David Burstein / 500px

Blyde River Canyon

Blyde River Canyon is both one of the world's largest canyons and one of South Africa’s most outstanding natural sights – little wonder that it is increasingly popular with international visitors. The canyon's scale and beauty make a trip here a memorable experience, especially if you're lucky enough to visit on a fine day. Epic rock formations tower above the forested slopes and eagle-eye views abound at the dramatic meeting of the Drakensberg Escarpment and the lowveld.

Appreciating the area's scenery is easy on Rte 532, which largely follows the edge of the canyon as it winds north from Graskop. En route, there are numerous scenic stops to make, taking in waterfalls and lookout points. Lying within the 260-sq-km Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve, most stops have a nominal entry fee, and their car parks are generally mobbed with craft stalls and tour buses.

Explore Blyde River Canyon

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Blyde River Canyon.


Learn more about Blyde River Canyon

Uncover the heart of travel and be inspired to see new sights with one of Lonely Planet’s in-depth, award-winning guidebooks.