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Vredefort is a small farming town in the northern part of Free State. It is an agricultural town where cattle, peanuts, sorghum, sunflowers and maize are farmed. It is home to 3,000 residents. The nearby Vredefort Dome is on the UNESCO World Heritage List.


Post office and police station

The town was established in 1876 on a farm called Visgat, on the Vredefort crater, the largest and oldest visible bolide impact crater in the world (with a diameter of 300 km (190 mi)). It was this approximately 10-km (6.2 mi) wide bolide that led to the preservation of the gold-bearing reefs of the Free State some 2 billion years ago. The town's name, which translates to "peace fort" in Afrikaans and Dutch, was derived from the peaceful conclusion to a threatened war between the Transvaal and the Orange Free State. The British built a concentration camp here during the Second Boer War to house Boer women and children.

The Vredefort Dome (Crater) is the largest and one of the oldest known meteor impact site in the world. It is South Africa's seventh World Heritage Site.

Dutch Reformed Church

In 2019, scientists from the University of the Free State discovered 8,000-year-old carvings made by the Khoisan people. The carvings depicted a hippopotamus, horse, and antelope in the "Rain Snake" Dyke, which may have spiritual significance regarding the rain-making mythology of the Khoisan.

  • Vredefort Dome Information Centre, Venterskroon. This office has displays that explain the asteroid impact and crater.

Get in[edit]

From the N1 take the R59 through Parys.

Get around[edit]


  • The Dome: Although the crater has long since been eroded away, the remaining geological structures at its centre are known as the Vredefort Dome or Vredefort impact structure. The crater was caused by an asteroid impact in the Paleoproterozoic Era. The crater site is one of the few multiple-ringed impact craters on Earth, although they are more common elsewhere in the Solar System. Jan Fourie[dead link] +27 56 811 2078 offers various tours of the dome (geological, history and culture, birding, and general).
  • Buildings in Vredefort classified as National Monuments include the post office (in Orange Street), the police station (on the corner of Church Street and Orange Street) and the oldest house in Vredefort, on the corner of Mark Street and Charl Cilliers Street.



  • The Famous Joko Tea General Store




  • D' Oude Molen Guest House (Isak Taljaard), 15 Molen Street (Potchefstroom), +27 83 297-6244, . Check-in: 10AM, check-out: 10AM. This restored guest house, built a century ago, features six spacious rooms with en-suite bathrooms, small fridges, PC with internet & printer (extra fee), and private entrances for all rooms. Coffee, tea and rusks are available each day as part of the price. Parking, barbeque facilities, and a pool table are also provided. From R250.

Go next[edit]

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