C a s t a   D i v a
The Place to... 

     Please visit our FaceBook page and do a "Like" for easy access to all our news updates and shows.
   Home      Location

Our property is set on the slopes of the magnificent Magalies Mountains in the sub tropical northern side of Pretoria. Only a 45-minutes drive from Johannesburg city centre.

Pretoria offers more to a traveler than just one night stay on your way to the Kruger National Park. It is a beautiful city with an abundance of museums (don't miss the Transvaal museum), botanical gardens, Voortrekker monument, Union buildings to name but a few. It is a good place to stay and visit nearby smaller towns like Cullinan (where the Cullinan diamond was found) and Krugersdorp. In the evenings there is the excellent Casta Diva's Charisma restaurant to cater for all your needs. Shopping centres are also easy to find and cater for African curios to designer labels. The people are very friendly and would usually assist you.
Pretoria offers all the attractions of a main city.
Burgers Park is Pretoria's first park, established in 1882.
The Fountains Nature Reserve was proclaimed in 1895, claimed to be the first in Africa.

Sammy Marks Museum is a Victorian period house of a sumptuous lifestyle.

Paul Kruger museum is in the house of President Paul Kruger of the Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek. Melrose House, built in 1886, is an example of Victorian lifestyle.

Pretora Art Museum hosts paintings of South African artists.

The Pierneef Museum has an exhibit of the artist Pierneef.

Van Wouw House was the home of sculptor Anton van Wouw, and exhibits some of his work.

Museum of Science and Technology has exhibits in which visitors can participate. Pretoria Zoo (the National Zoological Gardens) is the largest zoo in South Africa and with an aquarium.

State Theatre, consisting of several theatres, productions ranges from opera to jazz to ballet, drama and cabaret.

Wonderboom Nature Reserve, just north of the Pretoria Zoo, is a giant fig tree of about 1'000 years old, and which grows over an area of 0,5Ha.

History

The first known settlement at this location was by the Ndebele tribe, in the early 1600s. They were refugees and originally known as the Matebele, which means Refugees. Around 1825 a second group of refugees settled here. They were Zulus under the leadership of Mzilikazi, who built a village on the banks of the stream (now called Apies River) running through the area. In 1832 a Zulu army drove these settlers away and the fled north of the Limpopo River to the present Zimbabwe. In 1837 Dutch-Afrikaans pioneers arrived and found only a few Ndebele who were generally in hiding. He pioneers began farming on the banks of the stream.

In 1854 Marthinus Wessel Pretorius bought portions of the farm Elandspoort and a church was built on the spot today known as Church square. On Church square there are several buildings built in the late 1800s style: Raadsaal (Council Hall of the Zuid-Afrikaanche Republiek), Palace of Justice, now home of the Supreme Court, Post Office, old Reserve Bank. The first suburb was Arcadia at the foot of Meintjieskop, on which the Union Buildings were built. Pretoria became a municipality in 1903.

Airports

  • Johannesburg International Airport, approximately 65km (45-minute) drive from Casta Diva, transfers available by arrangement.
  • Wonderboom Airport, approximately 15km (10-minute) drive from Casta Diva, transfers available by arrangement.

What to do in the area of Casta Diva

  • Golf
  • Hot air ballooning by arrangement
  • Pretoria Zoo
  • Voortrekkers Museum
  • Paul Kruger House
  • Sun City and the Lost City
  • Pilanusberg Nature Reserve

The Cradle of Humankind

The Cradle of Humankind is unique in that since 1947, there have been great scientific discoveries, which have been a breakthrough in the search of the origins of humankind. These include a 3.3 million year old ancestor of humankind, stone tools dating back some 2 million years and the world's most perfect pre-human skull ever found - affectionately known as Mrs Ples. There are twelve explored sites within the Cradle of Humankind area including the Sterkfontein Caves. Aside from the rich anthropological value of the area, the Cradle of Humankind also boasts game reserves, a show cave which dates back 2 200 million years ago, and the first gold mine on the Witwatersrand. www.thecradle.co.za E-mail: michaelw@gpg.gov.za Tel: 011 957 0244.
 

Blaauwbank Historical Gold Mine

Built around 1902 toward the end of the Boer War. Visit the oldest Gold Mine in Gauteng for the experience of a lifetime! Tel: 011 396 1120

Van Gaalen Kaasmaker' / cheese factory

Open 7 days a week. On the farm they produce cheese according to Old Dutch traditions and recipes. They offer guided tours in which they show the process of cheese making. A unique variety of cheese is available at their farm shop, as well as odds and ends. Shadowed by the magnificent Magalies, enjoy a superb view including a dam, which abundant bird life visits, whilst having breakfast or a cheese lunch. Bookings are essential. Tel: 012 207 1289.
 

Bill Harrops Original Balloon Safaris

Bookings are essential for this unique experience, which is an elegant, eccentric adventure in space and time, hovering at tree top height while you wave to local farmers below. Your pilot will also take you soaring high among the clouds and whilst you drift along slowly, your "720" degree wrap-around panoramic view of the Magalies River Valley will leave you breathless. Tel: 012 705 3201.
 

Magalies Gliding Club

The club has around 200 members and offers introductory rides to casual visitors and potential new members. Weekday flying can be arranged. Cell: 083 526 6966.