Pilgrim's Rest - Abbey Travel, Ireland

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Welcome to Pilgrim's Rest

Pilgrim's Rest

Had it not been for its picturesque setting, Pilgrim's Rest would probably be a ghost town. It is, however, a popular tourist destination, existing today for little other purpose than to entertain and inform visitors about its colourful heyday. It all began in 1873 when a Scots miner, Alex 'Wheelbarrow' Patterson, shouted 'Eureka', having discovered gold at Pilgrim's Creek. Before long fortune seekers had clogged the little valley, and the town of Pilgrim's Rest was born. Mining continued for decades, but started to dry up in the 1940s and the final mine closed in 1972. The town has now been declared a national monument and many of its corrugated iron buildings have been restored. These now exist as living museums, and some as souvenir shops. There is an Information Centre on the Main Road where visitors can learn the history of the town before exploring it. Pilgrim's Rest is part of the scenic 'Panorama Route' north of Nelspruit.

Information & Facts

South Africa has 11 official languages, including Afrikaans, English, Xhosa, Zulu and Sotho. English is widely spoken.

South Africa's currency is the Rand (ZAR), which is divided into 100 cents. Money can be exchanged at banks, bureaux de change and the larger hotels. ATMs are widely available (there is a daily limit for cash withdrawals) and major international credit cards are widely accepted, except in petrol stations where cash is required. Visitors should be vigilant when drawing cash from ATMs, as con artists are known to operate there. Travellers cheques and some foreign currencies are accepted at larger hotels and shops, but commission is charged, otherwise all commercial banks will exchange them.

Local time is GMT +2.
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