About Amatola Hiking Trail

Start: 22 km from King William's town
Finish: 3 km from Hogsback
Duration: 100km over 6 days
Fitness: not for the unfit; considered tough
Our tip: take extra pairs of socks as there are numerous river crossings

The Amatola Hiking Trail is considered one of South Africa's top hikes. It is up there with the Otter Trail and the Whale Trail in terms of difficulty and popularity. The trail is set in the Amatola Mountains involving days of wandering rich indigenous rainforests complete with yellowwood and redwood trees, rolling mountains, mountain fynbos, wild flowers and water - in the form of streams, waterfalls and pools - in abundance.

The average day's hike is 16.5 km to 19 km, your evenings spent in wooden huts - most of which are set in amongst the surrounding forest, with hot water donkeys to heat showers, and toilets that range from long drop to flush.

Weather in the mountains is variable throughout the year. All weather clothing is essential as you can face anything from intense heat to freezing cold rain.

Day one:
Maden dam to Gwiligwili Hut (atop a hill with incredible views) is a steep climb through indigenous pirie forest, although there is a short cut that can save you 5 km.

Day two:
to Dontsa hut (set in a pine plantation), a somewhat easier day through indigenous forest with the Keiskammahoek valley below you.

Day three:
to Cata Hut (modern with a gas fired geyser) leaves the forest and climbs to the plateau. Walk in amongst wild flowers and macchia grasses, after which you can choose to climb Doornkop or enter the Hovald forest.

Day four:
to Mnyameni hut (most isolated hut) – the easiest and shortest day with an initial climb up Geju peak with incredible views, followed by a descent into Mnyameni gorge and Malan forest.

Day five:
to Zingcuka hut – a tough day with a steep climb; optional swimming pools ease the walk, and dense forest shades the last few kilometres.

Day six: to Tyume River
a day peppered by waterfalls in forest with a long ascent up Hog 1 and then down to the Tyume River basin.

Need to Know

WhereStart at Maden dam near King Williams Town and finish just near Hogsback, Eastern Cape, South Africa

WhenHow long: 6 days, 100 kms (regarded as a toughie)
Best time to go is in summer, although you can go all year round.

How muchPrices on request.

TelephoneConact a reputable hiking operator.

OvernightStay nearby in King Williams Town, in Eastern Cape


Please note, business details can change. While we endeavour to ensure all information provided by the service provider is correct at the time of publication, we do not assume any liability caused by errors or changes, such as price, cost, time, and location. Please check with the provider that the activity/business is still offered as described, before making any travel plans.

Need an Update?

Send us feedback if this is your service/activity. Please let us know if anything on this page is outdated or contains inaccuracies.
Note, we do not have additional information or rates. Please don't contact us, rather use the service provider's contact details provided.

Find Amatola Hiking Trail in these collections

In the vicinity

Hotels & other accommodation options by proximity

* Distances shown are "as the crow flies", not driving distances. Please confirm with the establishment should driving distance be a factor in your decision.

Other things to do in the area

Noteworthy attractions

Accommodation convenient to Amatola Hiking Trail

FIND / South Africa Accommodation / Eastern Cape Accommodation / Amatola Accommodation / King Williams Town Accommodation

King Williams Town as a destination

Want to stay overnight?


When would you like to stay?
Choose dates

Number of Guests

Why book with SA-Venues.com
  • Your card is safe with us; strictest card verification in the industry and we don't store card numbers.
  • No airy fairy service fees; you save!
  • We care. Service with integrity.
  • Multiple payment methods:
    credit card, SID instant EFT, bank transfer.
  • All King Williams Town property owners / managers are verified (our experience protects you from online fraud).
  • Secure your booking
Our Payment Protection Guarantee only applies if your deposit payment is made via SA-Venues.com
Things To Do
South Africa. Explore. Experience. Stay

SA-Venues.com® 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.