The North West Province is centrally located in the southern African region, and shares borders with Botswana. It offers visitors great diversity, and wonderful experiences ranging from an authentic African bush safari to the glitz and glamour of casino resorts.
The province has some of South Africa's finest game reserves, including those with Big Five game viewing, as well as having fascinating geological and archaeological treasures. It is also one of the more popular regions for adventure activities in the country. And best of all, these attractions are just a couple of hours' drive away from the major centres of Gauteng and the O.R. Tambo International Airport.
The Pilanesberg National Park, located in the crater of an extinct volcano, is an outstanding natural feature of the province. Owing to its rare rock types and structure, Pilanesberg rates high amongst the world's outstanding geological phenomena. Another game reserve located in the North West is Madikwe, one of South Africa's prime safari destinations. This park is home to 66 large mammal species including the Big Five and the endangered Wild Dog, and approximately 300 resident and migrant bird species. Both parks make for an exciting and authentic African safari experience where all the magic of the untamed bush may be enjoyed.
Another of the province's popular attractions is Hartbeespoort Dam, located in the heart of the Magaliesberg. Here the emphasis is on fun and leisure. Visitors can experience a number of activities ranging from water sports to paragliding, hanggliding and hot-air ballooning. A major attraction of North West is Sun City, the pleasure resort located deep in the heart of the Pilanesberg. Although the conference centre is a place of serious business, much of Sun City's focus is on fun, and some of the activities include gambling, pop concerts, swimming pools and water parks. Golfers are in for a treat at the two Gary Player-designed championship courses.
Economic activity is dominated by mining, and the area surrounding Rustenburg is the largest single platinum mining area in the world. Other economic activities include some manufacturing and construction. One of the most important industries after mining is agriculture, and some of the most valuable food crops including maize and sunflowers are grown here on large farms. The North West is also cattle country – there are such large herds that the province is often referred to as 'Little Texas'.
The North West has much to offer in the way of location, scenery and activity and is the perfect destination for an exceptional holiday.
PRINCIPAL LANGUAGES: Setswana; Afrikaans; isiXhosa
POPULATION: Approximately 3.43 million
AREA: 116,320 sq km