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Thulamela Guided Tour

Discuss activities available in the Kruger National Park, and follow all the sighting reports.
gwendolen
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Unread postby gwendolen » Sat Jan 21, 2006 10:05 am

Hi papop, I think you need to contact reception at Punda Maria.
Tel: +27 (0)13 735 6873
Fax: +27 (0)13 735 6894
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Unread postby LittleLeopard » Sat Jan 21, 2006 10:09 am

In one of the earlier discussions about historical sites in KNP, I found this reply from francoisd about the Thulamela site, but nothing else which suggests how much it costs or how it's arranged, etc.
Maybe the best for you would be to send a fax to the Hospitality Manager at Punda Maria and ask him all your questions.
You can find his fax number at the bottom of this page.
I'm sure he can answer all your questions.
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Re: thulamela guided tour

Unread postby CurtisDillon » Sat Jan 21, 2006 10:14 am

Hello papop
papop wrote:I did not find a lot of information about Thulamela excursion. As I‘d like to visit that place, if anybody could give me info about it. How long is the excursion? How much is it? And any more advice that seems to you helpful for me. Thanks in advance.


Cultural Heritage in KNP
Kruger National Park is best known for its big game sitings and large expanses of wilderness; however, Kruger has a unique cultural and historical landscape and diversity, with well over 255 recorded archaeological sites ranging from early Stone Age (roughly 1 million years ago) to various Iron Age settlements and recent historical buildings and sites. Many of these sites hold cultural and spiritual importance, while others reveal an exciting and romantic history of the area.

Conservation of these sites is imperative due to their cultural and spiritual value and the historical importance. As national stewards of the conservation of the area we are legally bound to protect these sites.

Sites that are currently open to the public are:

Albasini Ruins
Masorini
Thulamela

There is a lot more information about Thulamela at this site. I called reception at Punda Maria Rest Camp this morning and they said you will have to book a guided tour with them at the camp to see the ruins. :lol:
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Unread postby Nico » Sat Jan 21, 2006 11:45 am

Two years ago, we had a tour to Thulamela. I was with my wife and son and a fieldguide. The tour is amazing. The start is in Punda and after a drive, we had to walk to the ruins of Thulamela. What you see is amazing. Lots of Baobab trees, and between the rocks you will find the Yellow spotted Hyrax Dassie. After a climb you enter the place where the ruins are on the hill. It's a beautiful lookout point. The atmosphere is incredible and the guide is telling the beautiful story over the people who lived there.After the walk, there is a tour to Pafuri [picnic spot]There is so much to see. This trip is a must when you visit the north. :thumbs_up:
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Unread postby CurtisDillon » Sun Jan 22, 2006 11:25 am

I called Punda Maria Rest Camp again this morning and they confirmed that you should make the bookings at Reception for the Thulamela guided tour.
The tour will take about 4 hours and it costs R250.00 per person.
According to them, that is all the information you need.

Thulamela is a stone walled site is situated in the Far North region of the Park and dates back to approximately 450 to 500 years before present (BP).
This late Iron Age site forms part of what is called the Zimbabwe culture which is believed to have started at Mapungubwe.
Mapungubwe's decline coincided with the increase of Great Zimbabwe importance.
When Great Zimbabwe was abandoned about 300 years later, possibly due to political break down, several groups moved south across the Limpopo river into the North Eastern areas of South Africa (and Northern Kruger) and established new smaller chiefdom's such as Thulamela

(extract from SANParks website.)

There is a museum in Pretoria with more to see about this site. :lol:
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Unread postby papop » Mon Jan 23, 2006 8:14 am

Thank you for the information, a very interesting article. As I think that ghosts really exist. I'm going to be very mindful of what I hear or feel around the place and maybe if I'm lucky would I meet a ghost? Who knows!
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Unread postby wildtuinman » Mon Jan 23, 2006 8:29 am

I cannot find the Thulamila ghost story now, but I know that it is quite well documented. Apparently the Baobabs there are the hosts of the spirits!

