Louis Trichardt


Louis Trichardt is a town situated at the foot of the Soutpansberg mountain range in Limpopo. It was developed from the Voortrekker settlement in the area and named after the leader Louis Trichardt, who moved away from British rule in the Cape and arrived here in 1836. After his death en route to Lourenço Marques (now Maputo), other Voortrekker groups settled in the area but left after Chief Makhado defeated the unruly group of ivory hunters and adventurers of Schoemansdal in 1867. Only in 1898 did the Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek regain control of the area and establish the town of Louis Trichardt the following year in February 1899. Several historic buildings in and around Louis Trichardt bear testimony to the years of strife which existed in the area in the early years of the settlement. The Medike rock-art site with its fascinating murals and etchings is one of the most popular sites open to the public in South Africa, Lajuma being another. Various routes around the town highlight interesting aspects of the area such as the fruit route to farms where a variety of fruit and nuts are produced. The arts and crafts route in the Elim area, where sisal mats, candles, silkscreen prints, batik articles, traditional vhaVenda pots and woodcarvings are made, also provides insight into the life of the Shangaan people.

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