Holkrans at Golden Gate

Useful Information

Location: Between Phuthaditjhaba and Clarens at R712. Golden Gate Highlands National Park.
(-28.511582, 28.610145)
Open: no restrictions.
Fee: free.
Daily Conservation Fees: Adults ZAR 236, Children ZAR 118.
Classification: Speleologyerosional cave
Light: bring torch
Guided tours: self guided
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Address: Holkrans, Highlands National Park, Clarens Rd, Clarens, 9707.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1963 Golden Gate Highlands National Park created.
2004 merged with the adjacent Qwa-Qwa Nationalpark.


Holkrans (Hollow Cliff) is a huge erosional cave or shelter. It is of great archaeological interest. This part of the Free State is dominated by canyons with escarpments and cliff faces, and many overhangs and shelters, which were frequented by man since the Prehistoric. They are important sites until today. The trail actually goes along several rock shelters which may be explored. Normally they are marked by a wooden ladder which goes up to the cave entrance.

The Holkrans Cave is located in the Golden Gate Highlands National Park and is reached on a 3 km easy walk. Before you start you have to check in at the Glen Reenen Camp and buy a day use permit for the park. The trail itself is actually free.

The hike has two starting points, at the eastern and the western side of the Golden Gate Hotel (Brandwag Hotel). Hikers are allowed to park at the hotel, even if they are no customers, and you can start you walk right here. The walking time is about 1 hour, but you should plan more, there is much to see, the cave, the landscape, and the wildlife. While the walk is easy, there are several wooden ladders and staircases, especially at the cave, which must be climbed. Not a big problem with appropriate gear and good walking shoes. Some people prefer to turn aournd at the ladders and return the same way, but its not possible to reach the cave without climbing a ladder. The cave is a shelter, so a torch is actually not needed, but you many want to bring one though. Remember to bring a hat, walking shoes, sun block, and always carry sufficient water. The area is prone to sudden weather changes, so a raincoat is also recommended.