Wild Coast Hiking Trail – Natural and Historical Wonders Explored
The Wild Coast Hiking Trail is in one of the most picturesque areas of South Africa, the breathtaking Eastern Cape. Even though the Wild Coast Hiking Trail is certainly the most strenuous trail that South Africa has to offer, it is also the most scenic and worth every drop of sweat. The entire hike along the Wild Coast is a somewhat intimidating 280 km. The Wild Coast Hiking Trail takes approximately 25 days to complete and is therefore divided into 3 – 6 day sections (5 divisions), and permits from the Department of Agriculture and Forestry are required. Wild Coast Hiking Trails can be booked 11 months in advance, ensuring that your trip to Eastern Cape is well planned and an early booking insures that you will train and not back out of this spectacular challenge.
Hiking groups are limited to twelve per group, and hikers are advised to travel with their permits and tide tables at all times. Tide tables are important, as the Wild Coast Hiking Trail does cover beaches. The scenic coastlines, amazing rock formations, coves, mangrove swamps and wonderful wildlife, will keep your mind off any throbbing pain your legs might suffer. Hikers should always ensure that they have water with them as water from rivers and estuaries are not advised to be drunk without boiling.
The Wild Coast Hiking Trail has huts along the road with mattresses and bunks, water, tables and fireplaces. These huts can accommodate 12 people at a time, and hikers will also come across hotels, nature reserves, private cottages and various forms of accommodation, and trading stores to stock up at. After heavy rains roads become increasingly difficult to negotiate. Vehicles are often left at the trail heads, as busses and taxis are available to return hikers to their vehicles.
Hikers will come across footpaths worn in by villagers and livestock, tragic stories of lives lost along the rugged coastline, and a variety of cultures. The hiking trails are clearly marked, and hikers do not have to fear losing their way. If for some reason you have lost your way, remain on the coastline and follow the beaches or inquire from locals, who will put you back on track. All along the Wild Coast Hiking Trail, hikers will experience different levels of difficulty according to the terrain and weather conditions. For the less adventurous hikers, that do not want to complete the entire hike, there are options of hikes to choose from, due to the division of the 280km stretch. The trail is not only a physical challenge, but is lined with cultural rich villages, historical sites and natural wonders that punctuate the Wild Coast. Hikers will be challenged, moved and inspired along the way, making the Wild Coast Hiking Trail an adventure to be enjoyed by the entire family and nature lovers.