Western Cape Nature Reserves

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Cities (3)
Cape Town Knysna George
Tourism Regions (23)
Cape Peninsula Whale Coast Overberg West Coast Cape Winelands Helderberg Breede River … Rietvlei Bitou… Little Karoo Central Karoo Swartland Cederberg Riebeek Valley Elgin Koue Bokkeveld Seweweekspoort Boesmanskloof Hex River Valley Tankwa Karoo … Botterkloof Gamkaskloof LAgulhas Groot Winterhoek
Game Reserves (46)
Swartberg Nature… West Coast National… Cederberg Wil… Table Mountain… De Hoop Nature… Sanbona Wildlife… Agulhas National… Bontebok National… Bosch Luys Kloof… Cape Point George Private… Goukamma Nature… Hog Hollow Private… Karoo National… Keurbooms River… Outeniqua Nature… Silvermine Swartberg Private… Tankwa Karoo … Towerkop Nature… Anysberg Nature… Assegaaibosch… Bird Island Nature… Boosmansbos W… De Mond Nature… Elandsfontein… Gamkaberg Nature… Groot Winterhoek… Grootvadersbosch… Hottentots Holland… Jacobuskraal Jonkershoek Nature… Knysna Lakes Kogelberg Nature… Limietberg Nature… Marloth Nature… Mont Rochelle… Postberg Flower… Robberg Nature… Rocherpan Nature… Salmonsdam Nature… Ten Einde Private… Thali Thali Private… Touwsberg Private… Vrolijkheid Nature… Walker Bay Nature…
Towns (190)
Plettenberg Bay Blouberg Hermanus Stellenbosch Langebaan Mossel Bay Paternoster Somerset West Franschhoek Wilderness Simons Town Oudtshoorn Gordons Bay Strand Stilbaai Paarl Sedgefield Swellendam Durbanville St Helena Bay Prince Albert Montagu Bellville Tulbagh Robertson Beaufort West McGregor Keurboomstrand Stanford Kleinmond Wellington Calitzdorp De Kelders Hartenbos Struisbaai Yzerfontein Great Brak River Bredasdorp Clanwilliam Lamberts Bay Worcester Greyton Bettys Bay Shelley Point Ladismith Saldanha Onrus Sandbaai Witsand Bonnievale Herolds Bay Jacobs Bay Riebeek Kasteel Citrusdal The Crags Caledon Pringle Bay Vermont ZA Napier De Rust Velddrif Agulhas Albertinia Gansbaai Riversdale Darling Dwarskersbos Elands Bay Harkerville Hoekwil Barrydale Franskraal Natures Valley Port Owen Rheenendal Uniondale Victoria Bay Kuils River Piketberg Vanrhynsdorp Britannia Bay Ceres Laingsburg Rawsonville Boggomsbaai Bot River Grotto Bay Jongensfontein Tergniet Three Sisters Vredenburg Kleinbaai Malmesbury Reebok Ashton Klapmuts Pearly Beach Porterville Touws River Vredendal Arniston Grabouw Heidelberg (WC) Hermon Little Brak Murraysburg Raithby Riebeek West Suurbraak Wolseley Brandwacht Genadendal Klawer Malgas Moorreesburg Pniel Riviersonderend Rooi Els Suiderstrand Van Wyksdorp Bainskloof Gouritz Infanta Ruiterbos Springerbaai Wittedrift Buffeljagsrivier Elim Fishershaven Friemersheim Goedverwacht Herbertsdale Klaarstroom Kraalbaai Leeu Gamka Lutzville Nuy Redelinghuys Sir Lowry's Pass Stormsvlei Strandfontein Villiersdorp Vleesbaai Algeria (Cede… Aurora Doringbaai Hopefield Koringberg Kurland Leipoldtville Mamre Philadelphia Prince Alfred… Rondevlei Amalienstein Atlantis Baardskeerder… Bitterfontein Buffels Bay Chatsworth (Western… Churchhaven De Doorns Die Vlug Du Toitskloof Eendekuil Herold Hoeko Valley Jakkalsfontein Karatara Klipdale Matjesrivier Matjiesfontein Merweville Nuwerus Protem Rietpoort Saron Teslaarsdal Van Dyks Bay Vermaaklikheid Wolvengat Wupperthal Zoar Dysselsdorp Koekenaap Laaiplek Leliefontein Op Die Berg Roundhay Wittewater
Airports (2)
Cape Town Int… George Airport
Islands (1)
Robben Island
!Khwa ttu in Yzerfontein

!Khwa ttu

Nature Reserve in Yzerfontein

Join a guided tour at !Khwa ttu for interesting insights into the culture, heritage, knowledge and modern-day life of the Bushmen of southern Africa. Qualified San guides will demonstrate their skills, share their oral history, track animals and identify plants with you. You will also learn a few words in some of their languages and find out about recent accomplishments in obtaining their rights to land and intellectual property.

