To answer the malaria question for Namibia is not as straightforward as with other destinations. before we give you our opinion please note that our professional advice is of course to ask your doctor. the decision to take malaria prophylaxis to rest solely on yourself.

Having said that we can confirm that in some parts of Namibia (the North East/Caprivi region) malaria precautions should be taken in our summer months. for the rest of Namibia (including Etosha national park) the chances to contract malaria is similar to winning the lottery: it is a reality but highly unlikely that it will happen to you. I myself am 4th generation Namibian and I do not even know somebody that has contracted malaria. over the past 15 years, we (nature friend safaris) have had a few thousand clients travelling with us – to our knowledge, not a single one has contracted malaria. the malaria mosquito is active from sunset to sunrise – so the best precaution is to wear long sleeve shirts and pants as soon as the sun sets and spray the exposed areas (hands and neck) with a repellent like a peaceful sleep.

Keep in mind that the malaria mosquito does require permanent water to breed and people to carry the disease as well as warm temperatures. open permanent water is a seriously scarce commodity in Namibia and we are one of the least populated countries on earth and we normally experience low temperatures at night in our winter. that alone should tell you that the chances of malaria to exist in dry remote areas are almost none. that takes care of June-December. from December to may only the Caprivi area will have a risk factor in our opinion.

It is also a fact that many people do not enjoy the side effect of the tablets and that there is no guarantee that you will not contract malaria even when taking tablets. the most important defence is to diagnose the disease as early as possible so that the appropriate medication can be applied.

I guess, to sum up, we all live in Namibia and travel all over the country and it would never even occur to us to take malaria tablets. the issue is not on our radar at all. you do however have to decide for yourself.

Happy Travelling

Leander Borg
Managing Director
NatureFriend Safaris

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