The Unconventional Guide to Kagga Kamma

Our experience of a recent stay at Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve, all the fun and excitement in one shot.

We recently had the opportunity to visit the Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve with some friends. It’s about 250km from Cape Town and the drive there is part of the fun. You get to drive thru the Huguenot Tunnel, Ceres and Prince Alfred Hamlet and then finally a small town called Op die Berg, before you turn off onto an easy and very scenic 35km dirt road.

The landscape is littered with rocks (dubbed Dragon Eggs) of all shapes and sizes, some formations looks like it was carefully stacked & placed by an enormous hand. Kagga Kamma is home to many different wild animals, loads of birds and a large variety of shrubs (fynbos).

On arrival we had to go to the reception area to collect the keys, here the staff was friendly and very helpful. They went thru all the activities available on the reserve such as hiking & mountain bike trails, game & 4×4 drives, stargazing and the swimming facilities. Some of the activities were quite pricey but then again we had our own 4×4 so we weren’t very fussed.

The cottage we stayed was neatly furnished and had enough space to sleep 6 people comfortably plus there was some champers on ice waiting for us on arrival. Everything was clean and in working order and we could just offload and start relaxing.

The 1st eve we sat outside — watched the stars and just listened to the silence, if you are from the city and used to all the daily hustle and bustle then you notice the silence immediately. Because there are no city lights close by the stars almost seems surreal, there are so many of them and much brighter than normally. I slept like a baby that night.

The next day after an early morning stroll and a late breakfast we set off in the 4×4 to explore. What a blast! We set the GPS to at least find our way back to the cottage and off we went. The terrain is rough and you have everything from rocks to thick sand and steep up & down hills to contend with, everyone got a chance to get in behind the wheel and test their driving skills. Throughout the day we saw some buck, birds, baboons and dassies. I’m not too clued up on all the different types of fynbos but I can say that there were many different types in all shapes and sizes.

The views higher up is stunning, my camera simply can’t do it justice. You can see for miles and then some. Sitting there you can feel the isolation, the silence and the peacefulness of the area settle over you like a big blanket. On the way back we stopped at the swimming pool, in the caves surrounding the pool there were bushmen rock art. Apparently these rock drawings are over 6000 years old and were made with different colours of stone which was ground up and mixed with fat to form paint.

The sunset was stunning and the colours of the sky against the rocky ridges looked like a painting it was so perfect. That eve we made a nice fire in the lapa at the cottage, made a potjie and sipped on some good red wine whilst reliving our adventures of the day. Knowing that we had to leave the next day made everyone agree that next time we will stay longer and and fit more things into the day.

All in all it was a extremely pleasant experience, the weather played along and it was a blast to get away from the city and recharge our batteries — even if it was only for 2 days.

Just like the Terminator in the movies — I’ll be back!

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