Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve is located in Mpumalanga, South Africa, and forms part of the Greater Drakensburg escarpment. The reserve features a beautiful landscape made up of unusual rock formations, unsurpassed views, and rare fauna and flora, making it a spectacular natural attraction on the Panorama Route. Some of the natural attractions in the area include the Three Rondavels, Bourke’s Luck Potholes, Pinnacle Rock and God’s Window. Blyde River Canyon is the only true canyon in South Africa—formed by the Blyde River, which carves through more than 1,000 metres of the quartzite and Dolomite Mountain. It is also the third-largest canyon in the world and provides a remarkable outdoor experience for visitors. There are plenty of flights from Johannesburg to Hoedspruit, which take approximately 55 minutes, followed by a 40-minute drive.
Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve is one of the few areas of montane grassland in Mpumalanga that still exists. The grasslands are home to over 1,000 flora species of which many are endemic, rare or endangered. Additionally, the rare Taita falcon is only found in a few places in the world and calls the Blyde River Canyon home. The variety of wildlife in the reserve includes the Klipspringer, Grey Rhebuck, Oribi, Kudu and primates, while the Wetlands and Blyde River attract hippos, crocodiles, waterbirds and otters. Furthermore, three species of Loerie reside in the reserve.
The Blyde River Canyon is an ideal destination in any season. However, June to August is noted as the most rewarding time to go. The area is accessible from the western part of Kruger National Park.
Outdoor enthusiasts love the Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve and the wealth of recreation it provides. Intrepid travellers can explore the several hiking trails that carve through the reserve and range from easy to challenging. Thrill-seekers are in luck with the variety of adventure sports available, and these include white water rafting and abseiling. Avid anglers can also bring along their gear for fly-fishing activities. Other activities include horse riding, hot-air ballooning, biking, tours and boat trips on the Blyde Dam.
Accommodation options abound around the Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve. From lodges and family-friendly resorts to self-catering cottages, all accommodation options are within easy distance of the reserve.
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