About Maalgat Walk

Start: Sanddrif camping area
Finish: Sanddrif camping area
Duration: 2 km, an hour or so
Fitness: easy
Our tip: day visitors are not allowed over long weekends or school holidays; get your permit from the Dwarsrivier office

Justin Lawson, a South African climber and blogger, tried walking across a line he set up across the Maalgat pool in the Cederberg. His idea: to emulate the pictures he had seen of solo high-lining above Yosemite. Whilst Maalgat is not Yosemite, the blue of the sky and the orange cliffs around the hole are definitely as beautiful.

This effortless walk into the unusual cliffs at Sanddrif is about its aesthetic appeal rather than any hiking challenge. The reward: fantastic swims and cliff side jumps!

Maalgat (grind hole), often called Malgat (mad hole), or Hippo Pool, by locals is a natural pool in the sandstone below Sanddrif. One follows a well sign-posted path downstream along the Dwars River. You may find yourself distracted well ahead of the pool as there are various spots at which to paddle or relax. Look out for a stone wall to your left, through which the path passes, taking you to the pool.

Maalgat is huge and very deep. There is also no shade, so despite the temptation to head there when the sun is at its zenith during summer, be aware that you will need sunscreen and hats to survive the experience.

As far as rewarding, short and uncomplicated walks go, this one comes in tops.

Need to Know

WhereStart and finish at Sanddrif camping area in Cederberg Wilderness Area, Cederberg, Western Cape

WhenPlease enquire.

How muchPrices on request.

Telephone+27 (0)27 482-2825

OvernightThe closest town is Biedouw Valley, in Western Cape


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