Limpopo Province, South Africa: South Africa’s northernmost province, Limpopo, borders onto Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Botswana, making it the ideal entrance to Africa. Limpopo takes up 10.2% of South Africa's total land area. Named after the great Limpopo River that flows along its northern border, this province is rich in wildlife, spectacular scenery and a wealth of historical and cultural treasures.
The Great North Road from Pretoria was first carved by the creaking wheels of ox wagons. Today, when you follow the footsteps of the Voortrekkers, you'll travel on fast, safe roads and enjoy every modern amenity as you go. Known as the Great North, Limpopo is land of legend. Ruins and relics abounds in ancient forests, sparkling trout waters, hot mineral springs and waterfalls. Much of it has remained unchanged for centuries, offering unlimited opportunities in Limpopo for the enjoyment of untamed Africa. Limpopo is home to ancient lands and pre-historic secrets. This is home to Modjadji, the fabled Rain Queen, the Stone Age and Iron Age relics of Makapansgat Valley and the treasures of Mapungubwe that date back to time immemorial.
Dramatic contrasts in landscape and vegetation are symbolic of the Limpopo Province. Encompassing dry savannah plains, steep valleys and majestic mountain ranges, the province is one of legend and of the early pioneers during the Great Trek.
The province was formerly known as the Northern Province and includes vast areas of the Kruger National Park and many private reserves. In the North coffee, tea and citrus plantations can be found due to the more exotic climate above the Tropic of Capricorn.
The province in divided into four tourism regions; The Capricorn region, The Bushveld Region; The Soutpansberg region and The Valley of the Oliphants.
- Northern (the Limpopo part of the Kruger National Park)
- Valley of the Elephants
- Polokwane The Provincial Capital (Formerly Pietersburg) Capital of Limpopo and ideally situated for game viewing, Kruger National Park visits, cultural & historical experience and break-aways into the mountains.
- Bela-Bela (Warmbaths) In the sunshine town of Bela-Bela there is something for every need; from fun activities like our world famous cable-ski, to conference facilities.
- Haenertsburg With the rush waning the town grew steadily, providing for its inhabitants while retaining its rural charm.
- Hoedspruit Hoedspruit provides access to the Kruger Park and various surrounding game reserves and is the ideal base to explore South Africa`s wildlife from
- Lephalale (Ellisras) West of the Mogol River in the distinctive bushveld landscape of the foothills of the Waterberg Range lies the busy town of Lephalale.
- Makhado Situated in a tropical area surrounded by senic splendour Makhado (previously Louis Trichardt) offers the visitor a variety of leisure activities.
- Modimolle (Nylstroom) The commercial centre of the Waterberg plateau, Modimolle (Nylstroom) is a popular local tourist destination given its attractive surrounding and excellent facilities.
Just two hours from Gauteng, the town acts as the perfect getaway destination and the ideal stopover for travellers en route to Botswana, Zimbabwe and the Kruger National Park.
- Musina Situated in the lovely Limpopo Valley, close to the border to Zimbabwe. Sub-tropical climate, in the midst of game and nature reserves, this is an ultimate destination for a traveller in Southern Africa.
- Phalaborwa Phalaborwa, situated next to the Kruger Park, is a modern town and a major provider of ore for South Africa's mining industry.
- Thabazimbi Massive iorn-ore reserves brought about the establishment of Thabazimbi – gateway to Marakele National Park.
- Thohoyandou Thohoyandou is the centre for southern Venda situated in a beautiful area and offering many fascinating tourist attractions.
- Tzaneen A busy town in the picturesque Letaba district with tropical and subtropical farming and only 90 minutes drive from Kruger National Park.
- Vaalwater Vaalwater, in the Waterberg, is surrounded by game farms and nature reserves and is an excellent eco-destination.
- Mapungubwe National Park
- Baobab Tree Reserve
Agriculture offers attractive opportunities for investment, with the Polokwane International Airport offering potential for direct export. Limpopo produces key crops of mangoes, papayas, citrus, avocado, tomatoes and potatoes, while more than 700,000 tons of timber is produced every year from 170 plantations, with equal quantities of hard and soft woods. The climate is well suited for cut rose, peach and almond production.
Pre-feasibility studies indicate that peach and almond production is viable. Investigations have also been conducted into the potential for cassava and bamboo production. Soil and climatic conditions in large parts of the province are well suited to these commodities and ready markets for almost any level of production can be found in the province, in the country and in sub-Saharan Africa.
Cassava and bamboo are suitable for the production of staple foods and animal fodder. The first commercial cassava starch plantation was established in in 1999, with yields significantly higher than in the Far East and South America.
Bamboo can also be used for building materials suited to subtropical and tropical climates. Several large irrigation facilities are also underutilised and could form the basis for mutually rewarding public-private partnerships. Pre-feasibility studies of these projects indicate sound viability for subtropical fruit and citrus production.
The Limpopo Province enjoys hot yet pleasant summers and dry winters. The weather is characterised by almost year-round sunshine. It can get very hot in summer (October through to March), with temperatures rising to 27ºC (80.6 ºF) and sometimes reaching temperatures in the mid 30ºs Celsius (mid-90s Fahrenheit). This is mild compared to the Lowveld where some towns such as Phalaborwa have been known to reach 45ºC (116ºF). One of the great attractions is the Kruger National Park, where tourists can expect summer temperatures around the 30ºC (86ºF) mark.
