Namibia, formerly known as South West Africa, has a rich and interesting history. At one time the British Empire took partial possession of Namibia and later the Germans colonized the country until the First World War. Namibia was then placed under the administrative rule of South Africa and was finally granted independence on March 21, 1990.
Since independence, Namibia has benefited from great political stability. It is an easy, safe and affordable hunting destination for a great plains game hunting safari up to a high end big five hunting safari. This is why it is so popular amongst hunters, second only to South Africa in the numbers of hunters who visit annually, averaging more than 5,000 international hunters per year. Namibia has become a favorite amongst first time hunters, family groups of hunters as well as long time African hunting veterans who appreciate the benefits of hunting in Namibia.
Hunting properties range in size from private land of a few thousand acres to million acre hunting concessions where hunters can discover a country and its wildlife that are among the most beautiful, varied and rich that Africa has to offer. The hunting areas are spread throughout the country from north to south. In the vast majority of the cases, these are private areas managed by their individual owners or hunting companies.
The majority of the hunting in Namibia takes place on private game ranches which are found throughout the country. Safari hunting is allowed on private game ranches, conservancies where hunting is permitted and within government hunting concession areas which are only found in the North of the country.
In Namibia, the habitat of the hunting areas is composed of dense thorny savanna, shrub savanna and large semi-desert plains. The terrain in some hunting areas can be challenging, even mountainous. The elevation of the high plains in much of the country where many of the prime hunting areas are located can also cause hunting to be more strenuous for those who are not used to it.
Namibia along with South Africa are the only two countries in Africa where one can hunt the entire big five; Lion, Leopard, Buffalo, Elephant and Rhino (White as well as Black Rhinoceros). Most of the plains game hunting safaris, along with Leopard hunting, take place in the lower two thirds of Namibia. Leopards are hunted both with dogs and on bait and can be found in many areas. While Lion, Buffalo, Elephant and Rhino are hunted on a very limited basis and primarily harvested in the Northern most part of the country, including the Caprivi Strip. Cheetah (Acinonyx Jubatus) can be found throughout Namibia and can also be hunted.
Namibia is most well known for the availability of numerous species for plains game hunting. The most famous and emblematic animal of Namibia, the Oryx (Oryx Gazella), is found throughout the territories of Namibia. The following species are also found in abundance; Cape Eland (Taurotragus Oryx), Greater Kudu (Tragelaphus Strepsiceros), Blue Wildebeest (Connochaetes Taurinus), Black Wildebeest (Conochaetes Gnou), Blesbok (Damaliscus Pygargus Phillipsi), Impala (Aepyceros Melampus), Steenbok (Ourebia Ourebi), Klipspringer (Oreotragus Oreotragus), Warthog (Phacochoerus Aethiopicus)...
Hunting in Namibia is most often done on foot, sometimes directly from the lodge or camp, but more often by driving a 4x4 from the lodge to the area to be hunted, then tracking on foot once in the bush. The spot and stalk hunting technique is quite often used as well. In Namibia, the professional hunters are usually white Namibian PHs.
In most of the private hunting areas the accommodations are permanent lodges and/or bungalows. These lodges are very comfortable and some are even quite luxurious. A few outfitters provide tent camps for special occasions such as remote hunts from the main lodge.
Hunting areas are accessible by road from the country’s capital, Windhoek. Depending on the location of the hunting area, the drive is on average 2 to 5 hours. The roads are excellent however, since many hunting areas have their own airstrip, transfer by chartered plane is also possible, but not required.