Lydenburg (Mashishing) in Mpumalanga, South Africa
Lydenburg is situated at the foothills of the famous Long Tom Pass and is surrounded by the Steenkampsbeerg and Mauchsberg mountain ranges which are the highest points in Mpumalanga. Besides being close to the many tourist attractions in the surrounding area, Lydenburg is today a mining boom-town servicing the numerous platinum and chrome mines. Shopping is thus excellent and for those exploring this area, Lydenburg is an ideal provisioning town.
Lying only 290kms from Pretoria, Lydenburg is an easy 3 hour drive from Gauteng making it an ideal springboard to world-renowned attractions like Blyde River Canyon, Pilgrims Rest and God’s Window and the route north through the Strydom Tunnel takes the visitor through spectacular scenery on the way to the Kruger Park as well as the many game parks in Mpumalanga and Limpopo.
Four steams traverse the area, namely the Dorps River, Sterkspruit, Doringspruit and Klipgat, making fly-fishing a popular sport.
Lydenburg is the home of numerous Iron Age sites (500A.D.) such as on the Boomplaas farm and replicas of the Lydenburg Heads are beautifully displayed in the Lydenburg Museum along with much of the original pottery.The Museum is also a treasure-house of early settler and Anglo-Boer War displays and is well-worth a visit.
Many talented artists reside in the area – painters such as Eugene Hurter, stained glass artists, wood carvers and bead workers.
A strong cycling and running club arranges a number of events during the year, the most well known of which is the annual ‘Long Tom Marathon’, a grueling road race from Sabie to Lydenburg running over the dramatic Long Tom Pass.
For nature lovers and birdwatchers Lydenburg has The Gustav Klingbiel nature reserve which is set on the edge of the town and comprises an area of 2,200 hectares with typical escarpment flora and fauna from orchids to cycads and tree ferns. There are numerous species of game to be found including zebra, most of the antelope species, baboons and monkeys, jackal, caracal and cerval and the occasional leopard. The reserve also offers excellent bird-watching. While game watching and birding can be done from a vehicle, there are numerous hiking trails from 5kms to 12 kms. The reserve also offers a circular 20km mountain bike route which include some hair-raising downhill tracks. Nature Reserves close to Lydenburg and Dullstroom