standard Bank Namibia
The Standard Bank of South Africa Limited is one of South Africa's largest financial services groups, operating in 20 countries across Africa.

Namibian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI )
Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) with 2500 members the NCCI is the leading business representative and support organisation in the country.

Namibia Trade Directory
Namibia Information and Business Directory.

Air Namibia
Air Namibia the principal airline of SWA / Namibia, the former Namib Air (until 1991) serves destinations in South Africa and Europe, it is the national airline of Namibia, headquartered in Windhoek.
White and black Birds, Caprivi Strip, Namibia
White and black birds taking off on the wetland between Salambala and Kasika Conservancies in eastern Caprivi Strip, Namibia.
Image: Becky McCray

Travel and Tour Consumer Information

Destination Namibia - Travel and Tour Guides

The country is divided into 13 regions:
the Caprivi, Kavango, Kunene, Omusati, Ohangwena, Oshana and Oshikoto regions in the north,
the Omaheke, Otjozondjupa, Erongo and Khomas Regions in the central areas and the Hardap and Karas regions in the south.

Discover Namibia: Etosha National Park (vast white-green salt flat, has lions, elephants, black rhinos and giraffes); Bwabwata National Park (national park in the Zambezi and Kavango East regions, extending along the Caprivi Strip); Sossusvlei and Deadvlei (high red dunes surrounding a salt and clay pan); Fish River Canyon (largest canyon in Africa); Twyfelfontein (ancient rock engravings); Spitzkoppe (granite peaks in the Namib desert); National Marine Aquarium of Namibia (small aquarium with very few fish in Swakopmund); Alte Feste (fortress and museum in Windhoek)

Find accommodation, hotels, attractions, festivals, events, tourist boards, safari, hiking, climbing, tours and much more.

Namibia Tourism Board
Official website of the Tourism Board with comprehensive tourism information.

Ministry of Environment and Tourism
Official website of the ministry.

Namibia Wildlife Resorts Ltd Online
A guide to Namibia's prime tourist attractions.

An online guide to Namibia.

Travel News Namibia
Travel news, accommodations, facts and info, and travel services.

Jacob Holdt's Namibia photos
Impressive images from Namibia and its people.

Naukluft Park in the Namib desert, Namibia
Ancient dunes in the Naukluft Park in the Namib desert, a coastal desert in southern Africa.
Image: Bjørn Christian Tørrissen
Himba Girl
Himba Girl © NTB

Rock Giants
Rock Giants © NTB


Polytechnic of Namibia
A Namibian institution in the development of Science and Technology.

SchoolNet Namibia
SchoolNet Namibia had established a network among schools and allied educational institutions in Namibia. In 2009, SchoolNet fell out of favour with the Namibian government and was dissolved.

University of Namibia
The National University, Windhoek.
Oryx in Namib Rand Reserve
A pride of gemsbok (Oryx gazella) in Namib Rand Reserve.
Image: Johann S.

Environment & Nature

Ministry of Environment and Tourism
The Ministry of Environment and Tourism is in charge of Environmental Management, National Parks and conservancies, and tourism.

Desert Research Foundation of Namibia
The DRFN works collaboratively in all sectors involved in management and use of natural resources.

Gobabeb Training and Research Centre
40 years of scientific research in the central Namib desert is now offline.

Namibia Nature Foundation
The primary aims of the NNF are to promote sustainable development, the conservation of biological diversity and natural ecosystems, and the wise and ethical use of natural resources.

SADC - Southern African Development Community
Southern Africa Development Community of 14 African nations.
Kalahari Desert
Kalahari Desert

Elephants in one of Namibia's Wildlife Resorts


Namibia's history
Brief history of Namibia.
Colonial Picture Archive
Keyword searchable database of photographs from the German colonial history, the archive covers Namibia, Tanzania, Cameroon, Togo, and other former German colonies.
Chronology of Namibian History
From Pre-historical Times to Independent Namibia by Dr. Klaus Dierks (in German and English).
History of Namibia
Wikipedia entry about the history of Namibia.


Sources and additional Information on Namibia

Amnesty International: Namibia

Africa South of the Sahara (Karen Fung) - Namibia

Namibia Library of Dr. Klaus Dierks
Comprehensive web site on Namibian history and engineering infrastructure (in German and English)

BBC Country Profile: Namibia

FAO: Namibia

GlobalEDGE: Namibia

The Heritage Foundation: Namibia

Human Rights Watch: Namibia

OEC: Namibia

Reporters Without Borders: Namibia

Wikipedia: Namibia

The World Factbook -- Namibia
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Other Countries of Southern Africa:
Botswana | Lesotho | South Africa | Swaziland

Maps of other Countries of Southern Africa:
Botswana Map | South Africa Map | Swaziland Map

Searchable Maps of other Countries of Southern Africa:
Botswana Interactive Map | Lesotho Interactive Map | South Africa Interactive Map | Swaziland Interactive Map

Major Cities in Southern Africa:
Bloemfontein | Cape Town | Durban | Gaborone | Johannesburg | Maseru | Mbabane | Nelspruit | Polokwane
Port Elizabeth | Pretoria | Rustenburg | Windhoek