The De Hoop Nature Reserve boasts a stunning setting East of Cape Agulhas in South Africa and provides an excellent wilderness experience. Travellers visiting the area can escape the crowds of the city and immerse themselves in an authentic outdoor environment, as well as enjoy a plethora of activities. De Hoop Reserve spans about 90,000 acres and is characterised by sea, dunes, rare fynbos plants, the Potberg Mountains, and the vlei. Its conservation area is named a World Heritage Site thanks to its rich diversity and 70 kilometres of pristine coastline. Nearby attractions and highlights include the Garden and Whale routes, Plettenberg Bay, and the Cape Winelands. De Hoop Reserve is approximately three to four hours from Cape Town, making it an ideal spot for a weekend or week-long escape from the city.
De Hoop Nature Reserve offers a complete outdoor experience, combing sea, sand, vlei, flowers, and mountains. Birding enthusiasts can observe waders on the shores of the vlei, while a colony of endangered Cape vultures call the Potberg Mountains home. Wildlife species on the reserve include the Cape Mountain zebra, bontebok, eland, ostrich, and baboons. De Hoop is also home to the elusive caracal and leopard. Furthermore, its marine reserve is a breeding ground for the southern right whale, and about 120 whales return to these waters every year to mate and calve.
The best time to visit De Hoop Reserve depends on what guests are looking for. From January to April and from September to December, the weather is warm and temperate. Spring or summer is probably the best time to see many flowers and plants in bloom. Between June and November, guests can spot many whales on the bay, a wonderful experience and definitely worth the visit.
Birders are in luck and can observe wading birds on the shores of the vlei, while those who want to explore a little more may spot a colony of endangered Cape vultures in the Potberg Mountains. Hikers and cyclists can experience close-up encounters with bontebok, Cape mountain zebra, eland, baboons and ostrich. There are plenty of activities at De Hoop Reserve, and guests can choose between day walks along trails that carve through the rich fynbos plains or along the deserted coastline. Mountain biking is popular, as are the scenic game drives. Additionally, guests can laze around on the beach or go snorkelling in the many turquoise rock pools.
Guests opting to stay on De Hoop Reserve are spoiled for choice when it comes to accommodation options. The De Hoop Collection features an array of accommodation—from affordable self-catering chalets and luxury self-catering cottages to upmarket catered lodges.