Geography and history
Harrismith, including Swinburne, is a town situated in the Thabo Mofutsanyana region of the Free State Province, South Africa. It was laid out in 1849 and named after British Governor Harry Smith who tried to persuade the Voortrekkers not to leave the Natal area. Harrismith is an important crossroads in the country’s land trade routes. This town is situated near the Wilge River on the N3 highway and surrounded by picturesque rivers and mountains.
Harrismith offers a wide variety of visitor accommodation to suit every budget. There are guest houses, guest farms, self-catering units, bed and breakfasts and caravan and camping sites available. If you would like more information on places to stay in the area, please go to our accommodation directory.
Harrismith is a town with matchless beauty. The calming rivers and majestic mountains offer a tranquil destination for tourists who wish to experience this town. The Harrismith Wildflower Gardens, founded in 1967, contains approximately 20% of the Drakensberg region’s flora. It is a definite must-see for all nature-lovers.
Other things to do in Harrismith include:
Debora Retief Garden
Platberg (“Flat mountain”)
Sterkfontein Dam (Water sport and fishing)
Town Hall (National Monument)