Kimberley is Located in the centre of South Africa and is approximately 110 km east of the Vaal and Orange River. It is and is the capital of the Northern Cape province and is enriched with a diamond history. Kimberley is famous for the Big Hole and is the “diamond town” in South Africa.
Diamonds have been found in Kimberley and the surrounding areas for over 150 years and thousands of people in this region still make a living working in the diamond industry today. Kimberley is at the centre of De Beers diamond discoveries and consolidated mines and although many of its mines have been sold, many remain in production.
With many mines coming to the end of their natural life span (open pit and underground) there are still many opportunities in and around the Kimberley area. With so many kimberlite pipes known to be in this region of Africa coupled with large long rivers running across the country, alluvial diamond mining has become prominent.
The exact source of diamonds along the Orange river and the Vaal river are unknown, but with so many diamond bearing kimberlites available in the region, diamonds have been transported from several sources down the rivers all the way to the Atlantic Ocean on the West coast. As the ancient rivers meandered towards the ocean, so their precious loads were being deposited along the route for thousands of years. Only within the last 50 years has there been any focus on the potential of alluvial mining on the Vaal or Orange rivers.