Graskop Gorge Lift and The Lift Café restaurant and bar

Taste Experience Mpumalanga

Situated just outside Graskop on the R533 towards Hazyview (on the opposite side of the gorge to the Big Swing)

The Graskop Gorge Lift Company is centrally located on the Panorama Route and is an ideal stopover point, whether it be for the view, the forest, the food or the various adventure activities, guided tours and hikes in the surrounding area. There also fabulous curio and clothing shops, an art gallery and the community craft centre.

The Lift Café
The Lift Café is a spacious inviting restaurant and bar with the most spectacular view in South Africa!

On warm sunny days, sit back and relax on the balcony and take in the incredible scenic views, spectacular terrain and lush natural surroundings.

On warm sunny days, sit back and relax on the balcony and take in the incredible scenic views, spectacular terrain and lush natural surroundings... from the waterfall, big swing and zip line on the left to past the lift and across the gorge and to the magnificent valley in the distance on the right. Enjoy ice cold draught beer on tap and be tempted by Graskop's finest burger, fresh local rainbow trout, or perhaps a Gorge Ploughmans or trout platter. Maybe one of the pizzas may be more to your liking – Adventurer, River, Yellowwood, Forest, Canyon, Canopy, African Fire and Waterfall Pizza... you'll have to go and see for yourself what each one's toppings are!

On cooler, wet days, watch the clouds and mist gently rolling in and out of the gorge past the lift, while gathered around the crackling fire, sipping on red wine or a perfectly brewed cup of coffee and indulging in any of the other appetising temptations off the Sweet Spot section of the menu!

The Gorge Lift

Fast facts about the Gorge Lift:

  • 240 tons of concrete lies in the foundation
  • 88 tons of steel is in the shaft
  • The lift was manufactured by Otis
  • The distance from the base to the top of the shaft is 60 metres
  • The total travel distance in the lift is 51 metres down the cliff face of the Graskop Gorge
  • The lift travels at 1 metre per second and takes one minute to descend
  • Only the front of the lift is glass from waist height upwards for you to marvel at the best view from a lift in Africa!

The forest
While the lift itself was a feat of engineering mastery to construct, getting to the Afromontane forest below is at the heart and the very reason for its existence.

In South Africa, Afromontane forests cover only 0.5% of the country’s land area. They occur in pockets along mountain ranges in well-watered areas, including ravines and south-facing slopes. Under the vivid green canopy of trees lies a lush wonderland filled with a spectacular variety of plants, animals, insects and birds.

The interpretation trail

The trail has six interpretation exhibits and includes information about the forest, its biodiversity, water conservation, birds, insects, and includes giant replicas of indigenous mushrooms, a stained-glass window and much more to discover...

  • The trail takes about 1 hour to complete.
  • It has several stairs and steep inclines so is a wonderful workout as well as an adventure; however, the first 100 metres or so has no steps or steep inclines or declines so is accessible to everyone, even people in wheelchairs.
  • The climate in the gorge is generally wet and can be slippery in sections. The decks have been fitted with anti-slip treads but caution should always be taken.
  • Comfortable rubber-soled walking shoes are recommended.
  • In the rain or if the waterfall is full, either raincoats or umbrellas are recommended.

The shops and community craft centre

  • Zenzile – Designers of Africa, is a boutique with many Afrocentric products made specifically from African material and artefacts. It includes fashion, jewellery, decor, bags, etc.
  • Yonaka – Art Studio is a contemporary art gallery which curates some magnificent pieces that are both unusual and unexpected. It showcases the finest in local and African art.
  • Exotic Africa – curio store offers top-quality handmade leather and hide products unique to Africa. All their products are created by highly skilled local craftsmen.
  • Community Craft Centre specialises in African art, wire and wood sculptures, woven baskets, pottery, crafts and curios. Many of the works on display are made locally.

Rates for daily multi-entry tickets: 
Adults (17 and older) R175
Children (4-16) R120 (kids under 4 are free)
Pensioners R120

Open daily from 8.30am to 5pm

For further pricing and to book online, visit http://graskopgorgeliftcompany.co.za, email info@gglc.co.za, or call 066 305 1572/3.

Activities nearby
The Lowveld offers wonderful experiences, from exhilarating wildlife to secluded mountain retreats, wild water sports and some of South Africa’s most diverse and vibrant African cultures.