Bartholomeus Klip Renosterveld Reserve in Riebeek Kasteel

Bartholomeus Klip Renosterveld Reserve

Nature Reserve in Riebeek Kasteel

Bartholomeus Klip Reserve is teeming with herds of eland, springbuck, black wildebeest, zebra and bontebok. Many other animals, such as baboons, bat-eared foxes, lynxes, and smaller species of antelope, live here too, and it is known that leopards still occur in the mountains.Among the birdlife at Bartholomeus Klip is the world’s largest bird, the ostrich, once farmed here in large flocks at the height of the ostrich feather boom in the 1870s and today one of the leopard’s favourite foods. The magnificent black eagle (correctly known as Verreaux’s eagle) nests in the mountains, and the enormous dam near to the farmhouse has a spectacular array of water birds, some resident like the fish eagles and the kingfishers, and others such as the pelicans and the spoonbills less regular visitors. Flamingos have also been seen in some of Bartholomeus Klip’s smaller dams and there are a host of interesting large and small birds out in the reserve and on the wheatlands, including large flocks of the blue crane, South Africa’s national bird.

Botlierskop Private Game Reserve in Little Brak

Botlierskop Private Game Reserve

Nature Reserve in Little Brak

Home to rhino, buffalo, giraffe, zebra, eland, bontebuck and numerous antelope, Botlierskop provides visitors the opportunity to view free roaming wildlife from the safety of 4x4 vehicles in the Garden Route. Named for one of the dramatic rock formations on the reserve, the beautiful setting is also the sanctuary for two elephants that joined the Botlierskop team, Sam and Tsotsi, rescued orphans from the Zambezi Valley in Zimbabwe. Guests are able to experience riding on elephant back and interacting with these remarkable creatures. Knowledgeable guides share the wonders of Botlierskop and up close encounters with four rescued and rehabilitated lions, rhino, buffalo, giraffe and many of the 1 800 animals.

DanielsHoogte Private Reserve in Aurora

DanielsHoogte Private Reserve

Nature Reserve in Aurora

DanielsHoogte is a working farm rich in fynbos and situated at the top of Aurora Mountain, 800 metres above sea level. This hidden gem boasts spectacular views of St Helena Bay on the beautiful West Coast as well as the farmlands around Piketberg. On a clear day Table Mountain is visible in the far distance. This private reserve boasts much fauna and flora to be appreciated by any lover of the outdoors. The fauna that has been sighted thus far is the black eagle, klipspringer, duiker, fallow deer, lynx, aardwolf, and dassies, porcupine, baboons, the Cape eagle owl and occasionally leopard. It is a bird watcher’s haven with 85 different bird species having been sighted. It is an absolute delight for the wildlife photographer. The Protea Atlas Project has identified several endangered and endemic protea species on the reserve. Hikers and cyclists are able to explore and enjoy the natural surrounds. Bushman paintings can be seen on some of the rocky outcrops. You can cool off in one of our dams on a hot summer day. Guests are able to camp or stay in the self-catering mountain cottages situated in various locations on the farm.

Elandsfontein Private Nature Reserve in Elandsfontein Private Nature Reserve

Elandsfontein Private Nature Reserve

Nature Reserve in Elandsfontein Private Nature Reserve

Discover Elandsfontein’s rich fossil heritage on a guided Quad Bike Fossil Safari or 4WD Nature Drive. The dunes on Elandsfontein are the final resting place of early humans and animals that date back to the early Stone Age. The safari includes a rest stop where light refreshments are served. All quad bikes have fully automatic gearboxes to ensure that even novice riders can enjoy this unique experience. To manage the impact on the dunes the number of quad bikes is limited to eight, but each quad bike is big enough for two passengers. Watch wildlife in comfort during the 4WD Nature Drive. Originally the home of the largest inward migration of game in the history of the Western Cape, Elandsfontein is waiting to be discovered by nature lovers. Guests on the three hour nature drive can expect to see include eland, hartebeest, zebra, wildebeest, oryx, kudu, bontebuck, springbuck and Cape buffalo, the first of the Big Five to be reintroduced into the reserve. Unspoilt nature and rich and diverse birdlife complete the experience. The safari includes a rest stop where light refreshments are served.

