The Ecopsychology Africa “Venda Sacred Walk” is conceptually and experientially unique. It was inspired by Ecopsychology Africa and made a reality by Nelson Maphaha and Thamba Masindi of the African Ivory Route. This culturally sensitive community project is managed by the African Ivory Route and facilitated by Ecopsychology Africa.
The Venda Sacred Walk is limited to a few walks per year. A maximum of 8 participants are accommodated for on this immersive and exclusive pilgrimage into the sacred heartland of Venda. We experience the living spirituality of sacred Lake Fundudzi and The Thathe Sacred Forest sites that are still revered as sacred to the people living there today. Our walks are totally ‘off the tourist track’, providing participants with an immersive, unsanitised and meaningful experience. Participants learn about Africa and African culture, environmentalism, and themselves on their journey.
The Venda Sacred Walk is facilitated by clinical psychologists and combines wilderness, culture, meditation, adventure, fun, deep conversation and spirituality in an integrated way. Traditional culture is left totally intact, we sleep in traditional huts and eat traditional food. For the entire walk we know exactly where our organic food is coming from. No adjustment to daily life by the communities involved is made in any way to accommodate our groups. We experience Venda culture just as it is. All these factors combine to form a uniquely enriching experience for all who participate.
The Venda Sacred Walk was inspired by a passion for, and love of the people of Venda. It was a vision that took over a decade to become a practical reality and that required total dedication, resoluteness and commitment. The communities involved in our project derive significant social and economic benefits so much so that Chief Kennedy Tshivase met with Ecopsychology Africa to express his appreciation of, and support for the project that brings respectful tourism to this beautiful and isolated region of Limpopo. This joint initiative of Ecopsychology Africa and the African Ivory Route provides a viable alternative to the proposed open cast coal mining in this environmentally and culturally fragile region of South Africa.