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Thabazimbi is an iron mining town in the Limpopo province of South Africa. The town is situated at the feet of the Ysterberg and is surrounded by the Witfonteinrand and Boshofberg with the majestic Kransberg in the background.
The name Thabazimbi means mountain of iron because of the large iron ore reef that was discovered in 1919 by J.H. Williams. The mine boasts one of the largest mining shafts in Africa. More than 2 million tons of ore is mined every year and hauled by train to Mittal’s iron and steel works. The railway line from Rustenburg reached the area in the 1930s and full scale iron and steel production began.
The Marakele National Park
The Marakele National Park about 20 km north-east of the town and situated in the heart of Waterberg Mountains characterised by contrasting mountain landscapes, hills and valleys, as well a variety of wildlife. Named after the Twana word for ‘sanctuary’, the big 5 and other wildlife has been re-introduced and the park is characterised by contrasting landscapes of mountains, grassy hills and deep valleys. It is home to a very large colony of Cape Vulture and boasts around 800 breeding pairs.
Marakele National Park is also home to Tuli Elephants.
In the last decade Thabazimbi has developed into an Eco-tourism- and hunting mecca in South Africa with a large selection of game farms, hiking trails, bird watching, varied accommodation options and several other tourism activities. There is a great variety of holiday and tourist accommodation available, ranging from B&B accommodation to lodges, chalets, guest houses and backpackers. Thabazimbi business community serves this sector and the mining in the area, and hosts the annual Game and Tourism Expo.
Not far from Thabazimbi is the town of Lephalale (Ellisras, Limpopo), where you will find the world largest dry cooled power station called Matimba. Other tourist attractions include the Art Weekend at Thandanani and some of the most fascinating San Artwork to be seen in South Africa.