About Silaka Nature Reserve

Silaka Nature Reserve is a beautiful protected area of land that lies deep in a valley forest in the Eastern Cape, just 6 kilometres south of the coastal town of Port St Johns.

Did you know? There are not many tarred roads, the only stretch you can travel by normal vehicle easily is between Port St John and Coffee Bay, for the rest you better make sure you have a reliable 4×4.

A beautiful protected area of land lies deep in a valley forest in the Eastern Cape, just 6 kilometres south of the laidback coastal town of Port St Johns on the Wild Coast.

The Silaka Nature Reserve serves to protect the biodiversity of the coastal forest in the region, and stretches along the coastline between Second Beach and Sugarloaf Rock - 400 hectares of striking coast, a forest of towering trees, and grassland - an exquisite escape into nature.

Small the reserve may be, but it encompasses swimming, gentle meanders, hiking trails through trees, and exceptional bird watching opportunities. Through the forest, where the elusive blue duiker and bushbuck are seldom seen, filled with giant trees covered in mosses, lichens and orchids, flows the Gxwaleni River, and the trees are home to halfcollared kingfishers and longtailed wagtail.

There is also the gentle amble back from the reserve to Port St Johns - a perfect late afternoon mooch along the shoreline that restores and replenishes the human connection with nature.

The shoreline of the Silaka reserve is rough and craggy with a little sandy beach where the river meets the sea. Here the marsh is home to the Cape clawless otter, thickbilled weavers and yellowthroated longclaw.

Just offshore, a huge rocky outcrop that is a flurry of seabirds is known as Bird Island. On the shore, opposite Bird Island, is an interesting little pebble beach surrounded by driftwood and aloes that grow virtually all the way to the sea.

The Silaka Nature Reserve, worth visiting almost all year round, except possibly October and November when it rains quite copiously, is a complete gem and largely undiscovered.

Need to Know

WhereSilaka Nature Reserve, Port St Johns, Wild Coast, Eastern Cape, South Africa

WhenBest during daylight hours.

OvernightStay in Port St Johns Accommodation, Eastern Cape


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