Featherbed Nature Reserve in Knysna Quays

Featherbed Nature Reserve

Nature Reserve in Knysna Quays

Only accessible by ferry, Featherbed Nature Reserve is a privately-owned unspoiled headland at the Western Head of the Knysna Lagoon. Visitors young and old will thoroughly enjoy embarking on a spectacular four-hour eco-experience to this exquisite little corner of the Garden Route. This outdoor experience includes a return ferry trip, nature drive, guided walk and a lavish buffet lunch at the Food Forest Restaurant. Access to the reserve is strictly controlled and visits are only permitted in the company of the Featherbed Nature Reserve's specialist guides.Starting with a 25-minute ferry cruise, your local guide will share intriguing tales about the Knysna Lagoon, early shipping industry and Knysna’s oyster cultivation.The cruise is followed by a 4x4 drive to the top of the Western Head where supreme views of the lagoon, mountains and Knysna can be seen. After the drive, you have the option of walking a 2.2 kilometre downhill guided nature trail. This fun family outing ends with with a blowout buffet lunch at the popular Knysna restaurant under the milkwood trees.The four-hour excursion departs daily from Knysna Waterfront. Bookings are essential.

Fernkloof Nature Reserve in Hermanus

Fernkloof Nature Reserve

Nature Reserve in Hermanus

Situated in the Kleinrivier Mountains on the northern side of Hermanus, Fernkloof Nature Reserve incorporates mountain fynbos as well as a pocket of evergreen forest. A 60 kilometre network of trails provides the opportunity for people to go out and enjoy some exercise and fresh air. These trails offer stunning panoramic views of Walker Bay, the Hemel en Aarde Valley and Maanskynbaai.The reserve is a haven of biodiversity with 1474 species of plants recorded. Parts of the coastal area including the Cliff Path Nature Area, the Mossel River valley and the area from De Mond to Kettle Point, including the mouth of the Vogelgat River and part of the Klein River lagoon have recently been incorporated. This means that the coastal area with its unique fynbos, the mountain fynbos as well as the sensitive lagoon area is now linked.Keep your eyes open to spot grey rhebok, Cape grysbok, klipspringer, baboon, mongoose and dassie. Birds that you are most likely to see are Cape sugar birds, sunbirds, rock thrush and rock jumpers. Raptors include the jackal buzzard and black eagle. You can also spot seed and insect-eating species such as Rameron pigeons, canaries, flycatchers and white-eyes in the patches of forest alongside streams.Need to know? Fernkloof Nature Reserve is open from 7am to 7pm.

Gamkaberg Nature Reserve in Oudtshoorn

Gamkaberg Nature Reserve

Nature Reserve in Oudtshoorn

Nestled between the Swartberg and Outeniqua Mountains in the Klein Karoo, this remote mountain reserve is definitely worth a visit. Most folk who venture to Gamkaberg Nature Reserve come to soak up the peace and tranquillity. The best season to go is in spring although any time of the year is worthwhile. Part of the Cape Floral Kingdom which boasts one of the richest floras on earth, Gamkaberg is a botanists paradise. Here you will find four of the South African biomes – Fynbos, Succulent Karoo, Subtropical Thicket and Evergreen Forest. Home to the endangered Cape mountain zebra, honey badger and leopard, the reserve is an important refuge for rare Western Cape wildlife. Other animals you can spot include eland, red hartebeest, grysbok, grey rhebuck, klipspringer, duiker, steenbok, baboon, caracal, aardvark, aardwolf, black backed jackal and many small mammals. The reserve is also host to numerous birds, reptiles and insects. Day trippers can look around the information centre, meander through the labyrinth, explore the short footpaths and use the picnic or braai spots. Open daily from sunrise to sunset.

Harold Porter Botanical Garden in Bettys Bay

Harold Porter Botanical Garden

Nature Reserve in Bettys Bay

The incredibly scenic Harold Porter Botanical Garden is situated between the coast and the mountainside. The garden is renowned for its waterfalls, amber pools, deep gorges and abundant birdlife. Deep in the heart of the fynbos region, it is one of the best places to explore coastal fynbos. And its vast – there are 10 hectares of cultivated fynbos as well as 190 hectares of natural fynbos! Keen hikers should lace up their boots and hit the Leopard Kloof Trail. The 3 km round trip leads through fern forests and up to a waterfall. You’ll need to get a permit and pay a key deposit. Need to know? Opens at 08:00, closes at 16:30 on weekdays and at 17:00 on weekends and public holidays. The parking area closes at 18:00 in winter and 19:00 in summer. Keen gardeners can purchase plants from the indigenous plant nursery.

Helderberg Nature Reserve in Somerset West

Helderberg Nature Reserve

Nature Reserve in Somerset West

Initially a wild flower garden, the 407-hectare Helderberg Nature Reserve was proclaimed a reserve in 1960 to preserve an important enclave of Mesic Mountain Fynbos.Along with the incredible plant diversity, the reserve has a rich fauna. Visitors can experience bontebok grazing at any time of the day and some 169 species of birds have been recorded. Look out for three types of tortoise – the mountain tortoise, the angulate tortoise and the padloper.There are several lovely walking trails, of which only the Brown Route is non-circular. Facilities in the reserve include an information centre, plant herbarium, gift shop, indigenous nursery, resource centre, walking paths and benches, Oak Café restaurant, picnic area, facilities for the disabled and ablutions.

