Guided open vehicle game viewing
Copyright: African-Experiences 2007.
The Limpopo Valley.

Sweeping across from the Northwest - and flowing along the northern border - is the Limpopo River Valley, a vast, natural area with cultures that date back to the Iron Age.
Hilltop fortifications, and San(Bushmen) paintings and cave dwellings are unchanged from the ancient past.

To the west lies the real bushveld, almost endless except for the hazy blue of distant mountains. Amongst the tangle of vegetation grow old baobab trees, their branches looking like roots thus creating a striking silhouette against a fiery sunset.

This is a land of legend, ruins and rituals. The Venda people are intensely superstitious and place great store in rites and rituals. In the python dance, teenage girls perform a slow, rhythmic dance to the throb of drums. Part of the folklore of the North Sotho people is the legendary Rain Queen, Modjadji, while the Tsonga produce beautiful arts and crafts.

Mapungubwe - place of the stone of wisdom near Musina, was discovered in 1932 by University of Pretoria archeology department. The university has continued to research at the site over the years and hold a considerable amount of artifacts.

The site is on open savannah at the merging borders of South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe at the confluence of the Limpopo and Sashe rivers. Remains of a palace, ampitheartre court and artifacts that signify royalty were found. Gold and copper-smithing are evidence of trade activity. Some glass remains and other trinkets are evidence of trade with Arabia, China and India. The dynasty appears to have flourished from around the years 900 A.D. to about 1400.

To quote UNESCO:"What survives are the almost untouched remains of the palace sites and also the entire settlement area dependent upon them, as well as two earlier capital sites, the whole presenting an unrivalled picture of the development of social and political structures over some 400 years."
The hot climate makes Limpopo Province a pleasant year-round tourist destination. During summer - that is in the months October to March is hot with brief afternoon showers, providing a cooling effect for evenings. In winter - from May to September - the mornings are crisp, the days are dry and sunny and the evenings cold and clear.
Nylsvley floodplain
The largest inland floodplain in South Africa, covering +- 16 000 hectares.The Nylsvley Nature Reserve located within the area boasts a fantastic range of Acacia Woodland, Broad-Leafed Woodland and Grassland species. For Bird watchers, there are 426 recorded species of Birds.Amongst the wildlife the reserve holds, threatened animals. Breeding of endangered Roan antelope, which use the floodplain extensively, and rare Tsessebe is another appealing feature of the reserve.

The Waterberg.
A true wilderness mountain range that offers hiking climbing and birding with numerous private game farms and lodges for accommodation for a malaria free safari and also experience the Waterberg Biosphere, South Africa's only natural floodplain.
The Reserve is one of four UNESCO identified reserves in South Africa.
The Mokopane (formerly Potgietersrus) vicinity has several nature reserves.
The Arend Dieperink Museum has a fine cultural-historical collection, and the Makapan Caves are famous for their fossils.The Thabazimbi district is one of the fastest growing ecotourism areas in South Africa, thanks to its outstanding game reserves.Bela-Bela (formerly Warmbaths) is well-known among South Africans, and increasingly tourists from abroad, for its hot springs, fun slides and scenery.The Waterberg Range is rich in indigenous trees, streams, springs, wetlands, bird life and dramatic scenery.To the north of Letaba, Venda and Gazankulu,near the Zimbabwe border, are largely rural peasant communities with a reputation for arts and crafts.The Modjadji Nature Reserve, north of Tzaneen, has the world's largest collection of cycads (50-million-year-old palms) is named after the legendary Rain Queen, Modjadji, who was the inspiration for Rider Haggard's She.The Rain Queen is Ruler of the matrilineal Balobedu tribe.Phalaborwa has one of the country's top-rated golf courses, the Hans Merensky Golf Course, complete with animals on the fairways.Phalaborwa is the ideal year-round holiday destination due to the mild winter temperatures. There are numerous Safari lodges, private reserves and tour operators in the area. It is within close proximity to the Kruger National Park. It is the ideal spot to end a tour as there is an airport to board connecting flights to international destinations.The Schoemansdal Voortrekker Town and Museum, west of Louis Trichardt, is built on the site of an original Voortrekker village and depicts their lifestyle in the mid 18th century.
Cycads growing in Limpopo Province, South Africa
Open vehicle game viewing, Limpopo, South Africa
Pre- historic plants: Cycads.
Limpopo ProvinceTourist Routes.

