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Getting Closer to Nature


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foreword

Foreword from Executive Mayor Cllr Elvis Choganyetso Tladinyane e are proud to welcome you to a district that is unique, diverse and relaxing. The district provides a much needed break from the pressures of Morden life. You can be rest assured of quality time in all five local municipalities offering a multitude of attractions and investment opportunities. To experience most of these offerings, one needs nothing more than embarking on a journey to illustrate a great deal of untapped potential for

cultural heritage, tourism and interpretation of indigenous knowledge system. Furthermore, our district opens its arms to welcome you to explore the opportunities created by our natural resources – agriculture, manufacturing and mining. REST SAFE IN THE KNOWLEDGE THAT WE PROMISE GOOD RETURN ON YOUR INVESTMENT.


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Contents

Foreword

Culture

p02 Executive Mayor Cllr Elvis Choganyetso Tladinyane

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Introduction to The Province and Districts

Economy and Investment

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Discovering the Wild West

The Cultural Calabash

Texas of South Africa/Investment Opportunities

Routes

Business Tourism

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Taung & Taung Treasure Route

Doing Business Tourism with Style

Parks, Reserves and Safari

Accommodation

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Parks & Reserves and an African Safari

Top Five Experiences

Map

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The Dr Ruth S. Mompati Top Five Experiences

General Accommodation Guide

Dr Ruth S. Mompati District - Map

Image credits: SA Tourism, Stock Exchange c l o s er t o na t ure


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Discovering the WILD WEST The western region of the North W est Province i s cattle country, the largest beef-producing region in the c ountry and affectionately referred to as the ‘Texas of South Africa’ – where everything is bigger, wilder and simpler than the res t of the land. Recently renamed after the former mayor of Vryburg (Naledi Local Municipality), which serves as the centre of the agricultural area, the Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati District Municipality encourages tourists to “get close to nature” and there can be no easier place in the country to do just that. From untamed bushveld to the sophistication of 5-star resorts, this area of the North West Province takes one away from the hustle and bustle of city life and directly into to the real Africa. It is the complete tourism package, with scenic beauty of rolling fi elds of maize, golden sun fl owers and vast plains of African bushveld. The larger part of the region is still known as Stellaland and has one of the most coveted summer climates in the country – dry and healthy. The vast wildlife areas are home to a great variety of game species, including lion, buffalos and rhino, with the Big Five found at number of privately owned game reserves. The district is divided into five local municipalities.

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Attractions in t he a rea include B lue Pools, a p icnic site a t the Buxton Quarry a t the Taung H eritage S ite. This picturesque valley with c aves, streams and rock pools, lies close to the site where the skull was discovered.

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GREATER TAUNG LOCAL MUNICIPALITY The town of Taung translates from Tswana into ‘place of lion’ and is named after Tau, the chief of the BaTaung tribe. Yet the area is better known for the discovery of the Taung Child, considered to be one of the most important early human fossils ever discovered. The skull is the first hominid to be discovered in Africa and was uncovered by a quarry-worker in the nearby Buxton-limestone Quarry in 1924. It was described by Australian anthropologist Professor Raymond Dart in 1925 as being of the species Australopithecus africanus, and would provide supporting evidence to Charles Darwin’s theory that the closest living relatives of humans are the African apes. The child, estimated to have died at about three years of age, is believed to have lived here some 2.5 million years ago and the skull is now housed at the University of the

