Van Reenen – The Halfway Destination

Amongst the folding valleys and the forests lies a small village with bold characters that make a living out of tourism and idyllic lifestyles. Set in a panorama of natural beauty the Van Reenen area offers gracious splendour to rural simplicity with many varied and interesting places to stay. Van Reenen straddles the Free State and KwaZulu-Natal, halfway between Johannesburg/Bloemfontein and Durban on the N3 highway. Van Reenen offers many outdoor activities, community-based tourism, events and all the necessary tourist facilities. The area is well renowned for its ‘champagne soaked’ climate ranging from crispy misty days, temperate summers and winter snowfall.

In 2009 Van Reenen Tourism embraced the concept of community-based tourism. The Yenza Community Project aims to uplift the local community through tourism. The initiative has trained nine site-specific tour guides known as the Ihawu Tour Guides. They aim to give tourists a different outlook on culture, scenery and history. From visits to Sangomas (traditional healers) and retelling a contended history to tours which allow tourists to experience true Zulu/ Sotho culture, the guides can entertain one with a wide spectrum of activities and stories. Currently the project is building campaigns, enhancing capacity, hosting events and improving the aesthetic, as well as the functional facilities of the area.

Van Reenen offers a splendour of exciting events ranging from a Great Gatsby Horse Racing Day in May, mountain biking in early spring as well as the unique Yenza Cultural Festival which invites tourists to celebrate our culture.

Van Reenen also offers many outdoor activities and caters for family or romantic weekends, weddings at the Little Church, conferences or short breaks. We offer hiking, mountain biking, quads, trout fishing, horse riding and polo. One can enjoy guided tours eat the most delectable food or have a drink in a quaint old pub.

Accommodation ranges from cave dwelling through self catering, to boutique hotels, quaint cottages and a number of agro-urban developments offer a permanent lifestyle change. Our community is very warm and inviting and we embrace all tourists to come and enjoy this splendid lifestyle.

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