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Tree-top canopy tours

Tree-top canopy tours are a relatively new addition to the tourism landscape. The system of cables on which they run were originally designed to enable biologists to study the forest canopy in tropical jungles. But what a waste it would be limiting such a fun experience to dry and serious academics. The tours consist of a number of platforms joined by strong steel cables or short bridges. Each cable can take the weight of a car, so they’re not likely to collapse but – nevertheless – they are backed up by a climbing rope.
You need no skills, and even people who are very scared of heights have managed the tours – albeit with a few attacks of nerves and possibly even a tear or two. By the time you’ve done the first couple of slides, the beauty of the forest takes over. Once you are harnessed up and clipped in, you wait your turn to slide between platforms at whatever speed you feel comfortable. Some people enjoy the rush of a fast slide and others slow down to just experience hanging out over some of the most beautiful scenery.

There are three tree-top canopy tours in South Africa – one in the Tsitsikamma Forest near Stormsriver in the Eastern Cape, one in the Magaliesberg near Johannesburg and one in Karkloof in KwaZulu-Natal. Although it’s not exactly a tree-top canopy tour, there is a wonderful aerial boardwalk in the Dlinza Forest in Eshowe in KwaZulu-Natal.


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