1. The Anglo-Boer War Museum and Women’s monument
The Anglo-Boer War, also known as the Second Boer War (1899-1902) was fought between the Boers from Transvaal and Orange Free State on the one hand and the British Empire on the other. In order to bring the resilient Boer fighters to their knees, the English resorted to locking up Boer women and children in concentration camps. The War museum and National Women’s Monument are both worth a visit and provide interesting information to the context in which the war took place.
2. Naval Hill
Drive to the top of Naval Hill for a beautiful view of the city. The area is also a game reserve so enjoy wildebeests, antelopes and zebras on the way up. At the top of the hill you will find a large statue of Nelson Mandela.
3. Oliewenhuis Art Museum
Situated in a beautiful Cape Dutch gable villa, the Oliewenhuis Art Museum has a beautiful sculpture garden and an excellent contemporary art collection with works by mainly South African artists such as Thomas Baines and William Kentridge.
4. Batho Township
Batho was founded in 1918 and is one of the oldest townships in South Africa. It is also the birthplace of the African National Congress (ANC). Batho has a rich oral tradition, passed on by several generations of residents. Many of the original red brick houses that were built in the 1920s and 1930s can still be seen.
5. President Brand Street
Take a stroll along the historic government buildings around President Brand Street. The classic sandstone buildings are a testament to the grandeur of the time of the Orange Free State. In front of the 3rd council chamber you can also find the historic tree garden. Also beautiful are the Anglican Cathedral and the Town Hall.
Did you know?
The writer JRR Tolkien of the famous trilogy ‘Lord of the Rings’ was born in 1892 in Bloemfontein. He moved when he was five years old. The Hobbit Boutique Hotel in Bloemfontein is decorated according to a Middle Earth theme and rooms are named after well-known Tolkien characters.