Travel article: Blyde River Canyon

Travel blogger: Christelle & Cedric

Trip story: 100 days in Africa!

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Blyde River Canyon, Afrique du Sud

South Africa 3 days - April 2019







Let’s go to Africa! We have been dreaming to come to Africa for over six months now. We have only the main lines drawn : landing in Johannesburg on April 29th and a flying back from Ethiopia to Paris on August 7th. In between 100 days unlimited possibilities!


We arrive in Johannesburg after a 15 hours’ flight from Brussels and are greeted by an airport agent who tells us "do not move until I shoot you, no one will escape". Sorry ?

He just wanted to take our temperature with a gun-shaped object but knowing the reputation of Johannesburg and apprehending it, we did not really laugh ...

We take our rental car after two hours of paperwork (to be allowed to cross borders with the car) and discover again the rather confusing and contagious humor of South Africans!

Let's go ! Our five hour drive reminds us of Australia, stretches without relief, uninhabited, the few small towns consist of a street without charm with all the shops (mainly fast food).

We are getting closer to our hostel and huge pine plantations are present on a hundred kilometers. We arrive at the hostel and something that will be frequent in the coming weeks: we are alone in all the establishment! The joys of traveling out of season.


The reason we came: the Blyde River Canyon or Happy Canyon in Afrikaner. The largest canyon in the world. It surprised us with its lush greenery: the vegetation is indeed tropical.

It is really impressive and reminds us once again Australia (and especially the Blue Mountains)! Besides, if the Blue Mountains count the presence of three sisters (three stones that dominate the canyon), here we find the Three Rondavels, stones in the form of typical South African huts.


We then join the Forever Resort to hike the "leopard trail" and get closer to the canyon. Clear and nice views, we walk in the forest but the sun is strong. Not the hike of the century but we are alone and feel well.

We also take advantage of our visit to this province to visit three waterfalls: Mac Mac Falls, a very high waterfall that falls from a steep cliff; Lisbon falls and Berlin Falls. We would like to go down each and take a dip but unfortunately no way ... We will be satisfied with beautiful lookout!


First African step and perfect for getting in the rhythm slowly!


Some recommendations:


#From Johannesburg, about 5 hours drive to Graskop. Very good road; about 150 rand tolls.

# we have rented a small car for 50 days at 11 euros per day (including border crossing fees) Good surprise, these fees are unique and do not take into account the number of borders crossed! We will therefore pay 175 Euros less than expected!

# We stayed 3 nights at the Berlin Falls Lodge for 25 euros per night. Old but clean.

# we tested our first South African specialty: pancakes with Harry pancakes, ok and cheap.

# waterfall entries are 10 rand per fall per person.

# access to the canyon (Three Rondavels lookout): 30 rands per person.

# There are other points of interest on the Panaroma Road which winds around the canyon like the God's window and the Bourke's Lucy potholes but we did not go there.

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May 12, 2019 - 07:16 AM

c'est génial !