Garden Route Game and Nature ReservesThe De Vasselot Nature Reserve
Anyone who has been to Nature's Valley, down the R210, over Thomas Bain's Groot River Pass and into the Groot River valley below, will know the De Vasselot campsite with its little forest huts along the river front in amongst the shade of the forest trees.
De Vasselot Nature Reserve is part of the Tsitsikamma National Park. Nature's Valley, the unpretentious holiday village, lies within De Vasselot and as such has never grown beyond the bounds of its one or two shops, holiday homes and a couple of restaurants. Homes cannot rise above two storeys, and the pace has remained slow. It is the lagoon that attracts people here. That and the silence, the stillness and lack of commercialisation.
The reserve lies at the western end of the Tsitsikamma National Park and takes its name from Comte Médéric de Vasselot de Regné, the man appointed as Superintendent of Woods and Forests of the Cape Colony in 1880. It was the first time a professional forester held this position; a turning point for the country's forestry, which was exploited and unprotected up until then.
De Vasselot Nature Reserve includes a coastal plateau that rises 300 metres above the sea, a rugged coastline that includes a beautiful, uninhabited beautiful beach, forested slopes and indigenous forests that take up almost two-thirds of the park. The lagoon is warm and perfect for canoeing, kayaking and sailing.
Look out for otters, baboons and wetland birds.
There is a network of trails that run through the coastal scrub forest, high indigenous forest and the fynbos. They include the Kalanderkloof Trail, Groot River Trail, Salt River Mouth Trail, Salt River via Keurpad, Varinghoek via Keurpad and The Crags via Brak River – six trails that range from 5 km to 17 km in length.
Popular Activities in or near De Vasselot Nature Reserve
Kalander Kloof Hiking Trail
The Kalander Kloof Hiking Trail extends for some 4.8 kilometres and begins just opposite the entrance of the camping site of de Vasselot. The trail takes hikers up the Kalanderkloof Mountain, but is not too difficult, requiring only relative...
More info and contact details: Kalander Kloof Hiking Trail
De Vasselot Hikes
De Vasselot lies on the western edge of the Tsitsikamma National Park, incorporated into the park in 1987, and named after the country's first professional forester. There are a series of six circular and open-ended trails that pass through...
More info and contact details: De Vasselot Hikes