From the extinct Xam San term for ‘water-hole', !Khwa ttu offers an insight into the culture and heritage of the peace-loving, environmentally-conscious San people. They were persecuted, marginalised, under-appreciated by colonists, but !Khwa ttu aims to restore the San heritage, educate the public about the San and provide training to the San community members.
The !Khwa ttu culture and education centre is a joint partnership between the San people, who are majority owners and influence every aspect of the reserve, and the Swiss UBUNTU Foundation. Situated just over an hour's drive from Cape Town, near Yzerfontein, the 850ha West Coast nature reserve gives you an authentic, interactive experience facilitated by the San people themselves.
Learn about the San's history, their tracking and rock art painting skills and their complex ‘click' language. Go on a tractor-driven tour and hear the San's traditional animal stories or go on easy nature walks and discover their hunter-gatherer lifestyle.
Bringing the experience back to today, a poignant photographic exhibition provides an eye-opening account of the issues facing the San today, such as the dispossession of land and natural resources.
!Khwa ttu is near Yzerfontein, about 70km from Cape Town, on the R27.
The centre can be found on the West Coast flower route, where you'll also find the delightful town of Darling and its best wine estates - Groote Post and Cloof; West Coast National Park; and the fishing villages of Langebaan and Paternoster. Tours to do 3-hour guided San-guided experience and the San ethno-botany trail.
!Khwa ttu San Culture and Education Centre
Tel: +27 (0) 22 492 2998
Stay at the Guesthouse with incredible ocean views of the Atlantic at approx. R880; at the Bush Cottage if you're more adventurous - it has an unforgettable shower - at approx. R650 and at the tented Bush Camp at approx. R400
All year round - but closed on Mondays.
Hundreds of plant species as well as local wildlife form part of the spectacular natural surroundings. The indigenous fynbos, in particular, has been well-used by the San for health, household use and hunting. Visitors are given the opportunity to touch and smell the plants as well as taste some remedies at the traditional village.
Having been this close to the San's way of life, and have them share their wealth of wisdom with you, you can only leave enriched and equipped to deal with our ongoing human struggles to live harmoniously with one another and nature.
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