Description of the attraction
Blyde River Canyon, also known as Motletts Canyon, is a unique nature reserve that is part of the Drakensberg Mountains. It is located in the province of Mpumalanga, 60 km north of the small town of Graskop. Its peaks, almost 2000 meters above sea level, offer some of the most breathtaking views in South Africa. From the observation deck "God's Window" on a clear day, you can see the Kruger Park and the territory of the neighboring state of Mozambique.
Carved into red sandstone by the waters of the Blyde River, the canyon is the third largest in the world and covers an area of 29,000 hectares. Its depth in some places reaches 1380 m, and its length is more than 25 km. This unique location is one of the most impressive geological features in South Africa.
Among the natural attractions of the canyon, the "potholes of Burke's fortune" attracts travelers' gaze, where, they say, during the gold rush in the 19th century, the prospector Tom Burke made his fortune. In this place, the Blyde River (translated from Afrikaans its name means "joy") for millennia carved bizarre cylindrical sculptures in the mountain structure of yellow and red sandstone.
The eastern side of the canyon is dominated by the Three Rondavels, three massive spirals of dolomite that rise from the far wall of the canyon. Among travelers, these peaks are known as the Three Sisters.
There are convenient observation platforms on the territory of the reserve, from which you can take amazing photos. If you are not timid, you can take a trip on a motor hang-glider and see the beauty of the canyon from a bird's eye view. Regardless of the option chosen, every traveler can get many unforgettable impressions from the panoramic views of this amazing nature reserve with its noisy beautiful waterfalls, green slopes and lawns of blooming wildflowers.
On the slopes of the canyon, you will find over 1000 species of flora, including several endangered plant species. Among the wide variety of animals and reptiles that live in the canyon, the most common are hippos and crocodiles, as well as five species of South African primates. Among the birds you can see the black eagle, the emerald cuckoo, the golden-tailed woodpecker, the Mediterranean falcon and the bald ibis, which nest on steep rock ledges.