5 hiking trails in SA to enjoy this Easter holiday
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Want to do something different this Easter holiday? Keen for something adventurous? Want to burn some extra calories while enjoying a holiday? If yes to any of the above, you may enjoy a trail-inspired holiday.
Evan Sparks, the co-founder and managing director at Afritrails, a centralised platform providing real-time bookings of overnight hiking trails in SA, shares 5 trails to book for the Easter weekend.
Near a small town in the Eastern Cape, Hogsback, the Amatola Trail is commonly known as the toughest and best hiking trail in South Africa. With a length of 100km, the trail starts at Maden Dam and finishes in Hogsback. The hikes are six days and five nights. Travellers walk an average time of 7 hours a day, covering distances of between 14 an 20km.
Walk through a rain forest, across mountains and pass many waterfalls, fields, pools and lookouts along the journey.
The Mosamane Hiking Trail is not too difficult and is suitable for both adults and children over the age of 12. The ideal family activity is in the Free State. The 8km trail starts on Beatrix farm near Rosendal, a converted barn where hikers wanting to spend the night or weekend are accommodated.
As you travel through the grasslands and dongas, you will see streams and waterfalls that run off the rocks and wildflowers that bloom in spring. This shady trail will be thoroughly enjoyed by all who take part.
Situated in the Kruger National Park, the Mphongolo Trail is perfect for backpackers. It starts from Shingwedzi Camp and takes place in the large wilderness area between the Shingwedzi and Mphongolo rivers.
The trail stretches over four days and three nights, allowing its participants to spend their nights in this wilderness area without having the constraints of having to get to the next point or of following a set route.
The Chokka Trail is a diverse coastal hike in the greater St Francis area, which include Oyster Bay, St Francis and Cape St Francis in the Eastern Cape.
On this trail, hikers will encounter fishermen’s footpaths, Jeep tracks, a dune field, coastal forest and thicket as well as the rugged coastline around the south-eastern-most point of Africa. In addition, hikers will pay a visit to Port St Francis, a working harbour and home to the Chokka fleet, where they do calamari tasting, as well as a sunset cruise on the famous St Francis canals.
The hike is four days and three nights and is ideal for novice and older hikers.
Base Camp Trail
Located in Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, in KwaZulu-Natal, the Base Camp Trail is a four-day and three-night hike.
Hikers will enjoy close-up sightings and encounters with the Big Five and other wild animals. Be sure to be accompanied by an armed trails officer and a field ranger.