Tucked into the middle of the Great Karoo Loxton is probably the smallest town I’ve ever been to. It has enormously wide dirt roads (big enough for a truck to do a u-turn in, I'm sure) lined with century-old trees. It's become something of a South African star thanks to an Afrikaans movie Jakhalsdans, which was set in this remote location.
It is also home and refuge to Deon Meyer, a successful South African author of crime-thriller novels. Surprisingly though, and despite its compact size we didn't bump into him. If you think I'm exaggerating about the size and isolation of the town, just ask the locals where the closest ATM is.
Try 60 kms away, in Victoria West.
We stayed at a small self-catering cottage called 4-Season Self-Catering Cottage and had Provitas for dinner because we arrived on a Sunday and had thought (as Joburgers do) that a restaurant would be open. We were right opposite the town's most popular eatery Die Rooi Granaat which has a great reputation but we'll just have to go back to see for ourselves.
Not that I'm complaining, it was just wonderful. We were right opposite the town church and its resident owl which perched lazily in one of the triangular windows.
We strolled about the quiet streets and watched a storm trickle threateningly across the sky before being swallowed by the heat.
When you come into these small Karoo towns you can't help but wonder what on earth made them settle here. I'm not sure who first mentioned it to me, but my favourite theory is that during the Great Trek a tired, dusty wife who had had it with rusks, bandits and the devastatingly slow pace of the ox wagon said, "Enough is enough, I will not take a step further".
And Loxton was born.