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Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. A monument to the discovery of the Taung skull has been erected at the Taung Skull Heritage Site. Attractions in the area include Blue Pools, a picnic site at the Buxton Quarry at the Taung Heritage Site. This picturesque valley with caves, streams and rock pools, lies close to the site where the skull was discovered. There are barbecue facilities available, set alongside a natural spring which winds through an ancient limestone valley. Other wonderful picnic spots can be found at the Taung Dam, 17km from town along the Kolong River. The Boipelo Game Reserve forms part of the Tusk Hotel complex and consists of 150 hectares of bushveld reserve, supporting seven different species of wildlife and more than 100 bird species. Hiking and mountain bike trails provide the perfect opportunity for visitors to enjoy the wildlife from close up. Some impressive examples of San (Bushman) engravings and paintings can be viewed at the Dinkgwaneng site, which is about 20km from Taung, near the Manthe village. The Mmabana cultural centre, just east of Taung, is a modern social and educational centre offering locally produced arts and crafts. Reivilo is a town situated 100km southwest of Vryburg on the Ghaap Plateau. Originally named Cathcart West and later Klein Boetsap the town was renamed in 1918 after Rev AJ Olivier (Reivelo is Olivier spelled backwards), the Dutch Reformed minister at the time. Traditionally a cattle farming region, the area was once famous as a producer of lead and zinc, with Shell South Africa mining 18 million tons of ore from mines in the area in the early 1980s. Attractions include the NG Church Museum, NG Church Parsonage, Old Church Hall and the Old Mission Parsonage.


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KAGISANO/MOLOPO LOCAL MUNICIPALITY

Formerly known as Ganyesa Municipality, the rural Kagisano Local Municipality includes the village of Ganyesa, which is some 70km North of Vryburg on the R378. To the north of Ganyesa lies the Molopo nature reserve (175km) and the Mabuasehube Reserve in Botswana (380km), via Macarthy’s Restborder post (230km). This route is one of the alternative routes to the Kalahari Transfronteir Park (490km) via Heuningsvlei and Van Zylsrus. Considering that Johannesburg is 450km from Ganyesa, Bloemfontein 400k away and Kimberly just 270km, Ganyesa serves as a perfect halfway stopover for those en route to Botswana. There are several game farms in the area that are within 30km of Ganyesa, allowing for day trip safaris. It is also a great part of the country for quad biking, 4x4 trails and motorcycling, while the beautiful sunsets provide the backdrop for many evening barbeques. Piet Plessis is another small Kagisano town on the R377 and at just 50km from the Botswana border, is one of the last stops en route to the northerly neighbour.

The small town of Bray serves as the frontier post between South Africa and Botswana and provides access to the Trans-Kalahari route. Outdoor activities include bird watching, hunting, horse trails, safaris, night drive and a visit to the cheetah breeding facility. The quaintly-named nearby village of Terra Firma lies just 34 km from Werda and the Botswana border and 70 km from Tosca to the south east. Here wildlife lovers can enjoy world renowned, malaria-free game and nature parks and Terra Firma offers some of the best lion hunting in Southern Africa.

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NALEDI LOCAL MUNICIPALITY

Vryburg is the industrial and agricultural heartland of the Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati District Municipality region. The area supports a large number of game and cattle ranches are and Vr Vryburg Vrybu yburg hosts Africa’s third largest agricultural show as well wel as as a series se serie riess of events dedicated to outdoor

