That is the question I find myself googling so often. So after having done all the necessary research, I have put together a list of the most beautiful places to go for a hike in Johannesburg, so you don’t have to drive too far out of the city.
The Modderfontein Reserve is a 275 hectare reserve making it the second-largest private park in Gauteng. The reserve has walking trails and cycling trails reaching up to 40km’s. Along the way you will find bird hides, the Modderfontein Spruit cascades, a number of dams, grassland and rolling hills. If you’re lucky you’ll maybe see mongoose, marsh owls, duiker, zebra and even the cape clawless otter as well as an abundance of bird life.
• Where: Arden Road, just off Ardeer Road, Modderfontein
• Admission: R30 for adults, R15 for kids.
• Hours: Open daily 6am to 6pm. Conservation fee R30 per adult, R15 per child
HENNOPS HIKING TRAIL
Hennops Trails is located 30km’s from Fourways on Road R511 towards Hartbeesport Dam. These trails are some of the most beautiful and well-maintained hiking trails in Gauteng. There are three routes to choose from – a short 2km walk, an easy 6km Zebra route and a lengthy and more challenging 11.3km Krokodilberg Route.
All trails begin by crossing the Hennops River either by a suspension bridge or via a fun old fashioned cable car which works by a pulley system. Sounds like fun, right? All trails feature some beautiful flora and fauna and if you’re lucky you’ll spot some zebra, blesbok, kudu and giant tree-like aloes.
• Where: off the R511 (10km south of the R105 junction), towards Hartbeesport Dam
• Admission: R60 (last entrance at 12:00)
WALTER SISULU NATIONAL BOTANICAL GARDENS
This Botanical Garden was founded in 1982 and has been a very popular venue ever since. What is also interesting, the Garden has been voted the best place to get back to nature in Gauteng for 9 years in a row. It is beautifully well-maintained and is home to a breeding pair of Verreaux’s Eagles with their nest on the cliffs alongside the waterfall. You will also find the garden is home to an abundance of wildlife with over 220 bird species, a number of reptiles, antelope and jackals.
• Where: Malcolm Road, Rooderpoort
• Admission: R40, R27 for students and pensioners,R15 for scholars.
Just a 10km drive from the centre of Johannesburg will bring you to this popular city escape in the south of Johannesburg. Klipriviersberg is the largest proclaimed nature reserve and boasts a diverse range of game. Such as Zebra, red hartebeest and black wildebeest. The reserve is also a bird viewing hotspot! with more than 215 bird species. The hiking trails range form 3km to 9km. There is also a mountain biking area that opens on the weekends ranging from 6km to 30km.
• Where: Entrance at Silent Pools, Frandaph Dr, Mondeor
• Admission: No entrance fee.
Not only is Melville Koppies a nature reserve but it is also a national heritage site. As the name suggests, Melville Koppies is predominantly a ridge. It is actually the last of what remains of Johannesburg ridges to be conserved as it was before the discovery of gold in the late 1880’s. The Koppies became a nature reserve in 1959 and with the discovery of an Iron Age furnace, it became a national monument too. On Melville Koppies you will find over 200 different types of birds, a range of small mammals such as mongoose, civets, hares, hedgehogs, chameleons and tortoises.
The hikes range from between a 4km guided walk and a more a challenging 10km hike.
• Where: Cnr Judith Rd and Orange Rd, Melville
• Admission: Guided hike costs R50 and R20 for kids.
Or if hiking isn’t your thing, then take a walk around James and Ethel Gray Park
Every Sunday afternoon you’ll find us walking around this beautiful park in the heart of the city getting in our steps while breathing in the fresh air.
• Where: Melrose Street, Melrose Arch