As one of Africa's most densely population animal kingdoms, Namibia will for sure fascinate you! Unique landscapes and well-known nature reserves like the Etosha Nationalpark will enthuse you! Namibia can also be discovered on one's own initiative - as a self-drive tour.
Namibia is a very sparsely populated country in Southern Africa and is located between Angola, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, South Africa and the Atlantic Ocean. The name of the country was educed from the desert Namib, which takes up the whole coastal area. The total territory of Namibia comprises about 824.292 km² and with this is twice the size of Germany.
The population of the is concentrated on a few cities and the copious north of the country. About 44% of the population live in the regions of Omusati, Oshana, Ohangwena and Oshikoto. A third lives in Central Namibia, more than 300.000 of them in the capital Windhoek. Only 7% live in the south, while the west and the Namib desert - apart from the seaports - are nearly deserted.
The culture of the Owambo who comprise the most part of the population also has the strongest influences on the life in Namibia. But within the cities there are still hints to the German colonial era, e.g. different celebrations, food or architecture.
Today's Namibians are a mixture of different but party related nations who mostly relocated to this area during several migrations in the 16th and 18th century. As a result of the proselytization during the colonial era, about 87% of the Namibians are Christians, a number high above the African average. 50% are Protestants and 20% are Catholics, the other Christians are divided into other smaller churches. About 13% of the inhabitants belong to traditional nature religions. The Islam plays hardly any role in Namibia, the number of Moslems is estimated for a few thousend.
On the Day of Independence, 21. March 1990, it was decided against the previous official languages due to political reasons and for the English language which isn't spoken by lots of older people, especially in the north of the country. The main part of the inhabitants speak - apart from Bantu or Khoisan languages - either Afrikaans, several also German.
Windhoek is the capital of Namibia and political and economical centre. It was first mentioned in the documents in 1840 and founded in 1890 as a modern city. About 450.000 people live in Windhoek, the yearly population growth is at about 4,5%. Windhoek is called one of the cleanest capitals in Africa with a mixture of European and African influences. Due to its social security and the coexistance of the Namibian ethnic groups it is regarded an exemplary social modell of an African city, but it is also quite introspective.
Places worth seeing in Windhoek: the Old Fortress, the National Museum of Namibia, the Lutheran Christ Church, the Old Brewery and the Ink Palace
With its presently 81.500 inhabitants, Rundu is the second largest city of Namibia and is located in the Northeast of the country. For a long time Rundu's economy was based on the growing economic structures of the population and is today supplemented by trade and tourism. About 50% of the inhabitants work in the agriculture sector and the fishing, which also forms the livelihood of most of the city's small-scale entrepreneurs.
Walvis Bay is an urban commune in the Namibian region Erongo and the most important seaport of Namibia. About 67.500 people live here, it is located - together with its deep sea harbour - at the Atlantic Ocean. Walvis Bay is the third largest city in Namibia and situated about 30 km south of Swakopmund.
Places worth seeing in Walvis Bay: the Rhenish Mission Church
Portuguese sailors disovered the country in the 15th century for Europe. But for a long time there was no nameable colonisation due to the forbidding conditions at the coastal region. It was not until the 19th centry that a strong migration of European settler occured, mainly from Portugal, England and the German language area.
During the First World War, the country was occupied by the British troops of South Africa and commited as a mandated territory for administration to the South African Union after the end of the war. Despite international endeavours and an armed battle against the Southwest African Public Organisation (SWAPO - founded in 1960) over two decades it held the country till their Day of Independence on 21. March 1990.
After more than 100 years of heteronomy, Namibia is now an independent and democratic state. Since the foundation of the republic, the government is formed by the SWAP. It is the party of the biggest ethnic group, the Ovambo.
About 20% of the gross national product is earned by mining, the most important raw materials being uranium and diamonds. Besides, fishing and tourism play a more and more important role. Another important economic sector is agriculture with about half of all Namibian employees working there. Here the focus is laid on breeding cattle and sheep, especially Karakul sheep. In Southern Namibia, farms grow hoodia, additionally dates, wine, olives and roses are grown.