Okahandja

Okahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in Namibia
Okahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in Namibia

 

Geography and History

Okahandja is situated directly 70 km North of Windhoek.   Okahandja is known as the 'Garden Town of Namibia'.  Several major companies are based here because of it's excellent infrastructure. Many travellers find Okahandja just the place to take a break on their travels through the country, especially if they don't find the need to go on to the capital city. An interesting fact is that Okahandja has no traffic lights!

The word, 'Okahandja' is derived from Otjiherero (a local tribal language) and means 'The place where two rivers flow into each other to form one wide one.' (Or a 'short broad river.')  These two rivers are the Okakango and the Okamita, which flow only the during the summer season and are dry throughout most of the year.

Okahandja is rich in history and it revolves mostly around the Herero and Nama tribal people. Chiefs Tjamuaha and Kahitjene came to Okahandja in 1800 to establish themselves here. Chief Tjamuaha was the father of Chief Maherero, who was known to be the great leader of the Herero people.  In 1827 the first white person, Heinrich Schmelen a German pastor, came to Okahandja and called the place 'Schmelenverwachtung'. The Rhenish Mission sent two missionaries, Hugo Hahn and Heinrich Kleinschmidt to Okahandja in 1844 to do church work.

All went peacefully in Okahandja until the 23rd of August 1850, when the 'Bloodbath of Okahandja' took place between the Nama and Herero speaking people. Today the site where this historic battle took place in known as 'Moordkoppie' and is situated behind the town's school next to the Windhoek - Karibib main road.

 

Attractions

There are many historical sites to visit and a large variety of birds to view.

Just 25 km from Okahandja, is the Gross Barmen Hot Springs Resort,  There is an inside swimming pool, open-air swimming pool, restaurant, filling station, shop, and self-catering bungalows, making this a popular tourist attraction and is worth the visit.  Another popular resort - the Von Bach Dam - where water sports, angling and bird-watching are favourite pastimes with locals and visitors alike.

Okahandja is an important centre for woodcarvers from the north, who sell their carvings at the craft markets on a co-operative basis, next to the main road at both entrances to Okahandja.  A good place to buy a holiday souvenir or gift.

 

Accommodation

Okahandja offers several accommodation establishments ranging from guest houses to hotels, while the surrounding area has several excellent lodges.

 

Okahandja Tourism Office Information
Web address: http://www.namibiatourism.com.na
Telephone: +264 61 2906000
Okahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in NamibiaOkahandja in Namibia

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