Monday, December 10, 2007

Pilgrim's Rest

I spent the past weekend in Pilgrim's Rest, a tiny, tiny one horse town in Mpumalanga province, about 5 hours drive east from where I live in Johannesburg. Because most of you, who read this blog are not from South Africa, I'd like to share a bit of what it's like here, so I hope you enjoy this post and the photo's. Pilgrim's Rest was established in 1873 during a short lived gold rush, and today the town is a national monument, it's historical character has been preserved, and it's very quaint and pretty, especially because it's in a lush, green part of the country, and it's surrounded by beautiful green hills. It's very close to the Kruger National Park, South Africa's best known game safari park, so it gets a lot of overseas visitors, when we were there now there were loads of French tourists which is great, we really love it when we get overseas visitors. I'd be surprised if there are more than about 200 people living in the town, some work for the one mine in the town that's still operating, and the rest cater to the tourism trade.

This is the Royal Hotel where we stayed, like most of the buildings and houses here, it's made out of corrugated iron. Most of the homes are the original miners cottages, some have been renovated and made bigger and turned into guest lodges. The Royal Hotel was built in 1893 and this is the original structure. It contains a little foyer in the middle, a lounge area on the right, and a bar on the left. The hotel rooms are in renovated miners cottages behind this building.

This is the hotel foyer.

These two pictures are of the lounge area, which has some beautiful antique Victorian chairs and dressers, very quaint and old fashioned as you can see.

The hotel bar - unfortunately I couldn't get any photo's of the inside, it was early on Sunday morning, and the barmen with the keys was only coming in at 10.00am to open up. It's also very quaint, and comes with two resident local bar flies who have obviously seen better days.

This is one of the typical houses you see built of corrugated iron. I love the way it's surrounded by so much greenery. This is also one of the original structures, it's called Rose Cottage and I think it's a guest lodge. I just love these old fashioned quaint, characterful type of old houses.

The local garage, in this picture you can see the gorgeous hills surrounding the town.

The view from the Royal Hotel Hotel, past the post office down Main Street, you can see the hills in the distance.

These two images are of the view and the Graskop falls, close by Pilgrims Rest. There are about five or so large waterfalls in the area.

And finally, the reason we came to Pilgrim's very muddy and tired husband after completing the Pilgrim's Rest Mountain Bike Classic....and he looks clean compared to some of the other riders!


design for mankind. said...

Oh how LOVELY!!! :)

{this is glamorous} said...

It looks so quaint and peaceful--thanks for the little tour and the great photos.

Bronwyn said...

I'm so glad you liked my little tour - it's very peaceful there, a good place to relax and contemplate :)

Freshly Found said...

So you were also away for the weekend!
We saw very interesting parts of the country when my son was young enough to still need us to take him to his mountain biking events! It was fun!

Bronwyn said...

Denise - my husband says it can be quite embarressing when you're huffing and puffing up a hill, and a 10 year old kid comes whizzing past on his bike :)

All Things Bright and Beautiful... said...

Dear Bronwyn - what lovely photos - Its great to see some of your world!! More more more I say & tell your hubbie well done - I'm impressed :-)