Walvis Bay
Walvis Bay, Namibia

Walvis Bay is geographically and internationally well situated. Located on the southwest coast of Africa (central coast of Namibia) along the Atlantic Ocean, the city is about 700 nautical miles from Cape Town, South Africa and 900 nautical miles from Luanda, Angola. The harbor city is well protected by the Pelican Peninsular with a desert climate and has great potential for expansion and growth. The expansive Walvis Bay Municipal area covers 1,124km² which includes some 60km of coastline.

With more than 65,000 inhabitants, Walvis Bay has always been a drawing card for job seekers and investors alike. Although its economy revolves around its internationally renowned fishing industry, other industries are emerging as strong income generating sectors. This includes the budding tourism industry, engineering, cargo handling and property development.

Walvis Bay enjoys a near-perfect climate thanks to the cold Benguella Current, which creates temperate conditions all year round and an obvious attractive choice for entrepreneurs, residents and tourists alike. This is particularly true in summer (November to April), when Walvis Bay becomes a cool haven for those seeking refuge from the inland heat. Walvis Bay is a thriving city with a rapidly growing economy. Boasting one of the busiest ports in Africa, Walvis Bay has established itself as the gateway for trade, imports and exports between America, Europe, Far East and landlocked countries in Africa.

Walvis Bay
Environmental Issues

Walvis Bay’s remarkable progress has been the result of careful and responsible planning by the local authority and the business community, which includes the application of international best practices of protecting natural resources and upholding social responsibility.


Retail businesses and shops flourish in the city where first world experiences can be enjoyed in the diversified business sector. Varied engineering, industrial and other businesses are found including diamond cutting and regional importers.

A strong construction industry supports the building and development activities in and around the city. The local Namibian Dollar currency is equal to the South African Rand. Banking institutions provide comprehensive domestic and international banking services and ensure fast and efficient transfer of funds to and from any centre in the world.

Walvis Bay

Walvis Bay is blessed with wide-open spaces, scenic beauty and unique marine and plant life. With its endless variety of sun-drenched sport and recreational adventures, your visit to the Skeleton Coast will be an unforgettable experience. Walvis Bay is well suited for the outdoor lifestyle, boasting sports such as sand boarding, kiting, surfing, swimming, angling, sailing, golf and other in– and outdoor sport codes.

The coastal strip is an angler’s paradise. Some of the best quality and largest edible fish in Africa are caught from our shores. The sought after fish species include Steen bras, Kabeljou, Snoek and other delicious varieties. Visitors who intend to do fishing need a fishing permit. Undoubtedly amongst the most famous desert landmarks in Namibia is Dune 7, one of the highest crests in the dune belt along the coast. With picnic sites and shaded with palm trees, the dune is a popular sand–boarding haunt, while simply climbing to the top to see the view is an adventure on its own. The coastal dunes are popular with Para–gliding, sand–boarding and quad–biking enthusiasts. The dominant southwesterly winds create ideal conditions for a variety of water–sports. The Lagoon is an international Ramsar sanctuary for birds. Estimated to be 3,500 years old, it is one of the most important coastal wetlands in Southern Africa. As a must–visit for bird lovers, it provides a feeding ground for an estimated 200,000 birds of 50 species. A 3km long promenade ensures a scenic stroll on its edges. Further, south lay the red to blue hues of the largest solar salt evaporation fields in Africa. Those keen to explore the open sea can set off in a sea kayak with an experienced guide. In addition to close-up views of Cape fur seals and water birds, Bottle-nosed dolphins are spotted daily and occasionally leatherback turtles and whales are spotted. Visible from the main road, a few kilometers north of Walvis Bay, visitors can see the Guano Platform. The platform covers 17,000m² and rests on 1,000 freestanding wooden stilts.

Local tour operators offer various tour packages whether by quad–bike, off–road vehicles, sea excursions or scenic flights by plane. A wide selection of restaurants and coffee shops offer different cuisines, while shopping centre, banking facilities, postal and other services ensure that your visit is enjoyable and hassle free.

