Eden to Addo Trail, Eastern Cape
Did you know?
Biodiversity conservation corridors help conserve threatened and endemic species and restore eco-systems.
The Eden to Addo Trail is the longest and toughest hiking trail in South Africa, and among the most biodiverse hikes anywhere in the world.
The trail begins in Kranshoek, in Knysna's indigenous forests, and meanders through 3 mega-reserves: the Garden Route National Park, the Baviaanskloof Mega-Reserve and the Addo Elephant National Park. This passage is known as the Eden to Addo Biodiversity Corridor.
Covering some of the Western and Eastern Cape's most remote and pristine landscapes, the Eden to Addo Trail is a cross-country endurance hike made somewhat easier by being an assisted slackpacking trail. Your luggage is transferred, your tent pitched, and all meals prepared for you.
On this biodiversity hiking trail, carrying only a light daypack and a sense of purpose, you'll pass through transition zones of afromontane forest, mountain fynbos, succulent Karoo, savanna grassland and Albany thicket.
Daily distances covered on the Eden to Addo hike average about 26km. The walking is strenuous, much of the terrain is mountainous and natural hazards en route include river crossings, wild animals and unpredictable weather – all worth it thanks to the immersive nature experience and stupendous views.
At night, fireside debates with your knowledgeable guides on conservation, climate change and the urgent need to proclaim biodiversity corridors such as Eden to Addo will stretch your intellectual muscles. While resting your aching limbs and feet, you'll hear stories of the world's most southerly free-roaming elephants, of which only nine are believed to survive in the depths of Knysna's forests, where your odyssey began.
The corridor and the hiking trail have yet to be proclaimed formally. The long-term plan is to make the trail a self-guided hike, but it is untamed country, straddling over 60 properties, and will take careful planning.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Eden to Addo Biodiversity Corridor
Tel: +27 (0)44 533 1623
How to get here
Drive on the N2, from Cape Town (about 500km west of Knysna) or Port Elizabeth (about 300km east of Knysna). George (about 70km west of Knysna) is the nearest main airport with a regular flight schedule. Kranshoek, where the trail starts, is 24km east of Knysna. Access is through the Harkerville forest.
Best time to visit
The Eden to Addo Trail usually takes place in September. Check the website for details.
What will it cost
The hike costs approx. R20 000 per person. Price is inclusive of all meals, maps, camping fees, guides, permits, tents and transfers to Plettenberg Bay and Knysna.
Length of stay
The hike itself takes 20 days, so plan on 21 to 22 days, excluding travelling time.
What to pack
On confirmation of your booking, a detailed packing list will be sent to you.