Thanks to its scrawny and desolate dryness, North West Province’s Central Region feels especially remote, and there are not all that many towns worth visiting. Mmabatho, once the capital of Bophuthatswana and now incorporated into neighbouring Mafikeng, the provincial capital, forces reluctant bureaucratic pilgrimages on people from all over the province. The region’s appeal lies elsewhere, in the brooding plains and lush river valleys of Marico and the rarely visited game reserves, including Madikwe on the Botswana border. And then there are the people themselves: local Tswana and Afrikaners are both short on English but long on hospitality, at least to visitors, a trait best experienced at the village of Groot Marico, famed nationwide for its mampoer peach brandy and quintessentially laidback spirit.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

South Africa features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

7 amazing African journeys

7 amazing African journeys

Africa is a continent of wild open savannahs, terracotta sunsets, thousands of vibrant green hills and rugged coastlines. Here, you can be chugging along on …

06 Jul 2016 • Harriet Constable insert_drive_file Article
Why the Northern Cape is one of South Africa’s must-see destinations

Why the Northern Cape is one of South Africa’s must-see destinations

The Northern Cape, home to diamond mining capital Kimberley and wilderness of the Kalahari Desert, remains South Africa’s least visited province. But it just …

06 Jan 2016 • Meera Dattani insert_drive_file Article
Cape Town's irrepressible township revolution

Cape Town's irrepressible township revolution

Many visitors to Cape Town leave with a fairly limited view of the Mother City. They see the whitewashed beachfront restaurants and hotels, take the cable car u…

24 Dec 2015 • Chris Clark insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month