10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

Winona Griggs

Discovering Gems in Kimberley: 10 Must-Do Activities

If diamonds are forever, then Kimberley’s diamond wells are truly timeless. This captivating city, born from the discovery of precious gems in the late 1800s, has withstood the test of time, surviving wars and emerging as a hidden gem of South Africa. Here, I invite you to join me on a journey to unlock the secrets of Kimberley, as we explore its rich history and vibrant attractions.

1. Embark on a Grand Adventure at The Big Hole

10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

Welcome to the fascinating story of the Big Hole in Kimberley!

It all started back in 1866 when a young boy named Erasmus Jacobs found a small pebble on the banks of the Orange River. Little did he know, that pebble was actually a diamond weighing 23.25 carats. The pebble eventually ended up in the hands of Dr. A. Atherstone, who realized its true value.

A few years later, another discovery was made in Zandefontein. This time, it was an even bigger diamond, weighing 83.5 carats. This sparked a rush of fortune seekers flocking to the area, eager to dig up their own treasures.

By the time they stopped digging in August 1914, they had extracted a staggering 2,722 kilograms of diamonds from the ground. Their efforts left behind a massive hole, stretching 214 meters deep and covering an area of 17 hectares. This hole is now famously known as the Big Hole.

Today, the Big Hole is not just an enormous pit. It has been transformed into a museum that tells the captivating story of the Diamond Rush in South Africa. When you visit, you can even go underground to get a taste of what life was like for the miners. You’ll also have the opportunity to explore the Old Town and catch a glimpse of the diamond vault.

But that’s not all! The Big Hole offers more than just history. It boasts a restaurant, accommodations, and a few shops for you to enjoy. So why not take a trip down memory lane and experience the wonder of the Big Hole for yourself?



The cost for a day tour is R75.

2. Sol Plaatje Museum

I want to tell you about a really cool place called the Sol Plaatje Museum. It’s a place where you can learn about the history of South Africa and the important people who played a big role in making it what it is today.

When you visit the Sol Plaatje Museum, you will have the chance to explore the exhibits and see artifacts that tell the story of South Africa’s past. You can learn about Sol Plaatje, a great writer and political activist, who fought for the rights of all people in South Africa. His work is still remembered today and has had a big impact on the country.

The museum is a great place to learn about the struggles and triumphs of the people of South Africa. It’s a place where you can gain a deeper understanding of the history of the country and the challenges that have been faced and overcome.

The cost to visit the museum for a day tour is R75. It’s a small price to pay for the knowledge and insights you will gain during your visit.

So, if you’re interested in learning more about South Africa’s history and the people who have shaped it, I highly recommend visiting the Sol Plaatje Museum. It’s a fascinating place that will leave you with a greater appreciation for the country and its people.

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10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

I bet you didn’t know that No 32 Angel Street in Malay Camp, Kimberley was once home to the famous South African writer, journalist, and activist Sol Plaatje. Right there, he wrote Mhudi, the very first novel by a black South African. In recognition of his incredible contribution to South African literature, his former house has been transformed into a museum. If you’re interested in discovering more about Plaatje’s work during the 20th century, the Sol Plaatje Museum is the perfect destination.

Now, I know you might be wondering about the details. How can you get in touch with the museum? Well, just keep reading!

Oh, and before I forget, I have to tell you about another point of interest in the area – the Honoured Dead Memorial. Now, let’s get back to the museum.

When it comes to the museum’s contact information, here’s what you need to know:

– The Sol Plaatje Museum is located at No 32 Angel Street in Malay Camp, Kimberley.

– If you want to give them a call, the museum’s phone number is 011 717 4676.

– For any additional inquiries, you can send an email to info@solplaatjemuseum.com.

There you have it! Now you have all the details you need to plan your visit to the fascinating Sol Plaatje Museum. And you might even want to check out the Honoured Dead Memorial while you’re there. Enjoy exploring!

