Northern Cape: flower-season hikes at the Oorlogskloof Nature Reserve
The Oorlogskloof Nature Reserve is the best of both worlds – it’s a test of endurance for avid hikers and a feast for the eyes of nature lovers, especially during the province of extremes’ flower season.
The reserve is situated just 16km outside Nieuwoudtville, one of the towns that is a prime viewing spot for flower season, from August to mid-September. It has 4 776ha of mountains, deep river gorges, caves and plateaus that make for stunning views and challenging hiking trails.
The Oorlogskloof Nature Reserve boasts several day hiking trails that take a few hours to complete, as well as two trails – the 52km Rock Pigeon Hiking Trail and the 67km Rameron Pigeon Hiking Trail – that can take a number of days to complete. All trails have steep climbs and descents, so a good level of fitness is required to complete them.
In addition to getting a great workout, hikers will be rewarded with rock painting viewings and will come across caves, waterfalls, tunnels, wildflowers and pools. They can also enjoy beautiful views from various lookout points.
Accommodation options available at the reserve include cottages, hikers' huts (which can accommodate larger groups of people) and campsites.