Mpofu Nature Reserve

Mpofu Nature Reserve is situated in the heart of the Katberg Mountain Range

Eastern Cape Game and Nature ReservesThe Mpofu Nature Reserve

Mpofu Nature Reserve is situated in the heart of the Katberg Mountain Range, about 2.5 hoursí drive from Port Elizabeth in Nelson Mandela Bay.

The closest towns are Balfour, Fort Beaufort and Alice, all of which are small and quiet residential towns with a deep sense of historical import. This was a significant area in terms of the British colonisation of the country, and continues to offer a fascinating perspective into this very important time in local history.

The reserve was established in 1985, on land that belonged to family of the original settlers of 1820. The homes on the property were built in a classic Eastern Cape style, and have since been converted into guest lodges with a distinctive colonial character.

The Mpofu Nature Reserve covers an area of 7 500 hectares and occupies the valleys and escarpments of the magnificent Katberg Mountain Range. It is nestled just 25 kilometres from Fort Beaufort, and about 20 kilometres from Balfour. It is run by Eastern Cape Parks.

As with the whole of the Eastern Cape, this is a malaria-free zone, making it a safe choice for families with children as well as the elderly, who may not react well to anti-malarial prophylaxes. It is not only ideal in terms of safety and its central situation, but is also a fabulous representative of the animal- and plant life of the province, and of South Africa as a whole.

There are a number of different habitat types within the nature reserve, each complete with its own unique combination of fauna and flora. The landscape is unique, thanks to the natural array of treasures within the borders of the reserve. Some of the areas of the Mpofu reserve consist of steep terrain, which yields an entirely different array of life to those areas that are more level. The reserve is home to Burchellís zebra, eland, white rhino, giraffe, Cape buffalo and bushbuck.

The mountains and valleys of the Mpofu Nature Reserve are littered with hiking and walking trails. Whether you are fit and energetic or just want to go for a serene stroll, there are excellent options suited to you. Most of these are day trails, but this is also the home of the start of the Katberg Trail, which takes three days to complete and offers breath-taking views and vistas.

Educational tours and guided game drives are recommended to visitors that want to get the most out of their time here. There are also 4 x 4 trails and self-guided game drive trails available. Those with a penchant for bird-watching are in for a treat at Mpofu, as it is home to a massive variety of pretty avian species.

Nearby attractions include the enchanted mountain village of Hogsback and the Khoisan rock art in Waylands.

Activities near and in Mpofu Nature Reserve

Katberg Hiking Trail

The valley and mountain are regarded as an area of great natural beauty, preserved in a series of nature reserves and game farms, the indigenous forest and pine plantations, fynbos and grasslands a space made available for outdoor activities that...

More info and photographs: Katberg Hiking Trail

Amathole Horse Trails

A horseback ride through the breathtaking Amathole mountains and Hogsback forests is an experience to be treasured for a lifetime, and with a range of tailor-made outrides, you'll find the perfect experience to suit you at Amathole Horse Trails. Choose...

More info and photographs: Amathole Horse Trails

Did you know?

Riveting views of the Hogsback and Katberg mountains are one of the major drawcards of the Mpofu Nature Reserve.

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