Musina is the northern most town in South Africa and is situated only 16km from Beitbridge on the Zimbabwean border. This copper mining region, where copper was first discovered and mined in prehistoric times by the Musina tribe, is known for its large, magnificent baobab trees.  A baobab tree on the road to Malaladrift is known as a ‘trunk’ because of the shape of one of its branches. The largest baobab tree in the district on a farm named Nonsiang, has a girth of 19m and is 26m tall. During November the blooming impala lily and flamboyant tree turn Musina into a fairyland of color. The impala Lily park in the center of town is spectacularly beautiful in spring.

The name Musina can be traced back to prehistoric times when African miners on their quest for iron first discovered copper reserves in the area. However, the miners of the disregarded this soft metal as inferior hence calling the area ‘Musina’ meaning the spoiler. The tribe then became known as the Musina tribe . in 1901 the last known surviving member of the tribe, Magushi, led colonial prospectors to the area and four years later in 1905 Mesina was founded as a copper mining town. In 2002 the name was officially changed back to to Musina. Today Musina is a bustling town plays a pivotal in the mineral and diamond mining industry in South Africa. Iron ore, coal, magnetite, granite, graphite, asbestos and semi- precious stones are still mined in the area. Musina is an important trading center for South Africans and Zimbabweans alike and a base for the hunting and eco- tourism sector.

10km South of Musina is the entrance to the Musina Nature Reserve . Many old baobab trees, the oldest dated rock in the world and some endangered antelope can be found here

20km West of Musina on the R572 to pontdrift  you will find the Bolayi execution rock, where the Musina chiefs had their prisoners executed. Criminals were executed at Klein Bolayi on the side of the road.  The Klein Bolayi rock is one of the largest single granite outcrops in the world. The rock fog, over 100 years old, growing out of the rock is one of nature’s many wonder’s.

Home of the Baobab trees
Mapungubwe Baobab with Elephant

Home of the giant Baobabs

In terms of the National Forests Act, 1998 (Act No. 84 of 1998), is the Baobab (English and Venda), with its botanical name Adansonia digitata [or “Kremetart (Afrikaans), Seboi (Northern Sotho), Mowana (Tswana)”] and is listed as National Tree Number “467”.

A notice is regularly published in the Government Gazette informing the citizens (and visitors to the country) that no person may cut, disturb, damage or destroy any protected tree or possess, collect, remove, transport, export, purchase, sell, donate or in any other manner acquire or dispose of any protected tree or any forest product derived from a protected tree, except under a licence or exemption granted by the Minister to an applicant and subject to such period and conditions as may be stipulated.

This makes the concentration of trees in the Klein Bolayi area even more valuable as it seems as if the people who may have lived around the sacred rock may have “planted” the trees unknowingly in the surroundings of their habitat.  The saying of “one plants the seed, another waters the seed and someone else sits in the shade of the tree” may be very well relevant in this case as the people who live around 1 100 to 1 500 years ago in the area.  The people of the Monomotapa kingdom may have planted the seeds but today’s people (in 2022) have the privilege to appreciate the trees and their magnificence.

According to Clickatree, are the Baobab fruit a superfood.  They contain more vitamin C than oranges and more potassium than bananas.

The fruit, leaves, bark, and seeds of the baobab tree all have strong health benefits, and are traditionally used to treat diseases, reduce fever, and stimulate the immune system.

The trees are grown from the seed.  The coating of the seed is edible (one sucks on the seed to taste the coating) and disposes of the inner part (from which the tree sprouts under the ideal conditions).  The appetiser enjoyed by the old people may have resulted in the trees which are seen in the Klein Bolayi area.  Wildlife, especially the baboons and monkeys, enjoy the fruit alike.

Thaba Bolayi is home to more than 170 of these giant Baobab trees.  These trees are between 800 and 1500 years old.  They were used in the rainmaking process rituals.  Some trees are hollow and the ancestral has used these trees to store their food inside.  The constant temperature during summer or winter is 18° Celsius. The length and circumference differ from tree to tree, but they can be as small as the bonsai Baobab to the magnificent neighbour reaching around 20 metres high and around 50 metres on the circumference

Greater Mapungubwe
Mapungubwe national park


Mapungubwe National Park and World Heritage Site is well known among anyone interested in wildlife and birds and magnificent  scenery – but also to those in search of serenity, identity and the extraordinary history of this World Heritage Site.


Mapungubwe Hill is the place where archeogists excavated the famous golden rhino and other evidence of a wealthy, highly developed African kingdom. This civilization prospered between 1220 and 1290AD. The area was already inhabitat by an iron Age community from 900AD and became rich through trade with places like Egypt, India and China.


Sandstone formations, mopane woodlands, unique riverine forest and baobab trees from the astounding scenic backdrop for a rich variety of animals life. Elephant, Giraffe, white Rhino, eland, gemsbok and numerous other species occur naturally in the areaof present- day South Africa , Botswana and Zimbabwe. South Africa signed a memorandum of understanding with Botswana and Zimbabwe setting out principles for the Limpopo- Shashe Transfrontier conservation Area {TFCA}.


On 8 April 1933, The illustration London News reported a remarkable discovery in the former province of the Transvaal, now Limpopo : graves of unknown origin, containing many  gold art- facts, were found on the summit of a natural rock stronghold. This site, Mapungubwe Hill, was subsequently found to have been an iron Age metropolis – almost 800 years old. The remains of this ancient society, known as the kingdom of Mapungubwe, lay forgotten for more than seven centuries before they were discovered. After the discovery in 1933, the finding was initially not publicized but later research and news report have told the story of Mapungubwe.

Mapungubwe was the center of the first and largest kingdom in the subcontinent, where a highly sophisticated people under the reign of Africa kings traded gold and ivory with China, India and Egypt.

At the neighboring archeological site, known as K2, the remaining of a central homestead can be seen which is evidence of an extensive farming society. Together these sites were declared National Heritage Sites in December 2001. In July 2003 the area was listed as a World Heritage Site by the United Nation Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization {UNESCO}

Mapungubwe and Great Zimbabwe {the ruins near Mashvingo in Zimbabwe} are the most significant sites in the history of early Southern African civilizations. Further archaeological work has revealed the extend of the influence of these kingdom in the whole region.