10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

In the midst of the Anglo-Boer War, Kimberley became a battleground, and brave citizens lost their lives defending the city. Cecil John Rhodes, a prominent figure in the diamond industry, tasked Sir Herbert Baker with creating a tribute to these local heroes. And so, in 1904, a sandstone monument was revealed atop Kimberley’s highest point. Named the Honoured Dead Memorial, this impressive structure, resembling the Nerheid, stands as a testament to the city’s valor.

4. William Humphreys Art Gallery

10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

If you’re looking for some art in the diamond city, then the William Humphreys Art Gallery is the place to be. This gallery was opened in 1952 to honor William Benbow Humphreys. It currently houses a collection of 247 artworks, including pieces from France, the Netherlands, and Flanders. While the focus has shifted towards Southern African art, there is still a rich variety of exhibitions to explore.

Inside the gallery, you’ll find an auditorium that can accommodate 101 people, as well as a temporary exhibition, two small galleries, and meeting venues. It’s an immersive art experience that has played a significant role in shaping modern South Africa.



5. Kamfers Dam

10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

I’m standing here at Kamfers Dam in Kimberley, where there is a breeding colony of Lesser Flamingos. These birds create a stunning spectacle as they populate the area with their vibrant colors and graceful movements.

The Kamfers Dam colony is a special place for these flamingos because it provides the perfect conditions for them to breed and raise their young. The shallow waters are ideal for the birds to wade and feed in, while the island in the middle of the dam offers protection from predators.

But why is this breeding colony so important? Well, it’s because Lesser Flamingo populations are under threat. Habitat loss and pollution have made it difficult for them to find suitable breeding sites. That’s why places like Kamfers Dam are crucial for their survival.

When the flamingos come here to breed, they form large groups called colonies. These colonies can contain thousands of birds, all working together to protect their eggs and raise their chicks. It’s a remarkable sight to see so many flamingos in one place, all dedicated to ensuring the survival of their species.

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As I watch the flamingos bustling around, I can’t help but marvel at the beauty and resilience of nature. It’s a reminder of the importance of preserving our natural habitats and protecting the species that call them home.

So, if you find yourself in Kimberley, be sure to visit Kamfers Dam and witness this incredible natural phenomenon for yourself. You won’t be disappointed!

Just outside Kimberley, about six kilometers away, you’ll find Kamfers Dam. This place is super important because it’s home to the largest Lesser flamingo breeding colony in Southern Africa. Can you imagine that? Over 60,000 to 80,000 flamingos, which is more than half of the entire Southern African population, call this place their home. It’s like a dream for birdwatchers!

Kamfers Dam is a wetland that sits right where the Kalahari savanna, grassveld, and Nama-Karoo all meet. And it’s not just flamingos that live here. There are more than 2,000 other bird species that call this place home too. It’s like a little paradise for them.

But sadly, this paradise is under threat. You see, there are some problems with the sewerage and housing developments around the dam. If nothing is done, these problems could destroy the dam and harm all the amazing life that lives there. We can’t let that happen!

If you want to help save Kamfers Dam and the flamingos that live there, you can visit Save the Flamingo or BirdLife South Africa. They can give you more information on how you can make a difference. Let’s work together to protect this special place. We owe it to the flamingos, and all the other birds, to keep their home safe.

And now, let’s move on to our next stop on this adventure – the Vintage Tram!

10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

To let daring adventurers explore Kimberley, a railway line and tram were introduced in 1897. And guess what? Even after 126 long years, that burnt-orange tram is still going strong! Can you believe it? It’s like stepping back in time with its original wooden seats and steering wheels. Hop on board for a 20-minute ride around the Big Hole and experience the magic of Kimberley’s past and present.

If you’re curious to know more or have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out. I’d love to hear from you!

Oh, and I almost forgot to mention the cost. It’s just R20 for a 20-minute train ride. Pretty neat, huh?

Now, let’s move on to an exciting topic – haunted corners and the Ghost Trail. Get ready to dive into the mysterious and eerie side of Kimberley!

