Dumelang! My name is Hannah, and I am studying public and community health this summer at the University of Botswana. As a dorm kid in the summer, most of the food options are campus are very limited. Firstly, I want to do an honorable mention. The Sefalana Shoppers store in the student center sells basic groceries (at a steeper price than a normal store). I would sometimes stop in after class to grab some juice and a quick snack. The only shop in the student center that was open for the majority of the summer sold fat cakes, which are just big deep fried dough balls, and on a good day, muffins!
On a Scale of zero cows (being the worst) and 5 cows (being the best)
In no particular order:
The Daily Grind
Mugg and Bean
Bull and Bush
First up, everyone’s go to—Nando’s. Nando’s was a short taxi ride away at riverwalk. Everyone there is very friendly and when we missed some simple chicken and fries, this is where we went. I normally got the peri peri wedges and added vinegar (trust me on this one). The bar one milkshake is also just a really good standard chocolate milkshake! This was also our favorite movie food. Whenever we went to riverwalk to see a movie, we went to Nando’s first and grabbed some “chips” and milkshakes to smuggle in (our little secret, ok?).
Nando’s — 4 out of 5 cows
Next, we have The Daily Grind. This is the closest thing to American food we could find. It is a great little cafe that is super close to main mall. We normally just had the taxi driver drop us off at main mall and then walked for about five minutes. This place had the one thing I had been searching high and low for—COFFEE. Real, honest to goodness coffee. I almost cried tears of joy when they brought out my iced latte. It is a great brunch/lunch spot, and they have free wifi! This is a great weekend spot to relax and maybe work on some Setswana homework.
The Daily Grind—3.5 out of 4 cows
News Cafe is next on the list. We went to this cute cafe during the last week of classes. It is within walking distance to UB, making all of us wish we had found it sooner! If you are missing a taste of home, this is where you should go. They had free wifi, great coffee, and amazing food! The cafe itself looks modern and new, with indoor and outdoor seating. My friends ordered everything from eggs and toast to a burger and chips, and everything was delicious. They had smoothies, coffee, breakfast, and lunch food. It was hard to decide what to get! This place is a MUST if you are planning to come to Gabs.
News Cafe— 5 out of 5 cows
Mugg and Bean is also in riverwalk (can you tell we went to riverwalk quite often?). It is just your average coffee shop. They do have some spectacular muffins though. There is free wifi and it is a nice change of scenery. Their coffee isn’t as great as the aforementioned places, but it’ll do in a pinch.
Mugg and Bean—2 out of 5 cows
Bull and Bush was a hit or miss for my friends and me. We came here for one of the girl’s birthdays! I ordered the pizza, which was the closest thing to American pizza that I’ve had since I’ve been in Gabs. Steer clear of anything described as cheesy, because the cheese here is not what you’re used to. They love cheese sauces here that just don’t taste quite right. My pizza was great though, and so were the burgers. You could probably skip this one.
Bull and Bush—2 out of 5 cows
Spar is a random one, I I know, but I stand by this one. Spar is a grocery store in riverwalk that was not only our favorite place to grocery shop, but also had some great hot food. When we were in a rush but still hungry, we would stop by Spar on road trips or field trips and grab some popcorn chicken and chips. It was delicious! They also have some great fruit here. The strawberries here taste better. I promise. We once cleared out their stock of strawberries and ate all of the cartons in less than a week.
Spar—4 out of 5 cows
Embassy is an Indian restaurant in riverwalk. After a weekend trip to Swakopmund, Namibia where we had some amazing Indian food, we were all craving some authentic Indian cuisine. This place is a little pricey, but it was good! I had the chicken biryani, which is spiced chicken and rice, and it was delicious. If you want something a little different, this is the place to go.
Embassy—3 out of 5 cows
Rodizio’s is a place I would not have gone to normally. However, my group won a free dinner here for being first place in a scavenger hunt. This is a chain I am sure you are familiar with, but it was still great! They have great steak, and the prices aren’t too bad for a steakhouse. If you want to be fancy schmancy, go here! Skip dessert though. We were disappointed.
Rodizio’s—3.5 out of 5 cows
Debonnaire’s is a pizza chain in riverwalk. It is decent pizza that is very budget friendly. Be warned—pepperoni isn’t the same here. That’s all I’m sayin’
Debonnaire’s— 2 out of 5 cows
Main Deck is one of our favorite places here. It is fun to come here at night for drinks and it is also a fun dinner place. They have a good atmosphere, good food, and good drinks! We came here for birthday celebrations and to just hang out many Saturday nights!
Main Deck—4.5 out of 5 cows