Windhoek, (pronunciation:ˈvəntɦuk), is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Namibia. It is located in central Namibia in the Khomas Highland plateau area, at around 1,700 metres (5,600 ft) above sea level, almost exactly at the country's geographical centre. The population of Windhoek in 2011 was 325,858, growing continually due to an influx from all over Namibia.
The city developed at the site of a permanent hot spring known to the indigenous pastoral communities. It developed rapidly after Jonker Afrikaner, Captain of the Orlam, settled here in 1840 and built a stone church for his community. In the decades following, multiple wars and armed hostilities resulted in the neglect and destruction of the new settlement. Windhoek was founded a second time in 1890 by Imperial German Army Major Curt von François, when the territory was colonised by the German Empire.
Windhoek is the social, economic, political, and cultural centre of the country. Nearly every Namibian national enterprise, governmental body, educational and cultural institution is headquartered there.
Coat of arms
Location of Windhoek in Namibia
|Second founding||18 October 1890|
|• Mayor||Muesee Kazapua|
|• Deputy Mayor||Hangapo Veico|
|• Total||5,133 km2 (1,982 sq mi)|
|Elevation||1,655 m (5,430 ft)|
|• Density||62.8/km2 (163/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+2 (SAST)|
Theories vary on how the place got its modern name of Windhoek. Most believe it is derived from the Afrikaans word wind-hoek (wind corner). Another theory suggests that Captain Jonker Afrikaner named Windhoek after the Winterhoek Mountains at Tulbagh in South Africa, where his ancestors had lived. The first known mention of the name Windhoek was in a letter from Jonker Afrikaner to Joseph Tindall, dated 12 August 1844.
In 1840 Jonker Afrikaner established an Orlam settlement at Windhoek. He and his followers stayed near one of the main hot springs, located in the present-day Klein Windhoek suburb. He built a stone church that held 500 people; it was also used as a school. Two Rhenish missionaries, Carl Hugo Hahn and Franz Heinrich Kleinschmidt, started working there in late 1842. Two years later they were driven out by two Methodist Wesleyans, Richard Haddy and Joseph Tindall. Gardens were laid out and for a while Windhoek prospered. Wars between the Nama and Herero peoples eventually destroyed the settlement. After a long absence, Hahn visited Windhoek again in 1873 and was dismayed to see that nothing remained of the town's former prosperity. In June 1885, a Swiss botanist found only jackals and starving guinea fowl amongst neglected fruit trees.
In 1878, Britain annexed Walvis Bay and incorporated it into the Cape of Good Hope colony in 1884, but Britain did not extend its influence into the interior. A request by merchants from Lüderitzbucht resulted in the declaration of a German protectorate over what was called German South West Africa in 1884. The borders of the German colony were determined in 1890 and Germany sent a protective corps, the Schutztruppe under Major Curt von François, to maintain order. Von François stationed his garrison at Windhoek, which was strategically situated as a buffer between the Nama and Herero peoples. The twelve strong springs provided water for the cultivation of produce and grains.
Colonial Windhoek was founded on 18 October 1890, when von François fixed the foundation stone of the fort, which is now known as the Alte Feste (Old Fortress). After 1907, development accelerated as indigenous people migrated from the countryside to the growing town to seek work. More European settlers arrived from Germany and South Africa. Businesses were erected on Kaiser Street (presently Independence Avenue), and along the dominant mountain ridge over the city. At this time, Windhoek's three castles, Heinitzburg, Sanderburg, and Schwerinsburg, were built.
The German colonial era came to an end during World War I when South African troops occupied Windhoek in May 1915 on behalf of the British Empire. For the next five years, a South African military government administered South West Africa. It was assigned to the United Kingdom as a mandate territory by the newly formed League of Nations, and South Africa administered it. Development of the city of Windhoek and the nation later to be known as Namibia came to a virtual standstill. After World War II, Windhoek's development gradually gained momentum, as more capital became available to improve the area's economy.
