"The fastest growing town in South Africa"
Nelspruit is a town that has always been very close to my heart. I was born here and after moving away for a while, we relocated here as my father believed it offered our family a great standard of life. Eventually I spent my formative years here and it is the place I will always consider home. Most tourists in SA will also at some point most likely encounter this town - partly of how and where it is situated
Nelspruit is a city of 221,474 people (2000) situated in northeastern South Africa. It is the capital of the Mpumalanga province (formerly Eastern Transvaal). Located on the Crocodile River (known as the Krokodil in Afrikaans), Nelspruit lies 60 kilometres (37 miles) west of the Mozambique border and 330 kilometres (205 miles) east of Johannesburg. The nearest township is KaNyamazane, a few kilometres east of Nelspruit. Nelspruit was founded in 1905 by three brothers of the Nel family who grazed their cattle around the site of Nelspruit during the winter months. It is a key manufacturing and agricultural hub for northeastern South Africa. Major industries include the canning of citrus fruit, paper production, furniture manufacture and timbermills. Fertile soils and subtropical climate provide perfect conditions for the growing of citrus and tropical fruits, mainly mango, banana, avocado and also many varieties of nuts. There are many orange farms in the area around Nelspruit. The city has one airport, Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport, which is used primarily for flights from and to Johannesburg. It is also home to the Government Research Institute for Citrus and Subtropical Fruits, and the Lowveld Botanical Gardens. Nelspruit is a major stopover point for tourists travelling to the Kruger National Park and to Mozambique. During the Boer War, Nelspruit served briefly as the seat of government for the South African Republic (not to be confused with the Republic of South Africa), an independent Afrikaner state. Nelspruit has planned a new soccer stadium for the 2010 Football World Cup. Its name is Mbombela Stadium and will have a capacity of 40,000.