man showing direction his family when hiking

Discover the splendour of South Africa on an epic hiking adventure

Looking for a getaway with a difference? Tired of the same ol’ same ol’ family trips, and fancy the idea of trying something new?

Then perhaps you should consider embarking on an outdoor adventure to explore magnificent sights, often only accessible by hiking. With the cooler autumn season upon us, it’s a great time to lace up those boots and hit the trails.

According to Shaun Lamont, CEO of First Group Hotels and Resorts, whether you’re a budding explorer or a seasoned trekker, South Africa offers breathtaking landscapes and diverse terrain with awe-inspiring scenery and a vast network of thousands of hiking trails in all nine provinces. “From family-friendly and even a few wheelchair-accessible routes to more challenging trails for the experienced hiker, there is something to suit all skill levels and preferences.” 

So, if you’re eager to put on your walking shoes and explore, he offers his recommendations on hiking destinations, accommodations and ideal times to visit to help you make lasting, magical moments as you experience South Africa in a new and exciting way:


When to visit: Ideal for hiking during the dry season, November to April.

Where to stay: Mount Sierra in Cape Town offers cosy accommodations with amenities like a heated indoor pool and wellness centre. Plus, it’s conveniently located near multiple hiking trails.

Where to hike: Explore iconic destinations like Table Mountain and the Cape Winelands, with trails such as the Pipe Track, Kasteelspoort and Tranquility Cracks all within reasonable proximity for convenient day trips.


When to visit: Venture into the majestic Drakensberg Mountains from early autumn when it is at its best, to September.

Where to stay: Spend the night (or two) at Bushman’s Nek (Drakensberg) or book in at Midlands Saddle & Trout (Midlands), as there are plenty of hiking and walking trails close by.

Where to hike: Explore the rugged beauty of this Unesco World Heritage Site.


When to visit: For a unique hiking experience amid abundant wildlife and the bush, visit Zululand – home to some of SA’s best game parks – during the cooler, drier months from May to September.

Where to stay: Experience the best of both beach and bush. The magnificent La Rochelle resort in St Lucia – just 1km from the St Lucia estuary within the iSimangaliso Wetland Park World Heritage Site – is a springboard to the world-famous Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve as well as various other game parks in the area.

Where to hike: Enjoy guided hiking tours with prime wildlife-viewing opportunities in the heart of KwaZulu-Natal’s bushveld.


When to visit: Discover the enchanting Garden Route during the mild, dry months of autumn (April to May) and spring (September to November).

Where to stay: Situated in the heart of the Garden Route, Knysna River Club is a peaceful retreat set against the picturesque backdrop of the Knysna Lagoon. Or if Mossel Bay is calling, try Perna Perna, the very best of Mossel Bay resorts, perfectly positioned on a rocky hillside in this charming coastal village.

Where to hike: Traverse coastal trails and verdant forests as you hike in the natural beauty of this iconic region.

“So, make a date with adventure for the family and escape the hustle and bustle of daily life this autumn as you reconnect with each other and nature. Whether it’s short hikes initially that build up to full-day ones, this is an activity that can draw the whole family closer together as you discover and share new experiences,” Lamont concludes.

Image credit: pch.vector/Freepik

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