Namibia’s capital is a beautiful, ever-green city that is home to around 250,000 people, giving it that friendly small-town feeling. The pace of life is relaxed and laid back, and the city has a very distinctive charming character, making it a very popular tourist spot for ‘those in the know’.
Book a flight to Windhoek with Qatar Airways and you’ll discover a warm, welcoming city that also attracts its fair share of entrepreneurs. But the city is best known as the starting point for safaris into the interior of the country and the main point of entry into Namibia by plane.
Spend a little time exploring this pretty little city before you head off on the hunt for photo opportunities with the ‘Big Five’ game animals in the surrounding parks.
Christuskirche, a distinctive Lutheran church in the very centre of the city, is Windhoek’s best-known landmark. It was designed in 1907 by Gottlieb Redecker and merges two very different architectural styles of neo-gothic and art nouveau into a building that stands proud in the middle of a busy street.
The Tintenplast building is now home to Namibia’s state parliament, and still is a fine example of post-colonial architecture. The name means ‘Ink Building’, which probably refers to its former role as the centre for German administration in South West Africa.
Namibia is known for its handicrafts, with a speciality in needlepoint and embroidery. Head to the not-for-profit collective of Penduka at Goreangab Dam to watch women at work and buy a selection of crafts including needlework, fabric creations, carvings and baskets.
The biggest draw to the region is its wildlife and scenery, and one of the best places to see both is the Daan Viljoen Game Park in the Khomas Hochland, approximately 18 kilometres west of the city. Here, you can see everything from antelopes to zebras, and more than 200 species of birdlife, making this park a birdwatcher’s paradise.
Back in the city, the Zoo Park, which was a zoo until 1962, is now a public park perfect for picnics. If you’d like to include some education during your trip to Windhoek, then head to the Franco-Namibian Cultural Centre to take classes in a wide range of subjects including photography.
To find out more about the history and culture of the country, head to the National Museum of Namibia on Robert Mugabe Avenue, which also houses an excellent collection of rock art dating back thousands of years.
If you’re ready to try some exotic dishes, then make your way to a regional-specific restaurant for a zebra steak or ostrich kebab. Be aware that some restaurants tend to focus on meat-based dishes, with very little emphasis on vegetarian options.
However, in some of the finer restaurants, you can sample a rich selection of both local and international cuisine.
Street food is plentiful and cheap, and there are also lots of street vendors selling both hot and cold drinks.
The main shopping mall is Post Street, housing a brightly-coloured and eclectic collection of shops, boutiques and vendors selling everything from traditional handicrafts to tourist trinkets, boutique clothing, artwork, and spices. Head to the Old Breweries Craft Market for a bigger selection of traditional African handicrafts or visit the Namibia Craft Centre for some fantastic beadwork.
There are plenty of camping and adventure hiking shops throughout the city, thanks to the number of safaris operating in and around the region.
Qatar Airways flights to Windhoek arrive at Hosea Kutako International Airport, located approximately 40 kilometres from town. Visa restrictions for entry into the country will depend on your country of origin, length of stay and whether your trip is for business or pleasure. Click here before you fly to Windhoek for visa and passport requirements.
Currency: Namibian Dollar (NAD
Voltage: 220 V 50 Hz
Plugs: Type D / M
International dialing code: +264
Explore Discover Qatar’s stopover packages offered by Qatar Airways Holidays. Book hotels, desert safaris, city and architectural tours including visits to Katara Cultural Village, Souq Waqif and The Pearl.