Alan Murphy
Australia AU

Alan is a travel writer and author of over 20 Lonely Planet guidebooks, including the guides to Southern Africa and Zambia & Malawi.

Category: Best Kept Safari Secrets

If you’re threading your way through Free State, South Africa, consider swinging by the Golden Gate Highlands National Park and immersing yourself in a blissful landscape.

Golden Gate Highlands National Park in Free State, South Africa, won’t reveal the Big 5 but there is something special about this place. It might be the flaming sunsets or the magical Maluti Mountains which tend to glow golden in the dying throes of a fiery sunset. I think it’s because the park is just so beautiful and really off the beaten track for most visitors.  The high grasses hide rhebok, blesbok, eland, zebra, jackal and vultures. All of which sometimes stumble into view. Driving around this strangely soothing place is one thing but a walking safari is the thing to do here. The Rhebok Hiking Trail, a two-day trek, is steep in parts but it’s an unforgettable way to appreciate the park.

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