Be guided on a cycle tour through an exceptional part of the world
Bike tour South Africa and peacefully ride this scenic route
Roaming giraffes and other mesmerizing creatures will fill your view on this tour
Breeze down the declines and be richly rewarded with amazing vistas as you go
Glide your way through the remarkable scenery
Spend some memorable days getting up close to magnificent animals

Cycling the Drakensberg & Kruger

Duration
12 days
Site savings
$69
From
$3,351 USD

Cycle between the jagged peaks of the Drakensberg to the big game of Kruger National Park on an unforgettable bike tour over 12 days. Ride through vast mountain scenery, forests, waterfalls and canyons and discover the magnificent Drakensberg Mountains. Search for the big 5 in Kruger National Park as you embark on two full days of safari drives and epic adventures in this beautiful and wild land. With perfect road surfaces and idyllic sunshine, there is surely no better way to experience eastern South Africa than by bike.

  • Category
    Adventurous
  • Type
    Fully Guided
  • Duration
    12 days
  • Culture Level
    Adventurous
  • Skill Level
    3 - Intermediate
  • Activity Level
    3 - Active
  • Elevation
    3 - Intermediate
  • Terrain
    Hilly
  • Distance
    261 miles
  • Avg. Daily Distance
    32.6 miles
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Quick Stats

  • Duration
    12 days
  • Main Destination
    South Africa
  • Distance
    261 miles
  • Avg. Daily Distance
    32.6 miles
  • Elevation
    3 - Intermediate
  • Terrain
    Hilly

Route Map (click to view larger image)

Itinerary Details

  1. Day 1Start Johannesburg; transfer to Golden Gate National Park

    Upon arrival in Johannesburg, you will drive directly to the Golden Gate Highlands National Park in the Maluti Mountains of the Northern Free State. This transfer takes roughly 5 hours but will be broken up with stops along the route to stretch the legs and go to the toilet.

    The Golden Gate national park gets its name from the golden hue on the parks sandstone cliffs as the sun hits them. With 11,600 hectares of highland habitat, the national park is home to a number of animals including springbok, mountain zebra and wildebeest as well as the rare bearded vulture and bald ibis.

    Depending on the time of the group flights, bikes will be set up either this afternoon or tomorrow morning. You will have a chance to test them out around the grounds of the accommodation before you begin the cycling.


    • Glen Van Reenen Camp or similar
    • Dinner
  2. Day 2Ride over a spectacular mountain pass with a chance of spotting wildlife; transfer to Northern Drakensberg and cycle to the lodge

    Getting up early, you will cycle 25km (15.5mi) on roads through the national park. You will start with a short climb up to a viewpoint where mountain zebra are often spotted before descending a long winding mountain pass.

    Later in the ride, there are a few short steep up and down sections to get the heart pumping before it then levels out again. All along this road, there are great opportunities to see wildlife from the saddle so make sure you have a camera to hand!

    At the park exit, you will transfer towards the Northern Drakensberg (60km/37mi) stopping at the 'Vulture Restaurant' for the views over the Sterkfontein Dam and an early picnic lunch. You will then get back on the bikes and cycle down the Oliviers Hoek pass all the way to the Sungbala lodge, your overnight stay. Here you have the whole night to take in the stunning view of the Drakensberg amphitheatre whilst enjoying a meal cooked by the guides.

    • 34.2 miles
    • Sungubala Eco Camp or similar
    • Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
  3. Day 3Cycle to the Northern Berg before hiking and a chance to swim at a waterfall

    In the morning you will cycle towards the Drakensberg Mountains whilst following a back road route into the Royal Natal National Park in the Northern Berg. This ride is fairly undulating but the views of the Drakensberg amphitheatre at the top of each rise are well worth the effort.

    After entering the park, you will continue on your bike for approximately 2km (1.2mi) to a picnic spot – before lunch, you can get changed into swimming gear and walk the short distance to the cascades waterfall for a well-deserved swim in the cool waters.

    After lunch, there will be time to explore the park and its hiking trails or simply relax before transferring back to your accommodation.

    • 18.6 miles
    • Sungubala Eco Camp or similar
    • Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
  4. Day 4Transfer to Dundee; afternoon ride to Rorke's Drift Museum

    After breakfast, you will leave the Drakensberg with a 210km (approx. 3 hour) transfer by road to Dundee. Here there will be time for a little shopping and resupply before continuing onto Rorke's Drift.

    At Rorke’s Drift, you will have a guided tour around the area where 150 British and Colonial troops defended a small garrison against nearly 5000 Zulu warriors. After a hearty lunch and a change into cycling kit, it’s back onto your bike for a 45km (28mi) ride from Rorke’s Drift to your overnight accommodation.

    This is a great ride through the scenic cattle country; the first 17km (10.5mi) is on a good quality compact dirt road where you often spot many types of vulture and eagle flying overhead, once back on the tarmac road we have a flat ride to your accommodation where you can relax in the pool.

    • 28 miles
    • Battlefields Country Lodge or similar
    • Breakfast and Lunch
  5. Day 5Transfer to Badplaas before getting on the bikes for a great ride to the lodge

    You will have an early morning transfer (300km about 4 hours) towards the hot springs town of Badplaas in the Mpumalanga province.

