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Namibia Food and Drink

What you eat in Namibia depends largely on where you are and who you're with. Dining with Namibia's ethnic groups will usually involve a type of game meat (kudu, springbok, ostrich and sometimes crocodile) served with oshifima (thick porridge made with mahangu flour and cornmeal). Animal offal is also popular.

Among Afrikaans, braais (barbecues), potjiekos (spicy meat stew cooked over open fires), and bobotie (a South African curry dish similar to moussaka) are common.

On the other hand, meals in Windhoek, Walvis Bay and Swakopmund tend to feature fresh seafood and German-inspired dishes – schnitzel and frikadelle (meatballs) are two common examples. In general, menus tend to feature meat as a large part of Namibia is arid, making growing fruit and vegetables challenging. Having said that, more restaurants than ever before are offering vegetarian dishes.

The German influence is also extended to the sweet course with classics like apple strudel and sachertorte (chocolate cake) available in some konditoreien (cake shops). Afrikaaners also know their way around the dessert trolley, with vetkoek (fried dough), koeksesters (fried dough doused in honey), and melktart (milk tart) among the nicest.


Oshifima, thick porridge made with mahangu flour and cornmeal, a staple in Namibia.
Biltong, an air-dried meat, which is a bar snack staple, usually made from beef or kudu.
Braai, barbecue of game meat such as kudu, springbok and ostrich.
Potjiekos, one-pot bush stew, usually cooked over a campfire, and made with just about anything.
• Seafood, on the coast.
• Kalahari truffles, found in eastern Namibia.

Things to know

Namibia has been banning the routine use of hormones and antibiotics on its beef since 1991.


10% is customary.

Drinking age


Regional drinks

A former German colony, Namibia has a robust beer culture that many travellers embrace as they quench their thirst with cold beers.

Namibia Breweries is the country's largest and best-known producer, dominating the market with its award-winning Windhoek Lager and Tafel Lager. Then there are microbreweries, most of which are found in Windhoek and Swakopmund.

Despite the desert heat, Neuras Wine has been producing red wine from an oasis at the foot of the Naukluft Mountains.

• Windhoek lager, drunk by almost everyone.
Oshikundu, fermented mahangu (millet) beer.
Mataku, watermelon wine.

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