Clarens – beautiful Clarens … aptly dubbed “the Jewel Of The Freestate” richly deserves the accolade.
Some say Clarens is the Free State’s best kept secret
… no longer is this the case … the secret is out! This little town in the Maluti foothills is fast becoming by far one of the most popular weekend breakaway venues around! Situated centrally in the heart of the country in the mountainous Eastern Free State, close to Lesotho, and only a few hours’ drive from South Africa’s major cities makes Clarens the ideal weekend away from the hustle and bustle of big city life.
The Clarens square is a unique feature of the village and boasts a plethora of art galleries, shops, coffee shops and restaurants around its perimeter for your convenience and entertainment. Golden Gate National Park is only a short fifteen minute drive away and there are numerous other places of interest and activities catering for outdoor fun and adventure in and around Clarens.
Clarens is on the scenic Maloti Route and is set in the heart of the beautiful Rooiberg mountains of the Eastern Freestate. Further afield towards the southeast, the remote Maluti mountains dominate the distant horizon. Sandstone cliffs with their cinnamon sienna and umber multi-coloured layers are a unique feature around Clarens. This same sandstone constitutes a primary and important building material in and around the village. Many homes in the Clarens Valley are built with Clarens Sandstone and there are some superb examples of early frontier sandstone architecture on some of the farms in the area … crumbling relics from long gone boer and Basotho war days.
Clarens is commonly known as the “Jewel of the Free State”, dubbed so for its natural scenic beauty and amazing ambiance. Trees abound – fresh green leaves and white pink and yellow fruit blossoms flourish in the September spring and the magnificent rusty reds and vibrant oranges and yellows of autumn maples and Lombardy poplars attract artists and photographers from far and wide in April and May. Around easter time ‘the daisies of Africa’ bloom and fields and verges alongside the roads become carpets of white pink and purple cosmos flowers … Winters are cold and often turn the landscape into a wonderland of white with substantial mid winter snow falls.