And there you have it – an unforgettable adventure awaits. So, what are you waiting for? Grab your ticket, hop aboard, and let’s create some amazing memories together. I can’t wait to see you on the tram!

10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

If you’re ever in Kimberley and looking for a spooky adventure, the Haunted Corners and Ghost Trail tour is a must-do. Legend has it that the streets of Kimberley come alive with ghosts at night (yes, you heard that right, ghosts in South Africa!). This tour, which starts at the Honoured Dead Memorial, will take you to the most haunted corners of the city, including the infamous Kimberley Club (known as one of South Africa’s most haunted hotels) and the Magersfontein Anglo-Boer battlefield.



The cost is R1,300 per group for five hours.

8. Wildebeest Kuil Rock Art Centre

10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

When I visited the Wildebeest Kuil Rock Art Centre, I was astounded by the awe-inspiring Khoi/San engravings. Situated outside Kimberley on a small hill, this remarkable site features over 400 rock engravings that are believed to be more than 1,000 years old. These engravings were created by the !Xun and Khwe San People, and they provide a fascinating glimpse into the history and creative spirit of the Khoi/San societies.

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The Wildebeest Kuil Rock Art Centre offers guided tours that take you on an 800-metre journey through time. As you explore the centre, you can immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of the Khoi/San people and gain a deeper understanding of their way of life. The tour showcases the incredible talent and artistic expression of these ancient civilizations.

Once you’ve finished the tour, be sure to visit the shop at the visitors centre. There, you can find a wide range of Khoi/San arts and craftworks. These unique pieces make excellent souvenirs and allow you to take a piece of Khoi/San culture home with you.



9. Visit Galeshelwe

10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

Galeshelwe, a historic township in South Africa, dates back to 1887. Once a thriving hub that attracted people from all over the world, it later suffered under the oppressive policies of apartheid, leaving it neglected and dusty. Fortunately, initiatives like the Green Belt Project have transformed the township and breathed new life into it.

To fully experience Galeshelwe’s vibrant culture, I recommend taking a tour called “Poetry on da Bus.” This unique journey includes visits to the Sol Plaatjie Museum, the former home of the esteemed Pan Africanist Congress leader Robert Sobukwe, and even a local shebeen. Immerse yourself in the rich history and spirit of Galeshelwe by booking a stay here.

If you have any questions or wish to make a reservation, please contact us at 053-832-0037.

Now, let me introduce you to another remarkable destination – Mokala National Park.

10 things to do in Kimberley MzansiBride

Hey there! Did you know that Kimberley has something amazing to offer besides its rich history? Just a short drive of 80 kilometers southwest of the city, you’ll find the serene and beautiful Mokala National Park.

This national park is a blend of two unique biomes – the Savanna Biome and Nama-Karoo Biome. And guess what? It’s home to a diverse range of wildlife! You’ll find incredible species like Buffalo, Black and White Rhino, and Tsessebe roaming around in their natural habitat.

Imagine stepping out of the bustling city and immersing yourself in the African wilderness. That’s exactly what Mokala National Park offers!


What I Think

Hey there! So maybe Kimberley didn’t exactly experience a rebirth after the diamond rush. It’s a bit sad, but here’s the thing – Kimberley is still totally worth your while. And why is that, you ask? Well, because of its fascinating history, my friend.

Everywhere you go in Kimberley, you’ll see signs guiding you to incredible monuments, museums, and unforgettable moments. If you’re a history buff like me, you’ll be in absolute heaven. And here’s an extra bonus: if you’re planning to explore the Northern Cape (which you totally should), Kimberley makes for an awesome pitstop. Plus, it’s home to one of South Africa’s oldest pubs, Star of the West.

So, the next time you happen to find yourself north of the beautiful Cape, don’t write off this “little gem” just yet. Sure, it may have a bit of an old-fashioned vibe, but trust me, it’s anything but dead – at least, that’s what the local ghosts say. And hey, to help you make your stay even more enjoyable, here’s a handy list of accommodation options in Kimberley. Happy exploring!

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