adventure a enture activities in the scenic, rugged areas surroundadv ing the town. in The nearby n arby Leon Taljaard Nature Reserve contains rhino ne as well as as numerous nume nume um rous species of antelope, including both bluee and blu a d black bla l ck wildebeest, wildeb wil de ebees eest, est, zebra, giraffe, eland, springbok, hartebeest, buffalo gemsbok. There har arrteb ebees eest, t, buf buffal falo o and and gem ge sbok. k The T Th re are also an estimated species here and popular 30km, 100 bi bird rd spe specie ciess he h ere e aan nd d the th popula ular 30km 3 0km m, ttwo-day wo-day hiking trail pro provides provid vid des amp ample le opp opport opportunity or uni unity ty for wi wildl wildlife ldlife ldl if spott spotting. ott ttting in . The h Tierkloof Tierkkloo lo o f (Tiger (Tiger (Tig er Kloof) Klo oof) Missionary Mi Missi ssiona onaaryy Station Sta taatio t n was ass established e ablished est as a ston sstone to e chur cchurch urrch c in 190 1904 4 by by tthe he Lon London don on Mi Missionary ssssiion o ryy St ona Station ttaation and, now w a national monument, monume mon ument nt, has has been been restored reesto ssttored reed ass an educational ed ducational institute. Other attractions attractio tions nss include incclu ludee the lud the h Theiler The Th heile he ilerr Agricultural ile Agricul Agr grricul cu u tur tural al Museum Museum &C Cattle attle Research h Cen Centre, ntre t e, the the e Vry V Vryburg bu b bur urg Muse ur M Museum, use eum, th thee O Old ld Goa ld G Goall main gate and nume numerous u rou us SSan an n (B ((Bushman) (Bu Bu B sh hman) hm a en engr engraving gravin gra gr ving g and and pai p painting aint nti t ng sites. s The Stella named daughter he town wn of o Ste St ll was lla waas n amed ame ed aafter fterr th fte tthe he dau daught hteer of the owner ow own err of o the th farm farm m Biesjesbult, Biesje Bie sje esbu ult,, which which ch h was was often w oft ofte fte tten used used ed for fo forr church chur ch hurrch hu h gatherings gather gat h ings in he n the the early l twenties. twe twenti wenties nti ties. es. The Th The town town hosts h ho osts tss the the annual annu nnual all Festival October. Cattle Cat tle Fe Festi ssti t val ev every er Oc ery Octob tob ob ber. er.

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Outdoor a ctivities i nclude b ird watching, hunting, h orse trails, s afaris, night drive and a visit to the cheetah breeding facility.

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MAMUSA LOCAL MUNICIPALITY

Located on the R34 between Vryburg and Bloemhof and surounded by sunflower and maize fields, Schweizer-Reneke is an historical town in the Mamusa area which was named after Captain Schweizer and Field-Cornet Reneke, who were killed in a battle against the Korrona in 1885. Attractions include the town’s bank, the façade of which has remained unchanged since it was built in the early 1900s, Wentzel Dam, Kliphuisie Guesthouse, a national monument which was the site of the town’s first police station, Massoukop, the remains of the Koranna Kraals, and San (Bushman) rock art 2km north of the town on the Delareyville Road. The artist Irma Stern was born here.

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LEKWA-TEEMANE LOCAL MUNICIPALITY

Lekwa-Teemane comprises the towns of Bloemhof and Christiana, two towns that sprung up in the 1860s as diamonds were first discovered in the area. Christiana, an agricultural town on the banks of the Vaal River, was named after Christina Meyer, the only daughter of the Transvaal President Andries Pretorius. Tourist attractions include the Diggers’ Diamond Museum, with its authentic digging equipment and old photographs of the town’s diamond industry, and San Bushman Rock Art, with excellent examples to be viewed 6km out of town on the Stowlands Farm and Stows Kopje, where prehistoric rock engravings have been declared a national monument. Not far from Christiana, the town of Bloemhof was established on the farm owned by John Barclay, a survivor of the HMS Birkenhead shipwreck in 1852. The town became known known as Bloemhof (flower court) due of the lovely gardens that were planted by Barclay’s daughter.

The Bloemhof Dam Nature Reserve is not only one of the most popular angling sites in South Africa, having hosted both the 2008 men’s world cup of Angling and 2010 female world cup. but the 12 000-hectare conservancy in open Kalahari thornveld offers visitors wonderful game viewing opportunities, including springbok, black wildebeest, eland and gemsbok. Over 250 species of birds have been recorded at the reserve and it also hosts several national and international fishing competitions including the Tri-Nations and the Bloemhof Bonanza. The Bloemhof Dam is open for all water sports, with powerboat launching facilities provided.

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routes

Icon of the North West TAUNG TREASURE TROVE The famous Taung Heritage Site is the archaeological site where the fossilized skull of a young child was discovered by miners in 1924. The skull was taken to the noted Australian archaeologist, Dr. Raymond Dart who named it “Australopithecus Africanus”, meaning the southern ape of Africa.

