Dinokeng: The 4 Hubs
Cullinan & Rayton
The historic diamond-mining town of Cullinan is the glittering neighbour in the southeast with Rayton as a gateway, only 30 minutes drive east of Pretoria and Refilwe where you can experience cultural township tours and have your hair plaited in the salons. Please see the Dinokeng Tours map for directions and a view of Dinokeng with over 120 activities listed. Rayton is the historical mecca of Dinokeng which has many exciting historical sites, including Diamond Hill Battlefield, Prinsloo Agricultural and Sammy Marks museum, Zonderwater and its’ Italian Prisoner of War museum. Here you have many beautiful nature reserves where you can go horseriding, quad biking, and so much more … Refilwe is where you can experience cultural township tours. Here you can book a trip with Fundani Tours where Peterson, our excellent National Tourist Guide, who will take you on a wonderful tour where you can experience the local sangomas (traditional healers), historical sites dating back from early 1900s’, to shebeens and clubs. Here you will experience ‘Local is Lekker’ and eat from the local restaurants that will offer you traditional foods. A truly South African experience! The Cullinan Historical Village The diamond of Dinokeng is the quaint Victorian and Edwardian Village of Cullinan which is famous for the Cullinan Diamond (3106 carat), the world’s largest rough diamond was discovered in 1905. The cut and polished, part of that brilliant stone now sits in the centre-front of the Imperial State Crown of Great Britain, on display at the Tower of London. The Cullinan Diamond was discovered only 9m from surface in what is now known as the Cullinan Diamond Pipe, believed to be the oldest diamond pipe in the world. Huge diamonds are still occasionally found here, and although it’s unlikely you’ll find one, put an exciting one- to two-hour guided tour of a working diamond mine at the Cullinan Diamond Mine on your bucket list. Here you can also visit the Diamond Hub, where you can view replicas of some of Cullinan’s most famous diamonds, and watch a diamond-cutting demonstration. This late-Victorian town has retained a large part of its original architecture, with many functional locations offering genuine old-world hospitality. Cullinan Junction which includes the beautiful old train station and Oak Avenue in Cullinan, a favourite destination of tour buses and individual travellers alike and the heart of this Victorian village with original stone miners’ cottages, is a living museum lined with giant oak trees with lovingly restored old houses. But its other gems come in the form of an abundance of elegant and offbeat eateries, diamond outlets, a jewellery school, antiques, craft shops, art galleries and studios, theatres, a winery and an open-air museum. Cullinan also boasts a prestigious nine-hole Cullinan Golf Course. A somewhat poignant reminder of another chapter in Cullinan’s history is the Cullinan Mystique, a 1904 historical building that is home to a collection of murals painted by Italian prisoners of war during World War II, while the Zonderwater Prison commemorates those prisoners and internees who died during their internment. McHardy House Museum, the original 1903 home of the first mine manager, William McHardy – full of Victorian, Edwardian, art-deco and art-nouveau furniture – and the beautiful old stone St George’s Anglican Church are also well worth a visit. It’s illegal to take leave Cullinan with unregistered diamonds, but you can take away as many precious memories as you like.
Dinokeng central is the best kept secret and hospitable heart of Dinokeng where you can melt into nature right on the doorstep of the capital city. It is also dubbed ‘The Marloth Park of Dinokeng’, the ideal springboard for visiting the other hubs of the diverse Dinokeng destination: Many properties in Dinokeng Central offer a ‘private’ game reserve experience where they offer safe walking and can freely look for birds, other fascinating creatures and game such as impala, waterbuck, nyala, zebra, wildebeest and so much more. Here we have many private ‘hunting’ farms who will take you on an exhilarating experience accompanied by professional hunters with ethical conservation values. Apart from walking or hiking in the bush, you can go on game drives, Big Sky Ballooning, ziplining, abseiling, quad biking, horseriding, star-gazing evenings, and cultural tours at the Ndebele Village or Onverwacht where you can meet the Queen of the Royal House of the Mzilikazis’! Rust de Winter dam is one of the waterways of Dinokeng Central which is surrounded by nature reserves. Here you can enjoy boating, mountain biking, hiking to more restful fishing, bird watching and sundowner cruises at the end of the day! Whether it’s the lurking predators of the rolling African bushveld you’re after, a range of adventure activities to get your pulse racing, or fine dining in posh yet natural settings, there’s something for everyone in Dinokeng. So leave the rat race behind, even if it’s to a day resort, weekend or a holiday in Gauteng, and take in the sights, sounds, history and culture of this little piece of paradise. Please see the Dinokeng Tours map for directions and a view of Dinokeng with over 120 activities listed.
