South Africa Hiking Trails

South Africa offers a wealth of hiking opportunities

South Africa Outdoor ActivitiesHiking Trails in South Africa

South Africa boasts absolutely exquisite and picturesque terrains. Whilst modern advancements allow for such scenery to be viewed from the comfort of a 4x4, most prefer to explore this rugged beauty, on foot. Hiking in South Africa around the phenomenal mountain ranges is sure to be an unforgettable experience.

The Western Cape offers the most varied and interesting concentration of hiking trails in the world. Admire mystical mountain ranges including the renowned Table Mountain and the Cederberg whilst discovering the indigenous fauna and flora, blossoming wine farms and vineyards, lush forests, waterfalls, craggy cliffs and beautiful sandy beaches. KwaZulu Natal offers the magnificent and renowned Drakensberg Mountain Range. Besides the panoramic views there are also stunning waterfalls, indigenous forests and magnificent escarpments to boot.

The Tsitsikamma coast offers the most popular hiking trails through lush forests, sandy beaches and magnificent mountains that all breathtaking views. The Otter Trail is probably the most popular hike in South Africa. Lush forests, rugged shorelines, mountain streams and waterfalls and fragrant fynbos make this an exceptional South African hiking experience. It is quite strenuous and not for the terribly unfit. Any of the accommodation in Tsitsikamma can put you in touch with the right people to arrange this hike.

For a scenic trail but with fewer struggles and more strolling, try the Dolphin Trail. The Dolphin Trail passes through similar terrains to the Otter and joins up with it in places. Instead of staying in huts, you will stay in fully catered guest houses in Tsitsikamma with awesome views and great food. Your pack is transported to your next overnight spot by vehicle and you carry only a day pack with lunch, water, camera and swimsuit.

The Wild Coast of the Eastern Cape offers spectacularly different scenery including miles of deserted beaches, wave-lashed rocks and tropical forests - all making for an invigorating South African hiking experience. There are miles and miles of unspoiled hiking trail passing through high mountains, deserts and forests.

There are hiking clubs in each city of South Africa all offering great company and fantastic hiking trails. Most accommodation in South Africa offer awesome hiking trails through incredible terrains. So why not take a weekend to breathe in the fresh mountain air, whilst admiring the scenery during a South African hike. Hiking in South Africa promises to be an awesome experience.

Popular Hiking Trails

The Otter Trail

Where? Tsitsikamma
The Otter Trail follows the spectacular Garden Route coastline from Storms River Mouth to Nature's Valley in the Tsitsikamma National Park, in the Eastern Cape. The trail takes 5 days to complete and follows the rugged, rocky shoreline...

More info and contact details: The Otter Trail

The Whale Trail

Where? De Hoop
The Whale Trail spans over 55 kilometres from Potberg to Koppie Alleen with five overnight stops. Its comparison with the Otter Trail stops at its popularity and the cliff-top walk to Hamerkop, for the rest of its setting is totally different...

More info and contact details: The Whale Trail

Table Mountain Hikes

Where? Cape Town
We are so incredibly lucky to have a National Park right on our doorstep in the city, and the best way to explore it is on foot. Read on for a summarised list of some the various walks in, around and on the mountain including Pipe Track and...

More info and contact details: Table Mountain Hikes

Sentinel Peak Hike

Where? Drakensberg
What would usually be a rather tough and arduous multi-day slog from the Mahai campsite in the Royal Natal National Park is converted into a day's hike. The difference: a drive across the border into the Free State, to start the walk from...

More info and contact details: Sentinel Peak Hike

Drakensberg Grand Traverse

Where? Drakensberg
Regarded as one of the epic hikes in South Africa, the Drakensberg Grand Traverse hike reaches elevations that exceed Everest (the highest point in southern Africa - Mafadi and Thabana Ntlenyana are both part of the trail), and runs along the edge of the...

More info and contact details: Drakensberg Grand Traverse


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Search for general hiking trails or see the menu below for more detailed information on hiking trails by province. Also see first hand reviews of popular hiking trails on our blog at "Hikers' Guide to South Africa".

Did you know?

Undoubtedly the best known and most popular of the South African hiking trails, the Otter Trail ranks alongside the best trails in the world.

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