Hoedspruit – A True African Diamond
Hoedspruit is a city in South African Limpopo province, on the North East part of the South Africa. The name Hoedspruit is from Afrikaans and means “Hat Creek”. First settler in this area, besides native people, was David Johannes Joubert, who lived here since 1844, and he registered a farm in 1848. City lays on a railroad between cities of Tzaneen and Kaampudien, and it is a small town, with only about 3200 citizen. As you can see, it is a small city, but it experiences a growth of population and interest in recent years.
The major part of the local economy is an ecotourism, thanks to its proximity to the famous Kruger National Park, as well as some smaller private reserves, such as Klaserie Private Nature Reserve, Selati Game Reserve, Blyde River Canyon and Karongwe Private Game Reserve. As a matter of fact, it is surrounded by the largest privately owned conservation area in the whole world. Another big economy contributor is an Air Force Base, which share an airfield with the civil Eastgate Airport. It is also an agricultural center of this area, with a big production of mango and different citruses. Many people would say that such a small city has a little, or even nothing to offer and they would be so wrong.
Hoedspruit Accommodation Options
So, let’s see what is there to see in Hoedspruit for a curious passerby.Since tourism is one of the primary economic activities in this area, in Hoedspruit you will find a plenty of places to stay, from charming small B&B, country lodges and safari camps for the real adventurers, to the classic hotels and resorts. Of course, you will need to eat as well and you will have a chance to choose from different restaurants with local and international cuisine, as well as coffee shops, pubs and grills.
Since a town is situated between the Kruger National Park, which is the largest reserve in South Africa and the Blyde River Canyon, which is among the bigger canyons in the world and probably the biggest “green canyon” because of its subtropical foliage; you will have plenty to see in this area. Besides those two national parks, there is plenty of private reserves where you may enjoy in different activities. Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre is placed near the city. It is focused on the salvation, breeding, treatment and rehabilitation, and release of endangered animals, such as cheetah, black-footed cat, African wild dog and rhino. Buffalo Breeding project is another place dedicated to the saving of this magnificent, yet endangered species.
Khamai Reptile park is named after the old Greek word for the chameleon, one of the reptiles that live in this area. Other reptiles that need human help to survive are different snakes, lizards, and turtles. Moholoholo Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre was established in 1991., by a businessman from Pretoria, Mr. Strijdom, who owns the farm where centre is situated. It was established and run by Brian Jones. Most animals in a center come from farms and tribal areas, where they were causing problems. Also, a center accepts injured, orphaned or poisoned animals and treats them. In many cases, animals return to the wildness as soon as they are capable of an independent life. Among other, here you may see leopards, lions, servals, honey badgers, lynxes, eagles, wild dogs, vultures and many other animals.
It is never boring in Hoedspruit. No matter what time of year you visit this beautiful town, you may enjoy at different events and festivals. Hoedspruit Wildsfees is an annual event that happens every year during the summer on the Blyde Wildlife Estate, about 16 kilometers from the town. Every year in March and April, kayakers from all over the country and abroad come to this city because of the Blyde X Fest, an ultimate test of their skills on Blyde River. The Hlokomela Herb Banquet is held at the beginning of September in Thornybush Game Reserve, at it is all about food. Or better to say, various dishes made with different herbs and vegetables produced by the Hlokomela Herb Garden. rocking 4 Rhinos is a Rock music festival at the end of the September, which is dedicated to the preserving rhinos and celebrating a World Rhino day on September 22nd. Besides those big events, there is plenty of smaller events during the year.If all this is not enough for you, there is plenty of other things to do in this charming small city and its nearby areas.
Nyani tribal village is about 40 kilometers away, and it is a replica of the authentic Shangaan people village from the past. you may go on a tour through the village with the introduction to the Shangaan customs and beliefs, and in evening you may enjoy in their dances and food. Klaserie Waterfalls are a beautiful place to visit and enjoy in sightseeing and trekking. in Jabulani Park you may try an elephant back safari while rafting fans may choose between Blyde River or White Water Rafting. If you want to look at this area from the air, a hot balloon trip is a great choice.
As we said before, many people believe that small places had a little or nothing to offer to the modern tourists. Hoedspruit is a perfect example that this way of thinking is very wrong. First of all, if you come to this city, you may stay in many attractive places, and eat in different restaurants and bars. Once you satisfy your basic needs, there is so many activities you may join, that you will not be bored not even for a second. If you are a nature and wildlife lover, there is so many things to see we can hardly count. If you want an adrenaline rush, there is rafting, biking, elephant riding and many other activities. You may visit different tribal villages to learn more about the history of this area, or you may have a good time at various events and festivals. no doubt that, once you leave Hoedspruit, you will have a feeling that you haven`t seen all and you just have to come back for more of this magnificent city and area.