Stories of Magoebaskloof and Tzaneen


3 Nights / 4 Days package

Departures on Thursdays or Saturdays

Experience the stories of magical Magoebaskloof, Neverdie Mushwana, Nwamitwa and the legendary Modadji – Rain Queen of the Bolobedu with this scenic 3-night/4-day package. The package includes picnic lunches, traditional food and entertainment, as well as interactions with the local residents. The package starts and ends in Polokwane.

Day 1: Polokwane to Magoebaskloof

Depart Polokwane International Airport and drive through the centre of Polokwane for a whirlwind tour of the city en route to Magoebaskloof. You will hear stories of some of the oldest buildings in the city – the First National Bank and the Irish House – as well as the Peter Mokaba stadium, before taking the road to the mountains. We arrive in Haenertsburg and stop for lunch at the delightful Minki’s Coffee Shop in the village. After lunch we visit the Haenertsburg museum, learn the story of the Mike Gardner arboretum and drive up to the Haenertsburg cemetery for spectacular views across the mountains. Your guide will point out some of the landmarks, including the Iron Crown (tallest mountain in Limpopo) and the Ebenezer Dam. Following our visit to the village, we travel along the R71 towards our accommodation for the night – the historical Magoebaskloof Hotel.

Magoebaskloof Hotel is perched above the Magoebaskloof valley, with spectacular views towards Tzaneen, along the R71. The hotel was originally built in 1937, but was partially destroyed by fire in 2004. It is a popular overnight stop in the area. We enjoy dinner while being regaled with tales of Magoebaskloof by a local story teller.

Day 2: Wegraakbosch Dairy, Debengeni and Tzaneen Museum

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast at Magoebaskloof Hotel before we visit Wegraakbosch Organic Farm and Dairy. On your dairy tour, you will be taken through the entire cheese production process – from the milking of the cows and goats to the stirring of curds, which is done in a massive copper cauldron in the traditional Swiss manner. Find out how cheeses are shaped and cooled, and fascinating things like how 'good bacteria' are used to mature the cheese and keep the dairy clean.

We a picnic lunch at the Debengeni waterfalls in the Woodbush forest, before travelling to Tzaneen to visit the Tzaneen museum. This privately owned collection includes weapons, sacred drums, pottery, beadwork and baskets of the Tsonga and Northern Sotho people.

We end the day by checking into the Fairview Hotel in Tzaneen. While having dinner, we are regaled with stories of Tzaneen.

Day 3: Dan Village, Nkowankowa and Nwamitwa

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast at Fairview Hotel before heading out to interact with the local residents of the Dan village and Nkowankowa, and to learn about the culture of the Tsonga people.

We leave the vehicle to walk the streets of Dan Village. Your guide will point out any matters of interest along the way to the homestead of the late Neverdie Mushwana, where two of the wives are practicing sangomas (traditional healers) taking after their legendary husband who was a respected powerful healer and clairvoyant. Neverdie Mushwana was married to five wives and had 23 children! He bestowed insightful names on his children such as Moon, Nyeleti (meaning star), Diamond, Church, Heaven, and Reason. The Mushwana homestead is also home to a traditional natural ‘pharmacy, and visitors also have an opportunity – if they wish – to don the traditional Tsonga dress. After our tour of the homestead we explore the rest of Nkowankowa, and have a traditional lunch prepared for us.

Our accommodation for the evening is the African Calabash Lodge in Nwamitwa, where we have a traditional dinner, complemented by entertainment in the form of local dancers and story tellers.

Day 4: Modjadji

We have a relaxed breakfast at African Calabash Lodge before checking out. We leave Nwamitwa and take a leisurely drive to Ga-Modjadji – the home of the Rain Queen. She is the only female Queen in Africa and her rain-making powers are believed to be the reason for her tribe’s prosperity.

We visit the Palace with a local guide to ensure that our clients gain an insider perspective into life in the Royal Palace of Modjadji. He also explains some of the traditions and beliefs of the Balobedu people, including the ‘hut-opening’ ceremony to determine the royal successor.

The Modjadji cycad (Encephalartos transvenosus) occurs in this area, and can be seen growing in large clusters on the surrounding hills which includes the Modjadji Cycad Reserve.

Upon the conclusion of our tour, we depart for Polokwane.

Package details

Highlights:

  • Lunch at fantastic Minki’s Coffee Shop in Haenertsburg
  • Wegraakbosch Organic Dairy Cheese-making tour and platters
  • Have a picnic lunch at Debengeni Waterfall
  • Visit to the unique cultural collection of the Tzaneen Museum
  • Story tellers during dinner every night
  • Personal, authentic interaction with locals & their traditions and guided by local experts at Modjadji and in Dan village

Package includes:

  • 1 nights’ accommodation each at Magoebaskloof Hotel, Fairview Hotel and African Calabash Lodge on a dinner, bed & breakfast basis
  • All activities and entertainment
  • Lunches at Minki’s Coffee Shop, Debengeni Waterfall and Nkowankowa
  • Entrance fees at Debengeni waterfall, Mushwana homestead and Modjadji Royal Kraal
  • Local guides, where relevant

Package excludes:

  • Flights to and from Polokwane
  • Meals not specified
  • Personal purchases and gratuities

Rates for a group of 8-12 people. Valid till end December 2018

  • R9 470,50 per person, sharing for the itinerary above, including transport and tour guide.
  • Larger groups or different itineraries to be quoted on request.
  • Additional activities can be added to the itinerary at an additional rate.