- Northern Cape
Kuboes is a small village on the eastern periphery of the Richtersveld, near the Ai Ais – Richtersveld Transfrontier Park and is described as an arid wonder. Here you might find the elusive klipspringer, a Smith's red rabbit or a majestic Gompou on the sand plains. The stock-herding clans constantly moved about these dry lands in search of grazing for their flocks, mainly goats, and the village was established as a place of worship for them. A Rhenish Missionary Church was completed in Kuboes in 1893, and the village has become a significant Nama cultural centre.
It lies surrounded by three mountains:
- Vandersterr Berg
At midday in the desert heat, nothing much happens in Khuboes. However, venture out onto its streets at night and you will see the local community at play.
You will find music, children running in the streets and the ‘old folks’ visiting each other. Kuboes is rightly proud of its local choir and there is much singing. The nomadic shepherds often come in from the veld to socialise.
Much of the magic of Khuboes is actually getting there. Your route to Kuboes (and eventually the nearby Park) is to drive across from Alexander Bay along the Orange River. The road via Eksteenfontein to Kuboes is the more scenic route, but it’s quite rough beyond Eksteenfontein so it’s best left for 4x4s or at least vehicles with high clearance.
If you take the R385 west from Steinkopf (about 60km north of Springbok on the N7), you’ll pass a couple of turnoffs to your right. They lead to the small settlements of Eksteenfontein, Lekkersing and Kuboes.
En route, you will come across Cornell’s Kop, named after the luckless prospector Fred Cornell, who would never find a single diamond in these diamond-rich parts.
He did, however, leave the world with a wonderful book called The Glamour of Prospecting, which is a great insight into a diamond hunter’s adventures along the Orange River nearly a century ago.
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