Potchefstroom hosts the Potchefstroom Campus of the North-West University. Founded in 1838 by the Voortrekkers, it is the second-oldest European settlement in the Transvaal.
Today, the City of Potchefstroom combines a strong agricultural economy with a friendly, buzzing community and university life and generous hospitality. It has developed into a leading city in the province and the country. The town has a multitude of national monuments, respected educational institutions and a strong agricultural economy.
Potchefstroom is on the Mooi Rivier, roughly 120 km west-southwest of Johannesburg and 45 km east-northeast of Klerksdorp. Potchefstroom, together with Rustenburg, is the second-largest city in the North West Province.
Attractions in and around Potchefstroom include:
– Boskop Dam Nature Reserve is a popular angling and picnic site, about 25 km north of Potchefstroom, between Carltonville & Potchefstroom on the R501. Also favoured by yachting enthusiasts.
– Buffelsvlei Wild Animal Park
– O. P. M. Prozesky Bird Sanctuary
– Dome Bergland Nature Park, site of a meteorite impact
– The North-West University Botanical Garden, adjacent to the university’s Potchefstroom, covers an area of almost 3 hectares. Most of its plants are indigenous, except for a few exotic plants of botanical (or medicinal) interest. A section around a man-made ridge is a natural field garden, and the rest is more intensively managed. A variety of mammals, birds, amphibians and fish have made the garden their home in recent years.
– The country’s oldest Reformed Churches and its oldest stone-built Hervormde Church are in the town. St Mary’s Anglican Church, built in 1891, is notable for its stained-glass windows. The N. G. Moedergemeente building burnt down in July 2007, and has been restored.
– The Witrand Mental Institute, the second government institution for psychiatric patients, opened in 1923; the first, Valkenberg Hospital, opened in Maitland in the Cape.
– Andrew Carnegie Library and City Hall. Two national monuments in Potgieter Street, the city hall has a clockwork and bells that were manufactured in the Netherlands.
– One of the oldest Reformed Churches in South Africa (1891) featuring some exceptional stained glass windows, is located in the town.
– The Goetz Fleishack Museum is the only remaining example of the town houses that graced Market Square in the 1850’s
– The Summit, Boat & Paddle, Rooihaas, Mooirivier Pioneers’ Route Inner City and trails make Potchefstroom a favourite hiking destination.
– Potchefstroom offers a wealth of interesting architectural buildings dating back to the 1850’s when the town was a major centre serving the westernTransvaal farmlands and the diamond fields of the Northern Cape. These buildings, many of which have been declared national monuments, include the Old Gunpowder House, the Old Police Station Building, the Kruger Kraal Opstal, the Heimat building of the University of Potchefstroom and the Old Magistrates Office.
Tel: +27 (0)18 299 5027
– Oak Avenue is a 6,84km stretch of road lined with oak trees planted in 1910. The avenue is the longest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.
– The OPM-Prozesky Bird Sanctuary adjoins the golf course.
– Potchefstroom Dam Lakeside Resort for watersports, fishing, mini-golf.
– The Potchefstroom Museum is housed in the home of President Pretorius, the first state president of the Zuid Afrikaansche Republiek.
Excellent exhibits trace the history of the Potchefstroom region with fine ethnographic representation including an oxwagon from the Battle of Blood River. The museum houses a reference library and museum shop.
– Thabela Thabeng Hiking Trails set in the scenic Vredefort Dome.
– Trim Park is situated in the green belt area adjacent to the Mooi Rivier. This natural paradise, through which the Mooi Rivier trail meanders, is a delightful recreational and picnic area and close to the new MooiRivier Shopping Mall.
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