Heatbeat of the Bushveld
Lephalale, also known as Ellisras, the “Heartbeat of the Bushveld”, is situated at the spur of the Waterberg Mountains in the Limpopo province, on the Mokolo River, a tributary of the Limpopo River, in a wonderfully scenic area and Biosphere.
The Waterberg Savannah Biosphere with indigenous plants, Big Five game animals and hot springs is a real treasure trove. This region has not been fully discovered and spans a vast area of 15 000 square km. Visitors come to this town in Limpopo to get away from the madding crowd and savour the magnificent sunsets and peaceful atmosphere with its harsh beauty and beautiful vistas, crystal clear streams, mountain gorges and rolling bushveld.
Ellisras was started on the farm Waterkloof as recently as 1960 and named after the original farm owners, Patrick Ellis and Piet Erasmus. The mild winter climate and moderate summer evenings also make the town's surrounds a popular venue for star gazing.
In 2002, Ellisras was renamed Lephalale by the provincial government of Limpopo, after the main river that crosses the municipality. It is a small, peaceful and tranquil but prosperous town, just 60km from the Botswana border point of Stockport in a malaria free zone. The town is divided into three major suburbs Lephalale, Onverwacht and Marapong.
Lephalale is also known for its coal mining industry, a significant contributor to the economy of this town in Limpopo. The Kumba Grootgeluk open-cast mine (the largest of its kind in South Africa) provides high quality coal to ISCOR in Tshwane. The world's largest dry-cooled power station is also located here at the Matimba Power Station.
D'Nyala Nature Reserve
Visitors to this Limpopo town can explore the nearby D'Nyala Nature Reserve which is ideal for hiking, picnics and bird watching. There are two excellent hides for game viewing. Animals that can be seen here include Waterbuck, White Rhino, Giraffe, Zebra, Eland, Nyala with the associated predators residing here including Leopard, Brown Hyena and smaller cat species.
For golf enthusiasts there is a championship 18-hole golf course and this is the place to be during the first week of July, every year, for the Marula Amateur Golf Tournament and related festivities.Anglers can enjoy the Mokolo Dam and link up on the unique Fish Eagle Route in Limpopo.
Some of the interesting self-drive routes around the Limpopo town of Lephalale include:
1. Waterberg Route following the R33 highlights include; D'Nyala Nature Reserve and the Waterberg Biosphere.
2. Mokolo Route following the R33 and R510 highlights include; the Mokolo River and Dam, Game Parks, Waterberg Biosphere, Kudu Canyon.
3. Marula Route following the R510 highlights include; Marakele National Park, Matimba Power Station, Kumba Grootegeluk Mine.
4. Limpopo Route following the R572 highlights include; Baobab Trees, bird watching, The Limpopo River which passes 4 border posts.
5. Heritage Route following the R561 and R518 highlights include; unique rural villages and cultural experiences, Museums in Melkrivier, Big Five game and Mama Tau White Lions.
The climate in the Waterberg is ideal for year round holidays with mild winters and moderate summer evenings.There is an abundance of wild game and game farms in the area and is a great destination for camping and hunting enthusiasts.
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