Hotazel lies virtually on the border with Botswana, 73 km north west of Kuruman, in the “Deep Kalahari”. The town acquired its name from its association with the heat, despite the fact that it is not really hot as hell in Hotazel!
The bush-covered, flat and dry landscape, reminiscent of a desert, has its own unique beauty. The area is where the San have lived for eons in harmony with nature!
The village of Hotazel is a centre for mining. Set on the featureless plain, Hotazel is home to an open-quarry manganese ore mine and sinter plant, the mine was South Africa's first black woman owned manganese mine, said to be the world's largest sinter plant, producing three million tons of ore every year.
Unfortunately, other than the mine, and the small town, there is nothing much else to attract visitors to Hotazel. Visitors will find a few activities and attractions closer to Kuruman or over the Border in Botswana.
Hotazel has only one luxury Lodge, owned by the Oppenheimers, with internet access and a swimming pool!
Things to do and see
- Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park
- Kalahari Meerkat Project
- Moffat Mission Station, Kuruman
- Wonderwerk Cave, Kuruman
- Boesmansgat Sink Hole, Kuruman
- The Truce Tree, Kuruman
Hotazel receives approximately 343 mm of rain annually with most of its annual rainfall during summer.
Summer months, November to March will have average temperatures of between 15˚C and 34˚C.
Winter months, May to August will have average temperatures of between 2˚C and 23˚C.
The legend of the name of Hotazel goes back to a time, shortly after World War I, when a bunch of land surveyors, while in the area locating a route for a railway to the north, had a drinking session out in the red sands and, while discussing the place over a glass of Cape Smoke brandy, jokingly called it ‘hot as hell’.
The name stuck, and a farm was marked out and set up. When the ‘man with the cleft stick’ pitched up to determine where the underground water lay, he found manganese deposits instead, and so, the miners moved in!
Sometime in the 1950's Hotazel was registered as a town and the manganese mining continues.
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