- Free State
Soutpan is a tiny salt mining village just north of Bloemfontein. A small and rural area where the R700 between Bloemfontein and Bultfontein is a road less travelled by tourists, but more frequently by farmers on their way to the city for supplies.
The main tourist attraction is the Soetdoring Nature Reserve, popular for opportunities such fishing, picnicking and game viewing. The surrounds offer a serene loveliness and its close proximity, under 50 km, from Bloemfontein with its many attractions makes Soutpan and ideal place for visitors to overnight and experience the outdoors.
Soutpan locals are very hospitable and visiting here means popping in at the Boerediens General Dealer, enjoying a delicious meal at Truksvy and visiting the Dutch Reformed Church on Sunday. Sunday morning Mass is full of tradition where members of the small congregation still use pillows with their names on it to reserve their seats and a pipe organ is still played under a low yellow ceiling.
The Florisbad Resort is another attraction, but not a busy resort despite the hot and cold pool. The venue is used for weddings and conferences as well.
Soutpan accommodation basically comprises of a bed and breakfast, guest house and the Florisbad Resort.
Things to do and see
- Soetdoing Nature Reserve
- Soutpan Dutch Reformed Church
- Soutpan Boerediens
- Truksvy Café & Shop
- Florisbad Resort
Soutpan receives approximately 347 mm of rain annually with most of its annual rainfall during summer.
Summer months, November to March will have average temperatures of between 15˚C and 30˚C.
Winter months, May to August will have average temperatures of between 0˚C and 18˚C.
The name Soutpan directly translates to “salt pan”, the name is derived from a large geographical feature of that type on the slopes of which the Florisbad archaeological site is situated , and is testimony to the pans that are scattered around the towns borders.
The site has a very interesting archaeological history that began with the sudden ‘explosion’ of a mud spring in 1910. The Spring pushed up a fossil bearing mound that grew unchecked till the first excavations in the 1930’s and the subsequent discovery of the Florisbad Man – a hominid skull that has since been dated to 260 000 years old.
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