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This discovery led many scientists to believe that the origin of early man was initiated on the African continent. The finding of the Taung skull at the Buxton quarry in the North West Province was noted to be one of the most significant archaeological accomplishments of time. Due to this discovery, the Taung site was proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Taung, meaning “the place of the lion” was named after Tau, the chief of the Bataung people. Today this town is home to the famous Taung skull. A monument to the discovery of the Taung skull has been set up and an old mine tunnel has been opened for exploration. The Buxton quarry, which is no longer being mined, remains an important scientific research site. The azure Blue Pools are situated at the Buxton quarry and are surrounded by picturesque caves and streams. The pools were apparently discovered after a dynamite explosion in a mountain in which lime was being mined. This is a popular hiking, abseiling and picnic venue with barbecue facilities, set alongside these pristine springs that wind through the ancient limestone valley. Besides for these archaeologically significant sites, the Taung Heritage Site and the village of Taung present numerous alternative tourist attractions. The Taung Dam is an attractive picnic area situated only a short distance from the village, while on the outskirts of the village one finds the Mmabana Arts and Culture Centre. This Centre is a modern social and educational centre offering locally produced arts and crafts. The Dinkwaneng site – home to some of the country’s finest examples of San art – is located a short distance from the town near the village of Manthestas. Upon visiting the province, a trip to the Taung Heritage Site allows visitors to lose themselves, even for just a moment, in the rich history of the area, and in so doing allows a glimpse of a world millions of years ago. It is by all accounts a richly rewarding experience.

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Introducing the...

TAUNG SKULL HERITAGE ROUTE The National Heritage Council has made it its strategic priority to ensure that transformation is broadened to improve a variety of previously uncharted avenues for heritage projects. The NHC is proud to add the Taung Heritage Route to the list of many other heritage initiatives by responsible citizens of South Africa.

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routes

The Launch of the route is scheduled to take place on the 03 December 2009 at Taung. The timing coincided with the festive season, and all stakeholders worked together on formulating an intergrated plan for its success. It was agreed that the impetus of expenditure and investment in infrastructure could not have come at a better time, and so assisted in counteracting the effects of the economic slump. The Taung skull Heritage route is a living treasure exhibition of our remarkable heritage, history and cultural experience. This ancient pathway in the land which gave birth to mankind, the home to the famous Taung Child Skull and the area that boasts archaeological discoveries that goes back to the beginnings of humankind as well as the World Heritage Site of ancient lost civilization should become common knowledge to every South African. It promises to naturally bring much needed relief in terms of job creation and poverty alleviation through the stimulation of an alternate economy.

The Taung Heritage Route will amongst others, assist in determining areas of focus as gateways and routes, identify new opportunities and recommend methods of stimulating and facilitating growth in tourism development.

Given our serious challenges, it is important to remind ourselves of the importance of heritage for tourism. Heritage is a fundamental anchor of tourist development. The attraction along the route is that it tells the story of Taung. It does so through historic sites. For tourists this is a thrilling experience. That is why tourism is the fastest growing industry in South Africa, contributing signifi cantly towards the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and in creating employment. The attractions along the route include Thomeng – Small Heaven: This Limestone Waterfall is known as a “Tufa” It was formed through the movement of glaciers during the Ice Age millions of year ago. This phenomenon is found at only three sites in Southern Africa. Visit Thomeng Small Heaven where closer to na t ure


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constant stream of clear water from the limestone cliffs flow through. Taung Skull Heritage site have an attractive Blue Pool and a picnic site, a perfect spot for relaxation and outing for the whole family. The Taung Heritage Route will also take you through our resources, offerings as well as roaming wildlife. Taung Tusk Hotel an exclusive luxuries hotel situated along N18 route. - Mmabana Taung Cultural: A modern social and educational centre where the annual Art and Cultural Calabash event is hosted during September the Heritage Month. - Taung Dam: The dam is popular for an ever – increasing number of tourists. - Dinkgwaneng – an area rich with the Batswana history, you will also find Bushmen’s footprints and rock engravings. This is a must route to tour together with your love ones.

