Things To Do in GansbaaiFynbos Trail
Where? Grootbos Nature Reserve, Growing the Future College, Gansbaai, Cape Overberg
When? Booking is essential.
How? Call +27 (0)82 464-5115 or +27 (0)82 411-1008
How much? Price on request
Start: Grootbos Nature Reserve, Growing the Future College
Finish: Grootbos Garden Lodge
Duration: 26 km, 3 days
Our tip: this Green Flag trail comes as both a slackpacker version, and an unguided self-catering option using the same accommodation
This joint venture between the Flower Valley Conservation Trust and the Grootbos Private Nature Reserve provides a trail that is rich in fynbos, and through hidden pockets of indigenous forest, with dams and pools in which to swim.
Led by an expert guide who points out the various species of more than 800 fynbos species, including six plant species in the Grootbos Nature Reserve that are new to science, this is surefire way to enjoy a walk and learn a great deal about the ecology of the Overberg.
From Grootbos the trail takes hikers through coastal strandveld and on into one of only eight milkwood forest of this type, the Stynsbos Milkwood forest. In the forest are trees that they are many hundreds of years old that are home to 34 species of bird and various little mammals.
Night one is at the Fynbos Retreat in Grootbos.
Day two leads through a fynbos-rich valley into Witwoetskloof forest, over boardwalks and bridges under the canopy of the ancient trees – white stinkwood, wild olive, rooiels and assegaai – to a waterfall. From there up a steep climb to the limestone hills of the Agulhas Plain - limestone fynbos is particularly uncommon.
From here you head up Grootberg and then down into Flower Valley where bouquets of fynbos are prepared for the local and export market from the wild fynbos grown here. Plant a tree in the Stinkhoutsbos Forest to help it recover from the devastating 2006 fire.
Night two is at Bodhi Kaya Retreat or Witkrans.
Day three is a short walk through indigenous forest back to the Grootbos Nature Reserve.
During the winter months add an extra day's hike along the coast to whale watch and visit the Klipgat Cave, renowned for its archaeological value.