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Coolest Hiking Trails in South Africa

Hiking in the mountains, giant backpacks.

Hiking consists of long, vigorous walks that are usually on trails or footpaths. You are further immersed in nature and can enjoy all the scenery along the way to your destination. You may ask yourself, what is the purpose of hiking? Well, it serves as a means of exploration, exercise and reflection. Setting your foot down a path provides an unparalleled opportunity to build the human spirit while improving physical and mental health simultaneously. Whether you’re an avid hiker and want to challenge yourself, or just want to spend time in nature. There is a trail for you out there. With that said, let’s explore some of the coolest hiking trails in South Africa.

1. Hennops Hiking Trail in Pretoria

The first trail is in the heart of busy Gauteng, on the doorstep of Pretoria and Johannesburg. Hikers can experience the unspoiled Hennops Hiking Trail. If you’re feeling adventurous and ready to tackle nature’s trails, then Hennops is for you.

The Krokodilberg trail in Hennops spans a distance of 10 km. The duration can last between 3 – 5 hours. The difficulty ranges from average to difficult, so almost anyone can do it. This trail has an elevation gain of 400m. You will cross the river via a suspension bridge and a cable car, adding excitement to your hike. Therefore, you get a chance to see a variety of game on this hike, such as zebras and kudus. This gives you the full experience that mother nature offers. So bring your sunblock, wear comfy shoes and let’s hike!

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Hiking amongst the trees, on a trail

2. Robberg Hiking Trail in Plettenberg Bay

The Robberg hiking trail is one of the most popular and scenic hiking trails along the Garden Route. The route is a circular trail along the Robbenberg Peninsula. This trail is quite strenuous and is an 8.7 km walk. The difficulty of this trail ranges from moderate to challenging, which is for the more experienced hiker. On average, it takes 2 hours and 31 minutes to complete.

This trail also provides solitude in the quieter times of the day. From rocky coastlines to wooden trails, this hike has it all. There are aspects of technical hiking involved, so be prepared. This trail is very sunny be sure to bring a hat along for protection.

Coolest Hiking Trails in South Africa

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Stunning hiking trails amongst the trees

3. Cradle Moon Hiking Trail in Pretoria

Next, you can experience this 8.2 km loop trail near Zwartkop in Pretoria. It is tucked away inside the gates of the Cradle Moon Lakeside Game Lodge. This trail is also considered a moderately challenging route. With it being such a long route, it calls for experienced hikers. The route takes an average of 2 hours and 13 minutes to complete. In addition to all its attractions, Cradle Moon is popular for birding, running and walking. Moreover, the trail is well-marked and follows a circular route around Cradle Lake. Ultimately, you get the chance to see different wildlife and embrace what the vicinity has to offer too.

What’s more exciting is the stunning waterfall at the end of the trail. Bringing your camera along is a must. Lastly, there is a wonderful restaurant at the end of the trail. Therefore, you get to reward yourself for what you’ve accomplished.

Beautiful landscape with sunset

4. Kranskloof Hiking Trail in the North West

Finally, enjoy this 8.4 km trail near Oorzaak in the North West. Kranskloof is considered moderately challenging. With an elevation of 377m. This is a popular trail for both running and walking. You must certainly be brave to run over 8 km. Kranskloof trail houses amazing boulders, therefore you get the best scenic views. This trail leads to a valley where you can swim after your long hike. So go enjoy the majestic scenery that the North West offers.

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Lush greenery on a hiking trail

Parting Words

When you’re in South Africa, make sure you check out some of the coolest hiking spots they have to offer. Immerse yourself in nature and bask in the wonders that mother nature has to offer in this fantastic country. See game and wildlife specific to these regions, and learn all about it. With varying degrees of difficulty, there is a trail for everyone. There are many other stunning hiking trails all over the world. So when you’re globetrotting, don’t miss out on some of the best.

Psychology tip: hiking in nature reduces mental fatigue and further facilitates creative thinking.

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