In order to enter any state-owned conservation area in Namibia a so-called Permit is required. It refers to an authorisation paper to enter a specific area in the country.
All permits are issued by the Ministry of Environment & Tourism only. This is often confusing, as travellers think that they can get a permit also with Namibia Wildlife Resorts, however, NWR is only the public operator of different accommodation establishments in the parks. It has nothing to do with permits whatsoever.
Permits can be bought at the following places (it is not possible to buy permits online):
- At the entrance of a nature reserve, national park, etc., however, it has in most cases to be paid in the next accommodation en-route (e.g. you get a permit when you enter Etosha through the south gate, but you pay for it at Camp Okaukuejo). This is NOT the case for Namib-Naukluft-Park and Dorob National Park (keep in mind: here only the B2, C28, D1982, D1998, and C14 as well as parts of the D1991 are permit-free)!
- For Namib-Naukluft-Park and Dorob National Park you get the permit in Sesriem.
- For the Naukluft section of the Namib-Naukluft-Park the permit can be bought at the small office close to the start of the Olive Trail; this office is often not operating and thus it is strongly recommended to get the permit in Sesriem beforehand.
- For Mudumu and Nkasa Rupara (Mamili) National Park as well as Bwabwata and Khaudum National Parks you get the Permit at the closes ranger station to the parks entrance.
- Always and for any nature reserve, national park, etc. a permit can be bought at the MET offices in Windhoek and Swakopmund.
Entering a restricted section or nature reserve, national park, etc. without having a valid permit is an offence and you might get a fine (first fine generally N$ 300) and/or you are ordered to leave the park immediately.
In most cases you may pay the permit by credit or debit card. However, DO NOT rely on it! Cash is accepted in N$ and ZAR only!
Permit Office Opening Hours
Windhoek (corner of Dr Kenneth Kaunda St (formerly Uhlandstraße) & Robert Mugabe Ave): Mon-Fri 8-17 hrs (8 am-5pm); Swakopmund (corner Bismarck St & Sam Nujoma Ave): Mon-Fri 8-13 hrs (8 am until 1 pm) and 14-17 hrs (2 pm until 5 pm), Sat/Sun 8-13 hrs (8am-1pm)
Parks: sunrise to sunset 7 days a week
as of 1 April 2021
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