After 1955, large public projects were undertaken, such as the building of new schools and hospitals, tarring of the city's roads (a project begun in 1928 with Kaiser Street), and the building of dams and pipelines to stabilise the water supply. The city introduced the world's first potable re-use plant in 1958, treating recycled sewage and sending it directly into the town's water supply. On 1 October 1966 the then Administrator of South West Africa granted Windhoek the coat of arms, which was registered on 2 October 1970 with the South African Bureau of Heraldry. Initially a stylized aloe was the principal emblem, but this was amended to a natural aloe (Aloe littoralis) on 15 September 1972. The Coat of Arms is described as "a Windhoek aloe with a raceme of three flowers on an island. Crest: A mural crown Or. Motto: SUUM CUIQUE (To every man his own)".
Since independence in 1990, Windhoek has remained the national capital, as well as the provincial capital of the central Khomas Region. Since independence and the end of warfare, the city has had accelerated growth and development.
Expanding the town area has – apart from financial restrictions – proven to be challenging due to its geographical location. In southern, eastern and western directions, Windhoek is surrounded by rocky, mountainous areas, which make land development costly. The southern side is not suitable for industrial development because of the presence of underground aquifers. This leaves the vast Brakwater area north of town the only feasible place for Windhoek's expansion.
Windhoek's City Council has plans to dramatically expand the city's boundaries such that the town area will cover 5,133.4 square kilometres (1,982.0 sq mi). Windhoek would become the third-largest city in the world by area, after Tianjin and Istanbul, although its population density is only 63 inhabitants per square kilometre.
Windhoek is divided into different suburbs:
Windhoek has over 300 sunny days per year. It experiences a hot semi-arid climate (BSh) according to Köppen climate classification as the annual average temperature is above 18 °C (64 °F). The temperature throughout the year would be called mild, due to altitude influence. The annual average high and low temperature range is 13.6 °C (24.5 °F). The coldest month is July, with an average temperature of 13.1 °C (55.6 °F), while the hottest month is December, with average temperature 23.5 °C (74.3 °F). Precipitation is abundant during the summer season, and minimal during the winter season. The average annual precipitation is 367.4 millimetres (14.46 in). Due to its location near the Kalahari Desert, the city receives 3,605 hours of sunshine.
In 1971, there were roughly 26,000 whites living in Windhoek, outnumbering the black population of 24,000. About one third of white residents at the time, at least 9,000 individuals, were German speakers. Windhoek's population currently stands at over 322,500 (65% black; 17% white; 18% other), and is growing 4% annually in part due to informal settlements that have even higher growth rates of nearly 10% a year.
Windhoek is the only self-governed settlement in Khomas Region. It is governed by a multi-party municipal council that has fifteen seats. The Council meets once a month (each last Wednesday of the month); its decisions are taken collectively and councillors are bound by such decisions. As individuals, council members have no administrative authority. They cannot give orders or otherwise supervise City employees unless specifically directed to do so by the Council. The Council, however, has complete authority over all administrative affairs in the city. Council members devote their official time to problems of basic policy and act as liaisons between the City and the general public.
SWAPO won the 2015 local authority election and gained twelve seats (37,533 votes). Three opposition parties gained one seat each: The Democratic Turnhalle Alliance (DTA, 4,171 votes), the National Unity Democratic Organisation (NUDO, 1,453 votes), and the Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) with 1,422 votes.
The city is the administrative, commercial, and industrial center of Namibia. A 1992/93 study estimated that Windhoek provides over half of Namibia's non-agricultural employment, with its national share of employment in utilities being 96%, in transport and communication 94%, finance and business services 82%. Due to its relative size Windhoek is, even more than many other national capital cities, the social, economic, and cultural centre of the country. Nearly every national enterprise is headquartered here. The University of Namibia is, too, as are the country's only theatre, all ministry head offices, and all major media and financial entities. The governmental budget of the city of Windhoek nearly equals those of all other Namibian local authorities combined. Of the 3,300 US$-millionaires in Namibia, 1,400 live in Windhoek.