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thulamela guided tour

Unread postby Pieter Steyn » Sun Sep 17, 2006 9:33 am

Hi

I have done the thulamela guided tour. You indeed have to book for the tour at Punda. I t is really a interesting outing and I can recommend it.

We gathered at Pafuri picnic spot and frank accompanied us. We had the advantage of a knowledgeable guide as well as Frank's knowledge on birds.

My mom of 74 accompanied us. She made it all the way to the top. Is she the oldest female who has done it?

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Pieter Steyn
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thulamela guided tours

Unread postby Pieter Steyn » Sun Sep 17, 2006 1:48 pm

hallo peter

In Jan. 2006 the cost was R150.00 per person. Do not know if it has changed. Although I do not think so. The annual price increase come into effect in Nov. as far as I know.

The guides are excellent and eager to share their knowledge with you. They have answers on all your questions. language spoken by the people ext. It is worth the money to go up Thulamela. One story that they will tell you is how the wall was build overnight by ghosts.

You can phone Punda's reception and make your booking with them. All the other camps are more than willing to assist you either by radio or by phone. You can also pay at the camp where you make the booking.

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Unread postby Wild about cats » Mon Aug 13, 2007 11:26 am

I did this tour last December.

It was a magical experience. Unfortunatly, there were a few flaws. We left later than normal because the guide was late and then the vehicle was late and then we had to set it up.... Gee wiz! :roll: We were about 1 or 2 hours late already. We set off and the first sighting was a buffalo in a mudhole (first thing in the morning! :shock: :wink: ) and as people who have been there before will know, there isn't much game.

We arrived at a no entry walkway on Nyala Drive by the chemical toilet. We put our insect repellant on, go to the loo, take off our jackets etc. The weather was already very warm. We made our way up the path, climbing the mountain. It was exausting and truly annoying with all the insects around us but we still had a stunning time. The guide, Eric, showed us plants and dung along the way. Surprisingly, there was elepahant dung all the way up and we were shocked that he could climb so well.

At the top he explained everything about the old village, and it sure was very facinating! The view was undescribable. We saw the elephant migration trail and leopard middens. The heat was unbearable though and my sister and I were struggling a bit. Here's a tip: If you ever go on this trail, ensure that you leave EARLY. It is shocking how hot it gets. So we eventually made our way down again. My dad asked the guide to take us to the border to Moz. NEVER go there at midday. The heat is not for sissies, its really bad. Make sure you take enough to drink, you always seem to run out. :)
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Re: Thulamela Archaeological trail

Unread postby ndloti » Fri May 13, 2011 3:56 pm

I wonder if it is not publicised much because of the impact that many people may have on the site , the entrance is on a no entry road , perhaps with this in mind and the long distance from Punda Maria where the nearest infrastructure is located ..
I imagine low visitor numbers make it not viable to set up guides to accompany the tourists .

Perhaps phone Punda Maria ?

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Last edited by ndloti on Mon May 16, 2011 10:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Thulamela Archaeological trail

Unread postby Hugh » Fri May 13, 2011 4:57 pm

Thanks Ndloti ..Super photos I will phone Punda nearer the time.. I should imagine if peeps knew where to go they would ruin the spot completely .. But I do hope to go . We do the Nyalalnd trail and then three days in Punda .. there would be nothing better than going on this visit too.
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Re: Thulamela Archaeological trail

Unread postby Imberbe » Fri May 13, 2011 5:07 pm

Just spoke to Punda. Thulamela trips are R 240 per person.

Bad new though ... it is not available at the moment. I do not know why. They could not tell me when it would become available again.

Sorry! :(
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Re: Thulamela Archaeological trail

Unread postby ecojunkie » Fri May 13, 2011 6:18 pm

It is a very special place, and I suspect that not every guide/ranger could tell much about it, and appreciate the sensitivity of some areas there. Possibly they have nobody at the moment with the right expertise?
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Re: Thulamela Archaeological trail

Unread postby Hugh » Fri May 13, 2011 7:35 pm

I know EJ thats why I would like to visit but I also understand that not everyone knows its history and also the culture .. But if there is no one so be it .!! Imagine if everyone just pitched up there ... Shudder . an awful lot of history would be lost ..
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