‘Roof of Africa,’ home to the world’s ‘costliest’ diamonds

Roof of Africa, an area in Lesotho, is home to diamonds that go for 20 times the global average.

  • Mountain Kingdom Lesotho is a tiny, landlocked nation, surrounded on all sides by South Africa. The Maluti mountains, through which the Roof runs, rise up on top of South Africa’s highest mountains, the Drakensberg.
  • The world’s highest mines are found in the Roof of Africa, and hold diamonds that prized almost 20 times ($2,000 a carat) the world average of $100. However, excavation of these precious gems is dangerous and difficult because of the tough terrain and the high-altitude winds. Temperatures here can drop to 30 below zero.
  • Roof of Africa rally is one of the oldest and the toughest races in the world. Roof of Africa is also known as ‘the Mother of Hard Enduro’ (events that test man and machine to their limits) because of its tough terrain. The terrain on the Roof of Africa is full of steep and narrow mountain passes. The surface is very hard, even though there’s a carpet of grass, underneath it feels like iron.

    Lushoto or Lesotho?
    Remember watching the movie ‘All the Best’ (Ajay Devgn / Rohit Shetty film)? In the movie, Sanjay Dutt keeps on referring to the king of Lushoto, although the subtitle says ‘Lesotho’. Lushoto is located in Tanzania where they actually speak Swahili, whereas Lesotho is a separate country.

    In the climax, several characters, supposedly from Lushoto, enter the scene and speak something in Swahili…I am sure they faked it and spoke gibberish to make it sound like ‘African’

  • The Roof of Africa is the gateway to Lesotho, from a tourism perspective. The international and local visitors who come here, go on to explore other parts of Lesotho.

    Discover Lesotho

  • The Roof of Africa, is regarded by the Lesotho locals as a drought-breaker; thanks to its habit of bringing the summer rains.
  • In the warmer months (October – March), you may dress in light-weight clothing but do carry along a warm jacket, as the weather can change drastically. In the colder months (April – September), make sure you dress very warmly.

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