Everything You Need to Know When Hiking Around South Africa
This hiking blog details a hiking guide on useful advice and amazing views when traveling with your feet! Read our “how-to” hike and trekking itinerary when looking for your ideal South African hike.
South Africa is world renowned for its unique flora and fauna, diverse cultures and traditional foods. It garners attention from international tourists and inspires local travelers to get to know their country better. One of the best things about South Africa is its variation of hiking trails and natural parks that offer views of breath-taking landmarks, oceans and nature.
To maximise your hiking experience, we recommend thoroughly preparing before embarking on your trek. Everything, from the correct way to dress to researching and ensuring that safety precautions are taken, should be planned the night before. Here are some simple hiking tips to put on your checklist and hikes that should easily make it to your bucket list.
Our Top 5 Hiking Tips:
1. Hike in Groups
We highly recommend that when hiking in South Africa, it is ideal to be done in groups of 3 or more to ensure your personal security. There is safety in numbers!
2.Wear Comfortable Hiking Gear
Hikes can last several hours or require strenuous climbing, so it is important to ensure that you are comfortable in whatever you are wearing. South Africa can also reach very hot temperatures very early or cool down dramatically in early afternoons. We suggest always checking out the weather when planning your hike as well as on the morning of, to allow you to dress appropriately. Items like a backpack, sunscreen, sunhats, a jacket and the right shoes are important to all hikers.
3. Make sure to nourish your body for the long journey!
Hikes can be strenuous on your body or long and span across many mealtimes. It is important to stay hydrated and fueled to remain alert and energetic. Remember to bring along water, snacks and sandwiches to make the hike more enjoyable.
4.First Aid Kit
Rather be safe than sorry! Packing in a First Aid Kit is an essential item for any trip! Your first aid kit should include plasters, gloves, antiseptic cream and bandages.
5. Pace Yourself
When you first start the trail, you might want to power ahead like a hero. Though, your energy will be on zero by the time you reach the halfway point if you do not pace yourself. Instead, pick a pace you can maintain all day.
5 Thrilling Hiking Trails In South Africa
The Whale Trail
The Whale Trail is located a few hours outside of Cape Town in the De Loop Reserve. The Trail offers the best of both worlds as children as young as eight and adults up to the age of sixty-five can enjoy the scenery of both mother nature and shorelines.
Hennops Trails & Mountain Biking Trails
Hennops is the ideal place to venture out. It is located between Johannesburg and Pretoria which is the perfect weekend getaway for hikers, bikers and everyone in between.
Hennops offers a variety of trails with varying levels of difficulty (from 2.5kms to 38kms) where hikers can experience nature, enjoy splendid landscapes, explore historical sites and birdwatch! In Addition, people visiting Hennops can also look forward to scenic picnic spots where they can enjoy the sunset and good food.
The Storm River Mouth – Tsitsikamma National Park( Eastern Cape)
The Storms River Mouth is located in the Tsitsikamma Garden Route National Park, Eastern Cape region is famous for its magnificent 5km oceanic views with activities such as dolphin and whale sightseeing, and the Storms River Mouth – an extraordinary hiking trail within the park.
The Sentintel Peak trail has made a name for itself amongst hikers. The trail is known as the chain ladders hike as it consists of several ladders along the trail.
This popular 12km trail is situated in uKhahlamba-Drakensberg, KZN and is the ideal one-day hike. The hiking is self-guided with detailed route-markers from start to finish.
Magoebaskloof Hiking Trail
Magoebaskloof is located in Tazeen, Limpopo and is the ultimate hiking trail for those seeking a 2 to 6-day adventure. The trails range between 20 km and 62 km and offer hikers the experience to walk alongside exquisite forests, river streams and landscapes.