Tsitsikamma National Park in South Africa – All walks, activities, highlights & Tips
The Tsitsikamma National Park is the purest paradise for hikers, nature lovers and adventurers! In addition, it is simply a must along the Garden Route and belongs to South Africa as Table Mountain.
Two days we were on site and, although it has rained through a whole day, from the Tsitsikamma National Park even made a picture. One thing we can say: boring it will definitely not you!
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What is the Tsitsikamma National Park?
The Tsitsikamma National Park is not only one of the most popular nature reserves along the Garden Route, but also a much sought-after place for hiking and adventurous activities such as hiking. kayaking.
Incidentally, the Tsitsikamma has not counted as an independent national park for 8 years. Instead, it is part of the large “Garden Route National Park” and one of the last virgin forests in all of South Africa.
He is also known for the huge yellowwood trees. Sometimes the giants grow up to 40 meters high! Since it can be dizzy when looking up!
In addition to the fascinating nature, the wildlife is extremely diverse and diverse. In the water you have the chance to see dolphins, otters and whales. In the air and in the forest you can meet antelopes, cheeky monkeys, eagles and many other bird species as well as the sugar-sweet Rock Dassies.
Activities in Tsitsikamma
In total, there are five different activities you can do within the park.
All trails are presented in the section “Walks in the Tsitsikamma National Park”.
Bathing on the beach
The only requirement: the water is not too cold for you.
Kayak tour in the national park
Besides hiking, kayaking is the most popular activity in the Tsitsikamma National Park. If we had not been to Wilderness Canoe before, we would certainly have made it here.
Especially the backdrop of steep cliffs, the Tsitsikamma Suspension Bridge and the open sea is just breathtaking and the perfect place for a kayak tour.
Incidentally, the canoe provider in the park is called Untouched Adventure and you can book a tour through the website or in any accommodation around the national park.
Location of Untouched Adventures: Right in the Tsitsikamma National Park. Just drive through the car to the last parking lot and then the building is almost right in front of you.
Further information is available directly on the website: Untouched Adventure
Price: A tour through this provider costs 550 Rand (about 33 €) and takes about 2-3 hours.
More action? No problem! In addition to kayaking, the canopy tours over the treetops of the national park are another adventure highlight.
If you do not know what a canopy tour is: in the end, the same as a zip line. At dizzying heights, you glide on a rope attached from platform to platform, attached to the famous Yellowwood trees.
The provider is called Tsitsikamma Canopy Tours and a tour can be easily booked through the website or in any accommodation.
Price: A tour costs 650 Rand (about 39 €) per person.
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Hikes in Tsitsikamma National Park
As we hiked 10 kilometers the day before through the Robberg Nature Reserve and our legs were really tired, we only have the mouth in the Tsitsikamma National Park & Lookout Trail made.
Nevertheless, we will introduce you briefly and crisply to the other hikes with the most important information.
Day Hike 1 – The Mouth Trail + Tsitsikamma Suspension Bridge
The Mouth Trail is by far the shortest and easiest hike. He is just a kilometer over a well-established boardwalk and is not very demanding.
This makes it easily possible for small children and the elderly. Only at the end a few steps lead down a bit steeper.
The Storms River Mouth is the mouth of the river of the same name and is enclosed by two huge rock walls! Looks extremely impressive and also the big Tsitsikamma suspension bridge that spans the Stormsriver is super cool!
length & duration: The Mouth Trail is one kilometer long and takes about an hour.
behind the large suspension bridge spanning the Storms River.
The way is also only another kilometer long, but much more exhausting. At first it leads you through shady, but very steep jungle to the first vantage point.
Already from there you get a wonderful view of the sea, the forests and the coast.
Then there are another 500 meters, which are again a bit more relaxed, to the second vantage point or a wooden platform at the top of the mountain.
Again, the view is just terrific and shows once again impressively the beauty of South Africa!
Length & Duration: Together with the Mouth Trail, the Lookout Trail is about two kilometers long and takes about 2 hours.
Day hike 3 – Blue Duiker Trail
From there you get the unique chance to watch dolphins and whales in the sea. However, only between the months of June and November.
If you still have enough condition and time, you can branch off here and continue to the waterfall.
Length & Duration: The Blue Duiker Trail is 3.7 km long and takes about 3 hours depending on your physical condition.
Day hike 4 – Loerie Trail
As with the Blue Duiker Trail, you will only hike in the hinterland of the Tsitsikamma National Park at the Loerie Trail, and the two trails will share the first 500 meters of the trail.
Then the Loerie Trail branches off to the left and leads you another 500 meters through the landscape, until you come back to the main street of the Tsitsikamma National Park.
In principle, you can spontaneously reschedule at the diversion to your heart’s content and maybe wander the longer Blue Duiker Trail.
Length & Duration: The Loerie Trail is only a kilometer long and you will need about 1 1/2 hours for it.
Day hike 5 – Waterfall Trail
Note: The Waterfall Trail is also part of the Otter Trail. However, only walkers who have a permit for the Otter Trail are allowed to continue from the waterfall.
Multi-day hike 1 – Otter Trail
Let’s go to the first multi-day hike, the Otter Trail. Start of the trail is on the Storm River and the path runs along coastal, rivers and past forests to Nature’s Valley.
Since the hike is 42 kilometers long, it has been divided into 5 stages. Each stage is different in time and length.
Note: If you are planning exactly this trail, you should reserve well in advance. As already written above, a permit is required and only 12 people will be admitted to the trek per day. You do not need a guide for the hike.
Length & Duration: Again short and crisp: The Otter Trail is 42 km long the entire hike lasts 5 days.
All further information about the trail and the reservation: Otter Trail
Multi-day hike 2 – Tsitsikamma Trail
The Tsitsikamma Trail does not start in the National Park but just outside Nature’s Valley. So exactly where the Otter Trail ends.
How long you want to hike the trail, you can decide for yourself. It is between 2 and 6 days long and at the end of each stage there are simple wooden huts to sleep on.
Costs: For the hike and the overnight stay in one of the huts 155 edge per person and per night (about 10 €) are due.
Length & Duration: The Tsitsikamma Trail lasts between 2 and 6 days and is 72 km long.
All further information: Tsitsikamma Trail
Multi-day hike 3 – Dolphin Trail
The Dolphin Trail is the shortest of the multi-day hikes and takes two days. In addition, the walking route is a comfortable and luxurious alternative to the other two treks.
You will be escorted by a local guide, your luggage will be delivered to your accommodation, the overnight stay will be in the very noble Misty Mountain Reserve and ready made food will be provided as well.
So to speak, an “all-inclusive trekking package” for those who like hiking but do not want to miss out on luxury.
Costs: The whole course has a proud price. Pay per person at least 5900 Rand (about 368 €).
Length & Duration: The Dolphin Trail is a total of 17 kilometers long and takes two days.
All further information: Dolphin Trail
Accommodation in Tsitsikamma
Within the National Park, the Storms River Mouth Rest Camp offers three different types of accommodation. You can either sleep in well-equipped wooden cabins, bring your own tent or stay overnight in a campervan. Mind you all right on the sea!
But beware! If you are planning an overnight stay directly at the Tsitsikamma, you must book on time. Both the wooden huts and pitches for tents and campervans are almost fully booked.
Note: The wooden huts mentioned here have nothing to do with the huts of the multi-day hikes.
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