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Otjiwarongo

Otjiwarongo lies on the B1, some 50 kilometres west of the Waterberg massif and 250 km north of Windhoek. The Herero, who once settled here, named it "place of the fat cows", and still today some of the biggest cattle breeding enterprises are situated in the Otjiwarongo area. Due to the, in the Namibian context, relatively high rainfall, pastures are good and the soil is fertile. 

Otjiwarongo is mainly the supply cenntre for the surrounding farms. The town, with 12 000 inhabitants, looks green, prosperous and neat. There are supermarkets, banks, hotels, restaurants and a popular beergarden. In front of the station you can see the old steam engine No. 41, built in 1912 by the Henschel company in Kassel, Germany. It used to run on the railway line from Swakopmund to Otavi.

Quite a new attraction in Otjiwarongo is the crocodile farm near the eastern border of town, where you can observe and photograph crocodiles at close range and learn about the breeding habits of these reptiles.


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Top right: Catholic Church. Bottom left: Old Henschel steam locomotive at Otjiwarongo station.
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Situated in the Otjiwarongo area, are some of Namibia's most reputable private game farms and reserves with integrated luxurious lodges. The Okonjati Wildlife Sanctuary with the Mount Etjo Safari Lodge is excellent. Here, you can watch elephants, rhinos, giraffes, lions and others animals. On the farm Okonjima, you can view big cats like cheetahs and leopards at close range. Okonjima is the seat of the AfriCat Foundation, which is dedicated to the protection of African big cats. Both game farms are situated south-west of Otjiwarongo, less than an hour's drive from town.

East of town, at the Waterberg Massif, several farms have conglomerated to form the "Waterberg Conservancy"; a game and nature conservation area of more 200 000 hectares in size. The Cheetah Conservation Fund CCF, which is specifically dedicated to the survival of cheetahs, has established an information centre there.

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