Touring around Mapumalanga (East) - 'Place where the sun rises'
People are drawn to Mpumalanga by the magnificent scenery, by the fauna and flora and by the saga of the 1870s gold rush era and a wealth of fascinating tribal legends.
Aptly know as "Paradise Country", few regions in the world can match the extraordinary beauty of the Mpumalanga Lowveld and escarpment. Mountains, panoramic passes, valleys, rivers, waterfalls and forests characterise the landscape. This is also Big Game Country, the setting for dozens of sanctuaries teeming with wildlife Birdlife. Among them, the Kruger National Park is world renowned, as are several of the luxurious private reserves on its western boundary. The entire Mpumalanga area offers exceptional opportunities for bird-watching, hiking, horse-riding and fishing. Streams once panned for gold have become the haunts of eager anglers and lazy trout. Steeped in the history of pioneers, hunters and fortune seekers, fascinating gold rush towns abound. A special, additional dimension occurs in the Middleveld region which is inhabited by Ndebele people, notable for their traditional costumes and attractively decorated houses.
Mpumalanga is also a popular tourism destination. Kruger National Park, established in 1898 for the protection of Lowveld wildlife, covering 20,000 square kilometres (7,700 sq mi), is a popular destination. The other major tourist attractions include the Sudwala Caves and the Blyde River Canyon.
The various towns in the region have much to offer, like the African Silk farm near Graskop, The coffee farm nearby. Many activities including The big jump, mountain and quad biking, horse trails, river rafting and big game viewing are endemic to the region. This is Big 5 territory. The towns in the Lowveld, comprise of Barberton, Mbombela, White River, Sabie, Graskop. Hazyview, Malelane, Pilgrim's Rest, Lydenburg and Nkomazi.
In 2008 a Haute Cuisine route was formed, trickling from Mbombela down to Hazyview, the Lowveld Gourmet Route covers the four top fine dining restaurants the area has to offer. The restaurants include Summerfields Kitchen, Oliver’s Restaurant, Orange and Salt.