Due to Windhoek's proximity to Hosea Kutako International Airport, Windhoek serves an important role in Namibia's tourism. The report on Namibia Tourism Exit Survey 2012 – 2013, produced by the Millennium Challenge Corporation for the Namibian Directorate of Tourism, indicates that 56% of all tourists visiting Namibia during that time period, visited Windhoek. In addition hereto, many of Namibia's tourism related parastatals and governing bodies such as Namibia Wildlife Resorts, Air Namibia and the Namibia Tourism Board as well as Namibia's tourism related associations such as the Hospitality Association of Namibia are headquartered in Windhoek. Windhoek is also home to a number of notable hotels such as Windhoek Country Club Resort and some international hotel chains such as Avani Hotels and Resorts and Hilton Hotels and Resorts, that also operate in Windhoek.
Windhoek is connected by rail to:
In 1928, Kaiserstraße, now Independence Avenue, was the first paved road in Windhoek. Ten years later the next one, Gobabis road, now Sam Nujoma Drive, was also paved. Today out of ca. 40,000 kilometres (25,000 mi) of Namibia's total road network, about 5,000 kilometres (3,100 mi) is sealed.
Windhoek's three main access roads from Rehoboth, Gobabis, and Okahandja are paved, and are designed to be able to withstand the largest possible flood to be expected in fifty years. Sealed roads can carry traffic moving at 120 kilometres per hour (75 mph) and should last for 20 years.
As everywhere in Namibia, public transport is scarce and transportation across town is largely done by taxi; there were 6,492 registered taxis in 2013.
Windhoek is served by two airports. The closest one is Eros 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) south of the city center for smaller craft, and Hosea Kutako International Airport 42 kilometres (26 mi) east of the city. A number of foreign airlines operate to and from Windhoek. Air charters and helicopter and fixed-wing aircraft rentals are also available.
Hosea Kutako International Airport, situated 42 kilometres outside Windhoek, handles over 800,000 passengers a year. It has one runway without capacity limitations. The other international airport is located in Walvis Bay, with domestic airports at Luderitz, Oranjemund and Ondangwa. Air Namibia connects daily to Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban via Gaborone and Frankfurt. Air Namibia also services Harare, Lusaka and Victoria Falls. South African Airways, TAAG-Angola Airlines, Airlink and Air Namibia all have regular flights to Windhoek-Hosea Kutako International Airport, whilst Condor Flugdienst has bi-weekly turnarounds to Frankfurt. KLM from Amsterdam connects Windhoek 3 times weekly via Luanda. Ethiopian Airlines has 4 weekly direct flights to Addis Ababa. Qatar Airways introduced four times weekly flights between Doha and Windhoek on September 28, 2016. It was the first major carrier to introduce the Boeing 787-800 Dreamliner to Namibian aviation. Since July 2017 Eurowings introduced a bi-weekly service between Cologne/Bonn and Windhoek. Airlink start a new service from Johannesburg to St Helena in October 2017. A N$900m/78 km long dual carriageway is being constructed linking Windhoek to Hosea Kutako International Airport.
Eros Airport is the busiest airport in Namibia in terms of take offs and landings and a domestic hub for Air Namibia. This city airport handles approximately 150 to 200 movements per day (around 50,000 per year). In 2004, the airport served 141,605 passengers, the majority of which are light aircraft. Primarily, limitations such as runway length, noise, and air space congestion have kept Eros from developing into a larger airport. Most of Namibia's charter operators have Eros as their base.
Rugby is a popular sport in Namibia, and the national team is call the Welwitchias. Namibia has made the Rugby World Cup on five occasions, in 1999, 2003, 2007, 2011, and 2015, but has never won a game.
The Namibia national cricket team, the Eagles, plays the majority of its home games at the Wanderers Cricket Ground. It has also played at other grounds in the city, including the United Ground and the Trans Namib Ground. The team took part in the 2003 Cricket World Cup in South Africa, though they lost all their games. They have played in each edition of the ICC Intercontinental Cup.
The 'Tony Rust Raceway' is located west of Windhoek on the Daan Viljoen road, and reopened in 2007.
