Western Cape Tourist AttractionsThe Cape West Coast Biosphere Trails
Cape West Coast Biosphere Trails are slackpacker trails on the West Coast!.
Where? Cape West Coast, Western Cape
When? Booking is essential
How? Call +27 (0)86 187-2457
The Cape West Coast Biosphere Reserve (CWCBR) is a recognised UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, one of only 6 in South Africa and just over 600 world-wide. It extends from Diep River in Milnerton in the south, to the Berg River of Velddrif in the north, Malmesbury / Moreesberg in the east, and the Atlantic Ocean in the west.
At the heart of the reserve lie attractions like the West Coast National Park, the town of Darling and the West Coast Fossil Park, fishing villages (like Paternoster), lagoons, rivers, flora and birdlife in amongst the obvious marks of development and a growing population (biosphere reserves are there esssentially to protect plant and animal species whilst also dealing with a growing population and its resource needs).
One of the aims of the CWCBR is to improve the socio-economic well-being of communities that fall within the biosphere. In line with this there there is now a network of five trails (supported by the Development Bank of SA and the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund) that start, end and pass through eight of these communities – Atlantis, Mamre, Darling, Velddrif, Paternoster, Jacobsbaai, Langebaan and Yzerfontein.
The slackpacker trails are guided and catered for, comfortable and safe. Hikers need carry only a small daypack. All lifts and luggage are organised, with meals prepared locally in West Coast style.
The Darling Stagger (2.5 days, 10 km cycle and 15 km walk) is a slow-paced combination of hiking and cycling from the coast to !Khwa Ttu San Cultural Centre, through the hills, via wine and olive farms, to Darling.
Eve's Trail (2.5 day 30 km hike) is a wilderness hiking trail from Yzerfontein along 16 Mile Beach, veering into the West Coast National Park and along the restful Langebaan Lagoon.
Five Bay Trail (2.5 days 28 km hike) is a gentle coast-hugging trail between the fishing villages of Paternoster and Jacobsbaai.
Wheels of Time (4 days 146 km cycle) is a recreational, supported back road cycling trail from mamre to Darling, Elandsfontein Farm, the West Coast National Park and !Khwa Ttu.
Berg River Canooze (2.5 days 28 km) is an effortless downstream kayak from Hopefield to Velddrif with farm stays en route.
Groups are no larger than 12 people with special rates for groups of 6 or more.