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Map of Maseru, Capital of Lesotho

Maseru Map
Description : Maseru Map showing tourist attractions, airports, hotels, museums, shopping centers, etc. Disclaimer
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Facts About Maseru
CountryLesotho
StateMaseru
Founded1869
Area138 km2
Population227,880 (2006)
Lat Long Coordinates29.31°S 27.48°E
Time ZoneUTC+2
area Code266
LanguageEnglish,Sesotho
Major ReligionChristians (Roman Catholics)
Point of interestKatse Dam, Afri-Ski, Thaba Bosiu, Thabana Ntlenyana, Sehlabathebe National Park, Maletsunyane Falls, Ts'ehlanyane National Park, Bokong Nature Reserve

About City : 
Maseru is the capital of Lesotho (previously known as Basutoland) and has a population of about 228,000. It is the administrative center as well as the transportation hub of the country. The Sotho language is the official language here although English is also quite prevalent.

Maseru was founded in 1869 by the British who had set up a police camp here. It was also established as the capital of the British Protectorate of Basutoland in the same year. However this lasted only until the transfer of Basutoland to Cape Colony in 1871. In 1881, during the Gun War, several buildings in the city were burned down following which it was restored as the capital of the country. In 1996, the country gained its independence and was renamed as Lesotho and Maseru remained as the capital of the nation. Maseru has grown from being a mere trading town to the most important city of its country. Much of the city was destroyed in the 1998 post electoral riots and the city is still recovering from it.

Geography : 
Maseru lies on the left bank of River Caledon along the northwest border of the country. It is connected to the South African town of Ladybrand by a bridge across the river. The city spreads over an area of 138 sq km and is at a height of 1,600 m. Maseru is located at the foot of the foothills of Maloti Mountains, in a shallow valley shadowed by the Hlabeng-Sa-Likhama.

How to Reach (Transport) : 
The city is connected to the Moshoeshoe Airport which is 18 km away from the city and it is served only by the South African Airways which operates daily flights to and from Johannesburg which means one has to arrive in Johannesburg at first in order to come to Maseru. Mission Aviation Airlines also charters flights to Thaba-Thaba, Katse and Mokhotlong.

Maseru is well connected to the rest of Lesotho and South Africa by road. Cars, taxis and buses are easily available to travel to and from anywhere in Lesotho as well as Ladybrand. It is also accessible via a railway line that connects Maseru to Marseiles. Inside the city, one can avail of buses, rent a car or book a taxi as per convenience.

When to Visit : 
Maseru has a subtropical climate with two distinct seasons; warm and rainy summers along with chilly and dry winters. Temperatures during the summer months can rise up to 35 degree Celsius and January is the hottest month of the year. Despite the rain and warm temperature, summer is the best time to visit Maseru.

Fairs and Festivals : 
  • Maseru celebrates both religious and cultural festivals. It also glorifies its independence and celebrates the rich heritage unique to its country.

  • Morija Arts and Cultural Festival, held in September or October, is an annual event celebrated over a period of five days in Maseru and its surrounding towns. The festival highlights the rich theater, poetry, music and art of the locals and hosts several music concerts, movie showings and exhibits.

  • Lesotho Jazz Festival, celebrated in December, is a popular event of the country. Musicians from all over the country as well as from neighboring countries come together to celebrate this genre of music which focuses on their social development and is a favorite in the area.

  • Independence Day, commemorated on 4th October, is a national holiday. Several musical performances, parades and street dances are held all over as the whole nation celebrates its emergence as an independent power.

Other festivals include Family Day, Christmas, Easter, Kadmus Art Festival and New Year's Day.

Points of Interest (Places to Visit) : 
The following are some of the attractions of Maseru:
  • The Maloti Mountains, surrounding the city, offer a breathtaking view and also provide a perfect trekking experience.
  • Katse Dam, at a height of 185 m, is one of the most magnificent water features of the country. It lies on River Malibamatso and was completed in 1997.

  • Thaba Bosiu, a sandstone plateau about 24 km from the city, is a monument dedicated to Moshoeshoe I, who was the chief of the Basotho during the 19th century. It was the only stronghold as well Moshoeshoe's headquarters during the various Basuto Wars. Moshoeshoe is buried here and the place is now a major tourist attraction.

  • The Catholic Cathedral of Our Lady of Victories, the local church, is a must see in this city. Its architecture reflects the colonial rule.

  • Thetsane, about 2 km from the city, provides a fascinating insight into the industrial life of Africans. The area is full of factories which produce garments for leading US brands and the environment strongly clashes with the slow life of the city.

  • The Mokorotlo, a virtual museum, is one of the popular monuments in the city. It is built in a traditional hut with a modern style and houses a virtual museum showcasing the culture and tradition of the country and its people.

Other places to visit are the National Museum, Royal Palace, the State House and the Anglican St. John's Church.

Accommodation : 
Maseru offers an array of accommodation options which includes luxury hotels, mid range hotels and inns as well as budget hostels and backpackers. Maseru Backpackers and Lesotho-Durham Link are popular budget accommodations which offer clean rooms as well as accessible kitchens.

Mid-range options include Mohokare Guest House, Boikhutsong Bed and Breakfast, Foothills Guest House and Victoria Hotel which have facilities for modern and safe housing as well as easy access to the major parts of the city. For the luxurious, Maseru has Lesotho Sun, Lancer's Inn, Queen Proteas and Maseru Sun Cabanas which are equipped with swimming pools, casinos, gyms, restaurants and free wireless internet.

Last Updated : January 18, 2014





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