Dinokeng Game Reserve
The magnificent Dinokeng Big Five Game Reserve is to the north-west of Dinokeng. Gauteng proudly welcomed the first visitors to its malaria-free Big Five Dinokeng Game Reserve in 2011 (Lion, Elephant, Leopard, Buffalo and Rhino). Since then, the 21 000ha reserve has grown in stature to provide a free-roaming haven for brown hyena, lion, cheetah, giraffe, zebra, buffalo, buck, elephant, rhino, leopard and myriad bird species, including the endangered blue crane and a breeding pair of martial eagles. We believe by applying the philosophy of UBUNTU to people and nature alike, we can establish a conservation model for the future, and ultimately will make the world a better place. The future of conservation requires a two-pronged strategy the fight for open ecosystems and pristine wilderness areas and the development of new buffer models where people and nature grow together in harmony… Varying terrain and vegetation, ranging from bushveld to grassy floodplains and thornveld, support browsing and grazing species that are best enjoyed via two self-drive game routes. These routes, and others in planning, offer an unhurried and personal game-viewing experience, with ample opportunity for visitors to hone their photographic skills. Apart from the premier drawcard – vehicle game viewing – Big Sky Ballooning and Family Adventure Microlight Flights offers a unique vantage point over the animals. Or you might prefer a scenic boat cruise, a bush walk, fishing or a cultural tour. Find Dinokeng Game Reserve either from the N1 at the Hammanskraal turn off or through Dinokeng Central where you will find 3 entrances from either Rust de Winter, De Wagensdrift or the Hammanskraal road. Whether it’s the lurking predators of the rolling African bushveld you’re after, a range of adventure activities to get your pulse racing, or fine dining in posh yet natural settings, there’s something for everyone in Dinokeng. So leave the rat race behind, even if it’s to a day resort, weekend or a holiday in Gauteng, and take in the sights, sounds, history and culture of this little piece of paradise. Please see the Dinokeng Tours map for directions and a view of Dinokeng with over 120 activities listed.
Built in 1956, the Roodeplaat Dam lies 22km north-east of Pretoria, where it augments water supply to northern Tshwane via the Montana, Wonderboom and Magaliesberg reservoirs, and provides water direct to residents of Doornpoort. In 1972 plans were passed to develop the area as a nature reserve and recreation facility, and five years later the reserve was proclaimed. Today Roodeplaat Dam attracts hundreds of city dwellers who spend weekends enjoying a variety of outdoor pursuits. The water-sport and birdwatcher’s haven is centered around the Roodeplaat dam which is to the immediate southwest of Dinokeng. The southern part of the Roodeplaat Dam Nature Reserve has become a picnicking, hiking, birding and game-viewing hub. More than 250 bird species have been recorded in the reserve’s savanna veld and dense savanna habitat, where a 7km hike to two hides adds to this pleasurable activity. Osprey, Eurasian reedwarbler, purple heron, black heron and hamerkop are noteworthy species. Wildlife species living here include kudu, waterbuck, warthog, impala, blue wildebeest, duiker, steenbok and blackbacked jackal. A designated picnic and braai area along the shore of the dam is an added attraction. The northern part of the reserve is dedicated to recreational pursuits such as boating, fishing and camping. Freshwater anglers can expect to find bass, carp, kurper and barbel in popular spots around the top half of the dam. The dam offers a variety of water sports and activities, from power boating, waterskiing and canoeing, to more restful fishing, bird watching and sundowner cruises at the end of the day! Here we also boast the biggest mountain bike park in Gauteng and its’ Olympic rowing course. Whether it’s the lurking predators of the rolling African bushveld you’re after, a range of adventure activities to get your pulse racing, or fine dining in posh yet natural settings, there’s something for everyone in Dinokeng. So leave the rat race behind, even if it’s to a day resort, weekend or a holiday in Gauteng, and take in the sights, sounds, history and culture of this little piece of paradise. Please see the Dinokeng Tours map for directions and a view of Dinokeng with over 120 activities listed.