Tourist Attractions of the Free State
Tourist Attractions of South Africa
South Africa is a vast and extremely fascinating country that packs a powerful tourist punch. Few countries can match it for variety and diversity in attractions, activities and cultural groups. From art and history to food and wine, wildlife and nature, nightlife, shopping and even places of worship – there is so much on offer to attract, entice and entertain.
The Western Cape with its mountains and oceans offers scenery that has inspired thousands of descriptions. It has great beaches, World Heritage sites, romantic winelands and museums that celebrate a rich cultural heritage. You can’t talk about a trip to Cape Town without discussing the fabulous cuisine and shopping options that draw tourists time and time again.
Gauteng’s brash exterior belies its depth, uncovered at numerous cultural and historical attractions. Places like Constitution Hill, the Apartheid Museum and Soweto feature alongside chi-chi restaurants, funky galleries, shopping malls and fascinating visits to the Cradle of Humankind, where all our stories began.
In Mpumalanga you’ll find a host of nature-related attractions, arts and crafts outlets, country towns, cultural villages and stupendous scenery along the well-known Panorama route. Of course one of the major attractions is the world-famous Kruger National Park.
Limpopo shares this wildlife sanctuary - the size of a small country - and has many of its own nature reserves. It also boasts the fascinating Mapungubwe, where once an ancient kingdom developed a field of influence that spread beyond the continent. Intriguing groups such as the Venda and the Balobedu still practise culturally-rich traditions in the far north of this region.
The North West is all about Sun City, and the Pilanesberg and Madikwe Game Reserves, but don’t forget the mampoer farms and the idiosyncrasies of the Marico, the cultural mélange at Lesedi on the shores of the Hartebeespoort Dam or the little town of Taung where the famous skull of the same name was discovered. From the Margaret Roberts Herbal Farm (De Wildt) to Sol Plaaitje’s house in Mafikeng, there’s much to explore.
Immense skies and enormous spaces characterise the Northern Cape, along with attractions such as the Big Hole in Kimberley, the Loeriesfontein Windmill Museum and the myths and legends as taught by the ancient San. The Augrabies Falls National Park, the Ais/Ais Richtersveld National Park and the Riemvasmaak community all offer interesting experiences and insights.
KwaZulu-Natal has its own brand of uniqueness when it comes to tourist attractions. Here you can visit a Hare Krishna temple in Durban, pay your respects at the Battlefields in the Midlands, come face to face with Zulu culture and celebrate some of the finest beaches along the Indian Ocean coastline. Sunny year-round, the province has great places to shop, eat, and discover.
The Eastern Cape is a place of rich heritage and struggle sites. Here historic monuments find their place alongside fun aquariums and beachside establishments. Malaria-free game sanctuaries and numerous nature reserves thrill adventure-seekers and nature-lovers.
Small towns and homegrown hospitality are the distinctive attributes of the Free State. Visit the Basotho Cultural Village on the way to the spectacular Golden Gate National Park, visit the Choet Visser Rugby Museum in Bloemfontein or the Fertility Caves (outside Clarens). Make your way to the fun galleries of Clarens, feast visually on the sandstone sights of Ficksburg and drink in the fascinating history of the provincial capital, Bloemfontein.
Wherever you go around the country, you’re bound to find a fun attraction, a moving museum, a great place to enjoy the local vibes. Enjoy surfing the Nightjar site for the best attractions on offer in each of the provinces.
Articles & Blogs
The Cannibals of St Fort4:45am 4 Dec
Words Peter Howard, Pics Shaen Adey, Peter Howard
The Little Caledon Valley is a beautiful place, but it has a strange aura. Possibly because they used to eat people here.
Around 1815, while King Shaka’s rampaging Zulu army was laying waste to the Free State plains, one small clan sought sanctuary on an impregnable mountain top. This was all very well until they were besieged, ran out of food and had to...
Cosmogenesis6:00am 19 Jun
Words by Basil Scordilis, pics by Corette Barham
It has been just over 5 months since I took a long awaited holiday up to the Maloti mountain ranges on the border of Lesotho. The trip was to Cosmogenesis, a twelve-day spiritual retreat and music event. The idea for Cosmogenesis was born through the concepts of the Mayan 2012 mythos. This being not a calendar to the end of the world, but rather a cycle of renewal, rebirth and an awakening of consciousness...
Cosmogenesis 201211:40am 21 Dec
This stunning scene is from Cosmogenesis, which has been taking place from the 12th (until 23rd) December. The first festival of its kind held in South Africa, this ten day event welcomes people of all backgrounds to join into a community of universal upliftment.
The focus of Cosmogenesis is on the Mayan Calendar ending on 21 December 2012. This is seen, not as a point of destruction, but rather a point of rebirth - the start of a new and enlightened age. That’s not to say that if you go you will find enlightenment, but it will certainly aid in the pursuit of self-awareness!...