Angola is a new country after the civil war (1975-2005) that ravaged the country. Open to tourism since 2008 Angola offers some of Africa’s most spectacular tribal groups, stunning natural landscapes, and a rich colonial heritage dating from the Portuguese era. Angola is still virgin, unique and in this tour we combine ethnography and nature so that the traveler understands this different Africa.
Date: 4-12 April 2020
Duration: 9 days / 8 nights
Price per person (7-13 pax): 3.300 €
Single supplement: 250 €
Day 1: EUROPE – LUANDA
Arrival in Luanda. A guide will meet you at the airport and transfer you the hotel. Depending on arrival time can start city tour or wait for the next day. Accommodation in: Hotel Ilha Mar or similar. BB
Day 2: LUANDA – LUBANGO
After breakfast begin exploring the key sights of the city, with interesting old colonial buildings, such as Nosa Senhora de Nazaré baroque church, Anthropology Museum, Ferro Palace (19th Century) and Fortaleza de Sao Miguel (Portuguese fortress). After lunch, transfer to the airport for TAAG domestic flight to Lubango. 1h30 flight. Meet guide and transfer to Casper Lodge. HB (dinner)
Day 3: LUBANGO - CHIBIA – LUBANGO (2h)
Breakfast. Day focused in Huila Plateau, its history and anthropological reality. Visit Muila tribal area. Muila where the first Bantu tribe to reach the Plateau. Meet local chief (soba) and its wives (they are polygamous) with traditional hairstyle showing social status and tribal affiliation. In rural markets it is possible to meet richly decorated Muila women. After the visit we will drive to Chibia colonial town, good example of Portuguese 19th Century settlement and have lunch. Afternoon walk around the town and return to Lubango for the night. Casper Lodge. HB (lunch)
Day 4: LUBANGO – DIMBA - CAHAMA – LUBANGO (3h)
Breakfast and drive south towards the Namibia border to meet the Herero speaking people. Reach Dimba territory and visit a traditional village. Check the traditional hairstyles of the women in the area and discover their way of life based in cattle pastoralism, hunting and subsistence agriculture. We will spend half a day with the Dimba people and at mid-day we will drive to Cahama to have lunch in a local restaurant. After lunch, continue to Lubango. Casper Lodge. HB (lunch)
Day 5: LUBANGO – LEBA CHAIN – CARACULO – GIRAUL - NAMIBE (4h)
Breakfast and descent towards Iona Desert. Drive down along the famous Serra de Leba pass towards the Atlantic Coast and the city of Namibe. On the way stop at Caraculo farming project, designed by Salazar’s military regime in 1947 to colonize the Angolan desert…it did not succeed. Today Caraculo is a semi-phantom town with interesting crumbling afro-Portuguese buildings. Pic-nic lunch in Caraculo. Before reaching Namibe city we will make a short visit to Giraul Oasis. Arrival in Namibe and overnight IU Hotel. HB (lunch)
Day 6: NAMIBE
Breakfast and day to explore this historical city of the Atlantic coast of Angola. Founded in the late 17th century, Namibe grew as commercial port with direct trade with Brazil. Walking tour around the colonial city center, the fishing port, and stop in the many Art Deco constructions spread all around the city. Overnight IU Hotel. BB
Day 7: NAMIBE – CUROCA - ARCO – TOMBWA – NAMIBE (2h)
Early breakfast and drive into the desert. Visit the beautiful oasis of Curoca and Arco, with amazing rock formations. Continue to Tombwa, former Alexander Port, after a British explorer that discovered the place. Lunch and walking visit around the port. Return to Namibe for the night. IU Hotel. HB (lunch)
Day 8: NAMIBE – GARGANTA– BIBALA - LUBANGO – TUNDA VALA - LUANDA (2h)
Breakfast. Drive to Leba Mountains. Stop in Garganta hamlet to meet our last tribe, the Nguendelengo, with interesting wooden storage constructions and some of the younger women showing a beautiful hairdo, characteristic of this ethnic minority (numbering just a 3.000 individuals). After the visit, continue to Bibala colonial town where will have lunch. Reach Lubango and visit Tunda Vala panoramic views. Transfer to the airport for a late afternoon flight to Luanda. Accommodation in: Hotel Ilha Mar or similar. HB (lunch)
Day 9: LUANDA – MIRADOURO – SANTIAGO – LUANDA
Breakfast. Drive to Miradouro da Lua (Clift). From there we go to Slave Museum and artisan fair. Lunch in Ilha and afternoon visit to Santiago Beach’s ship cemetery. Continue to the airport for evening flight back home. BB
A valid passport and a visa are required for travel to Angola. Applications for visas can be made online (pre-visa) or in advance in the travelers’ home country. Last Places assists all travelers that need any type of help applying for the online visa or at the embassy. We recommend that passports be valid for six months from date of arrival.
Vaccines and Travel Health
A valid yellow fever vaccination certificate is essential for entry to Angola. Malaria is prevalent in the country. It is wise to take Malaria prophylaxis when travelling through Angola. Water supply is unsafe to drink, visitors should drink bottle water. Visitors should also avoid eating unpeeled, unwashed fruit and vegetables. The milk in Angola is unpasteurized and should be boiled; alternatively use tinned milk reconstituted with bottle water.
Security in Angola
Angola is a safe country in general terms. Land mines have been removed from most of the country except in some remote regions of Cuando Cuvango where Last Places does not normally travel to. We recommend to be aware of pick pocketing in crowded streets of Luanda and not to walk around city centre too late in the night if you are not accompanied by a local guide or group of local friends that are familiar with the streets of Luanda. It is strongly recommended not to drive during the night in the countryside because of the potential risk of your car hitting a wild or domestic animal.
When to go to Angola
Travelers can visit Angola all year around. Last Places Angola offers trips to Angola all year around. Said this, dry season –from June till November- allows the traveller visit all tribal areas while whet season – from December till May- may limit the visit to certain region such as Oncocua. Southwest Angola, where most of the tourism attractions are concentrated, enjoys mild weather during most of the year with daylight temperatures of 24-30 ? that can come down to 10 ? during the night and early hours.
Currency in Angola
The unit of currency is the Kwanza (AOA). Visitors should bring enough cash for their needs. Money can be exchanged at the airport or at the bank. Euros and newly issued US dollars are changed without any problem. Credit cards are only accepted in larger hotels, and cash withdrawals are not possible. Few ATMs in Luanda accept foreign cards.
Time in Angola
Electricity in Angola
Electrical current in Angola is 220 volts, 50Hz. Round pin attachment plugs are in use.
Communications in Angola
The international dialing code for Angola is +244. There are many more mobile telephones than fixed lines and the mobile coverage around Luanda and other main centers is much more reliable than fixed lines. Internet access is available at most major hotels.
Language in Angola
The official language of Angola is Portuguese. About 60 other African languages are spoken. Some French and Spanish is also spoken.
Prohibitions in Angola
Do not take photographs of government buildings, or use binoculars near them, as this could lead to arrest.