This scenically beautiful province, ‘the land of the rising sun’ in the local siSwati and Zulu languages, is probably best known as the home of the Kruger National Park. It is a place of game, adventure and rich history.
Overview of Mpumalanga
Mpumalanga is home to the Kruger National Park, one of the oldest, largest and most famous game reserves in the world. It is also home to the Sabi Sand Reserve, South Africa’s most prestigious private game reserve.
But it is also where you’ll find some of South Africa’s most dramatic scenery; more waterfalls than anywhere else in the country; mountains that cocoon Earth’s oldest life forms; the oldest dolomite caves in the world; colourful cultures; an exciting gold-rush past; friendly little towns; and adventure activities for the most adrenalin-hooked action junkie.
The province, which stretches east from Gauteng to neighbouring countries Swaziland and Mozambique, owes its spectacular scenery to its geographic location: about four hours’ drive north- east from Johannesburg, the Drakensberg mountains drop down steeply from the grasslands of the Highveld escarpment to the subtropical Lowveld savannah below.
The edge of the escarpment is home to the high, scenic Panorama Route that traces the course of the powerful Blyde River and takes in some spectacular natural attractions, as well the historic village of Pilgrim’s Rest, where you can relive the heady gold-rush days of the 1870s (and even pan for gold if you have time).
Four mountain passes wind down from the escarpment to a subtropical area of flourishing citrus and fruit farms, which then becomes 20,000km2 of the Kruger National Park. It’s also South Africa’s top adventure centre, where you can go river rafting, abseiling, climbing, quad biking, horse riding and mountain biking.