POSITIONING OF THE ROUTE TO TOURISM MARKET The route is linked with the Vaalharts Valley located in the Northern Cape Province to complete a Triangle Tourist Route. Within the triangle, the tourist will experience adventure, heritage, culture and agriculture. The route is expected to stimulate the tourist activities and benefits in the Taung Area and the surrounding through: - Increased tourist/visitor arrival to the area - Increased tourist revenue in area - Increased tourist length of stay in the area - Created tourism jobs (permanent and temporary) - Infrastructure development in the area. - Tourism investment in the area It will take the participation of the public sector, private sector and communities to create a complete tourism package along the main Triangle Route. The route is geared to the tourist market as one of the major attractions in the province. Furthermore, the route will be linked to the existing N12 Treasure Route, Hartsmeandor route and the Northern Cape Agri-Tourism Route.

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parks, reserves and safari

Parks, Reserves and an

African Safari BLOEMHOF DAM NATURE RESERVE Bloemhof Dam Nature Reserve lies on the North West province side of the Bloemhof Dam, on the dam’s northern shores; the Sandveld Nature Reserve is on the other - a rather confusing division of nature reserve that surrounds the dam that also happens to fall right on the border between the two provinces. The Bloemhof Dam, which lies roughly 320 kilometres from Johannesburg just outside the little town of Bloemhof, is regarded as one of the largest dams in South Africa covering an area of 25 000 hectares that lies at the confluence of the Vaal and Vet Rivers. Bloemhof is one of the angling destinations in the country, extremely popular with fishermen of all shapes and sizes and the

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site of both major local and international angling competitions. Consisting of mostly Kalahari scrub and thornveld, the reserve’s open plains are also home to large herds of black wildebeest, eland, springbok and gemsbok and over 250 species of birdlife have been recorded here. The dam supports more than 5000 waterbirds and one particular count registered over 10 000 individuals. Herons breed on the north-east side of the bridge over the Vaal River, whilst the thornveld that surrounds the dam supports several large raptors. The Bloemhof dam is possibly the main feature for weekend visits from locals who use the dam for any number of water sports and launch their power boats here. Approaching the reserve from Bloemhof village when the river is in full flood is supposed to be well worth the detour as the dam wall is pretty impressive when overflowing.

LOCAL TOUR GUIDES Passion Tours Lorato Mpolokeng: +27 82 054 4483 Bloemhof Dam Nature Reserve Desiree Montsheng: +27 73 514 7250 Ratlou Tours: +27 71 6605 439 Dimapo Tours : +27 83 329 9004/84 373 3853 c l o s er t o na t ure


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parks, reserves and safari

LEON TALJAARD NATURE RESERVE The Leon Taljaardt Nature Reserve of about 2 062 ha, adjoins the Vryburg municipality’s Swartfontein Pleasure Resort. The reserve has been stocked with a wide variety of animals. Leon Taljaardt contains both black and blue wildebeest and both Burchell’s and mountain zebra, though in nature the species’ territories seldom overlap. The reserve also contains giraffe, springbok, eland, gemsbok, red hartebeest, blesbok, buffalo, duiker and white rhinoceros. Leon Taljaard Nature Reserve also houses numerous species of antelope, including both blue and black wildebeest, zebra, giraffe, eland, springbok, hartebeest, buffalo and gemsbok.

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There are also an estimated 100 bird species here and the popular 30km, two-day hiking trail provides ample opportunity for wildlife spotting. Although no specific counts have been done in the reserve, there is a tally of 110 bird species recorded in the town. The terrain is mostly flat and featureless but in places the bush cover is so thick that it is difficult to see the game. A 30 km/two-day hiking trail is available for between three and ten hikers, who shelter overnight in rustic facilities that include a fire-place, cold shower and toilet. The reserve is open every day during daylight hours.


