Kleinzee is a small diamond mining town on the west coast, owned by De Beers. It is located in the arid Namaqualand region, 100 km (60 mi) west of the regional capital Springbok.
The town was founded after 1927, the name is Dutch and means ‘small sea’, referring to a lagoon at the mouth of the Buffels River.
The Buffels River “flows” through Kleinzee, but most of the time it is just a dry river bed. The river only actually flows approximately every ten years.
The towns population size generally consisted of around 2,000 residents. It was considerably reduced by the down-scaling of mining activities in 2009. The area has become known as the Diamond Coast.
Attractions in Kleinzee include:
– There are different 4×4 packages on offer that include routes through pristine strandveld, a shipwreck tour, the Buffels River Grace’s Put route and a mine tour showing the workings of a modern alluvial diamond mine. Only for prearranged group bookings.
– The Kleinzee museum covers the history of diamond mining, the natural environment and history of humankind in the area. This is an area with diverse attractions.
– Kleinzee Nature Reserve hosts over 100 indigenous plant species.
– A resident colony of more than 450 000 seals on the admiralty is protected by the adjacent mining area.
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