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Waterberg

The area known as Waterberg, in the southwest of the province of Limpopo, which will be circumscribed as the best kept secret of South Africa. Although this province has a relatively dry climate, the Waterberg area is a green piece of nature because of several rivers flowing through the area all of which flow into the Limpopo River. The 15 000 square kilometres area is a UNESCO 'biosphere reserve' which was recognized in 2001 and consists of Bushveld, savannah and swamps, making it attractive to many different animal and plant species. You will find the natural beauty of Waterberg at about 2.5 hours' drive from Johannesburg, nestled between the mountains.

The average height of the mountain is 600 meters, but there are mountain peaks with a height of 1400 meters from where you have a magnificent view. The mountains formed of sandstone are able to absorb water well, and serve as a water reservoir, hence the name Waterberg. Two thousand years ago the San Bushmen were already aware of the function of a water tank and therefore it was a good place to stay for them. The many rock paintings of the San provide a good picture of the animals they encountered in the area during the hunt like rhinos and antelopes. The petroglyphs are found in places where the Bushmen shelter or overnight. In Makapansgat near Waterberg there are skeletal remains of Australopithecus Africanus, who lived about 2.5 million years ago in the Waterberg region.

Waterberg has good opportunities for safaris and the area is free of malaria. Among others, there is the Marakele National Park, Kololo Game Reserve Welgevonden Game Reserve, Lapalale Game Reserve and the Entabeni Private Game Reserve which belong to this area. In Waterberg you will find members of the Big Five along with many other species such as impala, eland, kudu, hyena, blue wildebeest, zebras and giraffes, crocodiles and hippos along the rivers. The bird population consists of more than 300 species including several large vultures. The real birders can also visit the Nylsvley Nature Reserve, one of the best places to see birds in South Africa. Also in terms of flora, there is plenty of diversity, different grasses and trees like the Pale Tree with its silvery leaves, rare cycad and the beautiful lavender trees.

After a day on safari there are plenty of lodges in the area where you can relax and see the beautiful red sun set behind the mountains. For extra relaxation you can visit the nearby Bela Bela. Bela-Bela, formerly bore the name Warmbad. The name is derived from the natural hot springs that produce 22 000 litres of water per hour with a temperature of 53 degrees Celsius, a wonderfully relaxed experience.

Your South Africa holiday begins at the South Africa specialist.