Van Reenen, Drakensberg
Once you've booked your Van Reenen accommodation explore our pages for info on attractions and what to do in Van Reenen.
Van Reenen’s Pass, a sweeping pass renowned for its slippery and precarious roads (particularly as a result of the frequent misty conditions), and some of the most gorgeous views, is the main route through the Drakensberg Mountains connecting Jo-burg and Durban with Van Reenen, a little town perched on the high summit of the Pass, between Harrismith and Ladysmith on the N3.
Van Reenen has a history steeped in the Anglo-Boer War, and a lookout point, called Windy Corner, about 3 kilometres out of town with views over the mountains and lower lying regions - virtually all that there is to the town’s credit, apart from the Llandaff Oratory - a small chapel with only eight seats built by a father in memory of his son, and ostensibly the smallest Roman Catholic church in the world.
South Africans and travellers alike pass through this part of the world on the way to somewhere, and seldom stop to appreciate the unique mountainous area, the Battlefields Route sprawled out in the valley below filled with a unique charm, arts and crafts, hiking trails and Zulu culture.
If you’ve ever stopped on an early morning trip to or from Johannesburg - most South Africans stop at the bottom of Van Reenan’s Pass at some point to refuel as it is regarded as the halfway mark - then you can appreciate the cool mornings, peppered with moist clouds and the sharp smell of petrol. Add a bitter coffee and a soggy toasted sandwich to the mix and nostalgia is born.
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Van Reenen Reviews
"I love to stop at Van Reenen on roadtrips. It's such a place of solitude and peace. Just ..." - Kristen, Sutherland
Featured Attractions in (or near) Van Reenen
Nestled in the rolling foothills of the Maluti Mountains of the north-eastern Free State lies the Golden Gate Highlands National Park. The park derives its name from the brilliant shades of gold cast by the sun on the park's sandstone cliffs, especially the imposing Brandwag rock, keeping vigil over the main rest camp ... more information
The privately owned Mount Everest Game Reserve is set in a particularly scenic part of the Free State close to the town of Harrismith and, despite its smallness, gives one access to Mount Everest (as well as the 'I've climbed Mt. Everest' t-shirt to prove it). That's not the Mount Everest, also known as Sagarmatha ... more information
The Oliviershoek Pass, on the R74 from Bergville, is often used as an alternative route to Van Reenen’s Pass. This happens when Van Reenan's Pass is closed off to motorists during bad weather, but you can also use it as a scenic alternative that might appear on the face it as a ... more information
Broadly speaking, the southern parts of the Drakensberg lie between Bushman's Nek to the south-east and Kamberg to the north-west, including the Bulwer Mountain and what are often described as the 'country' towns of Underberg and Himeville. This part of the world is described as ... more information
Rugged, steep krantzes silhouetted against the skyline, mountain slopes snugly covered with a grass blanket, deep lushly vegetated kloofs and a crystal-clear lake are facets of the beauty of the Sterkfontein Dam Reserve which covers 18000 Ha. Oribi, Mountain Reedbuck and Grey Rhebuck inhabit the Sterkfontein ... more information
The Ukhahlamba Drakensberg Park has exceptional natural beauty in its soaring basaltic buttresses, incisive dramatic cutbacks, and golden sandstone ramparts. Rolling high altitude grasslands, the pristine steep sided river valleys and rocky gorges also contribute to the beauty of this world heritage site ... more information
Things To Do in Van Reenen