The general institutions of higher education in Windhoek are:
Other recognisable institutions of higher learning:
Windhoek has 29 secondary schools and 58 primary schools. Some of the notable schools are:
Windhoek is twinned with:
The 2014 African Women's Championship, the 11th edition of the tournament, was held in Namibia. This tournament, organized by the Confederation of African Football, was also a qualification tournament for the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup, with top three qualifying for the finals in Canada. It was played on 11–25 October 2014.
The tournament marked the first participation of Namibia in the African championship. Also for the first time the defending champions, Equatorial Guinea, were not taking part after failing to win their last qualifying round match.Nigeria defeated Cameroon 2–0 in the final to win their ninth title.2016 COSAFA Cup
The 2016 COSAFA Cup (known as Castle Lager COSAFA Cup Namibia 2016 for sponsorship reasons) was the 16th edition of the COSAFA Cup, an international football competition consisting of national teams of member nations of the Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (COSAFA). Originally, it was to be held in Windhoek, Namibia during May 2016, however the tournament was rescheduled to avoid a clash with the South African Premier Soccer League and took place in June 2016.Air Namibia
Air Namibia (Pty) Limited, which trades as Air Namibia, is the national airline of Namibia, headquartered in Windhoek. It operates scheduled domestic, regional, and international passenger and cargo services, having its international hub in Windhoek Hosea Kutako International Airport and a domestic hub at the smaller Windhoek Eros Airport.
As of December 2013, the carrier is wholly owned by the Namibian government. Air Namibia is a member of both the International Air Transport Association and the African Airlines Association.Holy Cross Convent School
Holy Cross Convent School may refer to:
Holy Cross Convent School, Akola, India
Holy Cross Convent School, Windhoek, NamibiaHosea Kutako International Airport
Hosea Kutako International Airport (IATA: WDH, ICAO: FYWH) is the main international airport of Namibia, serving the capital city Windhoek. Located well east of the city, 45 km (28 mi), it is Namibia's largest airport with international connections. The name of the airport comes from Namibian national hero Hosea Kutako.Katutura
Katutura (Otjiherero for The place where people do not want to live) is a township of Windhoek, Khomas Region, Namibia. Katutura was created in 1961 following the forced removal of Windhoek's black population from the Old Location, which afterwards was developed into the suburb Hochland Park. Sam Nujoma Stadium, built in 2005, is located within Katutura. Katutura Community Radio, a community-based radio station, also operates from the township. Katutura State Hospital, one of two State Hospitals in the Windhoek area, is located in the township.List of football clubs in Namibia
The following is an incomplete list of association football clubs based in Namibia.
For a complete list see Category:Football clubs in NamibiaMiss Namibia
Miss Namibia is a national Beauty pageant in Namibia.Miss Universe 1995
Miss Universe 1995, the 44th Miss Universe pageant, was held on 12 May 1995 at the Windhoek Country Club Resort in Windhoek, Namibia. Chelsi Smith of the United States was crowned by Sushmita Sen of India at the end of the event. Eighty-two contestants competed in this year.Namibia Breweries Limited
Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) is a Namibian brewery founded in 1920 when Carl List and Hermann Ohlthaver acquired four small breweries with financial difficulties. The breweries were merged under the name South West Breweries Limited (SWB). SWB changed its name to Namibia Breweries Limited when Namibia gained independence on March 21, 1990. Ohlthaver & List Group of Companies are still the majority shareholder.Namibia Premier League
The Namibia Premier League (NPL), also known as MTC Namibia Premier League due to sponsorship reasons, is the highest level of domestic association football in Namibia. The league was established in 1985 and was trimmed to 12 teams from the traditional 16 in 2005.Namibia University of Science and Technology
Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST), formerly known as Polytechnic of Namibia, is an institute of tertiary education in the city of Windhoek, Namibia. It was until March 2019 headed by the Founding Vice chancellor Tjama Tjivikua. The largely ceremonial role of chancellor of the university is held by Prof. Peter Katjavivi.Namibia national rugby union team
The Namibia national rugby union team, nicknamed the Welwitschias or Biltongboere, are a tier-two nation in the World Rugby tier system, and have participated in five Rugby World Cup competitions since their first appearance in 1999. They are governed by the Namibia Rugby Union.
