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you are here: | Top Billing breaks bread with the locals in Groot Marico

Top Billing breaks bread with the locals in Groot Marico

Top Billing breaks bread with the locals in Groot Marico 

The town which takes its name from the Groot-Marico River is anything but ‘groot’. That said, this hamlet in the midst of maize, citrus and tobacco country, packs a bunch of character.

Twenty four year old construction site engineer and model, Tiro hails from this same countryside which gave us designer Gert Johan Coetzee.

Groot Marico’s most famous citizen said that he knows no other place so heavy with atmosphere, with that stuff of life that bears the authentic stamp of South-Africa.

Herman Charles Bosman was a schoolteacher in the district in the nineteen twenties and Santa Van Bart manages a living museum in his memory.

Tiro loves books and used to read the newspaper aloud to his father. So it was a treat being in the buildings and around the kind of characters who inspired Bosman’s famous works, the Voorkamer sketches. People like Museum Curator Hansie Coetsee. 

Anna Molefe does her baking on the braai and successfully baking a loaf of bread should not be a challenge to this methodical, construction management graduate.

A readiness to join the party had won the guys a new group of friends and they’d each earned a loaf of Groot Marico’s finest, to take home.


The signature spirit of Groot Marico, Mampoer is named after the area’s nineteenth century Bapedi chief, Mampuru. It was first distilled by trekkers from the Cape and a proud heir to that tradition is local producer Rina Lewis.

Lemons, peaches and figs from nearby orchards are often the central ingredient. As Rina showed us, wild fruits feature too, including mampoer made from marula, milk-plum and kei-apple. But no tasting this time.

To see what else Groot Marico had to offer we joined Ignus Muller at The Marico Oog for some diving.
Producing two hundred thousand litres of fresh water an hour, Die Oog is the source of the Marico River and keeps it flowing all year round.

During high summer the water is a pleasant twenty four degrees but the real advantage of this visibility is that even if you are snorkelling, you can see everything. The forest of lilies is home to bass, eels and fresh water shrimp but the fairy-tale nature of the experience is what it is really about.

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