Walvis Bay

Walvis Bay is well linked to Namibia’s rail and road network, with international connections in telecommunications, corridors, air traffic and shipping. The city is linked with the rest of Africa via the Trans-Kalahari and Trans-Caprivi Highways. These two highways play an important role in the Walvis Bay Corridor; a concept currently promoted and marketed by the Walvis Bay Corridor Group to attract more transport business through the port of Walvis Bay. Namibia has a well-established rail network linking it to South Africa and terminating at natural cross border connection points.

The Walvis Bay world-class deep-sea port ensures that Regional and SADC countries gain access to world markets, and acts as a hub port to the West Coast of Africa. Exporters and importers are guaranteed a saving of at least eight to ten days when shipping to and from the European and American markets. The port consists of the Commercial Port and the Fishing Harbor. It offers extensive services with a range of terminal facilities for containers, bulk and break bulk including frozen and dry cargo. The Namibia Ports Authority continues to invest millions of dollars on a medium to long-term basis to make sure Walvis Bay remains one of the most efficient ports in the world. The port provides a direct link with the Far East, South and North America, Europe and the Southern/Western African Coast. High quality, potable water from aquifers in the Kuiseb River, is available to both residents and industry. There is an ample supply of electricity to serve the needs of Walvis Bay, as well as to accommodate new developments.

Walvis Bay has two well–equipped hospitals and three clinics, as well as medical support professionals in the private sector. Organized commerce is supported by an active local chamber of commerce and a Port User’s Association. Walvis Bay’s educational institutions are of a very high standard. Primary schools, secondary schools, a seaman’s training college, local branches of a number of tertiary institutions, three libraries and a museum, provide adequate development of human resources.

Fishing Sector

The fishing Industry of Namibia is respected as one of the most well managed industries in the world and employs approximately 10,000 people. With more than 2km of landing quays, cold storage, processing and canning facilities the fishing industry continues to play an important role in the development of Walvis Bay. The main species harvested are Hake, Horse mackerel, Pilchards, Rock Lobster (grayfish), Tuna, Sole and Orange Roughy. Walvis Bay also produces fishmeal for various purposes. Aquaculture has taken over as a focus growth area in the bay in the form of extensive Oyster, Mussel and Abalone production. High value-added fish products are processed for export purposes to niche markets in Europe, Australia, United States, Far East and Africa.

Walvis Bay
Heavy Industries

With the need for oilrig and ship repair/maintenance, well-equipped engineering firms with a high degree of expertise have emerged to provide a wide range of services to the fishing and other industries. This has also spawned to support industries such as shipping agents, ship chandlers, construction, retail services, transport and accommodation.

The 3,500-hectare salt field to the south of Walvis Bay is one of the largest solar evaporation facilities in Africa, processing 42 million ton of seawater each year to produce more than 700,000 tons of high-quality salt. The saltpans can be seen south of the Walvis Bay’s Lagoon and is especially eye-catching due to the different hues of red water that the evaporating salt causes.

Offshore exploration for oil and gas along the Namibian coast continues. The port serves as an important supply centre to the various companies prospecting and offshore activities along the coast of Namibia. Rough blocks of granite are quarried about 15 km to the east of Walvis Bay. The granite has an attractive yellowish-grey colour. The rough blocks of granite are cut and polished in Walvis Bay and it is then exported as natural stone product for overseas markets notably the US and European markets for use in hotel lobbies, kitchens and other areas that require a marble like finish. Close to Walvis Bay, two uranium mines are operational and 12 more are in process. About 3,800 tons uranium is produced annually and has led to a boom in interest from global players that wish to secure supplies for their nuclear energy expansion plans. The interest in uranium is a boost to our economy. The increase in local uranium mining enables Namibia to contribute towards resolving the global energy shortage.

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