Namibia has been playing international rugby since the early 1900s. As well as having competed at the World Cup, Namibia annually competes in the Africa Cup. Until independence, players for Namibia were also eligible to represent South Africa, with Namibian-born Springboks including Jan Ellis and, more recently, Percy Montgomery. As of 28 May 2018 they are ranked 24th in the world.National Council (Namibia)
The National Council is the upper chamber of Namibia's bicameral Parliament.
The 42 National Council members are chosen by regional councils, which are directly elected for a term of six years. Each of the 14 regional councils chooses three of its members to serve on the National Council. The last regional council elections were held on 27 November 2015.
Political party distribution in the current National Council is as follows:
South-West Africa People's Organisation (SWAPO) - 40 Seats
Democratic Turnhalle Alliance (DTA) - 1 Seat
National Unity Democratic Organisation (NUDO) - 1 SeatThe council meets in the Namibian capital of Windhoek in the so-called Tintenpalast. The current chairperson is Margaret Mensah-Williams. Ten women occupy seats in the National Council.Paulina Malulu
Paulina Malulu; (born 28 April 1989) is a Namibian beauty queen and model who represented Namibia and participated at the Big Four international beauty pageants. She competed in Miss International 2012 and was in the Top 15. She went on to compete for Miss World 2013 and Miss Universe 2013 and Miss Earth 2014.
Born in exile, shortly before independence, Malulu grew up in Windhoek. After completing her high school education, Malulu studied health and skincare and also has a qualification in tour guiding.
Malulu is also the executive director and founder of the Paulina Malulu Trust (PMT), an operating, not-for-gain organization that advocates for the roles of beauty queens. She also organised the "Day of the Beauty Queen", an annual event that highlights the important social role of beauty queens that was first held in Namibia in 2015.
She has represented Namibian youth on the African Youth Forum, the Global Aids Summit and serving as Public Relations for the Namibia Book Fair.Rail transport in Namibia
Rail service in Namibia is provided by TransNamib. Namibia's rail network consists of 2,382 route-km of tracks, however this number continues to increase as the rail infrastructure continues to grow.
Namibia has a history of more than 100 years of railway service. During the colonialisation by the German Empire between 1894 and 1915, a number of railways were built, some of which are still in service today.Sam Nujoma Stadium
Sam Nujoma Stadium (also called the Sam Nujoma Soccer Stadium or SNSS) is a football (soccer) stadium in Katutura, Windhoek, Namibia. The stadium holds 10,300 and was finished in 2005. It is named after the former Namibian president Sam Nujoma.
The name of the stadium is not - as widely said - the new name of the Independence Stadium.Supreme Court of Namibia
The Supreme Court of Namibia is the supreme court in all legal matters of the laws of Namibia. It is the court of last resort and the highest appellate court in the country. It is located in the centre of Namibia's capital city, Windhoek. A Supreme Court decision is supreme in that it can only be reversed by an Act of Parliament that contradicts it, or by another ruling of the Supreme Court itself.The Namibian
The Namibian is the largest daily newspaper in Namibia. It is published in English and Oshiwambo.
|Climate data for Windhoek (1728 m), Namibia|
|Record high °C (°F)||36.0
|Average high °C (°F)||30.0
|Daily mean °C (°F)||23.3
|Average low °C (°F)||17.2
|Record low °C (°F)||7.5
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||78.1
|Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm)||11.1||10.7||10.5||5.5||1.9||0.7||0.5||0.3||0.9||2.8||5.3||7.5||57.7|
|Average relative humidity (%)||42||56||51||44||37||32||27||19||17||22||30||34||34|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||288||254||282||273||310||309||326||341||321||319||297||285||3,605|
|Source #1: Deutscher Wetterdienst|
|Source #2: Danish Meteorological Institute (sun only)|
Administrative divisions of Windhoek
Capitals of African states