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In Philippolis in the southern Free State you can switch off completely and forget about rush-hour traffic and deadlines.

The tree-lined dirt roads, simple Karoo-style cottages and pomegranate and quince trees heavy with fruit take you back to childhood pleasures, grandma`s roast lamb and thick soup served in enamel bowls.

Former school principal Jens Friis and wife Nami, a domestic science teacher, taught at the local school for years.

They owned a few properties on the edge of town which stood empty for years. But after retiring they called in the help of their sons Jens and Nico and renovated the cottages, converting them into guest-houses.

"We wanted to retain the stripped, bare look that`s in keeping with the simplicity of the Karoo and took great care not to introduce Victorian influences for instance," Jens says. "The look works well with old-fashioned as well as modern pieces."

The wooden ceilings and floors exude a cosy warmth and in her home restaurant Nami lovingly prepares authentic, old-fashioned farm food.

Nestled on the edge of the town, it reminds one often of a farm. On surrounding even are the springbokkies of Mr. George de Vos, the horses of Mr. Johan Lamprechts, the succulent garden of the Funcks, and Caf Khooa where one can take a horse-and-carriage tour. Diverse bird life with owls in the cypress-trees.

This is all besides some peacocks, the cows of Tiekie Pienaar and a footpath that leads to an old ammunitions storage house.

Enjoy a hearty breakfast or take a picnic and explore local scenic spots. Return for sun downers on the stoep. Delicious dinners served by arrangement.

Worth knowing:
- Private entrances
- Self-catering facilities
- Restaurant nearby (licensed)
- Pets allowed by arrangement
- Children welcome
- Enjoy a game of tennis at nearby courts


* Transgariep Museum - exhibits of Emily * Hobhouses weaving school and the Griqua period.
* Rides through Philippolis on Caf Khooas horse-drawn cart
* Birdwatching more than 200 species
* Walkabout through Philippolis historic streets
* The old Kruithuis (ammunition depot)
* The annual Horse Show held in November
* The April Witblits Festival
* Dutch Reformed Church Conference Centre
* Safaris and Hunting packages
* Outstanding fishing spots
* Near to the Gariep and Vanderkloof dams
* Enjoy delicious Karoo cuisine with a bottle of wine (may be local Free State wine?) at our house restaurant.
* We can accommodate up to 20 guests in our cottages - an ideal venue for family reunions, weekend breakaways, small weddings ...

Health and Climate:

* Temperatures for midsummer are on the average (December) minimum 14 degrees Celsius and maximum 30 degrees Celsius and for the midwinter (June) 1 degree Celsius and 16 degrees Celsius respectively.

* Die Groenhuis is situated in the heart of South Africa, in a malaria free and safe area.

Rooms and Units Available:

* We cater for 20 guests in 10 en suite rooms equiped with fans, electric blankets, heaters, coffee/tea tray.
* Own entrance.
* Self catering possible.
* Dutch, Afrikaans, English spoken.

Standard Room
Amount of similar units: 10
Sleeps 2 Adults

Facilities & Services available:

Children under 12
Honeymoon Couples
Self-Braai / Barbecue
Parking (off-street - open)

Cancellation Policy:

- cancellations of 30 days and more from the time of arrival: 100% refund
- cancellations between 29 to 15 days from the time of arrival: 50% of total cost be refunded
- cancellations 14 days or less, a no-show or early departure: 0% refund


Especially during the holiday season, the R717 is an ideal alternative route to the N1. This tarred road is both quiet and 7km shorter than the N1. Turn off at Colesberg or Trompsburg and avoid heavy traffic for about 120km.

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  • Guests Rating: (1)
  • Accommodation Type: Guesthouse