The Northern Free State Region, Free State

The Northern Free State is at once rural and far enough from the major tourist routes to offer a hint of true ‘platteland’ living to newcomers and locals alike. It is not only the most accessible part of the Free State to Gauteng - it lies not even an hour from OR Tambo International Airport - but this rustic area is also rich in water, and manages to whirl together a rich collection of activities and weekend getaways that make it attractive to both those travelling through, and others wanting a break from it all.

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

During summer this area, which produces a high share of the country’s maize, bursts into an array of sunflowers, fields of mealies and wheat, interspersed with the vivid pinks of cosmos that transforms the countryside into a tapestry of gold.

The Northern Free State includes a collection of typical little towns - with names like Kroonstad, Frankfort and Heilbron - that silently bear tribute to a rich history in the form of characteristic sandstone buildings, and a collection of historical sites that relate to the Boer Wars, some of which are national monuments.

Did you know? The Vaal Dam and river provide effortless water play time from riding the white waters in a raft or canoe, to leisurely sailing the waters of the dam on a yacht.

In an arc to the north and west of Vredefort and Parys, lies a ring of hills known as the Vredefort Dome, South Africa’s seventh World Heritage Site, recognised as the largest and oldest meteorite impact site in the world. Hike in the rugged mountains surrounding the dome, view untouched San paintings, and abseil or rock climb in the area.

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South Africa Accommodation / Free State Accommodation / Northern Free State Accommodation

Destinations in the Northern Free State Region

Bloemhof

Overnight? Bloemhof accommodation
Not only does the little farming town of Bloemhof (flower capital or court) lie on the Vaal River, it also rests right up against a large dam known as the Bloemhof Dam - a major fisherman's paradise, especially for carp and fish cat, and somewhere you ca...

Deneysville

Overnight? Deneysville accommodation
There is some debate as to which province Deneysville in fact belongs. Although regarded as lying on the Free State shore of the Vaal dam (the pretty little town literally lies next to the Vaal dam wall), Deneysville is also just 100 kilometres from the m...

Frankfort

Overnight? Frankfort accommodation
The town of Frankfort lies on the banks of the Wilge River, south east of the Vaal Dam and Vereeniging, surrounded by farmlands that yield and feed corn, cattle and wildlife. Roughly 30 km from the N3, and an hour from Warden, Frankfort might serve f...

Heilbron

Lying due west of Frankfort, and an hour's drive south of Vanderbijlpark, Heilbron is a little farming community town, the fields that surround it the site of cattle, dairy, sorghum, sunflower and maize farms. On the face of it, a not-much-happening t...

Koppies

Overnight? Koppies accommodation
The little town of Koppies lies roughly halfway between the towns of Kroonstad and Vanderbijlpark on the N1. It is a little farming town that began its life as a railway station near the Renoster River. It boasts clear, starlit skies and time away fro...

Kroonstad

Overnight? Kroonstad accommodation
Find accommodation in Kroonstad and explore the prettiness of the Free State from this quiet little South African town. Despite its allusion to royalty (kroon is Afrikaans for ‘crown’) Kroonstad has far more humble beginnings, rumoured to have been named ...

Parys

Overnight? Parys accommodation
The little country town of Parys lies on the southern banks of the Vaal River about an hour’s drive from Johannesburg. Disputably named after its European counterpart on the banks of the Seine, what makes Parys interesting to visit is that it is situated ...

Tweeling

Overnight? Tweeling accommodation
The word “tweeling” means twins in Afrikaans, and the town of this name was established in 1920 on two farms that were named after a pair of similar looking hills in the area (Tweelingspruit and Tweelingkop). The town is a small one, situated in the South...

Viljoenskroon

Overnight? Viljoenskroon accommodation
Deep in the heart of the Free State Province, where cattle and maize farms drape the landscapes, is the small, homely town of Viljoenskroon. It was established in 1921 and was named after the farmer (Viljoen) and his horse (Kroon), and it is still governe...

Villiers

Overnight? Villiers accommodation
The little town of Villiers only just makes it into the Free State, lying as it does practically on the border with Mpumalanga, east of the Vaal Dam. Villiers, named after the farmer Lourens de Villiers on whose farms the town was founded, is built on the...

Vredefort

Overnight? Vredefort accommodation
Vredefort is a farming town, nestled in the unique beauty of the Free State Province of South Africa. The province is characterised by little ridges and koppies on otherwise flat terrain, and is home to a wonderful array of wildlife. The town of Vredefort...

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