The Sungazer Pilgrimage is now a proud member of the Trail and Hiking Association South Africa

THASA was born out of the need for our sector to be represented on a National Level and to contribute to the recovery planning of Tourism, Events and Sports.

"We welcome all owners of Trails and Hiking venues to join us and stand in unity to represent our interests.

We invite our industry partners in Tours and Guiding to share your knowledge within the Associations as partners and affiliates. We welcome hiking and trail clubs in to represent the sporting interests."

About The Sungazer Pilgrimage

The Sungazer Pilgrimage is named after the Sungazer Lizard (Smaug Gigantus), ‘Sungazer’, or ‘Ouvolk’ in Afrikaans.

Sungazers as a species are under threat, and may soon be on the endangered list.
 

They don’t lay eggs like other reptiles, instead give birth to live babies, but only one, maybe two babies every other year. This, together with the fact that their habitat is being destroyed at an alarming rapid rate, classifies Sungazer Lizards as vulnerable (IUCN red list).

The Sungazer Lizard is endemic to the Eastern Free State area. Unlike other girdled lizards who mostly live among the rocks, Sungazer Lizards dig a shallow borough into the silty soil of the open grassland areas of the Highveld. Sungazer Lizards are active during the day and hibernate during winter. Their diet consists of insects, especially beetles. Young Sungazer's prefer softer, smaller insects like ants.

Throughout your journey on the Sungazer Pilgrimage Routes, keep a lookout for this Giant Girdled Lizard, identified by a brown colour on the upper surface, merging into strawberry/yellow colours along the side of the body and yellow on the underside. There are four very large, spiny scales on the back of the head, and along the body. The scales on the back are larger than the side scales which are smaller but still spiny. The tail has whorls of large, very spiny scales, decreasing in size from the base to the tip. Juveniles are generally similar in appearance, but with patches of orange-brown on their bodies.​

We do hope you spot a Sungazer Lizard on your journey!


We ask that you please keep the environment clean and safe. 

Paul Roux Village

Paul Roux is situated in the Eastern Free State, looking out towards the Maluti Mountains.

 

This is where your Pilgrimage journey begins and finishes.

One of the last remaining authentic villages in South Africa where historic Sandstone houses are to be found.

Experience eclectic eateries with an individual ambience, rustic and reminiscent of an era where time moved more slowly.

 

Take a walk along the main road, browse the local shops and be transported back in time.

Watch the video.

Photo:

Pilgrims enjoying the hospitality at

The Pink Tricycle Tea Room

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