Guide To The Modjadji Nature Reserve

Fancy a South African vacation with a difference? Then why not take a trip to the most Northern Province in South Africa, Limpopo that borders Zimbabwe, Botswana and Mozambique. It is the ideal province in which to enter and explore South Africa. The Province features an abundance of wildlife, exotic landscape and enchanting scenery.

Modjadji Cycad Reserve is a place themed in local folklore and natural beauty so strongly consider a visit there…

Modjadji Nature Reserve covers an area of 300 hectares is nestled high in the Lobedu Mountains to the north east of Duiwelskloof (also known as Modjadjiskloof on newer maps of the Province), in the Bolobedu district of Lebowa. The Modjadji Reserve is home to a wonderful array of cycad plants, some of the largest and oldest preserves of this type of flora in the world. Cycad plants are similar to palm trees. The Nature Reserve is located in a fitting location – right next to the home of the fabled rain queens of the Modjadji tribe. The plants once formed a staple diet of prehistoric reptiles that lived in this area. The cycad of the Modjadji tribe has formed a natural forest, which is now a protected nature reserve.

According to local legend, five hereditary Rain Queens controlled the lands of the Bolobedu and Modjadji over generations, and these surround the impressive cycad park. The legend is intensified that the Rain Queen has special powers imposed upon her and she can control cloud and rainfall levels. The Queen’s succession is passed down from daughter to eldest daughter. The tribe are without a Queen at present, as the former queen Makobo Modjadji VI died early in 2005 at age just 27, with no heir to the throne.  Local tradition is that the Queen corresponds with her subjects through male advisers and never marries, but is allowed to bear children. Before the reigning Queen dies, her eldest daughter is appointed as the Rain Queen.

Cycad plants are protected in this region, and grow in the safety of a protected reserve. Would you believe that some of the 29 species of these plants in the Modjadji reserve may grow over 10 metres high, and they bear cones that can weigh 34 kg! The period from December to February of every year sees the palm tree like plants in seed, in a wonderful setting. Sometimes the whole reserve is covered over in mist, which leads to an “other world” like atmosphere. You will have marvellous views of the local lowveld and Kruger National Park.There are approximately 12km of walks throughout the cycad forests, which will take you to the beautiful acacia and grassveld areas where you will come across animals such as blue wildebeest, bushbucks, waterbucks and many different species of birdlife. On your walking trail you may come across monkeys and also antelope, and there are family picnic areas.

Some of the fine tourist attractions in Limpopo include not only the wonderful cycad reserve, but also the Modjadji Royal Palace.  The Palace and Nature Reserve are part of the African Ivory Route, which covers a total of 3.6 million hectares of national park, nature reserves, game farming areas and a whole lot of history.

Find out more about the Modjadji Nature Reserve.

Heading to South Africa in the coming months and are interested in visiting Modjadji Nature Reserve? The best way to get to the Reserve and explore the surrounding areas is to avail of a top quality vehicle hire. Check out our Car Rentals South Africa  page.

Have you visited the Modjadji Nature Reserve or any of the National Parks of South Africa? If you have any South Africa tourist information please make your fellow readers aware. As always, we appreciate your comments.