The London Missionary Society founded the town of Pella in 1814. In 1878 the missionary
station was taken over by the Roman Catholic Church. Two Roman Catholic ministers, who made use of an
encyclopedia for building instructions, built, over 7 years, the wellknown cathedral in Pella. It is surrounded by date palm trees and hosts a convent/mission and a museum.
Pella is close to the Orange River and is known for its fertile ground where dates are grown and
exported. There is no fuel in Pella however there are three shops and one has an ATM. The Orange River offers
good angling and watersports activities and there are various hiking trails including the self-guide trail from
Pella to Aggeneys.
Pella Tourism Info Khai – Ma Tourism Tel 054 971 006
Tour Guide Sarel 081 091 7719
Witbank is situated next to the Orange River and most of the residents of the town of Witbank
came from Namibia after the former South West Africa (now Namibia) gained independence.
The main economic sources in Witbank are agriculture; life stock farming and some people
work at the nearby zinc mines in Aggeneys. There is no fuel on sale in Witbank. The town
has only spaza shops and residents travel to Poffader for their main grocery supplies.
Tour Guide Ambrosius 071 080 7440
The small remote settlement of Goodhouse is located next to the mighty Orange River and
is said to be one of the hottest places in the country. The people who reside here are
mainly dependent on agriculture and livestock farming. Irrigation farming is practiced with
water pumped from the Orange River. Dates are grown in the nearby Koo Valley.
Goodhouse has a primary school, Clinic and spaza shops. The town has no or limited
cellphone reception. The Namakwa 4x4 eco trail runs through Goodhouse with a campsite
at Ramansdrift. The town also has a Pont on the river, which locals use for border
crossings. The people living in Goodhouse have historic family ties with people living
on the other side of the Orange River in Namibia. No fuel is available in Goodhouse.
Tour Guide Fernando 062 824 7363
Vioolsdrif is the primary South African border post to Namibia. The community from Vioolsdrift is dependent on agriculture, life stock farming and tourism. The Vioolsdrift community is divided into two sub regions namely Rooiwal and Vioolsdrift. The area is known for its majestic mountains that have become darker over the years due to the high temperatures along the river. Rock formations next to the N7 have become known as Giants Playground as the area is strewn with gigantic rounded rocks. No fuel is available in Vioolsdrift.
Tour Guide Izak 062 124 6712
The town of Eksteenfontein is situated off the R382 in the Southern parts of the Richtersveld Mountain Desert.
Eksteenfontein was named after Reverend Eksteen who made it possible for the (Baster/s) people of this area to
relocate after negotiating with the government for land.
The fountain part in the name of Eksteenfontein refers back to the legacies that were told by the elderly people of an ancient fountain in the town (with the Stink River nearby). Livestock farming is the leading economic activity with most of the residents working at the nearby diamond mines.
The local shops sell bottled water, as the tap water is brackish although it is safe to drink. Other facilities include a
library, a liquor store, post agency, public phones, accommodation and cellphone and internet reception.
Eksteenfontein Tourism Info Tel 027 851 7108
Tour Guide Sophia 071 556 0951
Reverend Jasper Cloete found the town of Lekkersing during 1926, it is situated 60 km east of Port Nolloth.
The name Lekkersing, which means to sing well, is thought to be named after a nearby fountain that used to emit a singing sound, however there is also a singing sand dune nearby after which it could have also been named. Local residents of Lekkersing are also known to sing beautifully! There is no fuel or ATM’s in Lekkersing, there are however general stores.
Lekkersing Tourism Info Lekkersing Municipality Tel 027 8518580
Tour Guide Freda 071 453 7759
Kuboes is regarded by the local people as the capital of the Nama culture in the Richtersveld. It lies in a valley between three mountains with Kuboesberg to the north, Van Der Stel Berg to the east and the Ploegberg to the south. It was founded by the Rhenish Missionary Society under the leadership of Reverend Johan Hein in 1844. During 1893 Reverend Hein established the Rhenish Church and school. The church became one of the Richterveld’s first permanent settlements in a time when people still had a nomadic lifestyle and was later named after Reverend Hein.
During the 1800’s most of the people in Kuboes only spoke the Nama language, a soft tongue of clicks and clacks. Reverend Hein worked closely with a Nama interpreter named Andries Domorogh. Nama is still taught today at the Primary School and helps preserve the Nama language, customs and culture. The schools Nama dance group have taken their Nama Stap (a traditional dance) onto international stages abroad. Nama poems, songs, dance and stories are kept alive by both young and old people from Kuboes.
Traditionally the Nama people are a farming community who lived in some cases on communal farms and today they commute between the live stock farms (Veepost) and their houses in Kuboes. Some of them work at the
nearby diamond mines.
There are two general stores in Kuboes but no fuel or ATM’s. The town has cellphone and internet reception.
Kuboes Tourism Info Kuboes Municipality Tel 027 831 2375
Tour Guide Kiewiet 078 855 6912
The town of Sanddrif is historically known as the place where the nomadic Nama people were driven to in the early 1900’s after diamond mining operations started on the Atlantic Coastline. Diamond mining operations started during the 1970’s in and around Sanddrif and the local Nama people were employed at these sites. Commercial diamond mining is still exercised for exporting purposes.
Today Sanddrif has several cultural influences although the Nama culture remains the more authentic culture among them all. Tourists can enjoy fishing and other watersports activities on the Orange River in close proximity to Sanddrif. The town hosts several general stores, a fuel station, a FNB ATM and has cellphone and internet reception.
Sanddrif Tourism Info Sanddrif Municipality Tel 027 831 1457
Tour Guide Emily 083 598 8426
The most northerly town on the west coast of South Africa and where the Orange River enters the Atlantic Ocean. Established in the 1860’s when Englishman Sir James Edward Alexander began exporting copper using the
Orange River to transport the copper ore, mined in the Richtersveld, down to the river mouth at Alexander Bay. By 1875 the exporting of copper halted and Alexander Bay became a ghost town. In 1925 diamonds were
discovered and brought Alexander Bay back to life.
The town is well planned and has a good infrastructure with grocery stores, a hospital, coffee shop, fuel station, a living museum and a RAMSAR site and a seal colony. The cold Benguela Current of the Atlantic Ocean has a moderating influence on the coastal climate making many watersport activities like surfing, windsurfing, river rafting, angling and diving, very pleasant.
Alexander Bay Tourism Info Tel 081 873 9043
Tour Guide Boetieman 082 887 2705
Most of the towns along the Route started out as mission stations.
European missionaries were appointed to minister to the local Nama people and to establish schools for them. This has created a rich and unique culturalhistory which the privileged explorers of the Namkawa 4x4 Eco trail get to