The Northern Cape is a cultural melting pot that is home to some breathtaking natural wonders. Renowned for being home to the indigenous Khomani San people and for the starkly beautiful Kalahari Desert, the province boasts many fascinating communities and towns. The settlement of Riemvasmaak is no exception.
Located near the Orange River close to the border with Namibia, Riemvasmaak (Afrikaans for “tying straps together”) has played a poignant part in South African history, as many of the inhabitants were forcibly removed from the area in the 1970s by the apartheid regime. The area was then used as a military testing centre until 1994, when a successful land claim allowed the return of the original residents.
Riemvasmaak has since developed a thriving local tourism industry, with a variety of outdoor activities for visitors, boosted by the proximity of the Orange River, which plays a crucial role in the province’s greater economy and agriculture.
The natural warm-water swimming pools at the Riemvasmaak Hot Springs are a popular attraction near the settlement. Bring your own camping gear or stay in the self-catering chalets provided. Take in the scenery and views on the surrounding hiking trails or rev it up on a 4x4 trail.
If water sports is your thing, make full use of the leisure activities available on the Orange River, including canoeing and kayaking. This is also a prime spot for birding, so bring your binoculars, camera and walking shoes.
Riemvasmaak is particularly known for its wonderful sense of community, and tour guides and residents are always keen to inform travellers about the history of the area and settlement.
Top tip: an hour or so away from Riemvasmaak, the incredible Augrabies Falls is a must-visit natural wonder. This Northern Cape gem forms part of the Augrabies Falls National Park.
We look forward to hosting you in our beautiful province.