North West, South Africa
The province of North West lies along South Africa’s northern border with Botswana. With the Northern Cape to its left, Limpopo to its right and the notorious farmlands of the Free State just on the other side of the Vaal River, North West is a strikingly diverse province. Ranging from arid Kalahari to golden maize fields and untamed bushveld, its landscape is as varied as its people and history and this allows North West to offer visitors an all-encompassing experience of South Africa.
Although “green” attractions like the Vaal River, the Magaliesberg Mountains and the Pilanesberg Game Reserve (which is located in the crater of an extinct volcano) make North West an exciting destination for eco-tourists, the province primarily markets itself as the custodian of South Africa’s heritage. True to its claim, it is home to several cultural, historical and archaeological attractions. In addition to monuments, forts, battlefields and graves that date from and commemorate key moments in the Anglo Boer War, North West is also home to places like the Lesedi African Lodge and Cultural Village which showcases the African traditions of the Ndebele, Zulu, Basotho, Xhosa and Pedi cultures.
The plume is North West’s marketing cap is, however, the fact that it is home to three UNESCO World Heritage Sites. These are the Taung World Heritage Site, where the “missing link” between ape and man was discovered in the 1920’s, the Vredefort Dome World Heritage Site, where a gigantic meteor struck the earth about 2023 million years ago and the infamous Cradle of Humankind which suggests that Africa is exactly that. Besides allowing visitors the opportunity to explore and see the archaeological finds for themselves, all three these sites also promote other cultural experiences and eco-adventures in the surrounding areas.
For those who are looking to experience something other than culture, history and nature, the North West Province can also offer the most exciting and lavish of South African resorts. Within the walls of Sun City, Africa’s kingdom of pleasure, North West transforms into an extravagant mecca of entertainment. Five-star hotels, world-class golf courses, spa’s, gaming centres and the Valley of Waves are just some of the exciting attractions that add to North West’s appeal and make Sun City one of South Africa’s favourite holiday destinations.
Overall, North West has much more to offer than what might initially seem the case. If you are one of those people who want to experience a little of everything during one trip, then perhaps North West should be your next stop.