The Hantam Karoo and Upper Karoo regions of the Northern Cape are bounded on three sides by the provincial boundaries and the Orange River. 250 million years ago the Hantam Karoo was a vast inland sea surrounded by primeval forest, lush vegetation and huge mammals. After the breakup of Gondwanaland the region slowly turned into the arid semi-desert we find today. The whole region is renowned for its completely unpolluted skies and the magnificent view of the heavens at night, making it the perfect setting for South Africa's Astronomical Observatory. The area is a region of wide-open plains dotted with rugged mountains and koppies. Wild life and beautiful flora abound, and there are a number of recognized 4x4 trails dotted about throughout the region. The Upper Karoo is more barren than the Hantam Karoo, but both areas explode into brilliant colour with the onset of the summer rains. The Tankwa Karoo National Park, to the west of Sutherland, is the driest place in South Africa.
In the East of the Hantam Karoo and Upper Karoo region the visitor will find numerous deserted towns which had originally sprung up at the time of the diamond rush in and around Kimberly. Diamonds have long since petered out, though there can still be found a handful of persistent miners who spend their time sifting through gravel in the hope of finding that elusive stone. I remember once taking a wrong turn and ending up in a tiny village where the miners were on their stoeps on a late Friday afternoon sipping beer. It was just as if I had stepped back in time by eighty or more years.
Just outside the town of Carnarvon at Stuurmansfontein can be seen some fine examples of corbelled houses. The first corbelled buildings were erected in the early 1800s and served as homes for the early pioneers. They are similar to buildings known to have existed in France, Italy and Portugal and are built with flat stones cemented together with a mixture of straw and mud.
The principal town of the Upper Karoo is De Aar, which has become the central distribution point for the succulent Karoo meat, unique in flavour and quality. The town is an important rail junction for Johannesburg, Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and Namibia. De Aar is famed for its generous hospitality.
A few kilometers to the East of De Aar is a fine example of a Karoo dorp from the past - this is Hanover. This small Karoo town was established in 1854 on a farm belonging to a man called Gous and named after one of his ancestors. When the first houses were built they were compelled to be built directly on the edge of the main road with their gardens at the rear. Owners had to pay a shilling a year tax for the priviledge of having a stoep at the front of the house encroaching the road - this tax is still imposed to this day.
The Hantam Karoo and Upper Karoo town of Victoria West gets its name from Queen Victoria and little has changed since it was first established in 1843. The town is wedged between two mountains and the Ongers River. The town is on the watershed between the West and East coasts of South Africa. To the South of the town is the small Victoria West Nature Reserve, home to a large collection of the riverine rabbit, only found in the central Karoo.
The Karoo is a region of South Africa that should not be missed by the visitor. It is mostly inhabited by sheep and widely scattered acacia trees and shrubs. In the Kalahari Desert can still be found scattered groups of San (bushmen) who have chosen to remain in the desert, unchanged by modern technology.
The guesthouse has luxury family en-suite rooms for 1 to 5 people and breakfast is optional. TV & dstv , fridge and coffee/tea making facilities in each room. Freezing and barbecue facilities are available and also undercover parking on the premi
When entering the Tankwa Lodge, visitors are still welcomed with true warm country hospitality. The Lodge offers 25 rooms all with en-suite showers & bathrooms, a Splash Pool to cool off in the summer heat, Conference facilities for up to 80 pax...
Karoo Koelte is furnished with inherited antique furniture and decorated with a warm and relaxed feel for your comfort. Your room comes with a standard five star prescribed quality mattress, and pure cotton percale linen, TV (1, 2, 3 & e-TV), ...
Kuilfontein Stable Cottages, near the N1 and Colesberg is perfectly situated as a stopover for travellers. The delightful old stable quarters have been converted with style and comfort. There are 2 luxury units, 1 family unit and 5 standard units.
Two of the three units can sleep a family of six and the third a family of three. All the units are equipped with fans and heaters. The first farmhouse of clay-bricks and stone was built in 1943 and is now converted with style and comfort into ...
Honeylocust is a modern, luxury B&B guesthouse in the historic town of Colesberg in the Upper-Karoo. Perfectly situated just off the N1 highway, it's the ideal halfway break on a long journey between the North and the South.
The Whitehouse Inn caters for travellers who enjoy warm hospitality, hot summers and snowy winters. This historic building has been converted to offer travellers a variety of accommodation. We boast a fully licensed bar on the premises...
La Provence, situated next to the N1 near Colesberg is the perfect resting place between Johannesburg and Cape Town. With 8 tastefully decorated room's 4 of which are cottages have Satellite television, air-conditioning, coffee/tea facilities.
De Oude Scholen is a beautiful guest house situated in the Karoo town of Victoria West. This building was build during 1891 and was the first public school in Victoria West.
Frans Carel Te Water built his beautiful Karoo house in 1886 soon after the corner stone of the Dutch Reformed Church was laid in 1880. Today it is know as Lord Carnarvon Guest House.
Accommodation, ideal for families and groups, consists of two well restored and luxuriously furnished self catering (fully equipped) farm houses - Huis Harpuis and Renosterbos Cottage. Each cottage has its own braai facilities with all the ...
Aandrus B&B in Richmond was established in the mid nineteen fifties and except for a short period of time, it has been owned by members of the same family. The motel type accommodation consists of 11 rooms with en suite facilities.
Ebenezer Guest house is situated in Colesberg your half way stop between Johannesburg and Cape Town. The Guest House has 10 rooms with an en-suite bathroom, TV, coffee/tea and linen (towels, etc). The Guest House has a swimming pool and "braai" ...
Colesview Guest House is a bed and breakfast situated in Colesberg, halfway to everywhere.Our "rooms with a view" can accommodate 21 people in 6 stylishly decorated bedrooms,all with TV's and private bathrooms.Pool & undercover lock-up
These antique stone corbelled houses appear only in the Karoo in an attractive small area. They were the first houses built by the Voortrekkers in the early 1800's. The Old Stone Shed used to be an old sheep shearing shed and has been converted into a se
Enjoy true Karoo hospitality in the centre of South Africa. The Horse and Mill is a perfect stop-over between Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Johannesburg and Durban. It is situated in the centre of Colesberg, in a quiet one-way street parallel to the