Philippolis 1822

The first settlement in the Free State


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Philippolis has a rich history not only as the oldest settlement in what is now the Free State, having been established as a station of the London Missionary Society (LMS) in 1822/1823, but also as a centre of the Griqua captaincies from the 1820s to the 1860s and, later, as a conflict zone in the Anglo-Boer war. 

Close to the geographic centre of South Africa, Philippolis is well placed as an off-the-highway stop-over for tourists travelling between the Western, Southern and Eastern Cape in the south, and Botswana, Johannesburg-Pretoria in the north, and KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga in the east. The deviation off the N1 highway on the R717 between Colesberg and Trompsburg is in fact shorter than the actual N1, making this not a detour at all. 

Philippolis is a major centre for sheep-farming, horse-breeding, game hunting and eco-tourism.


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