It’s 08:00 on a Saturday and while you’re still hiding under the covers, 164 locations fill with runners, walkers, dogs and children, all with one thing in common: starting their day with a five-kilometre parkrun. parkrunday, previously known as ‘Saturday’, has become the ultimate event to join! parkrun organises free running events around the world and, just for you, TravelGround ran it down to our 15 favourite parkruns in parkland surroundings around South Africa. Winter is slowly coming to an end, and we challenge you to get out of bed early, grab your running shoes, water bottle and dog, and head on out to take part in that five-kilometre run ─ and don’t forget to treat yourself to a much-deserved coffee at a local market or café afterwards!

 

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Things to remember

Sign up online

Follow this link to fill in the registration form

Opt for the newsletters

parkrun, along with Mr Price Sport, helps you set goals by providing milestone t-shirts. Once you have reached a milestone you will receive an email inviting you to claim it.

 

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Activity Tracker

Gain an Active Day with Multiply or earn up to 300 Vitality Points with Discovery

Barcode

Bring a printed copy to record your time. More frequent runners prefer a parkrun barcode band available from TenBits.

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Cash

parkruns are a way to get the community to connect, so join the group for a post-parkrun treat at a local market or café!

Your furry friend

Bring a leash, a plastic bag for you know what, and be sure to hydrate yourself and your pet!

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Try them all

See all the running events in South Africa here: parkrunsa events.

Volunteer

parkruns are entirely organised by volunteers and help is always needed to keep it a free event.

 

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Book accommodation with TravelGround

Make a weekend of it and explore your chosen event’s location.

Travelground’s 15 favourites:

Hogsback in Eastern Cape

 

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Hogsback’s parkrun starts at Commonage on the Bluff in the parking lot of The Edge and is run entirely on trail paths. As you run, you will go down a steep hill facing the gorge, overlook the Thyume Valley and have a magnificent view of Hogsback’s mountains.

Post-parkrun fun: 
Enjoy the view at The Edge Mountain Retreat while you have a coffee.
Take a breather: Book your accommodation now to escape to Hogsback. Don’t forget your pet*!

Potchefstroom in North West

 

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This parkrun starts on Potch’s old rugby field opposite Trim Park. It takes you on a mixture of gravel paths and grass, along the Mooi River where you cross a beautiful footbridge. With all the puddles and leaves after the rain, it can get quite muddy but it only adds to the adventure!

Post-parkrun fun: 
Join for a filter coffee at House of Coffees in Mooi River Mall.
Take a breather: Book your accommodation now to stay in Potchefstroom. Don’t forget your pet*!

iMonti in Eastern Cape

 

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iMonti’s parkun is in Cambridge and starts at Cambridge Sports Club. It ventures through a bushy trail and grass section, around the Cambridge Mashie Golf Course, as well as on the old rugby and hockey fields. Watch out for loose gravel and exposed tree roots while keeping an eye out for the beautiful birdlife. Unfortunately this terrain is not suitable for strollers, dogs or wheelchairs.

Post-parkrun fun: 
Drink a nice and cold beer at Cambridge Sports Club.
Take a breather: 
Book your accommodation now to rest in Cambridge.

Rondebosch Common in
Greater Cape Town

 

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This course is a newly built running track, away from any traffic and entirely on tarmac paths. The parkrun starts along Park Road with a consistent view of Devil’s Peak and the South Easterly wind on your back speeding you up for the last stretch!

Post-parkrun fun: 
Enjoy a breakfast special, exclusive to parkrunners, at Common Ground Café.
Take a breather: 
Book your accommodation now to stay in Rondebosch. Don’t forget your pet*!

Dullstroom in Mpumalanga

 

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This parkrun takes place on a mixture of trail paths with rocks, sand, grass and concrete, and laps around the dam at the Dullstroom Dam and Nature Reserve. It will take you over and under wooden bridges, one of which crosses the Crocodile River.

Post-parkrun fun: 
Have a hearty brunch at either Art of Food, Seattle or Charlie C’s.
Take a breather: Book your accommodation now to visit Dullstroom. Don’t forget your pet*!

Root44 in Cape Winelands

 

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Root44 Market’s parkrun on Audacia Wine Farm is a mixture of gravel, sand and sometimes muddy paths between the vineyards. This parkrun shares paths with mountain bikers, so be alert while absorbing the mountain and vineyard views!

Post-parkrun fun: 
Treat yourself to a glass of Audacia wine at Root 44 Market.
Take a breather: Book your accommodation now to experience the Cape Winelands. Don’t forget your pet*!

