The small town was established, like so many others, out of the need for a new Dutch Reformed Church parish. Its name, meaning “strong stream”, refers to the Hex River that runs through the town. Sterkstroom is situated on the main railway line from the coast to Johannesburg. The town boasts several historical buildings dating from the beginning of the twentieth century.
Adventure And Sport
Bass-fishing: The Henry Edward Hales Waterfowl Reserve allows bass-fishing within its borders.
Hiking: There is a three-hour hiking trail laid out in the Henry Edward Hales Waterfowl Reserve and, for the more adventurous, there are hikes through the remote wilderness of the Black Eagle Nature Reserve.
Hunting: Deer-stalking, trophy-hunting and partridge-shooting are allowed in the Black Eagle Nature Reserve.
Archaeology And Palaeontology
San rock art: There are numerous rock art sites on private farms in the Sterkstroom/Tarkastad area. Viewing is strictly by prior arrangement but the experience is certainly worth it. Contact the farm owners to view these paintings and per chance to experience a bit of “real” farm life too. Many of these farms offer accommodation and activities such as hiking, bird-watching and other outdoor adventures.
Fauna And Flora
Black Eagle Nature Reserve: The reserve is situated in the Andries Mountain Range near Sterkstroom in a very remote area that is only accessible by four-wheel-drive vehicles. It is well stocked with game but gets its name from the elegant black eagle that graces the skies of the reserve. Other birds found here include Cape vultures and greywing partridges. Bird-watching and hiking as well as deer-stalking, trophy-hunting and partridge-shooting are allowed in the reserve, a national heritage site.
Carnarvon Estates: Visit the Henry Edward Hales
Waterfowl Reserve to get a glimpse of the more than 100 species of bird and waterfowl that have a home in the reserve. You can also try your hand at a spot of bass-fishing in the nearby dams or view herds of small buck that roam the reserve.
Koos Ras Game Reserve: Situated just 3 km from Sterkstroom, the reserve is home to impala, gazelle, mountain zebra, wildebeest and several other smaller animals.
Sterkstroom Nature Reserve: A visit to the Sterkstroom Nature Reserve on the banks of the Hex River is a natural remedy for stress. Visitors are welcome to make use of the picnic sites within the reserve.
History And Architecture
The Sterkstroom Museum: The town’s museum resembles a shop from the days of yesteryear. Among its treasures are collections of antique crockery, cutlery and other household items.