TO DO IN GRAHAMSTOWN
Visit the MUSEUMS
[ All museums closed on Good Friday, 1st of May, Christmas Day & New
Year'ns Day ]
SCIENCE MUSEUM, Somerset Street. A
fascinating coverage of man and his environment, which includes a reconstruction
of the first South African
Dinosaur, an Egyptian Mummy, the Hall of Birds and Mammals and a Foucault'ns Pendulum. Hours : Tues-Fri 09h30-13h00, 14h00-17h00, Sat 09h00-13h00. Entrance : R5 adults, R4 children.
MUSEUM, Somerset Street. The
history and art of the people of the Eastern Cape with beadwork from the Eastern
Cape, traditional Xhosa dress, 1820 Settler history and art galleries in which
exhibitions change regularly.
Hours : Tues-Fri 09h30-13h00, 14h00-17h00, Sat 09h00-13h00. Entrance : R3 adults, R2 children.
MUSEUM, Bathurst Street. An
enchanting period house with the only genuine Victorian camera obscura in the
Southern Hemisphere and a Meridian Room for ascertaining exact local noon.
Hours : Mon-Fri 09h30-13h00, 14h00-17h00, Sat 09h00-13h00. Entrance : R8 adults, R5 children.
The NATIONAL ENGLISH LITERARY MUSEUM & BOOKSHOP. 87 Beaufort Street. South African Literature in English including books for children. NELM has comprehensive collections of scholarly books and articles, press-clippings, photographs, interviews and biographical works on South African writers. No entrance fee. Hours : Mon-Fri : 09h00-12h30, 14h00-16h30. Closed weekends and public holidays.
PRISON, Lucas Avenue. A very
different military gaol in the Botanical Gardens.
Walk through the DROSTDY GATEWAY, top of High Street, which once formed the entrance
to the military parade ground. The
stout wooden posts on either side of the Gateway were intended to protect the
plaster work from damage by the protruding "timbers" of gun carriages.
Also visit UNDER THE ARCH CRAFT
SHOP and IN TOUCH, to the right and left of the Drostdy Arch - local art and
crafts centres. Hours :
Mon-Fri 09h00-17h00, Sat 09h00-13h00.
SELWYN, Gunfire Hill. A reflection of military life on the Frontier.
Open by appointment only. Tel
(046) 622 2312.
STAR GALLERY, 4 Anglo-African Street, features printing machinery and other
historical items related to printing, including John Fairbairn’s editorial
desk. Open by appointment only.
Tel: (046) 622 7042 (NELM)
TOWNSHIP TOUR including a traditional Xhosa
meal at Umthathi Garden Project in Rhini Township.
Bookings essential, contact Fiona 082 784 1458, Marthie 082 809 3395 /
(046) 622 9720.
ARTS STUDIO, Paintings, photography, print work, ceramics and sculpture.
Approximately 800 works varying from traditional art forms to avante
garde contemporary works. Tel (046)
Hours : weekdays 11h00-17h00 or by appointment. 49 Market Street.
Do the OLDENBURGIA HIKING TRAIL, grade medium / difficult. The trail starts and ends at the Grahamstown Municipal Caravan Park and is a two-day circular trail. More details from Tourism Grahamstown or the Parks Booking Office on Tel (046) 603 6072 / 603 6093. R40 per adult, R20 per scholar. Overnight accommodation at the Thomas Baines Nature Reserve.
Street. The old artisan quarter
with many restored original houses which reflect a number of 1820 Settler
Visit the COMMEMORATION CHURCH in High Street whose foundation stone was laid
on 10 April 1845 - "this being the anniversary of the arrival of the 1st
Party of British Settlers". The
Church can seat 1 200 people, has ten stained glass memorial windows and
possesses one of the finest organs in the country.
The CATHEDRAL OF ST. MICHAEL & ST. GEORGE, Church Square, whose belfry houses the heaviest and first full ring of 8 bells on the African continent. The building was started in 1824 and finally completed 128 years later in 1952!
