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WATCH: Unleashing the Beauty of Matopos - A Journey from Bulawayo to Maphisa

by Mncedisi Nyathi
02 Jun 2023 at 10:56hrs | Views
As a nature enthusiast and adventure seeker, I am always on the lookout for new destinations to explore. One such place that caught my attention recently is Matopos, a beautiful region in Zimbabwe known for its unique landscape and rich wildlife. Our journey began at Tshabalala Game Sanctuary, a popular wildlife reserve located just 10kms outside the Bulawayo city centre along Matopos Road. Tshabalala Game Sanctuary is one of the popular game reserves in Matopos, offering visitors a chance to experience the region's wildlife up close.

Apart from observing the wildlife, Tshabalala Game Sanctuary also offers a range of activities for visitors to enjoy. One of the popular activities is game drives, where visitors can explore the sanctuary with a knowledgeable guide. The game drives provide an opportunity to see the wildlife up close and learn about their behaviour and habitat. Another enjoyable activity at Tshabalala Game Sanctuary is picnicking. The sanctuary has designated picnic areas where visitors can relax and enjoy a meal amidst the beautiful natural surroundings. The picnic areas offer stunning views of the sanctuary and are an excellent spot for photography.

After a satisfying breakfast on the road where we ate indlubu, we headed to Matopos Sailing Club, an ideal destination for water leisure enthusiasts. The club offers a range of activities from sailing to tshisanyama. The experience at the place was tranquil and provided a unique perspective of the region's landscape.

The next stop on our journey was the Matopo Research Institute, a centre for agricultural research and conservation. The institute was established in 1903 and is dedicated to the study and improvement of mainly irrigated wheat and Lucerne. We were impressed by the institute's efforts towards conservation and the research being conducted to understand the agricultural environment better.

One of the many farms that line up along the Matopos road is Anglesea farm. The farm is well known throughout Zimbabwe for raising milk cows and also breeding of pedigree Nkone cows. Nkone cows were part of King Mzilikazi's Royal Herd, and commoners were not permitted to own them.

The core of the Matopos region is the Matobo National Park, a vast area of granite kopjes and wooded valleys that cover an area of 3100 kmĀ². The park is known for its unique landscape and rich cultural heritage and is a popular destination for tourists. One of the best ways to experience the beauty of the Matopos Hills is by exploring it on foot. The region offers excellent opportunities for hiking, rock climbing, and cave exploration. The hills were formed over 2 billion years ago, and it was fascinating to imagine the geological processes that led to their formation.

Although we got involved in an accident on our way back to Bulawayo, our journey from Bulawayo to Maphisa was a memorable experience that highlighted the beauty of Matopos and its various attractions. From the unique landscape of the Matopos Hills to the serene waters of Antelope Dam, the region has something for everyone. I would highly recommend a visit to Matopos to anyone looking for an adventure in nature.

If you plan to visit Matopos, be prepared for some rough roads. The strip road, dust road, and potholes can make the journey challenging, but the beauty of the region is well worth it. Don't forget to visit the Amagugu Heritage Centre to learn about the region's cultural heritage and also ask to take a ride on one of the local buses operated by Phelandaba Bus Services, RM Dubies Bus Services, or Mayezane Motorways. If you're looking for accommodation, the Farmhouse Lodge is an excellent option to consider. Finally, don't forget to visit Maphisa shopping centre to experience the local culture and cuisine.

Source - Mncedisi Nyathi