About Phiphidi Falls

Phiphidi Falls is one of several natural sacred sites of the Venda people. The others include Lake Funduzi and the Thate Vonde Forest. The falls are used by the elders of the Ramunangi, a Venda clan, for communicating with their ancestors. It is a beautiful cascade of water surrounded by thick trees and lush vegetation.

Did you know? Before a visit to the falls, try and get permission from the Ramunangi, or contact local guides and travel companies who work with the Ramunangi people.

Phiphidi lies within a forest on the Mutshindudi River. The rock above the waterfall is called LanwaDzongolo, and the pool below the waterfall, Guvhukuvhu . Both are considered holy. The Venda believe that the water and the pool are the home of ancestral water spirits to whom they bring offerings of beer and grain.

A select group of women of the Ramunangi, known as Makhadzi, or women of power, carry out a series of rain rituals where they speak to their ancestors to pray for rain, health and peace.

These sacred sites are the core of the vhaVenda culture and community, and the people believe they should be both respected and protected. Unfortunately Phiphidi Falls, because of its attraction to tourists, has been tampered with and a road built along the river without consulting the custodians.

When construction began on a series of chalets, a bar and a restaurant at the head of the waterfall, the Ramunangi elders drafted a legal claim of rights to the sacred sites at Phiphidi Waterfall, petitioning the High Court to stop the building. The BBC ran a story on saving ‘sacred sites’ from tourist chalets.

The Venda community believe that if their sacred sites are destroyed that famine and disease will result. The elders joined forces with a local organisation called Dzomo la Mupo (Voice of the Earth), which represents sacred sites.

Need to Know

WherePhiphidi Falls, Phiphidi lies within a forest on the Mutshindudi River near Thohoyandou, Soutpansberg, Limpopo, South Africa

WhenBest during daylight hours.

OvernightStay in Thohoyandou Accommodation, Limpopo

Disclaimer

Please note, business details can change. While we endeavour to ensure all information provided by the service provider is correct at the time of publication, we do not assume any liability caused by errors or changes, such as price, cost, time, and location. Please check with the provider that the activity/business is still offered as described, before making any travel plans.

Feedback?

If this is your attraction, you can let us know if anything on this page is outdated or contains inaccuracies, by email. We regret, we do not have any other information, please contact the provider if you have questions.

In the vicinity

Hotels & other accommodation options in Soutpansberg

Things to do in the area

Accommodation convenient to Phiphidi Falls

FIND / South Africa Accommodation / Limpopo Accommodation / Vhembe Accommodation / Soutpansberg Accommodation / Thohoyandou Accommodation

Thohoyandou as a destination

Want to stay overnight?

Number of Guests

  • Secure your booking
Our Payment Protection Guarantee only applies if your deposit payment is made via SA-Venues.com
  • Thohoyandou

SA-Venues.com has been assisting travellers with their South Africa travel plans since 1999, and is the largest, independent online travel guide for South Africa available in both English and German.