Activities

Introduction

Buks Kruiper working with dr. Gus Mills | Khomani San
Apart from the incredible beauty of the Kalahari landscape – rolling red dunes topped with golden grass, vast pans and an endless sky – there is also a variety of activities on offer that will keep the interested and energetic traveller busy.

These primarily relate to sharing our Bushman hunter-gatherer culture and our deep understanding of the natural environment, as well as our world view and spirituality.

In a rapidly changing and westernising world, the interest shown in San culture and tradition makes us proud and encourages the youth to value and maintain them. In this way, Indigenous Knowledge Systems that have developed over tens of thousands of years are not lost and the knowledge is passed from generation to generation and can be used to the benefit of the community.

Tracking and Trails

Walking trails | Khomani San
Tracking in the park Dawid Kruiper and Noi-kariseb | Khomani San
Isak Kruiper shows tracks in the sand | Khomani San

One of the highlights of a visit to the Kalahari is the opportunity to undertake walks and trails with our trackers and guides. The walks can be tailor-made to suit personal preferences, needs and interests and could vary from an hour-long walk to a day long walk. Walks and trails are conducted on the traditional farms of Witdraai and Erin. Trails can be tailor-made to include tracking animals, looking at medicinal plants, a heritage trail, or a combination of these. The trackers and guides have a wealth of traditional knowledge to share and in addition to this have undergone training and are certified in accordance with the National Qualifications Framework for professional guiding.

The ‡Khomani San Trackers and Guides Association is being constituted to ensure that a professional service is delivered to visitors and to set suitable daily rates commensurate with the knowledge, qualifications and experience of the trackers and guides.

For more information contact the Bushman Council Office and speak with Luce Steenkamp on +27 (0)76 613 9095 or email bushmancouncil@khomanisan.com

Living Museum

Living Museum | Khomani San
Making Crafts | Khomani San
Making Fire | Khomani San

The Living Museum of the ‡Khomani San gives visitors an interesting insight into the life of the friendly San. The Living Museum is an authentic open-air museum where guests can learn about the traditional culture and the original way of living of the San. The Bushmen demonstrate and describe everything with great dedication and almost every offered programme is interactive, allowing the guests a chance to participate and try their luck at shooting an arrow, craft making and traditional games. Nature walks and medicinal plant tours are also offered. Not only does the living museum provide and income generating opportunity for the San, it also assists in maintaining traditional ways of doing things, keeping them authentic and instils a sense of pride in the youth as people from South Africa and around the world take interest in their culture and traditional way of life.

For more information contact Barbara Raats on +27 (0) 783280578 or email bonaraats@gmail.com

Hunting

Kalahari Bushmen Hunting | Khomani San
Hunting has been a way of life for the Bushmen for tens of thousands of years, though it is now a dying art as a result of loss of access to traditional hunting grounds, new laws and the loss of culture and traditional way of life. We traditionally hunted with bow and arrow, and spears, giving thanks to the animal’s spirit after it has been killed. Hunting has never been conducted for its own sake, but to feed and nurture the people and provide skin, bone and gut to make clothing and tools.

It is now possible to undertake a hunt with our experienced hunters, on our traditional farm Erin. Engage with the hunters, honour the age old rituals associated with the hunt and experience the ways of the past.

For more information contact the Bushman Council Office and speak with Luce Steenkamp on +27 (0) 766139095 or email bushmancouncil@khomanisan.com

Story Telling

Symbolism and ritual continue to play an extremely important part in our lives and as with many cultures, storytelling is an integral part of our lives – for the purposes of entertainment, releasing stress, teaching moral lessons and passing on history and culture. Many of our stories have been passed down over generations and also give insight into our understanding of the universe. We would like to invite you to an evening of storytelling around the fire, with the elders if you are lucky, as we share with you how Jackal got his black back, and many more…

For more information contact the Bushman Council Office and speak with Luce Steenkamp on +27 (0) 766139095 or email bushmancouncil@khomanisan.com

Donkey-car Rides and Tours

For something new, why not go for a donkey-car ride while on your Kalahari Safari; we can arrange a ‘spin’ for you. This local mode of transport is used as an alternative to travelling by foot and if water or other goods need to be transported.

For more information contact the Bushman Council Office and speak with Luce Steenkamp on +27 (0) 766139095 or email bushmancouncil@khomanisan.com

Song and Dance

Story Telling | Khomani San
Song and Dance | Khomani San
Isak Kruiper playing the mouth bow | Khomani San

Traditional San song and dance has social, religious and ritual significance, whilst some dances are performed solely for pleasure and entertainment. The ‘trance’ dance is also known as the ‘healing’ dance, and is used for exactly that purpose. Many of the dances are called after animals and there is the giraffe dance, the eland dance and the lion dance – each with a different purpose. Most commonly, the women will sing whilst the men dance around the fire, rhythmically stamping their feet, often adorned with dance rattles made from dried cocoons with tiny stones or chips of shell in them. Sometimes the woman will stand and join in the dance, adding their own energy and driving the dance to a new level. Join us around the fire and experience this age-old custom whilst respecting that certain dances are extremely private events.

For more information contact the Bushman Council Office and speak with Luce Steenkamp on +27 (0) 766139095 or email bushmancouncil@khomanisan.com

Aunt Koera’s Farm Kitchen

Delicious and authentic Kalahari farm food is on offer at Aunt Koera’s Farm Kitchen, located on Erin farm near Andriesvale. It is served in a relaxed, home-style, open-air restaurant. Food is prepared over the fire or in a traditional three-legged pot, with care and patience to produce the most delicious meals. Visitors may come and sample Aunt Koera’s traditional ash bread (baked in the ash of a camelthorn wood fire), venison potjie with veggies, or simply a delicious Kalahari lamb chop with braai bread and salad. A selection of desserts and puddings are also on offer.

Please book in advance. For more information contact Aunt Koera on +27 (0)83 588 8346

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