Cycling in South Africa

The breeze in your hair, the warm sun on your back and the open road in front of you - it’s easy to see why cycling is one of the best ways to explore and travel South Africa. There are many fantastic trails catering for all skill levels.

South Africa is full of exciting and beautiful cycling routes that anticipate your discovery. The gorgeous town of Paarl in the Cape Winelands offers many diverse cycling routes through tree lined streets and luscious vineyards. With the many national parks and game reserves in South Africa, there are a wide variety of tailor made packages that’ll take you on some spectacular cycling tours through the exciting wild.

Did you know? The Bicycling Empowerment Network in South Africa (BEN) addresses poverty and mobility by promoting the bicycle, importing used bikes from overseas and distributing them to low income areas.

If you’re fit enough for the long haul, then why not try a group ride along the magnificent Garden Route. Various tour companies offer cycling tours in South Africa that will show you many of the beautiful highlights of South Africa, during which you’ll get to stay in private homes as guests in a Zulu township, or in Mission stations, cosy guest houses, hotels or chalets. Alternatively, adventure cycling in South Africa is made complete with a tented overnight stay at one of many stunning locations in South Africa.

There are also a number of mountain bike tours covering the Magaliesberg, Drakensberg, Knysna and Cape Town. If you’re planning on cycling in Cape Town you’ll be glad to know that there are some great single-track routes on Table Mountain and in the surrounding pine plantations. There are escorted cycling trips on the mountain, around the Cape Winelands and in the Cape Point section of the Cape Peninsula National Park.

The picturesque De Hoop National Park near Swellendam has many easy South African cycling trails. There are four outstanding, laid-out circular tracks in the Harkerville Forest, ranging from the very easy to the very intense. Nearby are two long and rather strenuous linear trails, Homtini and Petrus se Brand.

Port Elizabeth also has dedicated cycling trails, including one which cuts right through the middle of the city. KwaZulu Natal has its share of cycling routes, with a number of beautiful South African cycling trails in the Drakensberg and the Natal Midlands.

The Free State is known for its more strenuous cycling trails which offer more challenging cycling routes to the more experienced rider. Johannesburg is home to a huge mountain biking population who head out to the wonderful trails around Mpumalanga almost every day of the week.

The Cape Argus Cycle Tour is the biggest event on the South African cycling calendar. The Cape Argus Cycle Tour gained international recognition from the UCI, becoming the opening event of the global Golden Bike Series. This South African cycling tour is so popular that entries for the race are restricted to 35 000 and over 5500 people entered to ride their first-ever Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour.

Not far behind the size of the Argus Cycle Tour, is the relatively new 94.7 Cycle Challenge, held annually in Johannesburg. The race attracted 4 000 cyclists in its first year, but climbed to 26331 competitors in the 2012 event.

Regardless of whether you are a competitive cyclist, or just a lover of the open road, South African cycling caters for all. So on your next trip to South Africa, make sure to bring your bike (or hire one when you are here) and take part in some exciting South African cycling.

Recommended in Cycling

Cycling / Sports & Leisure

Cycling and Mountain Biking with JMBC

Stay? Johannesburg Accommodation
The JMBC (Johannesburg Mountain Bicycle Club) is all about the fun and adventure of experiencing the outdoors, dirt and all, from the saddle of a mountain bike. ...

Sight Seeing / Cycling / Sports & Leisure

Rent-a-Bike and Cycle the Kogelberg

Stay? Kleinmond Accommodation
Rent-a-bike; own-the-experience. Two legs can get you so far breathing in the fresh air but two wheels can get you so much further with the wind blowing through ...

Sight Seeing / Family Entertainment / Cycling

Cycle through Greyton

Stay? Greyton Accommodation
Take in the beauty of Greyton at your own pace, enjoying the scenery around you - by bicycle! In this wonderfully scenic town, Greyton Bicycle Hire provides people ...

Sports & Leisure / Cycling

Hire a Bike and Cycle the Cape

Stay? Fish Hoek Accommodation
Cycle The Cape offers top quality road bikes to explore Cape Town and the beautiful Cape Peninsula. Bikes can be hired for whatever time period you require. We are ...

Cycling / Sports & Leisure

Cape Town Cycle Tours

Stay? Fish Hoek Accommodation
Cycle The Cape offers a wide variety of road bike tours around the Cape Peninsula which can be designed to your own specifications. Depending on your fightness ...


Explore Hogsback With Cycle Roots

Stay? Hogsback Accommodation
Cycle through Hogsback and explore its beauty with Cycle Roots. You can either bring your own bike or rent one form the Cycle Roots shop for the day. Take a ...

Cycling / Township Tours

Cycle in Soweto

Stay? Soweto Accommodation
South Africa’s colourful, complex, poignant history is what makes this country and its people so special today. Many of the major metropolises have incredible ...

Where would you like to stay in South Africa?

Additional Reading

You might also be interested in Want to go Cycling in South Africa?
  • Search for cycle tours, bicycle hire and other cycling experiences (and service providers) or check out things to do in South Africa for plenty of extreme sports, scenic flights, cruises, sight seeing and many other experiences.

Where to enjoy Cycling

South Africa. Explore. Experience. Stay® has been assisting travellers with their South Africa travel plans since 1999, and is the largest, independent online travel guide for South Africa available in both English and German.