Magical Mpumalanga is full of wonderful secrets and special spots just waiting to be discovered. Full of geographical wonders, a rich history, and unforgettable views, the Panorama Route is undoubtedly a favourite. Embark on a self-drive of discovery from White River to the vast Blyde River Canyon and back enjoying some of the very best sights along the way. Here are some of our top picks of things to do and see along the Panorama Route;
We recommend that all our guests begin their journey at the top of the Panorama Route just a 2 and a half hour drive from Nut Grove Manor. Once at the Blyde River Canyon, spend some time walking around the first stop and take in the views from every angle. If you happen to get there on a good day, tag along with a guide for a tour and some history of this natural landmark. The canyon is, in fact, the third-largest in the world and the biggest in South Africa totalling 26km in length and 800m deep.
Drive just a few minutes down the road for the best views of the Three Rondavels – 3 distinct peaks that form part of the Blyde River Canyon. The peaks are said to resemble native huts or ‘rondavels’ from which they draw their namesake.
Enjoy marvellous views of the canyon from several other top viewpoints such as God’s Window and the Pinnacle. Head our warning though, on a cloudy day, visitors to these spots are unlikely to see a thing as the mist hangs straight in front of the views. So, if you can, plan your trip for a sunny day!
Next on your itinerary must be Bourke’s Luck Potholes; one of the important points in Mpumalanga’s Gold Rush during the 1800’s. A true geographical marvel, these incredible potholes have been formed over centuries at a point where the Truer and Blyde Rivers converge. The collision of two streams has led to cylindrical rock formations that everyone can enjoy. If you’re into hiking, this is also the origin point for several lovely trails including the Protea Trail.
After a busy morning on the Panorama Route, it’s likely time for lunch! This is the perfect time to stop as one of our favourite spots is just 8 minutes from Bourke’s Luck Potholes, Potluck Boskombuis. Dine riverside and experience some delicious local fare prepared in front of you. It may seem a tad off the beaten track but don’t worry, it’s in there and well worth the trip!
The next big stop on your route should be Pilgrim’s Rest. Take a step back into the gold rush and get a glimpse of what life was like back then. Pilgrim’s Rest is a living memorial of an era gone by so be sure to walk these worn streets and discover its rich history.
Just a little further down the Panorama Route is likely your final stop, Graskop. Another integral part of the gold rush and timber industry but now also home to the increasingly popular Glass Lift. Soak in panoramic views of Graskop Gorge as you descend into an indigenous forest full of carefully designed walkways, bridges, and interactive exhibits of flora and fauna. For anyone with a penchant for adventure and adrenaline, be sure to pop around the corner and take the ‘Big Swing’.
There are always embellishments to the trip that can be made, it all just depends on what you want to see, do, and how early you set off. Some of the other aspects along the Panorama Route to enjoy are the incredible waterfalls such as Lisbon Falls, Mac Mac Falls, and Bridal Veil Falls. Slightly off track, but definitely fun for the whole family is the Long Tom Toboggan.
If the Panorama Route, Kruger National Park, and White River sound like a lovely destination for a holiday, come and visit us at Nut Grove Manor. Visit our website and book online or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org today!