The MTPA Mpumalanga Beyond Wildlife and Know Your Small Town Festive Campaign Kick-Off (Part 1)


Having officially launched the 2019 Festive Campaign at the start of this month, the Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Agency (MTPA) are thrilled to have kicked off the annual festive season focus. Aimed at both trade and tourism consumers travelling to the province during the coming holiday season, the MTPA Festive Campaign will run until January 17, 2020 offering a number of affordable travel and accommodation packages to all welcomed guests.

Debunking the myth that December travel is expensive, the annual Mpumalanga Tourism Festive Season campaign hopes to change the perception that domestic tourism is an exclusive opportunity available to only a handful of tourists who can afford to travel over the holidays.

Having curated a number affordable travel packages offered by various travel and tourism specialists operating out of the Mpumalanga province, this year’s objective is to offer applicable and relevant options for every type of traveller with packages that are suited to their unique vacation needs.

In an extension of the 2019 Festive Campaign, this year’s theme aligns to “Mpumalanga, beyond wildlife” which talks to the many diverse tourism offerings that visitors can enjoy in the province besides the wildlife experience. Encouraging visitors to explore the beauty, charm and adventure found throughout the many spectacular small towns, from the Makhonjwa Mountains in Barberton to the newly inscripted World Heritage Sites, visitors are invited to experience #MpumalangaBeyondWildlife and get to #KnowYourSmallTown this Festive Season, profiling small towns in the province as part of the “Know Your Small Town” campaign will help to create awareness on the unique tourism and heritage offerings available for visitors to explore in highlighted small towns.

Over the next few blog posts we look forward to introducing our readers to the various small towns to be highlighted during the MTPA #MpumalangaBeyondWildlife and #KnowYourSmallTown Festive campaign showcasing what each town has to offer and attractions that visitors can look forward to exploring during the coming holiday period.

With the aims to elevate the importance of domestic travel and bringing awareness the key small towns brimming with tourism and heritage offerings borne out of the province of Mpumalanga, without further ado we introduce to you; Barberton, Pligrim’s Rest, Emgwenya (formerly Waterval Boven) and Dullstroom



Surrounded by the magic of the Makhonjwa Mountains World Heritage Site, the town of Barberton is seated in one of South Africa’s most significant geological regions. Where the tale of the 1880's gold rush begins, it was here where Tom McLachlan found the first traces of alluvial gold in 1874 which saw the rise of the very first Stock Exchange born to what was then known as the Transvaal.


Pilgrim’s Rest

A traveller’s delight for those looking to journey into times gone by, the perfectly preserved Pilgrim’s Rest is known as the second Transvaal gold field after rich deposits were discovered in Pilgrim's Creek. Declared a goldfield in 1873, the tiny mining town soon became home to some 1500 diggers working in the area and also beat London in the race to receive electricity. Today the town is a living museum and provincial heritage site that sees local visitors get lost in the history and heritage of the old Transvaal Gold Rush.


Emgwenya (formerly Waterval Boven)

Gripped to the edge of the escarpment along the banks of the Elands River, Emgwenya (formerly Waterval Boven) is located along the railway line running from Pretoria to Maputo in Mpumalanga. Where the Waterval Boven tunnel formed part of the Eastern or Delagoa Railway, the construct played a key role in Zuid Afrikaansche Republiek (ZAR) giving the young country access to a non-British seaport preserving political and economic independence in the face of British imperialism.



For the ultimate in downtime, the dreamy town of Dullstroom welcomes domestic visitors to artisanal deli dining and home made goods, local creative crafts, exclusive art and of course an angler’s haven not far from landlocked cities. With a number of well stocked dams and river fishing as well as specialist stores and suppliers, Dullstroom offers a variety of still waters alongside various accommodation types to make for an ideal fishing retreat.


Keep a look out for our next insert as we continue to take you on a journey through #MpumalangaBeyondWildlife and showcase various small towns of interest.

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