Limpopo Tourist AttractionsThe Soutpansberg Region
Lying in the northern part of the Limpopo province, bordering on both Botswana and Zimbabwe, the Soutpansberg Vhembe Region is nothing short of spectacular - the baobab, a familiar symbol that stands resolute among the magnificence of vast expanses of indigenous bush in a land characterised by the myth and legend of the vhaVenda people and awash with the vivid colour of blue skies, a prolific wildlife and seemingly endless opportunities for exploration.
In the west of the Vhembe Region lie the craggy peaks that form the jagged spine of the Soutpansberg or ‘salt pan mountain’, which attributes its name to the giant salt pan on the west side of this range that has been a source of salt for centuries. Cross the mountain range and one falls into the all-encompassing plains of the Limpopo Valley, which stretches across the north of the country, characterised by further glimpses of the giant baobab and recurrent mopane trees.
Through this natural basin flows the Limpopo River, the country’s third most important river and a life source for the essentially hot, dry land through which it winds, giving life to more than 500 tree species, a series of farming villages and one of the world’s highest concentrations of leopard. Another important river to the region is the Nzhelele, which flows from its source on the eastern slopes of the Soutpansberg to slice its way into the Limpopo just east of Musina.
To the east lie the Lowveld and Kruger National Park, most of which falls into the Limpopo whilst to the south is the ‘land of legend’, a region that lays claim to a sacred lake, holy forest where ancient ways are still revered by traditional vhaVenda culture.
The Mapungubwe and the Makapane Valley are both national heritage sites, and a feast of lion, leopard, white and black rhino, elephant, cheetah and spotted hyena - most of the continent’s big game - roam here. It is rich in cultural heritage and boasts an incredible diversity of plant and animal life, but what draws visitors time and time again are the incredible unspoilt wilderness areas that seamlessly contrast with sophisticated resorts to provide warm hospitality in a destination without equal.
Popular Towns in the Soutpansberg Region
Overnight? Accommodation in Alldays
The distinctly rural town of Alldays, about 120 kilometres from Musina, lies within view of the effortless Soutpansberg Mountains, providing a constant purple hue in the land of huge baobabs, incredible sunsets, soaring temperatures...
More info and photographs: Alldays Information
Overnight? Accommodation in Elim
The tiny village of Elim (meaning "place of God"), just south of Makhado (Louis Trichardt) may have idled in obscurity up until now, but since the creation of the Venda art route, which meanders through some incredibly beautiful rural...
More info and photographs: Elim Information
Overnight? Accommodation in Louis Trichardt
Lying at the foot of the densely forested Soutpansberg mountain range, Louis Trichardt and the surrounding area is the land of litchis, bananas, mangoes, nuts, tea and coffee - a rugged hot terrain famous for the giant baobab and the indigo...
More info and photographs: Louis Trichardt Information
Overnight? Accommodation in Makhado
Louis Trichardt (briefly known as Makhado): Lying at the foot of the densely forested Soutpansberg mountain range, Louis Trichardt and the surrounding area is the land of litchis, bananas, mangoes, nuts, tea and coffee and a variety...
More info and photographs: Makhado Information
Overnight? Accommodation in Mapungubwe
Set right up against the northern border of South Africa, uniting Botswana and Zimbabwe, lies Mapungubwe National Park - an extensive savannah landscape situated at the meeting place of the Limpopo and Shashe rivers. This is the land...
More info and photographs: Mapungubwe Information
Overnight? Accommodation in Musina
In the land of the baobab lies a town in the northernmost section of the country, called Musina. Just 15 kilometres north of the little town that used to be known as Messina is the Beitbridge Border Post that serves the boundary with...
More info and photographs: Musina Information
Overnight? Accommodation in Schoemansdal
The little town of Schoemansdal, 12 kilometres west of Makhado off the R522 en route to Vivo, began as one of the most important trading centres in the then Northern Transvaal in the time of largely renegade and shady dealings in ivory...
More info and photographs: Schoemansdal Information
Overnight? Accommodation in Thohoyandou
The former capital of the independent homeland, Thohoyandou, meaning ‘head of the elephant’ in tshiVenda, lies south of Venda on the main road between Louis Trichardt and the Kruger National Park. Today the predominantly black...
More info and photographs: Thohoyandou Information
Overnight? Accommodation in Vivo
The Soutpansberg Mountains rise seemingly out of nowhere virtually on the doorstep of the little village of Vivo. From there they stretch east in a series of dips and troughs, petering out as one reaches the Kruger National Park, on the border...
More info and photographs: Vivo Information