Aquacade Camp – Namaqualand Escape
Near the border of Namibia, in the northern part of Namaqualand, lies Vioolsdrift. This once uninhibited area, did not have any means for people to get across the Orange River into Namibia, except for a lone “Nama” who travelers named Jan Viool. Jan Viool would guide travelers through the shallowest part of the river, named the “drift”, safely into Namibia. Hence the name Vioolsdrift. Farmers slowly started migrating to Vioolsdrift and one of the first farmers to the area was Hendrik Beets. Hendrik Beets, wife Johanna and children moved to an area that consisted of hard land, hark work and transport problems. Farmers worked on a canal to run water to their land, which was completed in 1934 and Johanna, two of her daughters and three workers worked on the roads, improving and repairing them through hard labor. Finally in 1956, the bridge, which is still in use today, was built. It is in this wild Namaqualand area that the Aquacade Camp is situated.
Aquacade Camp is located on the Orange River banks, and is surrounded by the scenic Richtersveld mountain ranges. These mountains are home to rare succulents and plant species. The Orange River attracts many animals and in the evenings the cry of the African Fish Eagle can he heard. The Aquacade Camp offers luxury self catering chalet accommodation, complete with air conditioning. Camping facilities are also available each with shady trees or lapa, power points, lighting, undercover kitchen and braai areas. Additional facilities that are available at the Aquacade Camp include a licensed bar with DSTV, clean ablution blocks with hot and cold water and flushing toilets, scullery with laundry and ironing facilities and a kiosk.
For campers wanting to get onto the water, canoes can be rented from the Aquacade Camp and a safe swimming area in the Orange River can be used to cool down in. Fishing is also another popular activity or enjoy an adventure on the 4×4 routes in the Richtersveld. Nature lovers can patiently enjoy bird watching, and if lucky, be able to see the illusive African Fish Eagle, who prefers to be heard and not seen.