Balancing rocks, Matopos, Zimbabwe

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Matobo National Park

Top choice in Zimbabwe

Home to some of the most majestic granite scenery in the world, the Matobo National Park is one of the unsung highlights of Zimbabwe. This Unesco World Heritage Site is a stunning and otherworldly landscape of balancing rocks, kopjes – giant boulders unfeasibly teetering on top of one another. When you see it, it's easy to understand why Matobo is considered the spiritual home of Zimbabwe. The national park is separated into two sections – the recreational park and the game park.

The recreational park includes World’s View (a scenic viewpoint and burial site of Cecil Rhodes) and ancient San rock art caves. The game park may not have the most prolific wildlife in Zimbabwe – it's been hard hit by poaching – but it remains one of the best places to see both black and white rhinos (although the black rhinos are difficult to spot). It also has the highest density of leopards in Zimbabwe, but you'll be extremely lucky to spot one. Matobo is home to one-third of the world’s species of eagle, so you may see black eagles, African hawk eagles or rare Cape eagle owls.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Zimbabwe attractions

1. World's View (Malindidzimu Hill)

0.04 MILES

One of Zimbabwe's most breathtaking sites, the aptly named World's View takes in epic 360-degree views of the park. The peacefulness up here is immense,…

2. Rock Art Caves

0.05 MILES

Dotted around the 425-sq-km Matobo National Park are 3000 officially registered rock-art sites, including one of the best collections in the world of San…

3. Bulawayo Railway Museum

26.98 MILES

Whether you're a train enthusiast or not, Bulwayo's Railway Museum rarely disappoints. Its passionate curator, Gordon Murray, will take you on a tour of…

4. Natural History Museum

27.82 MILES

Zimbabwe's largest and best museum makes for an essential visit. Set over three floors, it offers a great overview of the country's natural,…

5. National Art Gallery

27.83 MILES

Set in a beautiful 100-year-old, colonial, double-terrace Edwardian building, the National Art Gallery shows temporary and permanent exhibitions of…

6. Khami Ruins

27.97 MILES

Just 22km from Bulawayo, the Unesco World Heritage–listed Khami Ruins may not have the grandeur of Great Zimbabwe, but it's an impressive archaeological…