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Hiking in South Africa

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Earth : Africa : Southern Africa : South Africa : Hiking in South Africa
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There is a large number of hiking trails in South Africa with levels of difficulty, accessibility and luxury to suit any taste.

To ensure that you have a safe, healthy and enjoyable hike, also see Wilderness backpacking and Packing for a week of hiking. You may also be able to find more detailed descriptions of each trail on WikiOutdoors


Short Walks[edit]


  • The Whale Trail hike - 6 days in the stunning fynbos & pristine beaches & cliffs, De Hoop Nature Reserve, Western Cape, +27 (0)829034569 (). 56km all inclusive R12000 per person, available dates November 8 and December 17  edit
  • The Northern Drakensberg Traverse, aka Mini Drakensberg Traverse - 5 to 6 days, Hike from the Amphitheatre to the Cathedral Peak via the Chain Ladders, +27 (0)82 731 4696 (), [2]. Kwa Zula Natal Drakensberg, 60km 5 - 6 day wilderness hiking trail, overnighting in tents with an average altitude of 3000m.  edit
  • The Num-Num Trail - 5 days, Mpumalanga, between Machadodorp and Badplaas, +27 (0)72 889 9284 (), [3]. Mpumalanga, 42km 5 day hiking trail. 2 - 4 day hikes available. Equipped kitchens, hot showers, slackpacking. Waterfalls, yellow-wood forests, game, birds, ancient ruins, trees, gorges. Cost R150pppn (+VAT). R855 full 5 days  edit
  • Rietvlei Nature Reserve, Gauteng (From the R21, take the Irine Rietvlei Dam offramp and follow the signs), +27 (0)12 345-2274, [12]. A little bit of Africa left in the hart of Gauteng R40 for day hikes and R80 for overnight hikes.  edit
  • Table Mountain, (Starting point is 1.5km past the Lower Cable Station on Tafelberg Road). Always open, but you might want to start early enough to catch the last cable car down. Cape Town, 3km (all uphill), 1 to 3 hours, Platteklip Gorge to the Upper Cable Station. No fees are charged.  edit
  • Gecko Trail, Montagu, +27 (0)23 614-1895 (), [13]. Montagu, A wilderness hiking trail, starting at the Nuy Valley (near Worcester) and making its way through the Nuy River Gorge to Simonskloof (or vice versa). The route is 16 km and includes some serious ascents and descents. R25.  edit
  • Nuy River Gorge Kloofing, +27 (0)23 614-1895 (), [14]. Montagu, Oct-Apr. A one- or two-day kloofing (canyoneering) trip into a remote gorge including abseiling, boulder hopping, bivouacking and swimming. Meals and guiding included. R850.  edit
  • Devil's Hoek Valley. Royal Natal National Park, Starts next to the Tugela river at the car park near Thendele, 6km, 2 hours, easy walk. Some Bushman rock art along the way.  edit
  • Tugela Gorge Walk, [15]. Royal Natal National Park, The trail starts next to the Tugela river at the car park near Thendele, 23km return trip, 5 to 6 hours. A relatively easy walk except for the last 2km that required 3 river easy crossings and some boulder hopping. At the far point of the walk you will see spectacular view of the Amphitheatre, Sentinel and Tugela Falls.  edit
  • Cederberg Heritage Route Slackpacking Trails, Cederberg Mountains, Western Cape, +27 (0)27 482-2444 (), [16]. Northern Cederberg Wilderness area, three to five day trails, fully catered with luggage transport. Guided rock art walk and traditional donkey cart ride included.  edit

Kruger National Park[edit]

Prior booking is essential for all trails in the park.

Kruger Park Central Reservations, +27 (0)12 428-9111 (), [17].  edit

Wilderness Trails[edit]

All trails are 2 Days and 3 Nights, starting at 3:30PM. R2 350 per person, hut accommodation and meals are included.


  • Olifants River Back Pack Trail, [18]. 42km, 4 Days, from Olifants to Letaba, no frills, no trace camping, no camps provided, sleep in your own tent out in the park with the wildlife. R10 560 for up to 8 people.  edit

Luxury trails[edit]

Designed for the not so fit or those who do not want to rough it.

On luxury trails you generally only have to carry a light daypack, you will sleep in luxury accommodation every night and all meals are prepared for you.

  • Oystercatcher Trail, Mossel Bay, +27 (0)44 699-1204 (), [20]. Mossel Bay area, 5 Days (Mossel Bay to Gourits River) or 3 Days (Boggomsbaai to Gourits River).  edit
  • Wartrail Skywalk, Eastern Cape Drakensberg, near Barkly East, +27 (0)79 536-3996 (), [23]. Drakensberg area, 4 Day guided slackpacking tour. R3,575-R4,395 inclusive of accommodation, guiding, transportation of luggage and delicious home-cooked meals.  edit

Trails for the disabled[edit]

  • Glenholme trail for disabled & blind persons, Glenholme Nature Reserve, +27 (0)031705-5448. Durban, Caters for wheelchairs and the blind with elevated walkway and guide rails and braille plaques.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

Most of the larger stores have a basic outdoors section. Makro and Game might stock the items you need.

There are also a number of stores specializing in outdoors equipment and supplies. You will find anything from water purification tablets to hiking boots and sleeping bags at Camp World and Outdoor Warehouse.

Stay safe[edit]

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