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The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa


Afrikaans name: Harrismith

The Harrismith Town Hall

Harrismith Town Hall

Photo © Steven Herbert

Free State

Harrismith is a town in the Free State that is situated on the junction of the N3 highway that links Durban with Johannesburg and the N5 highway that takes you to Bloemfontein via Bethlehem.

The town was founded in 1849 and the name is derived from British Governor Harry Smith.

Bordering the town is the imposing Platberg mountain which dominates the area. Part of the Platberg is a nature reserve offering hiking trails. Platberg, by the way, means flat mountain. Each year the Platberg Mountain Race is held in this area. The 15 km route gets participants scrambling their way up the mountain, along the flattish top and then down the other side.

Harrismith weather


The main building in Harrismith is the Town Hall. Sterkfontein Dam is situated near Harrismith.

Platberg mountain near Harrismith

Platberg mountain

Photo © Steven Herbert

Monument to the soldiers who died in the First World War

A monument to the soldiers from the Harrismith who died in the First World War stands next to the town hall.

Photo © Steven Herbert


References and further reading

Book of the Road - 4th edition - Author: MapStudio - Year Published: 2019 - Page: 121

Conolly's Guide to Southern Africa - Author: Denis Conolly - Year Published: 1982 - Page: 338

Reader's Digest Illustrated Guide to Southern Africa - 4th edition - Author: - Year Published: 1986 - Page: 305

Southern Africa from the Highway - Author: AA RSA - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 72

The Pictorial Motoring Atlas of South Africa - Author: Maxwell Leigh - Year Published: 1987 - Page: 106

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