Windhoek, Namibia

Windhoek is the capital and largest city in Namibia. Located right in the heart of the country, about 1,700 m (5,600 ft) above sea level, Windhoek covers 645 sq km (249 sq mi) and has a population of 250,000 people (2011 estimate). Being far larger than any other city in the country, Windhoek is the center of all activities in Namibia.

More on Windhoek

Windhoek experiences a semi-arid climate. Annual precipitation is 362 mm (14.25 in). Wettest month is March, which receives 79 mm (3.11 in) of precipitation. July is the coldest month here, with average low temperatures of 6°C (43°F). Hottest month is December, when the average high temperature touches 30°C (86°F).

Windhoek is known in Khoekhoe as ǀAiǀǀGams, meaning “hot springs”, and in Otjiherero as Otjomuise, meaning “place of steam”. In either case, the city was traditionally named after the hot springs in the area. The area was first established by Jonker Afrikaner in 1840. He built a church and a school, which attract more people to settle.

When the British annexed Walvis Bay, the Germans reenforced their position by stationing a garrison in Windhoek. On 18 October 1890 the town of Windhoek was founded by Major Curt von François when he laid the foundation stone for a fort there. An influx of immigrants soon arrived from Germany and South Africa.

German colonial occupation came to an end during World War I. South African troops captured Windhoek in 1915 for the British Empire. After a couple of decades of stagnation, Windhoek began to grow once more after World War II. In 1990, it was chosen to be the capital of South-West Africa, and later became the capital of the Republic of Namibia.

St Mary's Cathedral, the main church for the Roman Catholics in Windhoek
St Mary’s Cathedral, the main church for the Roman Catholics in Windhoek
Author: ElGringoLoco (Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Austria)

Visiting Windhoek

The Windhoek Hosea Kutako International Airport (WDH) is located some 45 km (28 mi) to the east of downtown Windhoek. It receives flights from

Accra, Cape Town, Frankfurt, Johannesburg, Luanda, Lüderitz, Lusaka, Maun, Munich, Victoria Falls and Walvis Bay, among others.

Places of Interest in Windhoek

  1. Christuskirche
    Landmark Lutheran church in Windhoek.

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