Bothaville, Free State Province
The town of Bothaville is in the northern Free State, about two hours drive from either Johannesburg, Bloemfontein or Bethlehem. Surrounded by Leeudoringstad, Viljoenskroon, Klerksdorp, Welkom & Odendaalsrus, it forms part of the Free State goldfields. But gold is not the focus of Bothaville – agriculture is. The town of Bothaville hosts one of the biggest agricultural festivals in the world – NAMPO – every May, & is also the head office of Grain South Africa.
Bothaville’s humble beginning was as Botharnia in 1891, as a ‘church town’, with the name changing to the current name in 1893. It was laid out on the farm Gladdedrift, which was owned by Theunis Louis Botha – hence the name. It became a municipality in 1914. The biggest focus at the town was livestock and honey production. Today agriculture is still the focus, with dairy, wheat, sorghum, maize, sunflower, nuts and vegetables joining the list of staples. If you really want to experience the legendary ‘plattelandse’ hospitality and peace, Bothaville is the place.
With the dominance in grain & sunflowers, Bothaville has been selected as the site for the first ethanol plant in the country – a wonderful boost to the economy of the town. This will enhance Bothaville’s already rich economy and create jobs, both direct and indirect for its community.
Bothaville is also the host of the annual Food & Witblits Festival drawing visitors from all over South Africa. Bothaville – Center of the Free State Maize Route, is situated on the banks of the Vals River, the town of Bothaville is considered to be one of the richest agricultural communities in the country. This district plays a very important role in the Free State Province Maize Route as well as hosting the biggest agricultural show in Africa annually.