Wildlife & Animals – Golden Gate Highlands NP
Golden Gate is not the best wildlife destination, and the focus lies more on the scenery. There are no dangerous animals, which makes it a good hiking destination. There is, however, quite a variety of grazers that are well adapted to this specialized environment. Red hartebeest, blesbok, eland, mountain reedbuck and springbok are just some of the antelope to look out for. Black-backed jackal is quite common, and caracal is present as well, but rarely seen.
The endemic black wildebeest is common in the park, and the dainty endangered oribi can be found single or in pairs on the aptly named Oribi Loop. The grey rhebok is another mountain special, not to be confused with the more widespread and common steenbok, which is the smallest antelope in the park.
Best Time for Wildlife Viewing
Golden Gate can be visited throughout the year. Since the park is not a prime wildlife destination and its main attraction is scenery and hiking, the best time to visit is in the warmer months from October to May. These are the greener, more lush months, due to the summer rainfall. April and May are especially beautiful with rich autumn colors. Winter months from June to September are cold, and the sky tends to be very hazy.