    After lunch, you will get on the bikes and start your ride with a fantastic 17km descent before an undulating ride all the way to your accommodation located just outside of the town with stunning panoramic views of the Hlumu mountain range.


    • 28 miles
    • Badplaas Forever Resort or similar
    • Breakfast
  6. Day 6Transfer followed by a scenic ride on the edge of the Songimvelo Game Reserve and on to your lodge

    Today you will start with a short transfer to Maanhaar, close to the border with Swaziland. From here you will climb on the bikes and ride along a stunning gravel road which winds its way between the Songimvelo Game Reserve and the base of the Hlumu Mountains.

    You will pass an abandoned mine which has now become home to Vervet monkeys so make sure you have your camera at the ready. As the road starts to climb you will hop in the bus and transfer to the top of a mountain range overlooking the Songimvelo Game Reserve, you wil stop on this road for a quick photo stop at a breathtaking viewpoint that overlooks the valley below before getting back on the bikes to cycle into Barberton town and onto your accommodation.

    • 37.3 miles
    • African Rest Lodge or similar
    • Breakfast and Lunch
  7. Day 7Cycle to Kruger National Park through the Kaaprivier Valley

    After breakfast, you will get on the bikes and start your ride through the Kaap River Valley as it winds its way towards Kaapmuiden. After about 50km you will reach the stopping point and get in the van for a short transfer to a shopping centre where you can change out of cycling kit and stock up on cold drinks and snacks for Kruger.

    From here you will have a very short transfer to get to the Malelane Gate where you will enter the Kruger National Park and start the safari. You will have a two-hour game drive through the southern tip of Kruger to get to Skukuza Camp, keep your eyes peeled and cameras ready as the southern part of Kruger is known for its abundance of big cats.



    • 31.1 miles
    • Kruger National Park Camp or similar
    • Breakfast and Dinner
  8. Day 8Game drives in Kruger National Park

    This morning you will have an early start to beat the heat of the day and maximise your chances of seeing a predator. Because of the early start, you will only have a small breakfast at the camp which will consist of a South African 'rusk' and a coffee.

    After several hours of looking for animals, you will stop in one of the designated lunch spots where the guides cook up a delicious brunch. From here you will continue the game drive back to camp and have the rest of the day to relax in the pool or at the bar which overlooks the Sabi River.

    Tonight there is the opportunity to go on a night safari drive through the park in one of the official safari vehicles (this is an optional extra and should be paid for locally).


    • Kruger National Park Camp or similar
    • Breakfast and Dinner
  9. Day 9More game viewing, transfer to Hazyview

    Today you will aim to spend most of the day in the national park searching for animals, and once again start off with a morning game drive, but in the opposite direction to yesterday. You will return to camp for some brunch and to collect your bags before heading out on a final game drive in Kruger as you make your way out of the park via the Numbi gate. From here you will have a short transfer to your overnight accommodation in Hazyview where you can take a stroll down to the Hippo River or just relax by the pool.

    • Gecko Lodge or similar
    • Breakfast
  10. Day 10Cycle to Sabie and on to Graskop; visit Mac Mac Pools

    After a few days of well-earned rest, today you will get back on the bikes for the most challenging ride of the trip. After a hearty breakfast in Hazyview you will cycle from your lodge up the escarpment and towards Sabie. This first part of the ride is stunning and very different from what you have seen earlier in the tour as the route takes you through Avocado plantations and dense forests before arriving in Sabie where you can stop at a café for a muffin and coffee milkshake.

    From Sabie you can continue to climb until you arrive at Mac Mac Pools, here you will stop for a swim in the natural pools whilst the guides make lunch. After lunch, the ride heads downhill for a visit to Mac Mac Falls and continues all the way to Graskop and the accommodation which overlooks the escarpment.


    • 43.5 miles
    • Mogodi Lodge or similar
    • Breakfast and Lunch
  11. Day 11Ride along the Panorama Route to God's Window via Bourke's Luck potholes rock formations; afternoon ride to Blyde River Canyon

    Your final day of cycling will take you through yet more beautiful scenery as you cycle along the Panorama Route. In the morning you will visit God’s Window to take in the breathtaking landscape view before cycling past ‘Wonder view’ and on to Bourke’s Luck Potholes. Here you can stop for lunch and go for a walk around the curious rock formations before getting back on the bikes for the last time and cycling to the spectacular viewpoint over the Blyde River Canyon and on to your accommodation.

    For your last night in South Africa, you will have a big group meal in the hotel restaurant which has an amazing view of the three Rondavels and the canyon.

    • 40.4 miles
    • Blyde River Canyon Forever Resort or similar
    • Breakfast
  12. Day 12Drive to Johannesburg, end of tour

    After a leisurely breakfast and a short walk to the private viewpoint within the grounds of your accommodation, you will get in the bus and transfer through the small towns of Ohrigstad, Lyndenburg and Dullstroom as you make your way back to Johannesburg Airport. This transfer is roughly 420km (260mi) but it will be broken up with plenty of short stops and a longer lunch break.

    Please note that due to the often high levels of traffic surrounding Johannesburg you will leave the accommodation with plenty of time to complete this transfer. This does mean that on some occasions when the roads are traffic-free you might arrive at the airport early and have a long wait before your return flight departs.

    • Breakfast