House of Sorrow

EXCERPTS FROM MANNA IN THE DESERT: I absolutely love the writings from Alfred de Jager Jackson’s book, MANNA IN THE DESERT, originally published in 1920.    Their farm in the Karoo “where you find rest for the body and comfort for the troubled soul” had been in their family for generations. Alfred’s insights, descriptions and tales […]

Scimitar Oryx

This beautiful species of Oryx, also known as Sahara Oryx, were once widespread across North Africa but became extinct in the wild around 2000. How sad is this! – and whatever could have caused it? In short….. human disturbance, over-hunting, drought and loss of food due to excessive livestock grazing were all reasons for this […]

Rain at last

Drought has been Broken! We’re thankful to report that after our worst drought in living memory, we’ve had excellent rains, and all farm dams are full. 133 mm since the beginning of 2017! Having studied Weather Reports for months, always in hope of rain which the Karoo desperately needed, we were overjoyed last week; first a downpouring, then […]

Christmas in the Karoo

Always a reminder of how the year has flown by when once again we cut a tall Aloe flower that has already begun to dry……and that becomes our Karoo Christmas Tree. This ritual provides us with so much joy, and our Chapel takes on the Spirit of Christmas. Never cease to be amazed by the […]

Chris Barnard Museum and Birthplace

When travelling to the Karoo, don’t forget to spend half an hour in the frontier town of Beaufort West, for many the true entry into the Great/Upper Karoo. “Beaufort” belongs to one of our most beloved South African citizens, the late Professor Christiaan Barnard. Visit the Barnard Museum, the Missionary Church, and the Birthplace of Marius […]

Land of Thirst

The Karoo’s name is derived from the Khoisan word meaning “land of thirst”. Despite the barren landscape, the Karoo is home to some 9000 species of succulents and abundant wildlife.  The borders of the Great Karoo (home of BloemhofKaroo country guest house, near Richmond, Northern Cape) touch 4  provinces of South Africa, and this area forms the […]

Karoo Drinking Water

Four years down the line, there are still grave concerns about long term effects of shale-gas fracking in the Karoo Click here for full article: “Scientist call to test Karoo water before Fracking begins” BloemhofKaroo took initiative 3 years ago and had their underground water tested by Bemlab. “The water is ideal, and microbiologically extremely pure.” PH […]

Fascinating Facts – Gemsbok

Gemsbok (Oryx gazella) has been referred to as the “Aristocrat of the Plains”, and are often rated as the most handsome of the antelope species. Four Fascinating Facts: 1.  Gemsbok can subsist in waterless landscapes, utilizing habitats that other grazers can only use during rainy seasons.  They love grazing on short grasses, but will turn […]

Karoo Awakening

Waking up in the Karoo in winter is always an experience involving all the Senses! “We look again at the rise of the early sun.  The ravenlocks are now all golden and radiant…” First Thought…. is this going to be a freezing couple of days, or hopefully milder than expected? First Sound…the Tractor revving itself […]