The seemingly endless Karoo has a truly magical feel. It’s a vast, semi-arid plateau (its name stems from a Khoe-San word meaning ‘land of thirst’) that features stunning sunsets and starscapes. Inhabited by humans and their ancestors for over half a million years, the region is rich in archaeological sites, fossils, San paintings, wildlife and some 9000 plant species.
The Karoo covers almost one-third of South Africa’s total area and is demarcated in the south and west by the coastal mountain ranges, and to the east and north by the mighty Gariep (Orange) River. It’s often split into the Great Karoo (north) and the Little Karoo (south), but the Karoo doesn’t respect provincial boundaries and sprawls into three provinces.