Modderfontein Reserve in
Greater Johannesburg

 

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This parkrun takes place at Modderfontein Reserve and starts next to one of the many old, abandoned dynamite bunkers in the reserve. This route is a mixture of grass, sand and tarmac. It will even take you through some of the bunkers! Don’t let the big uphill get you down, just hang in there until that nice downhill stretch takes you to a final bunker where the run finishes. Unfortunately, dogs are not allowed at this parkrun.

Post-parkrun fun: 
Join the runners for a platter at Val Bonne Country Estate.
Take a breather: 
Book your accommodation now to enjoy Modderfontein.

Melkbosstrand in Greater
Cape Town

 

 
 
 
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The run starts at the NSRI Station. The whole parkrun is on a trail along the beach and may include mud, leaves and puddles after the rain. The breeze from the ocean will come as a welcome relief after some time on the trail!

Post-parkrun fun: 
Choose any charming local café that catches your eye for a cuppa.
Take a breather: 
Book your accommodation now to relax in Melkbosstrand. Don’t forget your pet*!

Umhlanga in KZN Coastal

 

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At the Umhlanga parkrun, you’ll run along Umhlanga’s promenade and pier on a mixture of brickwork paths and grass, all the way to Durban View Park and back to run across the finish line at the pier.

Post-parkrun fun: 
By the way, a well-deserved coffee is waiting at BTW.
Take a breather: 
Book your accommodation now to have a lie-down in Umhlanga. Don’t forget your pet*!

Kraalkop in Gauteng

 

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This Kraalkop Nature Reserve parkrun is at Gert van Rensburg Stadium in Fochville and starts and finishes at the cricket clubhouse. The course is run only on two-track trail paths and has a tiny hill, so come and work those glutes!  

Post-parkrun fun: 
Have a coffee and fun day at Tholo Camp.
Take a breather: 
Book your accommodation now to recuperate in Fochville. Don’t forget your pet*!

Delta in Greater Johannesburg

 

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Delta parkrun in Victory Park starts at the environmental centre on the grass, aligned with the large palm tree. It is mostly run on grass with sand and gravel parts at times and one section crosses a small tarred road. You will climb some hills, run past a pond, cross a small bridge and spot some leafy Oak trees.

Post-parkrun fun: 
Have a home-baked croissant or pastry at Doppio Zero in Greenside.
Take a breather: Book your accommodation now to unwind in Victory Park. Don’t forget your pet*!

Lady Slipper in Eastern Cape

 

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This parkrun is at Slipperfields, Nelson Mandela Bay, and is entirely run on trail paths. You’ll run through a forest on a single track and the rest of it on jeep track. But when you get to that climb, you’ll want to put yourself into 4×4 mode to get over the hill. Unfortunately this course is not suited for strollers.

Post-parkrun fun: 
Go to Slipperfields café for a boerie roll.
Take a breather: 
Book your accommodation now to put your feet up in Lady Slipper in Nelson Mandela Bay. Don’t forget your pet*!

KwaMashu in KZN Coastal

 

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This parkrun starts inside Princes Magogo Stadium and the terrain is a mixture of tarmac paths, paved paths and sand. Remember to bring enough water for you and your dog Spot!

Post-parkrun fun: 
Spoil yourself with a scrumptious breakfast at Mugg and Bean.
Take a breather: 
Book your accommodation now to chill close to KwaMashu. Don’t forget your pet*!

Malmesbury in Cape Winelands

 

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The parkrun kicks off at ‘Die Bos’, a Bluegum forest, opposite the high school sports field. The trail is run on a combination of different terrain types, including mud, puddles and leaves. At the highest point on the trail you will have a 360-degree view of the beautiful Swartland.

Post-parkrun fun: 
Have a brekkie at Die Langsdiebos Mark.
Take a breather: Book your accommodation now to take it easy in Malmesbury. Don’t forget your pet*!

Bridgetown in Greater Cape Town

 

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Bridgetown’s parkrun starts off at Nantes Park at the Appledene Road entrance. The course consists of a mixture of paved trail paths and grass and crosses 2 bridges. Remember to look up at the mighty Table Mountain and take it all in while you run!

Post-parkrun fun: 
Come join the parkrunners for a coffee at the café in Nantes Park.
Take a breather: Book your accommodation in Mowbray now to stay close to Bridgetown. Don’t forget your pet*!

“The best time to join parkrun was 11 years ago.
The second best time is this weekend” parkrun proverb

Why not join this week? It literally is a walk in the park when you start and you will eventually put the run in parkrun! What are you waiting for? On your marks, get set, go!

 

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*The accommodation linked in this blog is animal friendly upon request.

Feature image: CP-parkrun-99-14 by phillips_colin (Flickr)