Our tours to the Baviaanskloof are tailored to suit
the requirements of our guests.
Standard options are one and two day tours but we are often requested to
do three to four day trips.
standard one day tour takes us from Port Elizabeth to Bergplaas and
day trips cover the Wilderness area and return via the same route.
Three and more day trips offer one the opportunity to visit the upper
part of the Baviaanskloof and meet some of the people who make their
livings there. Options are to return via the Grootrivier Poort or via the Kouga Mountains,
covering lesser known areas.
Please contact us and we will gladly customise a tour to meet your
here for information on accommodation options.
Number of passengers
nature of the road restricts us to 4x4 vehicles with limited
passenger capacity. We can accommodate up to four passengers in a
vehicle but the ideal is two to three guests
Trips are arranged on
demand for single clients, whether the client be an individual or a group of up to
persons, and costs are therefore calculated on a sliding scale
depending on the number of persons.
Fees include light refreshments, meals
overnight accommodation. Please note that
no alcoholic beverages are supplied but can be arranged at the
overnight stop for the client's separate account.
Route Description - (You can read more about the route
Port Elizabeth is the primary point of
departure with Loerie the first town.
Flanked by the foothills of the Elands
and Groot Winterhoek Mountains, Loerie consists only of a railway
station, a church, a store and a couple of houses. It used to be the
terminal point of Portland Cement's overhead cableway system,
reputedly the longest in the country. Limestone was transported
over a distance of 8 km to the narrow gauge railway station which is
also the end point of the well known annual Great Train relay race between
Port Elizabeth and Loerie, where man pits his strength against the
power of the steam locomotive.
Cockscomb Mountain is a prominent landmark while we travel through the little known Stinkhout Berg Nature
Reserve wedged between Loerie and Hankey. This
area offers excellent wilderness hiking and birding for the fit and
adventurous. Should you be interested in pursuing these activities
please let us know and we will be only too happy to make the
boasts some of the most spectacular views of the broad fertile
Gamtoos valley floodplain. Our first stop after experiencing the
lush valley bushveld is at a giant sundial. It is usually too early
in the morning to synchronize our watches with the sundial time.
The grave of Sarah Baartman is also located here and worth
visiting. After this brief delay we
continue to Patensie 14 km away.
is surrounded by a mosaic of cultivated lands and orange groves.
Morning coffee and rusks at
a farm stall is the last stop in civilization and allows for a quick
browse through the wide variety of typical South African curios on
sale. (If open, otherwise we will have our coffee in the Groot Rivier
At Andrieskraal we stop to have a closer
look at the bust of Queen Victoria and the Enon conglomerate, a
cemented matrix of water borne pebbles. The road cuttings are
characterized by sheer cliffs of this geological
Shortly after this we arrive at the
gravel road between Patensie and Willowmore. The gravel road is
infamous for its condition, numerous river crossings, as well as the
steep mountain passes and is usually not recommended for
sedan vehicles. During the wet season the road is often closed for
The Grootrivier Poort takes us past Komdomo, a Nature
Conservation overnight campsite, and for the next ten kilometers we
encounter exquisite rock formations and lush vegetation which
provide us with an idea of the splendour to follow.
Cambria is a farming community where some
of the sweetest citrus in the region is produced. The name Cambria
(Welsh for the country of Wales) was bestowed on the
area by a early visitor who was struck by its resemblance to his
In the Poortjies Valley, watered by the
pristine Witrivier, we will encounter Knysna forest vegetation. It is
also the true portal to the Baviaanskloof wilderness
This ecologically sensitive system
contains a number of gems, including the George Lily and the red finned minnow,
a tiny freshwater fish.
Both will be encountered on our short
hike towards the waterfall, one of the lesser known marvels of this
unique area. Depending on the temperature, the pool at the foot of
the waterfall is the ideal opportunity to experience the crystal
clear water of the Baviaanskloof first hand.
this, we travel up the steep and very scenic Combrink's pass where we
can admire this feat of engineering and speculate on the hardships
suffered by early pioneers in the area.
On top of the pass is Bergplaas, a staging
point for various hiking trails in the area. Cape mountain zebras
were reintroduced in the area and if we are fortunate we will
encounter them and/or other antelope species which frequent the
Dry stone walls bear testimony of long departed
One of the farmers, Winston le Roux,
erected a cableway to bridge the gaping Waterpoort thereby providing
an effective link between the Enkeldoorn and Bergplaas farming
Constructed in the early 1960's, the system transported
farm produce (wheat, potatoes, vegetables and even livestock)
between the two areas bypassing the tortuous and time consuming road
Descending the Holgat Mountain Pass we
will admire Langkop a conical hill set against the backdrop of the
waters of the Kouga dam. Fynbos such as proteas, pincushions and
cone bush occur in profusion. Heaven for the botanists!
At the bottom of the pass we will briefly stop at Doodsklip wilderness camping site. Legend has it that
certain individuals died under strange circumstances at the site,
hence the imaginative name! Originally named Lemoentuin or Orange
Grove this area was extensively farmed until 1970. Flooding and
buyouts by the state put an end to farming in the area.
Five kilometers upstream we encounter Rooihoek wilderness camp which sports a natural swimming pool
fringed by an expansive stretch of white sandy beach.
depending on the temperature, we might decide to cool off in the
(usually) inviting waters of the Kouga River.
kilometers further on is Kruisrivier, located at the confluence of the
Kouga and Baviaanskloof rivers. This area is a favourite haunt of a
variety of antelope species such as Eland, Kudu and Bushbuck.
Shortly afterwards we will negotiate the Grassneck/Keerom Pass.
On reaching the summit of Grassneck Pass, the sentinels of the Baviaanskloof range will come into view with Scholtzberg
(1626m) dominating the Karoo skyline.
Next we will arrive at our destination
for the day.
Here we will enjoy true Baviaanskloof hospitality and traditional South African cuisine.
The rest of the afternoon can be spent
exploring the area's 4X4 and/or hiking trails or simply relaxing.
Our departure back to civilization will be with
heavy hearts but the return route is bound to be as pleasant and
exiting as our journey so far.
Should you wish to accompany us on a
Baviaanskloof or any other excursion in the region please obtain
further details by