The Northern Cape of South Africa is a region teeming with natural beauty. Home to the Namaqualand flowers, the Northern Cape landscapes are breathtaking and a colourful sight to behold, when these flowers bloom between July and August.
The big five, large antelope herds and the Kalahari lion add to the diversity of wildlife found in the Kgalagadi Transfrontier National, which is located in the Northern Cape. And, these together make the Northern Cape one of the best-hiking destinations.
While trying to find the perfect hiking trail in the Northern Cape, may leave you spoilt for choice, here is a selection of the 5 best trails if you are thinking about hiking in the Northern Cape.
Klipspringer Hiking Trail
Let your hiking take you through one of South Africa’s beautiful national parks, the Augrabies Falls National Park, through which the Klipspringer Hiking Trail meanders.
On this trail, you are sure to encounter the small rock jumping antelope (Klipspringer), after which the trail has been named. You will also have close encounters with a lot of reptiles, baboons, leopards, the colourful Augrabies lizard and various birds of prey like the Fish Eagle.
Hiking on this trail, one cannot help but stop and experience the great scenic beauty of the 56 metres high Augrabies Falls and the Orange River Gorge, which gives hikers on this trail some of the most memorable experiences.
The Klipspringer is a circular 39.5 kilometres trail which starts at Augrabies Rest Camp, in the national park, and takes 3 days to successfully complete. It is usually open from April until September due to high temperatures.
Fish River Canyon
Set in Ai/ Ais-Richtersveld Transfrontier Park, the Fish River Canyon Trail gives hikers a lifetime opportunity to experience the great scenic beauty that the second largest canyon in the world has to offer.
With 84 kilometres of mountainous landscapes, beautiful rock formations, memorable starry night skies, hot water springs, as well as a diversity of flora and fauna including the big five, this 4-day trial is one of the best experiences for hikers.
Hikers start at the Hobas viewpoint and relax their beat down hiking bodies at the endpoint in the resort and spa found in the Ai/ Ais-Richtersveld Transfrontier Park. To get there you’ll need a reliable vehicle, you’ll be glad to know that 4×4 hire South Africa is cheap and easy.
Diamond Coast Trail
This trail takes hikers through a rich history of diamond mining in the Northern Cape and hiking through the magnificent coastline of the trail, you will be amazed by the scenery decorated with wildflowers, rock and mineral remain, white sand dunes and a beautiful variety of indigenous plants, as well as shipwreck sites.
Water Mongoose, springbucks, hyenas, gemsboks, as well as ostriches, buzzards, and hawks, are among the wildlife hikers encounter on this 65-kilometre trail.
Hikers get the unique privilege of visiting the diamond mine and museum at the end of their hike, at the mining town of Kleinzee, having hiked for 3 days from the town of Koingnaas.
The Rameron Pigeon Trail, one of two hiking trails in the Oorlogskloof Nature Reserve, gives hikers the full hike experience and 5 to 7 days of memorable interactions with flora and fauna.
Indigenous forests, scenic and expansive rock features, waterfalls and waterfalls, as well as the sparkly Oorlogskloof river, give this trail its unmatched character, making hiking on it fun and memorable.
Catch a glimpse of spectacular rock paintings, caves, colorful wildflowers, natural water pools and vantage view points of the landscape below as you hike through the 53 kilometers long Rameron Pigeon trail.
Hiking on this trail starts and ends at Groot Tuin in the nature reserves, and hikers take overnight rests in tented camps, after each day of hiking.
Transkaroo Hiking Trail
Set on a farm in Middleburg, the 42 kilometers long Transkaroo hiking trail sends hikers up mountainous landscapes and down valleys with outstanding scenic beauty and unique Karoo vegetation.
Natural swimming holes, rock art and a fossilized river bed, are some of the unique attractions of the Trans Karoo trail, but hikers also get to enjoy great views of the varying landscape, and a rich collection of wild life.
Hiking this circular trail takes 3 days, and starts and ends at the farm.