Nelspruit in South Africa has the honor of being called the “gateway to Mpumalanga.” It is also where one would have to pass to get to Kruger National Park. Nelspruit is the original name of the city but 2 years ago, the government of South Africa renamed it as Mbombela. Of course, being known as Nelspruit for so long, even with the formal change, Nelspruit is still used by most residents.
Nelspruit, which is in a valley east of Johannesburg is the capital of the province of Mpumalanga which is known as the “place where the sun rises.” It is also under the district municipality of Ehlanzeni. It started as a farm town in 1995 and because of the abundance of fresh produce was able to grow economically to become the capital city.
The weather in Nelspruit is considered to be sub-tropical, and being situated in fertile land, the main crops are tropical fruits, pecan and macadamia nuts, and citrus. It is the trading place in South Africa for mangoes, avocadoes, and bananas. The winter climate is moderate at 25 degrees Celsius and hot during the summer at high 30 degrees Celsius. Rain comes in October and lasts up to March of the following year.
Nelspruit is along Crocodile River, also called Krokodilrivier. It begins at the north of Dullstroom and goes through the Kwena Dam and up to Montrose Falls. This is a main water source for irrigation for the farms of Nelspruit and yes, there are crocodiles in the river. Surrounding Nelspruit are granite hills in the shape of domes.
Infrastructure in Nelspruit
Aside from the Riverside Industrial Park where local businesses thrive and real estate property is booming, Nelspruit has 2 airports. These are the Nelspruit Airport in the south west and the Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport located on the north east of the city. The Nelspruit Airport is mainly for private airplanes and chartered flights. It is managed and controlled by the international airport but does have it own control tower.
Other signs of progress are the Lowveld Botanical Gardens, Government Research Institute for Citrus and Subtropical Fruits, the Emnotweni Casino, Mbombela Stadium where the 2010 FIFA World Cup was held, and the Sudwala Caves, golf course, and mall to name the more popular spots residents like to visit. A well developed communications infrastructure means that access to the Internet, and all its associated benefits like online shopping and information access, is easily obtained.
Nelspruit has a well planned road system and part of the reason for this is because it is a tourist destination. Visitors either visit the city or pass through on their way to the Kruger National Park.
Living In Nelspruit
From a village to a farm town to the capital city is an accomplishment and credit goes to the leaders and people of Nelspruit. They are extremely enterprising by taking advantage of their natural resources but refraining from exploiting them. It’s the rich soil where they found the key to economic growth and now they supply most of South Africa’s fruit and nut requirements.
The city is beautiful because it has flowers blooming in luxurious abundance. It’s conveniently located being close to Pretoria and Johannesburg, Maputo and the Panorama Route which leads to the Kruger National Park.
The economy is self sustaining and comfortable, and this allows the people of the city to enjoy the better things in life. The fact that they have their own casino means that many they have the means to enjoy a round or two at the Poker table.
Additionally, malls like the Riverside Mall cater to the needs of the local population: here you can find anything from kitchen appliances and consumer electronics to baby products and entertainment venues for children.