BATHURST - BATHURST is situated on the fringes of both the Sunshine Coast and Frontier Country, a scenic half hour drive on the R67 from Grahamstown (N2) or 10 minutes from Port Alfred, half way between Port Elizabeth and East London on the R72
It is a quiet pastoral village most widely known for its famous (and infamous) pubs!
“There is no thirst like a Bathurst!”
Also in the village centre you will find craft shops, galleries, pottery studios, antique shops, nurseries and plenty more to keep the day visitor entertained.
RESTUARANTS AND PUBS
Pickwick’s Pizzas are the BEST! Freshly prepared and delicious.
The Pig ‘n Whistle hotel is famous for being the oldest pub in the country and has an Al a Carte menu and offers delicious Sunday Lunches.
The BATHURST ARMS serves regular pub fare, steak n chips etc.
BLEAK HOUSE serves breakfasts & light lunches
They are also all open for breakfasts.
SUMMERHILL INN is next to The Big Pineapple and offers Rib Specials on Friday and other delicious fair.
KINGSTON FARM is just out of town and offers excellent Cuisine dining for a real treat. Book early for special occasions.
THE BIG PINEAPPLE has a curio shop and sells juices and ice creams.
There is a convenience store at our famous BATHURST BUTCHERY, should you wish to purchase your own ingredients! They have the best Biltong and tender steaks.
ART & CRAFTS
RICHARD PULLEN’S Earth Art Studio is well worth a visit. Each vessel is hand thrown and decorated to be completely unique.
THE CURIOSITY SHOPPE’s wares include Jewellery, pottery, basket-ware, gifts, crafts and sweets
THE TWO SAGES make and sell health and beauty products
YESTERDAY, TODAY & TOMORROW our local nursery. Indigenous plants are their speciality.
FARMING IN THE BATHURST AREA: Pineapples, Chicory, and Beef are the major agricultural industries in the Bathurst area.
Visit THE BIG PINEAPPLE (the world’s biggest!) on Summerhill Farm. Inside the fruit there’s a craft shop filled with pineapple curios, jams and juices, informative displays and a panoramic viewing deck. It is on an experimental farm where you can see interesting new species of pineapple being generated.
PLACES OF HISTORICAL INTEREST
The Horseshoe Bend and Water's Meeting Reserve: There is an outstanding view of bush covered valleys where the Kowie River loops in a horse shoe. Another 3 kms down a steep winding road you can picnic and relax under the trees at the water’s edge. Canoe trails and scenic hikes available.
Bradshaw's Mill: Built by the Settler, Samuel Bradshaw in 1821, this water-driven wool mill contains a working water wheel. By 1825 wool from the Settlers sheep was being used to make coarse cloth. In 1835 the 3rd storey was added and corn milling began. It is now restored and is a National Monument.
Wesleyan Chapel: Built by Samuel Bradshaw and opened in 1832, it was besieged in the Frontier Wars. Houses Jeremiah Goldswain's Family Bible. Services still held every Sunday. It is a National Monument and epitomizes many of the other Wesleyan churches in the rural areas
St John's Anglican Church: Oldest unaltered Anglican Church in South Africa. A sanctuary in the Frontier Wars of 1834, 1846 and 1851 for hundreds of Settlers. 1st service held on the 1st January 1838. Look for the "church mouse" on the west wall!!
Bathurst Agricultural Museum: Discover how the past has influenced the future! Over 1400 items of interest (and they also have a cosy pub!)
Pig 'n Whistle Hotel: Built in 1831 by Thomas Hartley, a blacksmith who came from Nottinghamshire with the Settlers. Later accommodation was added and it became known as the Bathurst Inn. Legend has it that it was nicknamed "The Pig & Whistle" by the men at the nearby 43 Air School in WWII.
The Toposcope: This marks the spot where the 1820 British Settlers locations were surveyed. 57 bronze plaques record details of settlements (unfortunately the original plaques were stolen!) On a clear day you can see from The Great Fish River to Kwaaihoek. The stones in the wall are taken from ruins of original Settler homes.
THE FARMERS MARKET held every Sunday (9:30 am till noon) stocks the fresh and creative produce of Bathurst’s people including: fruit & veg, cheeses, jams, craft and health products.
THE BATHURST OX BRAAI is held in December every year and is very popular with students from all over the county. Find it on Facebook!
THE BATHURST SHOW is an Agricultural Show held at the Bathurst Show Grounds in April and has been going for 150 years! Also has many popular Horse Riding events.
Bathurst - Bathurst has been variously described as a sleepy hollow, historic and artistic. Yet there is more to it than that. Yes, there is a pub, an old pub, and several more besides. There are arts and crafts as good or as banal as you could want. You can eat as well or as cheaply as you wish. However, this small, diverse community is somehow more than the sum of it's parts: It's survival tells the story of South Africa and by it's tenacity, the future. The rural roots of this harsh and unforgiving environment are often, but never completely, disguised by the historic buildings and large verdant trees of the village. Bathurst offers an intriguing opportunity to reflect upon and engage in all that is and will be South Africa.