Tsumkwe

Capital of the San (Bushmen)

Tsumkwe is situated about 60 km west of the Botswana border and 300 km east of Grootfontein in the Otjozondjupa Region. Tsumkwe is just a small town with about 500 inhabitants and it is administrative centre for the Tsumkwe district in which 9,000 people live, of which about 2,400 are San.

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The San, the original inhabitants of Namibia, also called Bushmen, have been living in Southern Africa for more than 20,000 years. The region belongs to the former Bushmanland, appointed homeland to the Bushmen by the former South African administration.

The Bushmen established the Nyae Nyae Conservancy, a game reserve of about 30 x 35 km around a pan (Nyae Nyae Pan), which turns into a lake after good rainfalls. In this regoin the Bushmen can be seen in their natural habitation and one can even partake in a hunt or a nature walk. It is estimated today that about 30,000 San are living in Namibia, of which about 2,000 still have a traditional way of live.

En route to Tsumkwe there are many smal turn offs from the C44, which lead to Bushmen villages where one can meet the people and their fascinating culture. The best way though to experience it is to visit the Living Hunters Museum 20 km north of Tsumkwe.

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