Lydenburg
Close to the ground.

GPS: S 25 05.602 E 030 27.377 pop. 20,000 | elevation 1,401 m/4,596 ft

Lydenburg was named “the place of suffering” by the Voortrekkers, who founded the town in a mosquito-free area in 1849 after many of their family members died from malaria. More recently Lydenburg is known for its archeological significance with the 1950s discovery of the Lydenburg Heads – seven ceramic masks dating from the 5th century.

The Lydenburg Museum

The Lydenburg Museum is right outside of town on R37 toward Sabie just past the Checkers Supermarket. The museum exhibits replicas of the seven Lydenburg Heads (the originals are on display in the South African Museum in Cape Town). There are also displays on the establishment of the Voortrekker town, its mining history, and its role in the wars and battles over the past 100 years.


Gustav Klingbiel Nature Reserve

The Lydenburg Museum shares its location with the entrance into the Gustav Klingbiel Nature Reserve a 2,000 hectare reserve that is good for bird watching and has a scattering of other animals. Heading east from town on R37 toward Sabie you cross the Long Tom Pass. At 2,150 m it is the second-highest mountain pass in South Africa. The pass gets its name from the French-made foursiege canons carried up the pass by the Boers in the Second Anglo-Boer War (1899-1902) - called Long Toms because the long barrels could shoot a 150 mm shell over 9 km.


The main commercial center in Lydenburg is the Pick 'n Pay Shopping Center and the Shoprite across Lange Street.


There are a number of guest houses and B&Bs throughout town and most are well marked with signs on the main Voortrekker Street.


Uitspan Caravan Park

The only budget option in town is the Uitspan Caravan Park but at the time of review it had just been sold and is slated to be leveled for a shopping center in the near future.


De Ark Guest House

De Ark Guest House offers true luxury rooms, each well fitted with their own style from Gothic and Renaissance to Victorian. De Ark makes for a great location with its Rambling Rose Tea Garden and the Cuisine Classic Restaurant on the premises and host Francis le Roux offering a wealth of knowledge on the surrounding area.


Klitz-Grass Chalets

Klitz-Grass Chalets is on the outskirts of town on Viljoen Street just past the bridge. The main lodge has a large communal deck and the stone and wood self-catering chalets each have their own kitchenette, braai area and deck overlooking a small duck pond.


Misty Mountain Lodge

Misty Mountain Lodge is an old family farm, converted into a lodge, situated on the Long Tom Pass with impressive views of the DrakensbergMountains. The two-, four- or six-person individual chalets are outfitted for self-catering and the lodge has a lounge, bar and restaurant (mains R60-120) with delectable food that makes it worth a stop for lunch even if you are not staying overnight. The lodge has trout fi shing, hiking, mountain biking and rents quad bikes (R445/2hr guided tour).


Trout Inn Restaurant & Pub

Trout Inn Restaurant & Pub is an old establishment with a bespoke maitre'd and a large menu with everything from oxtail potjie to pork schnitzel. The house special is smoked or fried deboned trout fresh from the local rivers.


The Cuisine Classic Restaurant

The Cuisine Classic Restaurant at De ArkGuest House is an elegant upmarket linen table cloth and candle restaurant with an open fireplace and multi-course meals.


Okus

Okus is a contemvporary restaurant serving tasty dishes, with indoor and outdoor seating, and cocktail lounge that promotes their R25 jam jar drinks.


The night life in Lydenburg can be difficult to find, but check out the Trout Inn Restaurant & Pub or Okus.


Trout Inn Restaurant & Pub

Trout Inn Restaurant & Pub is an old establishment with a bespoke maitre'd and a large menu with everything from oxtail potjie to pork schnitzel. The house special is smoked or fried deboned trout fresh from the local rivers.


Okus

Okus is a contemvporary restaurant serving tasty dishes, with indoor and outdoor seating, and cocktail lounge that promotes their R25 jam jar drinks.