Abseiling in South Africa

If you’re not afraid of heights and you have a craving for the extreme, then abseiling in South Africa might just for you. Abseiling involves using specialized ropes, harnesses and other safety equipment, to make a controlled descent down a jagged cliff face. For beginners and first timers, this descent is usually very slow, very nerve-wracking and always aided by a professional.

Did you know? Abseiling was initially a means for hardcore mountain climbers to descend vertical cliffs but has now developed into a globally popular activity for thrill seekers.

Abseiling in South Africa has only quite recently matured into a mainstream sport. It’s rapidly grown in popularity with its claim to having the highest commercial abseil of 112m. This legendary descent can be found on the cliffs of Table Mountain in Cape Town. For a reasonable fee, you can book the services of a professional abseiling company who'll guide you through the in's and out's of abseiling and then help you to face you fears as you repel off the cliff and drop 112m back down to terra firma.

The unique vantage points that abseiling in South Africa provides you with, will allow you to enjoy uninterrupted views of incredible mountain rock faces, valley and gorges. Whilst your first abseiling experience will probably not include much sightseeing on the way down, once you’re accustomed to it, the views and experiences that you’ll enjoy are unparalleled.

Did you know? Abseiling’s attraction lies not only with the rush of descending an otherwise impassable cliff, but also in the opportunity to experience the view and magnificence of the landscapes around you.

A four hour drive along the Garden Route will bring you to the spectacular sea side town of Knysna which is home to a number of options for the abseiling enthusiast. Whilst Knysna boasts of being one of the most scenic areas in South Africa, the view will more than likely be the last thing on your mind as you brave the cliff faces and make your steady descent to the ground below. Abseiling in Knysna provides the opportunity to make a breathtaking descent on a totally exposed cliff with the waves crashing into the rocks below - an experience for only the very brave, or the slightly crazy abseiling enthusiast.

An hours drive past Knysna will bring you to Storms River Gorge, an area that is jam-packed with exciting adventure sports. There are adventure combination packages available that will allow you to have an adrenaline filled day involving an amazing 100m abseil into a stunning valley, a tube ride down the river and finally an invigorating cycle to the Storms River village.

Other abseiling combination packages can be found inland near the Hartbeespoort Dam. Those who’re keen to try abseiling, but who don’t feel quite up to the challenge of a 100m drop, can test their limits at the abseiling spots around Crocodile River. A combination abseiling package includes a 40m abseil into a magnificent mountain gorge, followed by an exciting river-rafting trip through Grade 1 and Grade 2 rapids.

Once you’ve tried it a few times and the 112m abseil on Table Mountain isn’t so hair-raising anymore, then abseiling’s big brother, 'rapp jumping' awaits you. Rapp jumping is quite similar to abseiling in that you’re descending frightful drops in a matter of minutes, but it offers something more. With abseiling, the harness is attached to your front, so you descend the mountain backwards. With rapp jumping however, the harness is attached to your back. Your descent is made going forwards and is a lot faster than abseiling. In the concrete jungles of Durban and Johannesburg cities, rapp jumpers can be seen sprinting down the sides of office blocks in what seems like a surrealistic defiance of gravity.

So if you’re keen to get your adrenaline pumping, to experience views that few others will see and push the limits of excitement, then abseiling in South Africa is not to be missed.

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