Noncedo Seekoei

The vast Northern Cape does not often come to mind when thinking about South Africa’s tourism attractions but Noncedo Seekoei is passionate about the prospects of marketing of the sparsely populated province.

She left a secure job in the tourism industry in 2009 to do something that she loves — to create unique and different travel packages linked to De Aar, the third largest town in the province.

Among these, Seekoei launched science and technology tours at renewable energy conference in August last year. The Northern Cape records some of the hottest temperatures in the country and features two solar parks, one of which is the largest in the country, near De Aar. Subsequently,

Karroo Travel Dimensions has capitalised on the growing interest of renewable energy investors in trips to the facilities, as well as in helicopter rides to view them from the air.

Seekoei cites conducting a ghost tour through De Aar as her personal favourite. It takes place between midnight and 2.30am and she enjoys watching the expressions of spooked tourists making their way through the historic cemetery. Several people have even claimed to have seen ghosts and zombies there.

History buffs are also fascinated by De Aar and its role in the South African War. Seekoei’s tours, which differs from the battlefields tours in KwaZulu-Natal, takes visitors to the cemetery where many of the combatants lie buried and to the Garden of Remembrance.

Like many small businesses, Seekoei cites the government’s failure to pay suppliers timely as one of the biggest obstacles to cash flow. However, she was recently able to buy her own 16-seater minibus, of which she will take delivery shortly, and is excited about not having to rely on a hired vehicle.

It is not easy to market the remote province and she works hard with tourism authorities to advertise what the region has to offer. The Northern Cape is also subject to extreme temperatures, very hot in summer and sometimes going below zero as early as April, which discourages travellers.

Seekoei, however, sees massive opportunities for growth and hopes to expand her offering to include visits to the Square Kilometre Array, the radio telescope project near Carnarvon. But there is no tourism office in the town despite widespread interest in the programme.

She believes it needs someone who understands the province and who has been involved in science and technology tours, such as herself, to drive the project.

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Tehillah Niselow
Tehillah Nieselow
Tehillah Nieselow is a Journalist at Power FM. She Covers labour issues, strikes, protests and general stories

Related stories


Subscribers only

The war on women in video game culture

Women and girls make up almost half of the gaming community but are hardly represented and face abuse in the industry

Q&A Sessions: Marcia Mayaba —Driven to open doors for women

Marcia Mayaba has been in the motor industry for 24 years, donning hats that include receptionist, driver, fuel attendant, dealer principal and now chief...

More top stories

In emotive missive, Zuma says he will not provide answering...

Former president Jacob Zuma on Wednesday submitted a 21-page letter to Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng out of “respect”, to let the head of the...

Gordhan writes to JSC to clarify ‘incidental’ mention of Pillay...

Public enterprises minister denies that he tried to influence the appointment of a judge and friend to the SCA in 2016

The battle for 2050 energy dominance: Nuclear industry makes its...

Nuclear sector says it should be poised to take up more than 50% of the 24GW left vacant by coal

#SayHerName: The faces of South Africa’s femicide epidemic

This is an ode to the women whose names made it into news outlets from 2018 to 2020. It’s also a tribute to the faceless, nameless women whose stories remain untold.

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…