The San roamed the high reaches of the southern Cederberg over 6,000 years ago, and one still gets a sense of their earthy spirituality encapsulated within the rocks and upon the fynbos plains of the Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve. The area is part of the Swartruggens Conservancy, and forms a bridging biome between the Cederberg and Ceres-Karoo.
The high-altitude fynbos plains – at nearly 1,400m above sea level – provide Kagga Kamma with a cooler climate than the rest of the Cederberg. Heather species and restios dominate the floral landscape, while plains game such as Burchell’s zebra, eland, kudu, blue wildebeest and smaller antelope species flourish in the cooler climate. Expect the winters to be freezing at this altitude, so come prepared with proper cold-weather gear.
If your quest is an indulgent weekend of pampering, head directly to the Main Lodge area with its sumptuous restaurant, rock pool and spa. Here, your accommodation options will vary from the celebrated Kagga Kamma caves to traditionally styled thatched huts. Families are accommodated in the Hut Suites which have a sleeper couch suitable for two children under the age of 12.
The spectacular campsites have remained Kagga Kamma’s best-kept secret. More’s the pity, as these getaway spots (including their wilderness camping options along the 4×4 route) are superb.
Reasons to visit
Tramp onto Kagga Kamma’s network of self-guided hiking trails and walks to experience the magic of this wilderness up close and personal. There are three routes to choose from, ranging in distance from 4km to 9km, offering a great trail-running opportunity as well. Kindly direct all queries about routes to the Lodge)
If you are keen to explore Kagga Kamma in your own off-road vehicle, their 4×4 route of more than 100km is sure to entice you. Magnificent views across mountain fynbos plains towards the Cederberg ranges will unfold as you navigate river crossings, rugged ascents and other natural obstacles.
Mountain bikers have a fantastic opportunity to crank onto a 30km-plus network of routes within the reserve. Both the Red Trail (10km) and the Black Trail (30km) start from the Main Lodge area, initially along a short stretch of jeep track before you turn right onto the quad-bike trail. Although quite sandy in places, the Red Route is flat enough to suit average riders, while the longer 30km option will give more advanced mountain bikers a good workout. Your total ascent is limited to just on 300m along the latter route, so expect to spend a good 2–3 hours in the saddle. Packing a camera is a good idea as wildlife and beautiful scenery can be enjoyed along the way.
The routes are comprised mainly of a jeep track and the terrain is varied, winding through beautiful rock formations, with spectacular views across the dramatic mountain fynbos plains.
FAST FACTS BLOCK
Easy to intermediate
Sandy, jeep track, quad bike trail
Cell reception & WiFi at Reception
(and Staying Over)
The best route is via Ceres, approximately two hours from Cape Town. Continue along the R303 for 40km to Op die Berg and turn right at the Ceres Karoo/Cederberg sign. After 25km, turn right onto a gravel road at the Kagga Kamma sign and travel straight for another 20km on the gravel road. Turn left at the Kagga Kamma sign and travel for 15km to the entrance gate.