Clarens in 72 hours
This tranquil gem of a small town is popular amongst locals and visitors. Its spectacular views and amazing rock formations that frame the scenic land has been known to attract Artists from all over the world. This small town is also a haven for nature lovers for its tranquillity and natural beauty.
At Adventure Travel Tribe all our trips are characterized by adventure, and fortunately Clarens hosts a long list of adventurous activities for visitors to enjoy. Therefore, we wasted no time, after a very nice breakfast at the Post House restaurant we made our way to have some adrenalin pumping fun.
Visit Clarens Xtreme Adventure Company
We had a variety of activities booked, according to each individual’s preferences and had the time of our lives. If anything this place should be the reason you visit Clarens because you are guaranteed a great time no matter which activity you choose. They specialize in adventures that will get your adrenaline pumping, which include river rafting, abseiling, paintball, zip line, quad biking, hiking, rock climbing. They also offer put-put, archery, enduro trails and a variety of day tours.
Important to note, Clarens Extreme Adventures offer the best white water rafting in South Africa hosted at the Ash River. This river can be found just outside Clarens. It provides year round rafting with 17 rapids, scenic vegetation and outstanding birdlife. Experienced guides will lead you down grade III and IV rapids in the pristine waters. …An experience to remember!
Cherry picking at Iona Fruit Farm
We always maximize on our trips. We look for all sorts of activities that can be enjoyed in every town we visit. While in Clarens, we went out on a drive to @ionafruitfarm for an afternoon of cherry picking in Ficksburg – The cherry capital of the world. What will excite you about this is the fact that you get to eat cherries as much as you like and still leave with a tub full of them.
What they won’t tell you is what happens when you over eat cherries. I will just leave it at, we learned the hard way 😂. We had a great time being driven on a sleigh while learning about the farm and the cherry growing process. I recommend it for your next trip to Clarens.
Dinner at Clementines
Then we wrapped up day one with a fulfilling dinner at Clementines Restaurant. This fine dining restaurant offers a delectable menu packed with all the nice stuff that will make you taste buds dance. It doesn’t matter if you are a hard-core picky eater, you are guaranteed to find something that suites your palate. We enjoyed their food and the ambiance.
Hiking the Wodehouse Trail
On this day, as early as 06:30 we were out of the house on our way to the start what was to be the toughest hikes for the weekend. The Wodehouse Trail is an 11km lightly trafficked loop trail located near Dihlabeng NU, found within the Golden Gate National Park. This gorgeous trail features the most beautiful views, amazing sunsets and beautiful wild flowers. It is rated as difficult (not for the faint hearted and impatient). This took longer than we had anticipated because of the many photo opportunities we took advantage of along the way, and the steep and not so friendly terrain.
There is up to 6 trails within the Golden Gate National Park alone, and many more around Clarens town. Hikers are spoiled for choice as this is a very mountainous small town. Therefore, Clarens has a trail for all types of hikers. Choose what works for you and be merry.
Basotho Cultural Village
The best way to know a place and its people is by learning about their culture, way of living and language. The Basotho Cultural Village lies next to the R712 from QwaQwa to Golden Gate National Park. It is also close to the popular Amphitheatre of the Drakensberg mountain range and forms part of the scenic highlands route.
On arrival at the Cutural Village, a friendly receptionist will show you an introductory video which illustrates the building process of the museum. You will also enjoy a demonstration of the decoration of huts, making of basket-ware, crushing of maize and traditional dances.
Guided tours of the museum are conducted from 09:00 to 16:30 (until 17:00 on weekends) seven days a week.
Your tour will commence at the Khatloa under the expert guidance of a tour guide as you cannot enter the Chief’s village and explore the way of life of his people without first receiving his permission. He will offer you a sip of Sotho beer as a token of hospitality and you may engage in a traditional game of maraba-raba. Next will be the visit to the Ngaka/ Traditional healer.
This is more than just an experience; you leave with a better sense of understanding and newly found perspective of the Basotho people.
Alternatively, you can explore the gallery route and visit the different types of art galleries found in Clarens.
Dinner at the Mossic Pizzeria
We had our dinner at the Pizza place where we enjoyed a performance by a jazz band. However, we did not stay long. We had to leave it to the people that were not going hiking the next morning and called it a night after we finished eating.
Hiking the ‘Titanic Rock’ Trail
We had to do one last hike before we left, and we decided on one of the trails inside Clarens Nature Reserve – The Titanic Rock Trail. The titanic rock is situated just 2km north of Clarens. This uniquely shaped rock in Clarens was named by a resident after the Titanic ship tragically sunk. The rock is shaped like the bow of the ship and the resemblance is remarkable.
This hike can be classified as moderate and can be done in under 3hrs. The trail is accessible every day of the week. More than the workout, you get to marvel on the beautiful views of the town and the mountain ranges surrounding it.
Cheese tasting at Noah’s Farm
On our way out of Clarens we made a detour to Noah’s Cheese Farm for some cheese tasting. Noah’s Cheese is a boutique cheesery situated on the farm Node, 10km from Clarens in the Eastern Free State. Noah’s Cheese is one of a few raw milk cheese producers in South Africa. They proudly make only raw milk cheese from Jersey cows in the time honoured tradition.
Their range of cheeses includes their unique String Cheese, Salaté, Halloumi, Bocconcini, Speciality Cheese, Hard Cheese, White Mold and Blue Cheese.
Noah’s Cheese is well known for its marinated string cheeses, smoked mozzarella, salad cheese and a range of other products. You need to make a stop here and taste their uniquely delicious products.
72 hours can never be enough for this beautiful town with a lot to offer, however you can try and maximize on the time spent here. Each time I come here I always discover something new. This time around my surprise came from the food scene. Breakfast at the Post House restaurant, Dinner at Clementines and the cheese at Noah’s farm were my highlights.
Go visit Clarens and let us know what you discovered #khenkethamzansi