The Namaqualand Region, Northern Cape

Namaqualand extends from the Atlantic Ocean on the west coast, to the little town of Pofadder in the east, to the Orange River in the north, south to Garies, and includes the Hantam Karoo, along the southern border of the Northern Cape.

Did you know? Once you've booked your hotel or Namaqualand accommodation, explore the destination pages below for info on attractions, activities and things to do when you visit the Namaqualand region.

Regarded as a portion of the Succulent Karoo, Namakwa (Namaqualand) forms part of the only arid hotspot in the world; is regarded as a biodiversity hotspot, and as such boasts the richest succulent flora on Earth.

The Namaqualand region of the Northern Cape is imbued with the story of the Namaqualand daisies; a brimming over of fertile flowers that transform the almost lifeless Namaqualand into an exquisite floral display of beauty during spring. One for which people are more than willing to enter the hinterland of South Africa’s Northern Cape, to discover that the unspoilt vastness of Namaqualand and Hantam Karoo, which make up Namaqualand, is far more than an area of sweltering extremes and dry earth under unforgiving skies.

Did you know? Also known as the Daisy Route, the Cape wild flowers draw thousands of visitors a year to the semi-desert of the Namaqualand, annually metamorphosed into a profusion of blooms. Just after the first winter rains what was desert comes to life and the Karoo and Kalahari’s dry grey scrub bursts with colour.

Namaqualand is indeed a thirsty earth, but one that is fascinating to travel. For visitors the explosion of wild flowers along the flower route from Springbok’s Goegap Nature Reserve to Kamieskroon’s Skilpad Wild Flower Reserve, is a phenomenon that combines incredible landscapes through remote little towns, like Pofadder, the Richtersveld National Park, the Hester Malan Wild Flower Garden, and the Namaqua National Park.

The narrow window between July and September, in which the Namkwa casts off its dowdy desert cloak to transform its barrenness, relies heavily on good rainfall just before spring.

But then the Namaqualand is not its flowers alone. Little historic towns that include quaint names like Kamieskroon, Aggeneys, Garies and Nieuwoudtville, are as much a part of the landscape as the incredible flora.

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Destinations in the Namaqualand Region

Alexander Bay

Way up the west coast of South Africa, virtually on the border with Namibia in a region known simply as Little Namaqualand, is Alexander Bay. There is nothing more northerly than this seaside town that lies on the mouth of the Orange River – the river...


Eksteenfontein lies on the southern verge of the Richtersveld World Heritage Site, west of Nababeep, in the north western reaches of the Northern Cape. It is one of three little settlements within the Richtersveld Community Conservancy. The other two a...


To describe Garies as in the middle of nowhere does not do any damage to the reputation of the town (for those who stay here, particularly during the spring flower revolution, will come anyway). The average person after a Namaqualand 'dorp' experience wou...

Hondeklip Bay

Overnight? Hondeklip Bay accommodation
Enjoy the ultimate in untouched peace and tranquillity when you visit the little village of Hondeklip Bay. This coastal town, (also spelt Honeklipbaai) is secluded on the Northern Cape shoreline, in the picturesque Namakwa District of South Africa. The se...


Overnight? Kamieskroon accommodation
Kamieskroon, just off the N7 between Garies and Springbok and 20 km west of the Namaqua National Park, lies in the midst of the Northern Cape's flower route, resting in amongst a series of huge, angular granite hills and distinctive kopjies that make up t...


It is hot in Khuboes. And nothing prepares one for the midday desert heat on the eastern perimeter of the Richtersveld, near the Ai Ais-Richtersveld Transfrontier Park. Khuboes is one of several communities in the Richtersveld World Heritage Site. The ...


Overnight? Kleinzee accommodation
Kleinzee is easy to find. Take the N7 from Cape Town, travel for about 560 km and then veer left at Springbok, following the course of the Skaap River, which merges with Buffels River on its way to the sea. Set on the coast, Kleinzee (sometimes referr...


The Richtersveld in the Northern Cape is home to only a few villages. One of them lies 60 km east of Port Nolloth, and 100 km north of Springbok. Its name is Lekkersing (sing sweetly). Its a quiet little village with under 650 residents, where an avera...


Namaqualand is the least populated part of the country, due to the bleak, desert-like climate and the mountainous landscape. Leliefontein is one of the little towns in this harsh region, a pretty historic village that lies between Kamieskroon and Garies, ...

McDougalls Bay

Overnight? McDougalls Bay accommodation
McDougall's Bay is a collection of seaside cottages, homes and camp sites a stone's throw south of Port Nolloth on the West Coast, in the Northern Cape. Its beach has blue flag status and it is something of a playground for Namaqualanders, and those Capet...


Overnight? Nababeep accommodation
Little over 20 km north west of Springbok lies the small village of Nababeep, a former copper-mining town in the heart of the Namaqualand, its quaint sounding name an amalgamation of two Nama words – 'naba' or hump of an animal, and 'bib' or small spring ...


The mining settlement of Okiep is situated in the Northern Cape part of the Namaqualand and, while small and secluded, was once the pivotal point of the richest copper mining region on earth. It was established in 1862 and is part of the Nama Khoi Municip...


Probably one of the most beautiful provincial cathedrals in the country is at Pella, an oasis bedecked with palm dates close to Pofadder. This beautiful golden building has quite a story attached to it. It was built by a couple of French missionaries...


Overnight? Pofadder accommodation
The very little town of Pofadder lies surrounded by rugged, sparsely populated and very scenic countryside. Here locals make their money from sheep or goats farming, and there seems little more to entice you to visit the town than its position on the main...

Port Nolloth

Overnight? Port Nolloth accommodation
What today is essentially a fishing village, Port Nolloth lies on the bay known by the indigenous Namaqua people as Aukwatowa (where the water took away the old man) - it was the last landfall the Portuguese explorer Bartolomeu Dias sighted, before he and...


Overnight? Springbok accommodation
Book your Namaqualand accommodation in Springbok to enjoy the wild flowers and dramatic landscapes of the Northern Cape, a South African destination that stands apart for its rugged beauty. The pretty town of Springbok is found in the heart of the Namaqu...


Imagine, if you will, a place that is bone dry. Bone dry and very, very flat. And as far as the eye can see it remains flat – not a tree, a building or a hill in sight. Although you will see the odd fence because, believe it or not, what surrounds you is ...


Overnight? Vioolsdrift accommodation
Springbok might be regarded as the last major town en route to Namibia from Cape Town but the little town of Vioolsdrift serves as a border post that lies virtually on the border with Namibia, on the south bank of the Orange River. Legend has it that b...

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