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MOLOPO GAME RESERVE The Molopo Reserve was established in 1987 and has been restocked with game from other parks and reserves. Today the reserve has flourishing herds of eland, blue wildebeest, gemsbok, red hartebeest, kudu, zebra impala waterbuck and springbok, as well as numerous steenbok, duiker and warthog. Cheetah, brown hyena, caracal, black-backed jackal, African wildcat, honey badger and the small spotted genet are also resident in the reserve. Over 120 species of birds have been recorded at Molopo, including breeding pairs of bateleur, tawny and martial eagles. White-backed vultures and lappet faced vultures are also

common. The reserve forms part of a one million hectare interprovincial raptor conservancy. Both day and night drives in the reserve are permitted with the permission of the authorities. A number of artificial waterholes have been constructed where concentrations of game can be seen. The network of roads through the reserve are suitable for 4x4 (and 4x2 with diff lock), vehicles. A special feature of the park is the fossilised Phepane river bed which can be visited and explored. This feature, which is many millions of years old, once carried huge volumes of water.

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top five

The District’s

TOP FIVE The Dr Ruth S Mompati District Municipality is warmly known for its unique “BIG FIVE” namely: Heritage, Culture, Agriculture, Water sport and Hunting.

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HERITAGE

ed as a heritage hub of the province because cance of the nd gave rise to the remarkable insights and revolutionary claims of Raymond Dart which created not only a c endeavour, including African palaeo-anthropology. Heritage resources such as this trace the fabric of the country’s heritage all the way back to the dawn of humankind. Sites such as the Taung Heritage Site and the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site (shared with bordering Gauteng) signify the depth of the history represented in the North West Province, and have subsequently been developed for tourism purposes. The condition of the known cultural heritage resources found within North West Province is deemed to be fairly good, however it is believed that a large portion of the cultural heritage resources of the province remain unknown.

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CULTURE The Dr. Ruth S Mompati Region is a place where cultures from all over the country come together and run wild, express themselves simply and give generously. Experience diversity in culture ed heartbeat of the people is made up of a unique blend of traditional African rhythm and dancing. Usually used for any occasions calling for a more up-market, musical ambiance. The arrestingly diverse landscape of the North West is occupied by charming people who’s responsibility to the land parallels their strong sense of tradition. The culture of the people of the North West is to be found in every aspect of the daily lives of the people - in their beadwork, the pottery, the houses, the music and song.

The people of the North West are predominantly BaTswana in origin and their language is SeTswana. They can trace their origins for many centuries through a turbulent history of war and migration across the plains and valleys of the province to the borders of the Kalahari. The district has a rich variety of cultural resources • Archaeological sites • Graves • Forts • Bushman paintings elds • Historic buildings • National monuments

TOWNSHIP ENTERTAINMENT Life is never boring in the Townships. This is where you can escape the trappings of hotel luxuries and have fun “Township Style”. Tourists can have nights of fun, interact with the township folk, and learn more about life in the townships. Clubs and Taverns offer all kinds of music, from Hip-Hop and R&B, to the truly South African sounds of Kwaito – especially on Fridays and Saturdays. One is guaranteed laidback and relaxed Sundays of Jazz and Fusion music, and indulge in “Shisanyama” (traditional braai/barbeque). closer to nature


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AGRICULTURE The Dr. Ruth S Mompati Region can boast as the largest beefproducing region in South Africa, with Hereford cattle the most popular, hence the name “Texas of South Africa”. Maize and peanuts are important crops produced in the district. The district was renamed after the mayor of Vryburg.