Jubilee Creek in Knysna

Jubilee Creek

Nature Reserve in Knysna

A top spot for families, Jubilee Creek is probably the most beautiful picnic spot in the indigenous Knysna forest. Situated alongside a stream in two forest clearings, this site is very popular with young families. The stream is perfect for playing, exploring and walks along the river. Hidden in the forest, you might even sight a rare Knysna elephant - one of the Knysna elephants was actually seen here in March 2007!

Karoo National Park in Karoo National Park

Karoo National Park

Nature Reserve in Karoo National Park

Overshadowed by the soaring peaks of the Nuweveld Mountains, the stark landscape of the Karoo National Park is once again home to endangered black rhino, buffalo, Cape mountain zebra and riverine rabbit. Large herds of springbok, 20 pairs of breeding black eagles, five tortoise species, small reptiles and a wide variety of endemic wildlife and succulent plants find sanctuary within the park. The stark beauty of the Great Karoo seems vast and unforgiving but sustains a fascinating diversity of life, all exclusively adapted to survive here. Towards evening the harsh sunlight slowly softens and washes the landscape with pastel colours, eventually deepening and setting the Karoo ablaze with magnificent sunset hues. Itchy feet? Walk the unique 400-metre Karoo Fossil Braille Trail. Specifically adapted for vision-handicapped visitors, you will discover funky fossils of mammal-like reptiles and interesting geology of the Great Karoo. Stroll the 800-metre Bossie Trail and check out the showcase of Karoo succulents including aloes, crassula, spiny klapperbossie and boegoekaroo. More energetic folk can lace up their boots for the 11-kilometre Fonteintjieskloof Trail.

Keurbooms River Nature Reserve in Keurboomstrand

Keurbooms River Nature Reserve

Nature Reserve in Keurboomstrand

Take time out in an unspoiled wilderness playground near Plettenberg Bay. The Coca-Cola coloured water lapping the soft sandy beach beckon further exploration into the upper reaches of the Keurbooms River. Time seems to stand still in the pristine forest of towering Outeniqua yellowwood, Cape beech, giant stinkwood, keurboom and ironwood trees. Indigenous plants cling precariously to the cliff faces. Beyond the woodland agapanthus, arum lilies, bracken, pelargonium and numerous fynbos species proliferate. Rewarding sightings of Cape clawless otter, mongoose, caracal, genet, baboon, vervet monkey, bushpig, dassie, blue duiker, bushbuck, grysbok and the occasional leopard are not uncommon. Twitchers will be able to tick off numerous species of forest-, fynbos-, mountain- and river-dwelling birds. Look out for the Knysna lourie, malachite kingfisher, giant kingfisher, Narina Trogan, fish eagle, white-breasted cormorant, African darter, reed cormorant, yellow-billed duck, little grebe, hamerkop, black-headed oriole, Cape batis, Knysna woodpecker and dazzling sunbirds. Hike along the river bank or paddle upstream in a canoe for a tranquil commune with nature. Beyond the 4 km mark, power boats are prohibited. All you will hear further up this unspoilt gorge is the faint sounds of the forest and spirited chorus of birdsong. Permits for the reserve, one-hour hiking trail and boating on the river are available at the entrance.

Koeberg Nature Reserve in Melkbosstrand

Koeberg Nature Reserve

Nature Reserve in Melkbosstrand

Eskom controls 3000 ha of West Coast around the Koeberg Nuclear Power Station. In keeping with both Eskom's environmental policy and national conservation trends, Eskom has decided to open this property to the public. Grysbok, Steenbok and the larger Duiker are buck species in the area and Bontebok and Springbok have been introduced as well. The elusive African wild cat, Grey mongoose and genet can also be seen. 153 Bird species can also be observed. A hidden treasure in the reserve is a large underground lake that supplies a lot of the surrounding areas with water.

Kogelberg Nature Reserve in Kleinmond

Kogelberg Nature Reserve

Nature Reserve in Kleinmond

The Kogelberg Nature Reserve has an amazing network of hiking trails along the coast and in the mountains. The trails pass through pristine fynbos and provide breathtaking views of the sea and mountains.

 

Did you know? Western Cape Nature Reserves is often misspelt. Here are some variations:

WCape Nature Reserves, WesternCape Nature Reserves, Weskaap Nature Reserves, Wes Kaap Nature Reserves, West Cape Nature Reserves, WesternCape Nature Reserves,