Day 10: Ghanzi - Windhoek
Windhoek Travel Blog› entry 12 of 34 › view all entries
September 23rd, 2009 – by: Biedjee
The difference with the border crossings between Zambia and Zimbabwe, or Zambia and Botswana was striking. Here the customs buildings were neat and tidy and welcoming, while customs and immigration went smooth and efficient.
We arrived in Windhoek, the capital of Namibia, just after midday. Windhoek was a strange experience in several ways. Of the five countries we will be passing through this trip, Windhoek is the only capital city we visit.
And while I generally don't care much for cities, it was nice being in one again. ATMs, proper coffee, internet, mobile phone reception - all the modern needs we had gone without for the past week.
Windhoek doesn't boast all that many sights, but we had a nice stroll through the centre of town looking at the German built Christuskirche and the nearby National Museum, which is the oldest standing building in Windhoek... just over 100 years old.
Windhoek was shaped by the Germans, who bought it from the Portuguese (who had colonised Angola in the north), but after the first world war it fell under control of South Africa. Namibia only gained independence in 1990 and such it is the youngest country in Africa.
The Western world never really cared for the South African occupation but the country had unexpected help from Cuba, and this is probably one of the very few cities in the world where you will find a “Fidel Castro Street”. It gets even better though, as one block further down you find “Robert Mugabe Ave”. Interesting choice of street names. In my country streets are usually named after dead painters rather than dictators.
I always try to visit a barber while travelling. Mainly because my receding hairline simply looks better when kept short, but also because it is often a fun experience.
A night in the city also meant that we'd be sleeping in a hostel tonight. Two nights in a row in a proper bed - I couldn't believe my luck!
We shared a dorm with Rudy, Sally and Paola, while the rest of the group bunked up in the other dorm.
For the last section of our tour five more girls would join in Windhoek. We met up with them at the hostel and all went out for dinner together at the famous restaurant “Joe's”,
Windhoek's liveliest and most famous restaurant. This is a huge place, with a great interior, and huge portions.
On the menu are many endemic animals, so naturally I opted for something local with the Bushmen sasote; a kebab with ostrich, zebra, kudu, buffalo, crocodile and, erm, chicken.
Rudy who sat opposite of me had the same dish, but different pieces of meat. A bit of a disappointment, really.
But the atmosphere was excellent. It was great eating at a table again, after a week in the bush. Riaan and Juliana played the perfect hosts by buying us a few rounds of drinks.
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