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Top 10: Botanical gardens

The colourful Karoo Desert Botanical Gardens The colourful Karoo Desert Botanical Gardens

1 Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, Western Cape

Part of the Cape Floral Kingdom World Heritage site, this world-renowned garden grows only indigenous South African plants and is one of 18 biodiversity hotspots on the planet. more

2 Free State National Botanical Garden, Free State

Just outside Bloemfontein, the botanical garden consists of woodlands and grasslands dominated by wild olive and karee trees. more

3 Harold Porter Botanical Garden, Western Cape

This garden is found in Betty’s Bay in the very heart of the Cape’s fynbos region, some 100 km from Cape Town. more

4 Karoo Desert National Botanical Garden, Western Cape

This garden in the town of Worcester is unique as it is the only truly succulent garden on the African continent. more

5 KwaZulu-Natal National Botanical Garden, Pietermaritzburg

This garden specialises in the conservation of plants from the eastern grasslands region of South Africa. Take a walk down Plane tree avenue, planted in 1908. more

6 Lowveld National Botanical Garden, Mpumalanga

Explore various types of African Rain Forests, and see 600 of South Africa’s 1000 tree species in this lovely garden situated in Nelspruit, not too far from the Kruger National Park. more

7 Nieuwoudtville National Botanical Garden, Northern Cape

Described as the ‘bulb capital of the world’, this 6300 km garden on the Bokkeveld plateau is a biodiversity hotspot, and conserves endemic and threatened species. more

8 Pretoria National Botanical Garden, Gauteng

Close to the city centre, this botanical garden, founded in 1946, offers a glimpse into a variety of indigenous biomes - savannah, forest and fynbos. There is a special collection of medicinal plants and the birdlife is fantastic. more

9 Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden, Gauteng

Set against the backdrop of a magnificent waterfall, this garden is known for its musical concerts, walks, succulent plants and its pair of nesting Verreaux eagles. more

10 Botanic Gardens, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal

These are the longest surviving botanic gardens in the country. Visit the orchid, cycad and bromeliad house, and there is a trail for sight-impaired visitors. more