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Limpopo Province is the most northern of the country’s provinces, and has year round sunshine making it a very pleasant place to visit at any time of the year. With a range in landscape from bushveld plains to mountain ranges, there are also a number of excellent places to visit.
The first of these is Soutspanberg, a large area named after the salt pans found at the base of the Soutspanberg Mountains. The area is a combination of plains, mountains, bushveld and lowveld, with a growing amount of agricultural fields. With a huge diversity in flora and fauna, and over 30 endemic trees, and at least one species of endemic butterfly, the area is a wildlife lover’s paradise. Birds are here in abundance as well, with a huge variety of raptors living in two raptor conservancies that have been set aside for the majestic birds. Other options for birders include the magnificent Lake St Lucia, home to tens of thousands of greater flamingos.
Waterberg is the second, with incredible mountain scenery punctuated by clear streams, stunning vistas and rolling hills (see also Drakensburg Mountains). The mountain range is free of busy resorts, and the isolation this gives is incredibly relaxing and refreshing. A conservation area for elephant, white rhino, leopard and buffalo, as well as 300 species of birds, this is perfect for those looking to explore the country’s wilderness areas.
The Valley of the Olifants is in the northern reaches of the world famous Kruger National Park, and is another unspoilt region, in which elephant, hyena, jackal and lion are regular visitors. The valley bursts into colour as the flowers bloom in the spring, bringing out amazing sights and smells which enhance the experience in one of the country’s most unhurried places. The Kruger National Park is more than just a place to see the Big Five with its magnificent scenery and wilderness areas.
Finally, Venda is near the Zimbabwean border and has a distinctive tribe inhabiting the area making this the cultural centre of the province. These people come from Great Zimbabwe, and crossed the Limpopo River to get here – the culture has been affected accordingly, and the traditional arts, crafts, singing, dancing, legends and superstitions are fascinating to learn about. The landscape is stunning too, with highlands right down to baobab and mopani scrub.