Sport & School News
24 March 2017

Thabazimbi – Marakele National Park’s most popular event, the Marakele marathon and half marathon’s date has been announced to be the 08th of April 2017. This Comrades qualifier race is brought by SANParks in partnership with SANParks Honorary Rangers and Thabazimbi marathon club. 

This is a unique marathon which takes place inside the park and aims to bring both the ordinary members of the public as well as the professional running community of South Africa to have some fun and take “a run on the wild side”.

It also focuses the public and the media’s attention on the importance of conservation and highlights various fundraising and tourism initiatives which are key to the functioning of a national park. Furthermore, the marathon provides an opportunity for runners to experience the wild as well as get the opportunity to qualify for the popular Comrades marathon.

Participants can choose to complete one of three races, the full marathon which is 42 km, and a half marathon which is 21 km or a 10 km race. There is also a 5 km fun run for the whole family, which is very popular among children and casual supporters. Participants are limited to 300 runners per race and there is no limit on the 5 km fun run.   

According to Marakele’s Park Manager, Mphadeni Nthangeni, “This marathon has gained so much momentum and we do it for the people of Thabazimbi and South Africa at large… getting an opportunity to run in a big five national park is a thrilling feeling and this event offers that to the participants and we hope this year won’t be any different.” He further added that, “The proceeds from this marathon will go to the Honorary Rangers who will plough it back into the park towards conservation activities.”

Those who wish to participate can register online at and manual entries as well as accommodation in the park please contact Elise Coetzer on or fax 086 613 0720.

For additional information, contact the South African National Parks (SANParks) on 012 426-5304.

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