The settlement known as Groblersdal is one more of South Africa's many small farming communities barely distinguishable at face value but never-the-less possessing their own unique characters under closer inspection. It is located in the province of Mpumalanga and is known for its role in the province's irrigation system, as well as its proximity to game farms and nature reserves.
Groblersdal was established on the farm 'Klipbank', and named after the farm's original owner, WJ Grobler. It is situated in a man-made floodplain in the south of the province, close to the Mpumalanga/KwaZulu Natal provincial boundary. The town is renowned as the country's second largest irrigation settlement, and plays an important role in the irrigation system originating at the Loskop Dam, 32 kilometres to the south of town.
The area in which it is found forms part of Mpumalanga's much lauded Ndebele cultural heartland. The most obvious proof of this are the brightly-painted houses along the side of the roads and in the surrounding landscape, characterised by their distinctive patterns.
While the houses are interesting and pretty to observe, the most 'involved' one is able to get is to stop at one of the craft stalls and browse or buy some Ndebele curios. The Loskop Dam however is a much more immersive experience.
While game farms are a dime a dozen in the areas surrounding Groblersdal, it is only in the Loskop Dam Nature Reserve that game viewing is offered by boat. Furthermore, the dam is a popular angling destination thanks to the carp and bream found there, and water sports are also popularly practised there.
Groblersdal is mostly known for its water works and the produce, like tobacco, citrus and peanuts grown there, but there are no doubt other interesting aspects to explore, but you'll never know unless you visit.
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View from the deck
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