The Motheo Region, Free State

Motheo is one of five districts of the Free State in South Africa. The term ‘Motheo’ comes from the Sesotho for “foundation” or “cornerstone” and was consciously chosen to represent the heartbeat of the province, regarded as an area of entrepreneurial and investment opportunities and the centre of the economic and industrial development of the Free State.

The three municipalities of Mangaung, Mantsopa and Naledi fall within Motheo and include the city of Bloemfontein and other towns like Ladybrand, Hobhouse, Tweespruit, Wepener, Dewetsdorp, Thaba Phatswa.

Did you know? Once you've booked your hotel or Motheo accommodation in the Free State, explore the town and destination pages below for info on attractions, activities and things to do when you explore the Motheo Distict.

Motheo incorporates the highlands of the Maluti Route, the R26, which winds through Naledi, and the township of Botshabelo, 55 kilometres from Bloemfontein - the largest township in the province and the second largest in the country after Soweto.

Bloemfontein is without doubt the main attraction of Motheo. Marketed as an “outdoor mecca” by the city’s tourism, Bloemfontein is filled with history and myriad outdoor activities. From President Brand Street in the middle of town where the statue of President Brand stands in front of the National Afrikaans Literature Museum, along a street lined with stone building that date back to the 1800s, to the Botanical Gardens and Oliewenhuis Museum, there is plenty to do in the city.

Did you know? Bloemfontein is without doubt the main attraction of Motheo. Marketed as an “outdoor mecca” by the city’s tourism, Bloemfontein is filled with history and myriad outdoor activities.

The other attraction included in Motheo, 60 kilometres east of Bloemfontein, is Thaba ‘Nchu, a town established as early as 1873 that was granted independence in 1979 and then reincorporated in 1994, but not before it become the site of a casino complex - one of the main reasons that Bloemfontein residents regularly visit the largely Tswana and Sotho dominated town.

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Destinations in the Motheo Region


Overnight? Bloemfontein accommodation
Bloemfontein is perched near the centre of South Africa, on the road between Cape Town in the Western Cape and Johannesburg in Gauteng. Bloemfontein is one of the largest cities in the country, but is known for its natural prettiness and warm hospital...


Overnight? Botshabelo accommodation
Botshabelo is a large township, a hangover from the apartheid era that lies close to Thaba Nchu, just east of Bloemfontein. People originally moved there in search of work, when they left their rural homes in the Free State to move closer to Thaba'Nchu (a...

Generaal de Wet

Generaal de Wet is a small suburb of Motheo, which is a part of the Free State Province of South Africa. Generaal De Wet is approximately six kilometres from the hub of Bloemfontein, which is not only the province’s capital city, but also a melting pot of...


On the southernmost tip of the Eastern Free State region lies Hobhouse, named after the British girl who became a Boer heroine. Emily Hobhouse visited the war-torn South Africa during the Anglo Boer War and was appalled at the conditions in the concen...

Thaba Nchu

Overnight? Thaba Nchu accommodation
As one reaches Thaba Nchu, 65 kilometres east of Bloemfontein and one of the oldest settlements in the Free State, it becomes fairly obvious where it got its name. The mountain that looms over the town of Botshabelo often falls into shadow whereupon it be...


Wepener gets a raw deal. It's usually no more than an afterthought in literature on the Free State, possibly because of where it lies at the foot of the Jammersberg (sorrow mountain), virtually on the eastern border of the province and right next door to ...

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