South Africa's Top 10 Botanical Gardens

South Africa's magnificent botanical gardens are home to numerous indigenous and endangered plants and wildlife, making them prime attractions year-round.

To help you discover the richness and splendour of these natural treasures, we've put together a list of the Top 10 National Botanic Gardens in South Africa.

  • Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

    1. Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden

    The Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, located in Kirstenbosch, Cape Town, is the first garden of its kind in the world dedicated to the indigenous flora of a country such as the Namaqualand daisies and vygie, as well as to the majestic Baobab and cycads.These botanical gardens, part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site, are a must-see for anyone visiting Cape Town.

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  • Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens

    2. Walter Sisulu Botanical Garden

    Named after the late struggle stalwart, Walter Sisulu, and located just 30km west of Johannesburg's city centre, the Walter Sisulu Botanical Garden has been voted Gauteng's foremost place to get back to nature 9 years in a row. The gardens, founded in 1982, are ideal for travellers longing to escape the hustle and bustle of city life without having to travel too far.

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  • Pretoria National Botanical Garden

    3. Pretoria Botanical Garden

    The Pretoria Botanical Garden is a pristine haven situated in the eastern suburbs of South Africa's administrative capital, Pretoria. This urban oasis is an important conservation site home to some of the country's most endangered plants like the beautiful cycads.

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  • Lowveld National Botanical Gardens

    4. Lowveld Botanical Garden

    The Lowveld Botanical Garden, Mpumalanga's only national botanical garden, is a must-see for its many plant species as well as the largest collection of cycads in Africa. The yellow bush lilies and the scarlet display of the vivid flame creeper are just some of the garden's delights.

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  • KwaZulu-Natal National Botanical Gardens

    5. KwaZulu-Natal Botanical Garden

    The KwaZulu-Natal Botanical Garden in Pietermaritzburg is home to many rare species of plants and birds. Many of the plant species attest to the gardens' Victorian past, particularly the magnificent Plane Tree Avenue, planted just after the turn of the 20th century, in 1908. Pooches welcome, braai facilities set the tone for an idylic picnic in one of SA's oldest gardens.

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  • Harold Porter Botanical Gardens

    6. Harold Porter Botanical Garden

    The Harold Porter Botanical Garden is set against the mountains and coastline near Hermanus, in the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve. It is a flora hot-spot in the heart of the fynbos region. Local attractions include the penguin colony at Stone Point and the ruins of the old whaling station.

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  • Hantam Botanical Gardens

    7. Hantam Botanical Garden

    The Hantam Botanical Garden - the youngest of the National Botanical Gardens in South Africa, is situated on the Bokkeveld Plateau, outside the town of Nieuwoudtville, in the Northern Cape. Here you will find more bulbs than anywhere else in the world, earning it the name "bulb capital of the world". The garden hosts a variety of hiking trails allowing visitors to really experience the treasures this garden holds.

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  • Karoo Desert Botanical Garden

    8. Karoo Desert Botanical Garden

    The Karoo Desert Botanical Garden is situated on Roux Road on the outskirts of Worcester, a stone throw away from Cape Town. This garden is set at the foot of the Hex River Mountains and is popular for its wide range of succulents, its plant maze, its Braille trail, its many birds and wide range of small mammals such as the Cape Grey Duiker.

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  • Moholoholo Rehab

    9. Free State Botanical Garden

    The Free State Botanical Garden, located in Bloemfontein (aka the City of Roses), is dedicated to cultivating and displaying the varied flora and birds of this region. Roses feature prominently amongst the 400 species of plant, which originate from the Free State, Northern Cape and Lesotho.

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  • Kwelera Botanical Garden

    10. Kwelera Botanical Garden

    Situated just north of East London, and adjacent to the coast, the Kwelera National Botanical Garden is the first to be established in the Eastern Cape. It comprises of 160 hectares of pristine coastal dune forest, natural vegetation, marine frontage, and coastal grasslands.

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