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WATER SPORTS

A variety of water sport is on offer in the region, primarily at the Bloemhof Dam. The dam is one of the largest dams in South Africa, approximately 25 000ha and stretches for over 100km upstream from the dam. The long yellow grasses contrast against the azure blue, northern shores of the Bloemhof Dam. Visitors to the dam can look forward to a myriad water-related sports and ng, sailing, skiing, and canoeing. For a less challenging experience, enjoy a leisurely cruise, a peaceful picnic alongside the water or simply be treated to a spectacular aquatic sunset. Fed by the Vaal River and Dam, the Bloemhof Dam is also well known as the Fishing Mecca of South Africa. Apart from being renowned for its sh species, namely the Large sh and the Vleikurper. nest angling locations. The Dam’s popularity for hosting international, national, provincial and club angling competitions has contributed to an ever-increasing number of tourists.

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HUNTING The district encourages tourists to get close to the nature, away from hustle and bustle of city life and indulge in everything from the untamed bushveld to the sophisticated resort. For an ultimate bush experience, the North West offers an unforgettable hunting safari. Hunters have an in-depth knowledge of the bush and can offer you a unique experience not easily to be found anywhere else. The district accounts for between 55% and 60% of lion hunts in the province, and hunting safaris primarily take place on tribal and game farms. An abundance of plains game roam throughout the district (on game farms etc.) and include, Springbuck, Blesbuck, White Blesbuck, Zebra, Gemsbuck (Oryx), Red Hartebeest, Black Wildebeest, Blue Wildebeest, Impala, Ostrich, Mountain Reedbuck, Eland, Kudu, Waterbuck, Steenbuck, Duiker, Warthog.

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Cultural

Cultural Calabash The North West Cultural Calabash is a youth based arts festival held annually in the village of Lokaleng, greater Taung, North West Province, South Africa.

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t was initiated by Hendrik Baird in 1994 as a celebration of cultures and coincided with the democratic elections in the country. The name symbolises the African tradition of using a Calabash as a means of feeding people. By putting the various South African cultures in a melting pot, it was hoped that a new culture would emerge to feed the nation. The Cultural Calabash started as a one day event, but thanks to significant sponsorship, the festival was able to grow and bear fruit. Soon the North West Provincial Government in the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture came on board as a funder, enabling the event to prosper and grow.

Today The Cultural Calabash is a multi - disciplined youth arts festival which include Local and District Selections, as well as a Provincial Festival held annually in the North West Province and culminating in the village of Taung and aimed at an adult audience. The Cultural Calabash is a unique arts festival in that it sets out to discover new talent. Through a series of Provincial auditions held at local municipal level, amateur and semi-professional artists are identified in drama, dance and music. The winners in each category take part in four District Previews, where only the best are selected to participate at the Main Festival held traditionally during the last week-end of September. From its humble beginnings, the Calabash has grown to encompass twenty two auditions, four District Previews and a four day main Festival. Being a youth based event, it does not promote alcohol, but strives to give its participants and audience a healthy alternative. Today, Taung is in the midst of a development boom, of which the annual Calabash festival is a major component. Accommodation is at the nearby Tusk Taung Hotel, and in the village itself where you can stay with locals and learn how they live, as well as in surrounding towns.

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ecomony and investment

ECONOMICS and

INVESTMENT

Agriculture in the North West Province is critical to both the regional and the national economy. South Africa is essentially self-sufďŹ cient in agricultural production and is frequently a net exporter of food. While agriculture may only contribute 3.4% to GDPR, it plays a vital role in the economy and provides 8% of the province’s employment opportunities.

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Throughout the North West Province sunflower seeds, groundnuts, maize, wheat and cattle dominate the sector. High-yield crops include citrus, summer grains, tobacco and cotton, though almost every type of animal, crop, fruit and vegetable production is found in the Province. In the dry Vryburg area, some of the largest cattle herds in the country are to be found, and farming provides much of the employment throughout the region. The Dr. Ruth S Mompati region accounts for a disproportionate share of livestock production in the country. The province, as a whole, produces nearly 13% of the cattle and 3% of pigs nationwide and over 11% of goats. Some of the largest cattle herds in the world are found at Stellaland near Vryburg, which explains why this area is often referred to as the ‘Texas of South Africa’. Marico is also cattle country.

