Windhoek is more confusing to drive around than it should be given its diminutive size. This is mainly due to its rolling hills and dispersed residential areas – largely a hangover from successive colonial governments’ urban planning. On the plus side, however, streets are well signposted, though since most have been renamed since independence, some residents still occasionally refer to the old names. The city’s main arteries run broadly parallel from north to south: Namibia’s principal highway, the B1 – which stretches the whole 1500km between the South African and Angolan borders – becomes Auas Road as it approaches from the south, passing Eros Airport (the small domestic airport), and then Hosea Kutako Drive as it enters the city. Peeling off to the west, just south of the airport, the aptly named Western Bypass circumvents the city, continuing the apartheid-era separation of the former non-white townships of Khomasdal and Katutura from the white areas, before the two main roads rejoin, north of the city. Two other major north/south roads to get a handle on are Robert Mugabe Avenue, which undulates along the eastern flank of the city, and Mandume Ndemufayo Avenue, which starts in the town centre and heads southwest, through the Southern Industrial Area, where several vehicle rental companies are located, to emerge as the C26, the back road to Walvis Bay. The main highway on the east-west axis is Sam Nujoma Drive: eastwards it heads out through the Klein Windhoek Valley and on to Hosea Kutako International Airport – where all international flights arrive – Gobabis and the Botswana border, as the B6; to the west it skirts Khomasdal and becomes the C28, the back road to Swakopmund, passing the Dan Viljoen Game Park.

The city centre, however, consists of little more than a kilometre of Independence Avenue and a block or two either side, which can easily be explored on foot. Independence Avenue continues northwards all the way to the former black township of Katutura, crossing Hosea Kutako Drive and the Western Bypass en route. Most accommodation and restaurants lie in Klein Windhoek – along or just off Sam Nujoma Drive and Nelson Mandela Avenue – and the other eastern suburbs, with a sprinkling of restaurants in the city centre. Some cheaper lodgings are to be found in Windhoek West, and Pioneers Park (also Pionierspark), to the south, beyond Eros Airport.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Namibia features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

In pictures: the otherworldly landscapes of Namibia

In pictures: the otherworldly landscapes of Namibia

From the spectacular dunes of the Namib Desert to the serpentine chasm of the Fish River Canyon, the rugged mountains of the Great Escarpment to the acacia-stud…

15 Feb 2018 • Sara Humphreys camera_alt Gallery
Namibia from above: the world's most extreme landscape

Namibia from above: the world's most extreme landscape

The Namib desert is one of the world’s most extreme environments. Covering 81,000 square kilometres, its vastness can only truly be appreciated from above. He…

17 Jul 2017 • Lottie Gross local_activity Special feature
27 awe-inspiring pictures of Namibia

27 awe-inspiring pictures of Namibia

Namibia has some of the world's most astonishing landscapes. It's home to the world's oldest desert, a long and undeveloped coastline and national parks that te…

31 May 2016 • Lottie Gross insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Privacy Preference Center

Necessary

Mandatory - can not be deselected. Necessary cookies help make a website usable by enabling basic functions like page navigation and access to secure areas of the website. The website cannot function properly without these cookies.

PHPSESSID,aelia_cs_selected_currency,cookie_notice_accepted,RS,bp-message,bp-message-type,id,UIDR,w3tc_logged_out,__cfduid
__cfduid

Statistics

Statistic cookies help website owners to understand how visitors interact with websites by collecting and reporting information anonymously.

__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid,__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xt
__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid
__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xtc

Marketing

Marketing cookies are used to track visitors across websites. The intention is to display ads that are relevant and engaging for the individual user and thereby more valuable for publishers and third party advertisers.

__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID,__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll,c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs
__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID
__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll
c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs