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17 Aug 2014 | By Sun International

Things To Do and See in Windhoek, Namibia

An extremely small capital by global standards, Windhoek is a charming, friendly and remarkably clean city. Not your typical tourist destination, the multiple charms of the city are subtle and unique.

Located in a basin between the Khomas Highland, Auas and Eros Mountains, the quaint, walkable city of Windhoek is most well-known for its nostalgic German architecture and relaxed atmosphere. Recently refurbished, the four-star Kalahari Sands Hotel and Casino is the best location to enjoy all of the amazing attractions that Windhoek has to offer.

Gaze at the beautiful Christ Church

The Christ Church, also known as Christuskirche, is a Lutheran church and national monument in the capital of Windhoek. It is a great location and landmark for budding photographers to test their skills. The church is immediately recognisable due to its unique architecture, a contradictory combination of neo-Gothic and Art Nouveau styles. The unofficial icon of the city, the church is a tourist favourite.

Stroll through the Parliament Gardens

After visiting the Christ Church, be sure to make a stop at the adjacent Parliament Gardens, also known as Namibia’s National Botanical Gardens. With an olive grove, a bowling green and lush lawns, this is the perfect lunchtime spot to relax and enjoy an impromptu picnic. What’s more, entrance to the gardens is free, making this a great pocket-friendly activity. Built in 1932, the gardens are located next to the Namibian parliament, uniquely named Tintenpalast meaning “Ink Palace” as a light-hearted reference to the copious amount of ink used on official documents and paperwork.

Book a massage at the Kalahari Sands Wellness Centre

Located on the rooftop of the Kalahari Sands Hotel, with stunning panoramic views of the city, let the tranquil atmosphere of the city soak into your skin at the serene Kalahari Sands Wellness Centre. With options for individuals, couples and weary business travellers, select an indulgent treatment from a full bouquet of wellness and therapeutic packages including Reiki, Thai and Swedish pampering treatments.

Go on a horseback tour with Equitrails

With the highly-rated Equitrails you can enjoy Windhoek’s spectacular scenery and wildlife from a unique and thrilling perspective. Offering a variety of horseback tours to suit your experience level and interests, Equitrails is a great excursion for the whole family, with picnic day rides and riding lessons available for both kids and adults. For those with limited time, Equitrails also offers rides by the hour, making it a great way to begin or end a holiday.

Indulge in retail therapy at Gustav Voigts

Enjoy an afternoon of shopping at the Gustav Voigts Shopping Centre. Whether you are looking for jewellery and designer clothes, or safari gear and braai supplies, this centre is your one-stop shopping destination in Windhoek. With a tasty selection of bakeries and delis, this is also a great place to grab a snack for the road as you explore the highlights of Windhoek.

Rooftop swimming at the Kalahari Sands Hotel

After an exciting day of sightseeing, enjoy a refreshing dip in the rooftop swimming pool or work up a sweat at the stunning Kalahari Sands Hotel gym.

Explore the Independence Museum

The latest and shiniest addition to the Windhoek skyline, the Independence Museum is an essential visit for history enthusiasts. Standing over 40 metres tall, you can’t miss this sky-high museum and dazzling monument complete with a restaurant at the top.

Try your luck at the casino

For an evening of thrills and high stakes there’s no need to venture too far. Guests of the Kalahari Sands Hotel can enjoy endless hours of entertainment at the Kalahari Sands Casino conveniently located in the hotel. With over 130 coinless slot machines and 10 table games, the Kalahari Sands Casino is one of the best casinos in Namibia. First-time visitors take note; a visit to the casino is not complete without a drink for courage at the Casino Bar.

Go on a safari adventure at the Etosha National Park

Only five hours away from Windhoek, the Etosha National Park is a uniquely African experience. Famous for its salt pan, which can even be seen from space, Etosha is home to an abundance of wildlife notably, including the endangered black rhinos as well as elephants, lions and leopards.

And lastly, stop in at the Zoo Park

Kick back and relax in the leafy surrounds of a former zoo. The Zoo Park, which served as a public zoo until 1962, is now a favourite picnic spot and lunchtime retreat among locals and tourists alike. The site of a Stone Age elephant hunt dating back 5,000 years, the park now includes an open-air theatre and pond.

Tell us: Have you been to Windhoek? Experienced something that’s not on our list? Let us know in the comments!