With the fresh country air and miles of picturesque landscape, the Midlands Meander is a firm favourite of Kwa-Zulu Natal locals, as well as inter-provincial visitors. Whilst you might know all the best spots to shop, eat and enjoy a fun-filled family day, you may not know much about the area’s historical past.
The History of the KZN Midlands
The history of the KZN Midlands is extremely interesting, as well as all the little facts about the area that make up the arty routes, so get ready to brush up on your knowledge before your next visit. Here are 5 facts about the beautiful KZN Midlands.
1. The Midlands Meander was Established in 1985
The start of the Midlands Meander dates back to 1985, when a small group of creative minds gathered at Caversham Mill. The group consisted of four potters, a weaver and several artists. Trying to brainstorm a way for them all to work together and increase their income, they decided that they would allow the public to visit their studios that were scattered around the countryside. Many of the original artists still reside and have shops along the Midlands Meander, enjoying the constant flow of friendly tourists and the country life.
2. The Midlands is home to the Largest Curio & Craft Centre in the Country
In Howick, visitors can treat themselves to a look at the country’s largest craft center, holding uniquely African crafts from across the country. Take your time browsing through this store, taking in the cultural replica souvenirs, and start your Midlands Meander off with a few purchases from the friendly crafters.
3. There is Over 80km of Route to Explore
Most Meanderers pick one route to explore for the day (and don’t often finish it). With so much ground to cover, we advise planning your day beforehand to ensure that you make it to all the stops that interest you. With over 80km to cover, you can keep coming back until you have seen it all.
4. Fort Nottingham Was Established in 1856
In 1856, a fort was built by the local farmers to protect themselves from the bushmen who regularly raided their land and homes. Between the years 1845 and 1872 (4 decades after the settlers first arrived in the Midlands) there were 62 raids recorded, with a loss of 2287 cattle. The fort is now a museum off Nottingham Road.
In the 80km we mentioned above, there are over 150 sites that you can stop at. From rustic countryside bed and breakfasts to divine wine and cheese tasting, you are in for a treat! With so many options to choose from it is bound to be a day out that the whole family will enjoy.
Visit the Midland Meander & Learn More About This Beautiful Spot
Whether you are interested in the history of the Midlands, the old buildings, or how your favourite shops came to be, we are sure that there is a museum or friendly shopkeeper to give you the information you are looking for. Start planning your trip today and we will see you soon, so feel free to get in touch with any questions or queries.