Wordtravels

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Blyde River Canyon

Blyde River Canyon, South Africa © Paul Tosio
Blyde River Canyon, South Africa © Paul Tosio

The spectacular vista of the Blyde River Canyon is part of the scenically breath-taking Panorama Route, where sheer cliffs drop into a bush-covered valley. It's worth covering the route as a self-drive trip from Nelspruit, or on a bus tour. Other sights on the route include a trio of green-clad peaks set in the canyon called the Three Rondavels, and the Bourke's Luck Potholes. The latter are huge holes in the mountainside formed by grinding sand. The Blyde River Canyon is the biggest green canyon in the world, and the third largest canyon on earth. Only the USA's Grand Canyon and the Fish River Canyon in Namibia are bigger. The river itself offers some challenging white-water rafting, and one of the best ways to experience the canyon is to paddle the river. A five-day hiking trail winds along the canyon, through the Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve. It is one of the most rewarding walking trails in the country, if not the world. Visitors can also enjoy shorter walking trails, game safaris, horse-riding trails, mountain-biking trips, and abseiling.

All of these activities are offered by the nature reserve. Lastly, it's worth mentioning that there is a variety of accommodation in the reserve.