Natural Rock Pools in South Africa That Will Change Your Life!

Nothing beats a swim on a scorching hot South African day! Except, perhaps, a swim in a pool that was made by Mother Nature herself. 



Where: Magaliesberg, Gauteng

It’s all too easy to dismiss the Magaliesberg as an insignificant row of hills, but mountaineers know and revere its hidden forests and criss-crossing gorges, each a wonderland of hanging gardens, quartzitic walls, waterfalls and boulder-flanked pools. Best of all is Tonquani, the home from home of Gauteng rock climbers and nature lovers.


Info: 018 397 1500 / 014 534 0114 / /

For accommodation nearby, click here.


Tierkloof Pool

Where: Kgaswane Mountain Reserve, Rustenburg

Stop at the top of the Tierkloof in the Kgaswane Mountain Reserve at Rustenberg and make your way down to the rock pools. Formed in the quartz above the Tierkloof Waterfall, they are like private spa baths with spectacular views.


Info: 014 533 2050 /  /

For accommodation nearby, click here.


Die Hel

Where: Grootwinterhoek Mountains, Western Cape

Die Hel in the Grootwinterhoek Mountains near Tulbagh is an easy day’s walk from the top of Dasklip Pass – and a bit of a harder uphill slog out. It’s huge and fed by a generous waterfall that marks the start of the Twenty-Four Rivers Gorge.

Die Hel

Info: 022 931 2860 /

For accommodation nearby, click here.


Mac Mac Pools

Where: Mac Mac River, Mpumalanga

The name is Scottish, but so is the landscape. Would you believe it is in South Africa? The pools are located in a grassy valley with pine trees in the background – perfect for a picnic!  The Mac Mac Falls belong to a cluster of divine waterfalls in Mpumlanga’s Sabie area, on the stunningly scenic Panorama Route. Its twin falls plunge dramatically 70km into the gorge below.

Mac Mac

Info: 013 759 5432 / /

For accommodation nearby, click here.


Ploughman’s Kop

Where: Drakensberg, KwaZulu-Natal

For the more steadfast, the ‘bubble bath’ pool at the top of Ploughman’s Kop in Royal National Park is a clothes-off delight on the edge of the Gudu Falls. For the less adventurous, the ice cold pool below the falls is just as good and easier to access through a small forest.


Info: 036 438 6303 / /

For accommodation nearby, click here.


Otter’s Trail

Where: Tsitsikamma, Eastern Cape

An unnamed waterfall and rock pool three kilometres from the start of the Otter Trail marks the spot beyond which only official hikers may proceed. It’s a popular spot, but the swim is cathartic.

Otters Trail

Info: 012 426 5111 / /

For accommodation nearby, click here.


Crystal Pools

Where: Gordon’s Bay, Western Cape

On a blistering False Bay day, join the class-ditching students from Stellenbosch University lazing at Crystal Pools in the Steenbras River Gorge. It’s an easy 45 minute hike in, and if the laying gets too lazy for you, take on some of the jumps – anything from three to 15 metres.

Crystal Pools

Info: 021 856 5204 / /

For accommodation nearby, click here.


Suicide Gorge

Where: Hottentots Holland Nature Reserve, Western Cape

Time to leave your fear of heights at home, because this one is not for the feint- hearted. If you want a little adventure with your swim, then make your way to Suicide Gorge, which boasts a series of jumps into cool, clear pools, with heights ranging from about three to 14 metres. The 17 kilometre hike will take you roughly eight hours, but enjoying the water will keep you a while longer.

Suicide Gorge

Info: 028 841 4301/02 /

For accommodation nearby, click here.



Where: Knysna Forest, Western Cape

Swimming in large, peaceful pools surrounded by rocks and lush, untainted forestry is a reality on the Drupkelders Walk. These are among the most spectacular and peaceful rock pools around, and their serenity is ensured by SanParks issuing only 12 permits a day. The walk starts near Forest Edge Nature-Lover’s Retreat and winds through indigenous forests, and for the more adventurous, there’s even a waterfall that you can climb.


Info: 044 388 4757 /

For accommodation nearby, click here.

One thought on “Natural Rock Pools in South Africa That Will Change Your Life!

  1. Those places of Natural Rock pools are Beautiful & the water is so crystal clear. I didn’t know South Africa had such beauty. I was looking at Michael Tellinger’s Website with his UBUNTU Movement along with other discoveries he has achieved in his life studies. He is truly awesome & his Wife is lucky to have him (she looks like a friend of mine) Thank you so much for sharing those great picture’s. God Bless You & Always Remember to take care of yourself & each other. Stay Positive in Mind, Body,Spirit & Soul..

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