The Golden Hills of Free State and Kwazulu-Natal

Somewhat by mistake, we discovered what may be the most beautiful part of South Africa – the golden hills that lie in the 400 km stretch between Swaziland and Lesotho.


Reminiscent of Arizona, these mountains carved out by ancient tidal waters glow in a spectrum of oranges and yellows. It made us feel like we’d been dropped off in a middle of a cowboy movie set, and that Clint Eastwood will be coming riding round the next mountain.


Close to the Lesotho border, we stopped at Clarens, an artsy village that serves as a weekend retreat for the affluent people of KwaZulu-Natal. The streets of this bohemian haven are bordered with art galleries, restaurants and ecological food shops.

Eduardo and I took a rest here and stayed in a hippy backpackers’ inn, where we had our own little house, with kitchen and all. Freezing cold, but pleasant with a fireplace that kept us alive throughout the night.

One day Eduardo went out jogging, and came home with two kids from the nearby township (where the poor people live, like the projects in NYC). A whole swarm of kids had ran with him for a while, but these two were the only ones who made it all the way, barefoot over sharp pebbles. The reward – juice and cookies at the Duartes’.



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