Golden Gate Highlands National Park

The Maluti mountains are located in the North-East of the province of Free state they form the natural border between Lesotho and South Africa. Here you can visit the somewhat smaller (11,000 hectares) Golden Gates Highlands National Park near the village of Clarens. The park’s name was given by the van Reenen family. This family bought the piece of land and the farm that was there at the time in 1878. When they arrived on the site, the sun just set and the sandstone rocks got a beautiful golden glow, the name Golden Gate is derived from this.

This park is really located in the highlands and contains a diversity of wildlife: blesboks, springboks, zebras, wildebeest, divers, moose, gray rheebok, oribi, jackals, caracals etc. There are also many bird species including a number of vultures, including the vultures rare bearded vulture. But also numerous eagles, buzzards, hawks, owls and falcons use the clear sky here. And also the rare bald ibis that has its breeding ground here among the sandstone rocks.

Try to find the highest point in the park, called Ribbokkop, by sunset. Here you have a very nice view, where the sun shows you a true spectacle with a large color palette. In the park you will also find the cemetery of the van Reenen family and you can make beautiful walks with a guide. A visit to the traditional Basotho village located in the park is also worthwhile. Here you can see how the Basotho people lived in the 18th century and you get to know the current residents.

– The Rhebok hiking trail is a two-day trip (1 night). If you want to make this trip, you must book in advance. The trip is for a maximum of 18 people and you take care of all things yourself.
– There are walks that vary in time from 1 to 5 hours.
– Make game drives in your own vehicle
– You can play bowling, tennis, table tennis and snooker at the hotel.
– Horse riding, book in advance to avoid disappointment
– Excursions from the Basotho Cultural Village rest camp are a museum tour, a cultural tour and a herbal tour (medicines that were and are used by traditional healers) ask for availability.
– Cozy pub with fireplace in the hotel
– Picnic areas with braai (bbq) for day visitors
– Gas station, souvenir shop, restaurant, coffee shop
– No ATM facilities, take enough cash with you.
– You can swim in a natural water bath at Glen Reenen

Basotho Cultural Village Rest camp
Golden Gate Hotel
Glen Reenen Rest camp
Highlands Mountain Retreat

Conservation Fees: the South African National Park administration has set a daily entrance fee that applies to all parks. If you are going to visit several SAN Parks in South Africa, it may be useful to purchase a Wildcard.

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