In May 2015 John and I went back to South Africa.
On this trip we drove 3 hours south of Johannesburg to Clarens, The Jewel of the Free State.
Clarens is a small town in the foothills of the Maluti Mountains.
We stayed at Millpond House, a charming B&B just a short walk from the center of the village.
Millpond House is set among colorful roses and offered all the relaxation and tranquility we were looking for during our stay.
As well as a hearty country breakfast each morning.
We spent a whole day exploring the artistic square in the center of town.
There you will find a large grassy park framed by art galleries, boutiques, and restaurants.
Clarens is often referred to as an artist’s haven. Many well-known artists either live in Clarens or visit the village quite often.
John even got an autographed copy of someone’s novel who promises to be famous one day.
One day we went to Golden Gate National Park for a day of hiking.
The park gets its name from the bright orange, red and gold colors of the sandstone cliffs.
The Brandwag Buttress is the most recognizable feature in the park.
The climb to the top is only about 1.2 kilometers.
I wish my pictures could show how massive and interesting the sandstone is.
The only steep part of the hike is at the very end.
But there is a chain to hang on to, when needed.
You’ll definitely want to use it on the way down.
Once you get to the top, you’ll have a spectacular panoramic view of the Free State.
I’m so glad we decided to spend our days in Clarens and the surrounding area.
It was the perfect getaway in one of our all-time favorite countries.