MINING AND MINERAL BENEFICIATION South Africa is the world’s fifth largest producer of diamonds and much of this production comes from Lichtenburg, Ventersdorp, Koster, Christiana and Bloemhof in the North West Province. Many of these mines still have substantial reserves which, at the current rate of consumption, will last for many years. Increased demand over the past decade has spurred massive expansion in mining by the major mining houses, with more expansion plans in the pipeline. The economic spin-offs will enhance growth prospects for the province, specially in local beneficiation.

DID YOU KNOW? The Dr. Ruth S Mompati region is the largest cattle farming region in South Africa.

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INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES Investors are urged to consider the district’s numerous investment opportunities across sectors such as Agriculture, Tourism, Manufacturing and Mining: • The Taung Integrated Development Programme (TIDP) offering eco-tourism opportunities (cultural village project including a five star lodge, caravan park, camp site, information centre and heritage museum along the Taung Skull Heritage Route. • Farming abundance gives way to possible investments including an abattoir and beef canning facility. The district also has a large number of Boer Goat which presents an opportunity for cashmere production. • Manufacturing - production of Wildstick for cosmetic, commercial and industrial use and Devil’s Claw for medicinal use. • Stella Platinum - a large deposit of platinum has been discovered in Stella and recently evidence of lime, salt, marble, and diamond in the Taung and Mamusa areas has been identified. • The Taung Irrigation Scheme presents opportunities for agro-processing such as production of livestock feeds, maize, vegetable preservation and canning, production of crops such as groundnuts and sunflower seeds. • Road Infrastructure Programme. Transport - allows access routes to our neighbouring countries such as Botswana and Namibia and provinces such as Gauteng, Northern Cape and Free State.

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business tourism

Doing

Business Tourism

with Style!

Over the years, an estimated 7% of all foreign tourist arrivals to South Africa were made up of business tourists, translating to over half a million business tourists. And even though there is strong regional and international competition, the business tourism sector within the North West Province of South Africa has grown substantially during recent years. closer to na t ure


business tourism

n this regard, the Dr. Ruth S Mompati region has aligned with the Province’s mission to offer a unique, desirable and feasible destination for meetings, incentives and conferences. Some superb conference and team building venues are scattered throughout the region, and if you are looking for that ideal place to take your colleagues, employees and business associates, the province has a wide variety of locations to try. The Bophirima Region’s slogan “Getting closer to nature” forms not only the focus of its tourism industry, but is the main focus of the people of the region. The principal town, Vryburg, is the centre of a large agricultural district which has all the modern

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conveniences. However moving out of the town and into the heart of the region will provide a uniquely relaxing break from modern life. The vast expanses of this African savannah bushland is home to a great variety of game species, including lion, buffalos and rhino to be encountered at number of privately owned game reserves. t from our outstanding service, stylish environment and excellent meeting, incentive and conference facilities. Come to the Dr. Ruth S Mompati Region.

053 927 1731

Conference

20 Rooms

Conference Venues

Klondike Lodge

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closer to nature


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accommodation guide

closer to na t ure


accommodation guide

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c l o s er t o na t ure


The Dr Ruth S. Mompati Region... where everything is bigger, wilder and simpler than the rest of the land.

This is the Road Less Travelled


Naledi Local Municipality Tel: +27 53 928 2200 Email: mathubeg@naledilm.co.za

Greater Taung Local Municipality Tel: +27 53 994 9400 / 9600

Lekwa Teemane Local Municipality Tel: +27 53 441 2206/433 1018

Kagisano/Molopo Local Municipality Tel: +27 53 998 3343 / 3286

Mamusa Local Municipality Tel: +27 53 963 1331

Dr. Ruth S. Mompati District Municipality P.O. Box 21, Vryburg, 8600 Tel: +27 53 927 2222 Fax: +27 53 927 2401 Web: www.bophirima.co.za E-mail: info@bophirima.co.za


Closer to Nature