Hiking in the Free State The Free State is great for hiking

Home to the Vredefort Dome, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the Golden Gate Highlands National Park, the Free State offers visitors a relaxing experience. Learn about the customs and traditions of the Basotho people, enjoy a myriad of water sports, and stroll around artsy Clarens.

Did you know?

The Free State is South Africa's 3rd largest province, covering 10,6% of the country's surface area.

The Free State is known as the ‘bread basket of South Africa’, due to its thriving agricultural industry.

The Free State province is also renowned for its fascinating history and glorious landscapes – this is ‘big sky’ country where golden mountains stretch heavenwards and life is decidedly unhurried.

Mangaung/Bloemfontein is the hub of the Free State province and is hailed as the country’s legislative capital. The name Bloemfontein means ‘a spring of flowers’ and the city is renowned for its spectacular gardens including the roses at King’s Park, just west of the city.

Enjoy the sights at the Franklin Nature Reserve or celebrate with cocktails at the well-known Naval Hill lookout point. For a spirit of adventure, make sure you visit one of the local townships and get to know a bit more about the local culture.

Further afield there is so much to be enjoyed in this province – head off to arty Clarens in the Eastern Free State, and make sure you stop over at the Golden Gate National Highlands National Park – one of the country’s most spectacular parks. Take time to explore the Basotho Cultural Village as well as Phuthaditjhaba.

Small towns like Ladybrand, Clocolan and Fouriesberg offer fascinating insights into everyday life in the province.

For sports-lovers, there are the Vaal and Gariep rivers – known for fantastic water sports. Of course there is also the Vredefort Dome, near the town of Parys, the world’s oldest meteorite impact site that is definitely worth some exploration.

While the Free State is more laid-back than Durban, Johannesburg and Cape Town – there are a number of excellent meetings and conference options to choose from, with the added benefit of enjoying the incredible hospitality on offer in this wholesome part of the world.

Travel tips & Planning info

Who to contact

Free State Tourism Authority
Tel: +27 (0)51 411 4300
Email: info@freestatetourism.org