Limpopo diverse mining activities include diamonds, iron ore, coal, copper and phosphates. The world's largest reserves of platinum group metals are to be found in the centre of the province, which also has rich deposits of chrome, vanadium, nickel and titanium. Large coal reserves occur in most of the western part of the province and are associated with significant quantities of natural gas or coal bed methane. A joint South African and US feasibility study is being conducted to assess the potential of these reserves.
The province is also the world's largest producer of antimony, a strategic element used in alloys and medicine. There are also a host of smaller operations extracting a range of minerals including gold, emeralds, mica, scheelite, black granite, potassium and silica. The potential of a new ilmenite, magnetite and vanadium mine is being assessed.
Other key investment opportunities include: The provincial department of economic affairs has conducted pre-feasibility studies on four mining projects for which prospectuses are soon to be prepared. Extraction of platinum from chrome tailings at several mines appears to be a profitable opportunity for private sector investment. A significant deposit of graphite in the northwestern part of the province is also awaiting development. Very large deposits of vanadium in the western part of the province are another investment opportunity. A pre-feasibility study has also been conducted for the mining by emergent groups of vanadiferous magnetite in the southern part of the province.
Sepedi (52%), Xitsonga (22%), Tshivenda (16%).
Car Hire and Transport Services Public roads in South Africa are well developed and well sign-posted with driving done on the left hand side of the road. Drivers must have an international drivers license and a minimum of 5 years driving experience to hire a car in South Africa.
Hoedspruit has an airport with regular flights to Johannesburg.
Polokwane International Airport Pietersburg / Polokwane International Airport is situated five kilometres from town. There is no bus service to town, but major car hire companies have rental kiosks at the airport and taxis are also readily available.
- The north of the Kruger National Park.
- Some of the private game reserves, like Thornybush.
- Rock Climbing
- Mashovhela Lodge, Morning Sun Reserve N1(14km north of Makhado), ☎ 0027129916930, . Experience the African bush, Feel the beat of Venda drums in the heart of the Soutpansberg ZAR680. (22 56'35.66 S,29 53' 23.2E)
Limpopo Game Reserves
With its vast expanses of bushveld wilderness habituated by an abundance of wildlife species, the Limpopo Province is the perfect destination for nature and wildlife enthusiasts. The Limpopo province is predominantly rural with the result that large areas still remain untouched by human development.
- Balule Game Reserve Valley of the Olifants
- Klaserie Nature Reserve Valley of the Olifants
- Mabula Private Game Reserve Waterberg
- Manyeleti Game Reserve Valley of the Olifants
- Marakele National Park Waterberg
- Thornybush Game Reserve Valley of the Olifants
- Timbavati Game Reserve Valley of the Olifants
- Tshukudu Game Reserve Valley of the Olifants
- Umhlametsi Game Reserve Valley of the Olifants
- Welgevonden Private Game Reserve Waterberg
- Zwahili Private Reserve Luxury en-suite rooms and elegant tented camps await you. Embrace a true African experience in comfort, style, and luxury.
This exclusive private game lodge is situated 2 hours North of Johannesburg in a malaria free area at the foot of the Waterberg in the bushveld region of the Limpopo Province.
Here at Zwahili where the most spectacular sunsets are experienced from the extended timber deck, you'll find unsurpassed peace and tranquillity while in the distance nocturnal life comes alive. As the Southern Cross and Orion's belt garland the dome of the night sky, the distant smell of campfire from the open-air boma welcomes the guests back from their early evening game drive. The faint call of tribal drums announces an array of culinary delights to appease even the most discerning palates. Game viewing, conducted by an experienced ranger offers sighting of giraffe, cheetah, civet cat, caracal, zebra, blue wildebeest, eland, impala, red hartebeest, ostrich, gemsbuck, waterbuck, blesbuck, kudu, bush pig,warthog, and numerous smaller antelope. Bird watching over 300 species of African bird life with rare sightings such as lizard buzzard and brown snake eagle. The world-renowned Nylsvley bird sanctuary is in close proximity for aspiring birdwatchers. Guided bush walks and excursions ascending “Witkop” going back in time to when the “bittereinders”, at the helm of a Boer General, utilized this koppie as a hideout from the British for almost two years. “Witkop” stands proud in bearing homage to a period in history long forgotten.
Take the same safety precautions as you would in any other international city or town, particularly when sightseeing in built-up urban areas. Avoid unnecessary displays of valuables including jewelery, cash or audio/visual recording equipment. Do not walk in deserted places or go out alone at night. Always lock your car doors and keep the windows closed. The use of travellers' cheques or credit cards is more advisable than carrying large amounts of cash with you. » Police Emergency - Tel 10111 » Ambulance - Tel 10117
This page was last edited at 18:23, on 6 March 2009 by Wikitravel user Vidimian. Based on work by David, Leighanne Dawkins, Nick Roux, Tim Sandell, Colin Jensen and Felix Gottwald, Wikitravel user(s) Jonboy and Yzerfontein and Anonymous user(s) of Wikitravel.