- Northern Cape
Khutu is a small mining town is located on the N14, between Upington and Kuruman, and only three hours from Kimberley. The Sishen mine is the heart of the Kathu community and the reason for the existence of this rural Northern Cape town.
The picturesque town lies in the middle of the Kalahari and owes its existence to one of the largest open-cast iron ore mining operations in the world. The magnitude of this mining operation is difficult to describe and so one of the main reasons for visiting Kathu is to take a Mine Tour – visitors are generally astonished by the sheer size of one of the open-cast iron mine and giant ore trucks bearing up to 170 ons of ore each load.
But this is not the only surprise this rather remote town has in store for visitors, just south of the town is an incredible forest of camel thorn trees, one of only two such forests in the world! This approximate hectares of trees alongside the barren red sand has been declared as a Natural Heritage.
A third reason to visit Kathu it that it boasts one of the most beautiful golf courses in the country. The Kathu/Shishen Golf Course lies partly in the forest and is rated among the top 20 courses in South Africa.
Accommodation in Kathu includes a well-stocked Game Reserve/Lodge, B&B’s, Guesthouses and an affordably priced Hotel.
Things to do and see
- Sishen Mine Tours
- Khai-Appel Resort
- Game Drives
- 4X4 Trails & Abseiling
- Sishen Golf Course
- Kalahari Meerkat Project, Kuruman
- The Eye of Kuruman
Kathu receives approximately 395 mm of rain annually, it is a desert climate with virtually no rainfall during the year.
Summer months, November to March will have average temperatures of between 10˚C and 33˚C.
Winter months, May to August will have average temperatures of between 2˚C and 23˚C.
Kathu, "˜the town under the trees', came into being because of Iscor's iron ore mining activity in the Kalahari. The phrase “the town under the trees” was coined by an engineer working in the town in the early-1990's as part of a tourist marketing drive.
The meaning of the word “Kathu” has anecdotically been attributed to a porridge brewed by the local population from the powder found in the pods of the Camel Thorn trees.
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