Augrabies Falls, Augrabies Falls National Park
The Khoi people called the Augrabies Falls 'Aukoerebis', the place of the Great Noise, referring to the Orange River thundering its way downwards for 60 metres in a spectacular waterfall. The falls are sacred to the Khoi who believe that a giant snake lives at the bottom of the falls. It is believed to be a powerful mythic creature with mesmeric eyes, shimmering scales and a huge flawless diamond on its head for a crown.
Khoi and San (Bushmen) belief has it that this enormous jewel can bring you great happiness – if you could only outwit the snake. But if you fall under its spell, you’ll be captured in its shimmering scales and pulled underwater into the churning froth, gone forever.
It is believed that no one has ever outwitted the snake. It might sound like a quaint little Kalahari fairy tale, but to this day the Watersnake (Waterslang) commands fear. Its influence stretches over the whole of the Karoo and Kalahari, especially where the Orange and Sak Rivers flow. There are many people who say they have seen it.