Tzaneen, Valley of the Olifants
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Described as an appealing subtropical garden town, Tzaneen is in fact the second largest town in the Mopani district in Limpopo that lies at the foot of the Wolkberg Mountains in the northern reaches of the Drakensberg range. These form an impressive backdrop to the town that is renowned for its abundant growth of just about everything subtropical - avocados, nuts, citrus fruits, mangoes, bananas and litchis, coffee, tea and cotton.
Tzaneen also serves as a good spot from which to explore the rest of the region, with its position just below the Magoebaskloof. The special thing about Tzaneen is the constant change in scenery - lush vegetation, plantations, mountains and one of the biggest baobab trees in the world (at the Sunland Nursery between Duiwelskloof and Ga-Kgapane) mean that there is never a dull moment.
The quaint little Tzaneen Museum is definitely worth a visit, on a day when you’re not out exploring the various nature reserves or the Tzaneen Dam (also a nature reserve), for its collection of ethnological artefacts like pottery, beadwork, weapons, the largest collection of pole carvings in the country. There is also a collection of royal drums from the Rain Queen, Modjadji - hereditary ruler of the Balobedu people of the area whose succession is matrilineal (the Queen’s eldest daughter is heir and males are not entitled to the throne) - whose residence is close to the Modjadji Nature Reserve.
Just 17 kilometres from Tzaneen is the beautiful Duiwelskloof (devil’s gorge), renamed Modjadjiskloof in 2004 in the Rain Queen’s honour.
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Visitorials: We ♥ South Africa
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Featured Attractions in (or near) Tzaneen
On the banks of the Great Letaba River lies the Hans Merensky Nature Reserve, just west of the Kruger National Park and not far from Tzaneen. The main draw card to this beautiful reserve is the fact that you can walk most of it on foot, and despite its apparent flatness, there is the welcome relief of... more information
Bordering the Timbavati Game Reserve and Kruger National Park, the Klaserie Game Reserve reserve is hot and dry for most of the year. The bush is sparse but soon recovers, if and when summer rains arrive. Wildlife wanders freely over vast areas and you are likely to see all the usual... more information
Bounding the Wolkberg Wilderness, Lekgalameetse is an attractive mountain reserve sporting sparkling clear rivers and waterfalls and natural pools. The most colourful of butterflies, natural beauty, lush kloofs, indigenous forests and the plentiful birdlife make it a much ... more information
Also known as the Greater Makalali Private Game Reserve and one of the country’s major privately owned conservation areas, Makalali Conservancy is over 22 000 hectares set in the Lowveld region of Limpopo, an hour west of the Phalaborwa gate of the Kruger National Park and roughly 80 kilometres from Hoedspruit ... more information
The Makutsi Conservancy, in the heart of the Limpopo, lies adjacent to the Greater Makalali Private Game Reserve just 40 minutes' due east of the Kruger National Park. It lies on route 36 that links Tzaneen to the N4 from Pretoria, making it easily accessible and one of the easiest escapes for visitors to Johannesburg ... more information
High in the Lobedu Mountains near Duiwelskloof and situated next to the home of the fabled rain queen, lies the Modjadji Cycad Reserve, boasting some of the oldest and largest Cycad specimens on earth. The 530 hectare Modjadji Nature Reserve, situated in the Bolobedu district of Lebowa, north-east of... more information
Timbavati Game Reserve shares a common unfenced border with the Kruger National Park. This allows the animals free range and ensures guests to the area the opportunity to view the greatest diversity of wildlife that South Africa has to offer. Timbavati is a "Big Five" Game Reserve: Lion, Leopard... more information
Covered with indigenous grasses and endowed with putting surfaces unmatched throughout Limpopo, Tzaneen Country Club will reward the player who can adapt to the subtle breaks and influences of the ever-present grain and the golfer with putts dropping at a whim. A blend of rolling fairways and punishing but ... more information
Lying just off the R71 outside Haenertsburg where the Drakensberg meets the Strydpoort Mountains, the Wolkberg Wilderness Area is a selected few hikers’ idea of bliss - the tracks through the awe-inspiring 22 000 hectare piece of paradise are pretty indistinct, meaning that a hiker can choose his own strenuous route ... more information
Things To Do in Tzaneen
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