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Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Cederberg Mountains – a natural playground in the Western Cape

The Cederberg Mountains, Western Cape
The Cederberg Mountains are home to dramatic sandstone formations like the Maltese Cross and rich plant and animal life. These mountains also enchant visitors with their San rock paintings, and are an excellent destination for rock climbing and hiking.

The Cederberg Mountains are noted for their dramatic, wind-carved sandstone formations like the Maltese Cross and the Wolfberg Arch, as well as San rock paintings.
The range is situated near Clanwilliam, between two and three hours - about 200km - drive from Cape Town. The area offers plenty of space and tranquility, as well as activities ranging from rock climbing, to swimming in rock pools, visiting a rooibos tea farm and viewing ancient San rock paintings.
The 71 000ha Cederberg Wilderness Reserve, proclaimed in 1973, includes the Cederberg Mountain range and is known for its abundant spring flowers and fertile valleys in the surrounding dry landscape, as well as rugged mountainous landscape.
Animal life includes dassies in rocky areas, small antelope like klipspringers and reedbuck and mountain zebras. Leopards and caracals also inhabit the Cederberg while raptors float above scanning the grasslands for small rodents. The mountain range offers two notable peaks – Tafelberg, which is not to be confused with Table Mountain in Cape Town, and Sneeuberg, or snow mountain. The former is also one of the most popular peaks for hiking along with the cliffs of Krakadouw.

The spectacular landscape and wide range of activities make the Cederberg Mountains well worth a visit. While visiting, why not try a wine tasting at the highest wine estate in South Africa – Cederberg Cellars.

Travel tips & Planning info

Who to contact
Cape Nature
Tel: +27 (0)861 227 362 8873

Cape Town Tourism
Tel: t: +27 (0)21 487 6800

How to get here
The Cederberg lie about 200km north on the N7 from Cape Town.

Tours to do
Tours of ancient rock paintings of the San people, hiking amongst fynbos and dramatic rock formations, wine-tasting at the Cederberg Cellars, the highest wine estate in South Africa, and donkey cart rides through the mountains are on offer.

Get around
It's best to rent a car and drive yourself.

What to pack
Pack sturdy boots, warm clothes, binoculars and a camera for this spectaular experience.

Where to stay
There are a number of hotels (including the upmarket and award-winning Bushmans Kloof), camping sites and b&bs in the area. Check with Cape Nature or Cape Town Tourism.

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The Expeditionist

The Expeditionist
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