Walk through the RHODES
UNIVERSITY campus to appreciate the spacious estate and the wealth of fine
historical buildings. Some of these
are Selwyn Castle, which represents the first serious domestic essay in Gothic
style in South Africa, the Lillian Britten House which was the first
purpose-built sanatorium at Rhodes, the Royal Engineers'n building, The Retreat,
the Drostdy Lodge and Drostdy Barracks and the Chapel of St. Mary and All the
Angels. Among the research
institutes associated with the university are the world-renowned SA Institute
for Aquatic Biodiversity (JLB Smith Institute), the International Library of
African Music, and the Institute for the Study of English in Africa. These can be visited by appointment Tel (046) 603 8111.
The CITY HALL AND SETTLER MEMORIAL TOWER in High Street bears the simple marble table commemorating the heroic 600-mile (960km) ride of Dick King from Port Natal to Grahamstown, 24 May to 4 June 1842, which led to the relief of the besieged British garrison at the Old Fort in Durban. The Tower was built to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the British Settlers'n arrival in 1820. The City Hall was publicly opened on 24 May 1882.
On the traffic island in High
Street, the WINGED FIGURE OF PEACE
graces a monument to "the Men of Albany" who lost their lives in the
Anglo-Boer War of 1899-1902. The
sculpture is by Stanley Nicholson Babb and Rudyard Kipling specially wrote the
inscription. The site was chosen as
one which was "in the midst of our daily work and so would serve as
perpetual remembrance of the dead and be an inspiration for peace".
Drive up to the 1820 SETTLERS NATIONAL MONUMENT on Gunfire Hill, which was built to
commemorate the British Settlers in South Africa and was officially opened in
July 1974. It serves all South
Africans irrespective of race or creed, and contains a large theatre and many
conference facilities. From the
upper floors there are panoramic views of Grahamstown and the beautiful Belmont
Valley beyond. On a clear day, the
mountains of the Winterberg and Amatola escarpment to the north are visible.
The Monument is home to the Grahamstown Foundation, the organisers of the
annual Standard Bank National Arts Festival and the Sasol National Festival of
Science, Engineering and Technology (SciFest).
Hours : Mon-Sun 08h00 - 16h30. Tel
(046) 622 7115.
Post a letter in the OLDEST OFFICIAL LETTER BOX IN SOUTH AFRICA, at the north-west end of
Worcester Street, where it intersects with Somerset Street.
Though not the oldest letter box known, the Grahamstown "oldie"
might rank among the top twenty of the world'ns traditional "red box"
Look for the yellow-painted
canary in the scrolls at the base of the right-hand turret on the Muirhead &
Gowie Building (Clicks Building) on Church Square.
This building was Grahamstown'ns most elegant shop in its heyday - during
the last century imported ballgowns were displayed in a candlelit room to show
their colours by night, and the best bonnet-maker in the entire Cape Colony
presented regular seasonal collections. Next
door is GROCOTT & SHERRY
where the oldest family-owned newspaper still in circulation in South Africa is
AFRICAN LIBRARY FOR THE BLIND in High Street serves the entire country and
was founded by Miss Josie Wood in 1918. Tours
of the library by appointment. Tel
(046) 622 7226.
The INTERNATIONAL LIBRARY OF AFRICAN MUSIC (ILAM), Prince Alfred Street (follow ILAM signs from gate opposite RU Theatre). ILAM is a research, publishing and teaching centre for traditional African music and houses a collection of more than two hundred traditional African musical instruments. Open by appointment only. Hours: Mon-Fri 08h30-12h45, 14h00-17h00. Tel: (046) 603 8557.
Learn to SKYDIVE with the Eastern Province Skydivers Club.
Jumping every weekend. Contact
Joos Vos. Tel (046) 636 2486 / 082 800 9263.
Visit the EGAZINI MEMORIAL - one of the first township based heritage sites in
South Africa. The Memorial marks
the event of the Battle of Grahamstown which took place in 1819.
Visit the artist’s and crafter’s at the Egazini Outreach Project who
will share their interpretations of Grahamstown’s rich heritage through
authentic art and craft available for sale.
Contact Dr Julia Wells 083 556 1268 or Zandisile Sakata 083 545 0842 or
Giselle Baillie 082 435 0995.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE CITY
CONTACT MAKANA TOURISM
Tel: (046) 622 3241. Fax: (046) 622 3266