The Ivory Route: is based on the legendary trail of ivory hunters and gold prospectors of the past and is about 2,000km. in total length. It is part of about 3.6million ha. of national parks, nature reserves and game farms stretching across the Province. It traverses 4 mountain ranges and is a 4x4 eco-tourist destination. It offers Big Five game viewing, horse trails, abseiling, birding and hiking trails.

The Heritage Route:This route follows the R561 from Baltimore (N11) to Marken and via the R518 to Shongoane and Lephalale town. The road between Ga-Shongoane and Ga-Seleka also forms part of the route.

Limpopo Valley Route:
The route proceeds into the heartland of the land of legends and myths.
Musina, Mutale, and Thohoyandou,. Some of the interesting sites for visitors include the sacred forest of Thatwe Vonde, Lake Fundudzi, Dzata ruins, and Big Tree (200-year old Baobab), and a visit to Makuya Park in the LevubuGorge one of the provinces last remaining wilderness areas.
Whilst in the area, visitors can enter the Kruger National Park either on its northern most gate at Pafuri or Punda Maria, to visit the Thulamela heritage site,

Soutpansberg-Limpopo Birding Route is ideally situated along the Soutpansberg Mountains and the Limpopo River Valley. This little known area has over 540 bird species (55 % of the Southern African total count)

Ribolla Open Africa Route.There are traditional dancers, storytellers,artists, gardeners and singers to be seen on this route. In traditional Tsonga / Shangaan and Venda villages, visitors can stay overnight in rondawels or in luxury accommodation at one of the participating lodges in the area. Experience the culture and traditional way of life of the Venda and Tsonga people.
Limpopo Map Makhado (Louis Trichardt) Musina (Messina) Thorybush Game Reserve Tzaneen Thabazimbi Soutpansberg Mpumalanga Map Hoedspruit Bandelierkop Vivo Bela Bela (Warm Baths) Capricorn Nylstroom Vaalwater Kruger National Park Map Valley of the Olifants North Kruger Park Map Bushveld Nelspruit Gauteng Map North West Province Map Pafuri Gate N1 N1 Zimbabwe Map Botswana Map Lephalale (Ellisras) Mozambique Map Waterberg Mokopane Polokwane Phalaborwa
Bordered by the Limpopo River and Zimbabwe to the north, Mozambique to the east, Botswana to the west, Gauteng to the north-west, and Mpumalanga to the south,South Africa's Limpopo Province is a region of vast un-spoilt wilderness and variety, with a culturally rich and diverse people. As a tourist destination Limpopo Province is the setting for an  African Safari experience par excellence, much of which is malaria free and offers numerous tourit attractions attractions.
The NI from Johannesburg divides the province in two, providing tourists with easy access to all areas.The province is a combination of high and low veld.The Southern Region is famous for its many hot spring resorts, the Nylsvlei wetland and the unspoilt mountains and streams of the Waterberg. The Waterberg mountains and the Soutpansberg provide excellent opportunities for hiking, riding and nature watching, and there are several private game ranches in the area.
There is abundant wildlife and the scenery ranges from rolling hills to mighty cliffs of stark red rock.To the east the Limpopo Province straddles the Northern section of the Kruger National Park. By contrast, visitors can breathe in the cool evening air amongst the mountains and rivers of the lowveld. This unhurried and timeless region is known as The Valley of the Olifants (Elephants).At the centre is the vibrant capital city of Polokwane (Pietersburg) - the industrial and commercial heart of the Great North. Gold was first mined and smelted in the 19th century. The very earliest hominid fossils were discovered close by, in the historic caves of the Makapan Valley
A leopard, Limpopo Province, South Africa
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Limpopo Province: Tourist Attractions and Safari.

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