Blyde River Nature Reserve

The 29 000 hectare Blyde River Nature Reserve rests against the Greater Drakensberg escarpment and preserves not only the canyon but other natural wonders

Mpumalanga Game and Nature ReservesThe Blyde River Nature Reserve

Say the word 'Blyderivier' (the Afrikaans version of Blyde River) and on the tip of every South African's tongue is the unmistakable 'canyon'.

The third largest canyon in the world (now renamed Molatse River Canyon) is virtually an icon it is so recognisable. However, the average person does not realise that it is encompassed within the Blyde River Nature Reserve.

The 29 000 hectare Blyde River Nature Reserve rests against the Greater Drakensberg escarpment and preserves not only the canyon but other natural wonders of Mpumalanga as well Bourke's Luck Potholes, the Three Rondavels, Pinnacle Rock, and the Devil's and God's Window.

God's Window is the type of marvel for which people travel miles. From this southerly viewpoint a series of undulating sheer cliffs fall over 700 metres on to the lowveld below, the way the cliffs of Dover plummet into the sea at the coast of Britain, with a more gradual decline, but no less graciously.

Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve stretches for some 60km, its southerly reaches extending from just beyond the town of Graskop all the way north to the Abel Erasmus pass. The reserve's remarkable biodiversity includes one of the last remaining montane grassland areas in the province with over 1000 flora species, most of which are endemic, rare or endangered. Specimens include giant ferns, rare orchids and a collection of ericas and proteas. The Taita falcon, found in very few places in the world, lives in the reserve.

Other than the panoramic views, waterfalls and geological wonders, one can hike, horse ride, white water raft, climb the kloofs, hot-air balloon overhead, flyfish, bike and take a boat out on the Blyde Dam, when in the reserve.

Popular Attractions in or near Blyde River Nature Reserve

Blyderivierspoort Hiking Trail


The Blyde River Canyon Trail, or Blyderivierspoort Hiking Trail, wends its way through the third largest canyon in the world, and arguably one of the most beautiful. The Blyde River Canyon outshines every other landmark in the country, bar Table...

More info and contact details: Blyderivierspoort Hiking Trail

Hippo Trail


The route is roughly 18 kilometers from beginning to end and it is advisable to start early so that you can complete the hike while it is light. You will need to get a permit from the Forever Resort in order to go on the hike. Please note that the resort is...

More info and contact details: Hippo Trail

Blyde River Canyon


The Blyde River Canyon Reserve extends along the Blyde River Canyon's winding path, which at every turn offers more and more impressive views over sheer edges dropping 800m into the riverbed. Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve - The fresh mountain...

More info and contact details: Blyde River Canyon

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