The last stop of our journey took us into the Baviannskloof for 3 nights. This was some way east of Prince Albert and the journey ended with a 2 hour dirt road journey (80 kms).
The valley is sandwiched between the Baviannskloof and the Kougaberg mountains. This is a wilderness area and a world heritage site. We were told that the area is of the Cape Folded belt, a region which runs parallel to the coast, between Plettenberg Bay and Port Elizabeth. This was evidenced in the extraordinary rock formations of sand stone and lime stone – the soft stone being easily eroded over the years ….
The area has many rock paintings – although many have been damaged and removed …
The area also evidences 7 of the 8 biodomes found in South Africa and is an area where the fynbos is being studied. It was fairly easy to see the delineation between then – Acacia belt, Euphorbias and Aloes competing with the other vegetation.
We were lucky to stay at Sederkloof, an old farm, which has been sensitively developed into an eco-tourism lodge – you can hardly see the lodges until you reach them high above the dirt valley road – (a 10 minute drive in 4×4). It was very luxurious and we ate like kings! The room views were good too.
Whilst there, we did a few walks and went to look at the water system at Sewefontein. Despite its semi desert status, there is plenty of water from underground springs which is closely managed. Where the springs come to the surface, there is a wild fig forest; water supply is shared between the farmers on a “4 day on and 4 day off” basis all fed by an underground aquifer, which is refreshed by winter rains.
The grounds sported some game – Gemsbok, Kudu – reintroduced. There was mention of leopard in the area, although no-one seems to have seen them! They had Black Eagles and baboons as well.
The weather was a bit mixed with our last day being very cloudy ending in rain, but this cleared up as we left – so we got a sunset and sun rise during our stay.
Sadly, this brought to an end a very happy holiday. There is so much to see and do, I would strongly recommend this country as a holiday destination …