Embark on one of the De Hoop Nature Reserve's hiking trails and discover one of the most beautiful and least-known areas of the Western Cape. In season, the De Hoop bay teems with breeding Southern Right whales and you can see dolphins all year round.

Did you know?

De Hoop's 1 500 plant species are amongst the finest of the Cape Floristic kingdom.

Put the De Hoop Nature Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage site, on your to do list. And be sure to walk any one of the many De Hoop hiking trails whilst there.

Officially the area is South Africa’s first private and public enterprise initiative between Cape Nature and the De Hoop Collection. The brains behind Madikwe Game Reserve, William Stephens and Carl Trielof, came up with the idea of cooperating with Cape Nature and re-inventing this incredibly beautiful and isolated area.

If you hike one of the inland De Hoop trails you’ll be knee-high in fynbos – yellows, corals, pinks, purples and 100s of shades of green. Among the more than 1 500 plant species in the area, gorgeous, rare proteas of different sizes and colours proliferate.

Among these fynbos plains you could also bump into bontebok, eland, Cape mountain zebra, baboons, red hartebeest and ostrich.

Far off you’ll see high white dunes lining 70km of beaches overlooking the De Hoop Marine Protected Area, which extends 5km out to sea. Take a marine walk at low tide to discover rock pools which octopi, starfish and other marine critters inhabit.

The 16km long De Hoop vlei, an internationally important Ramsar site, has an abundance of water birds of all kinds. Scramble along the edge of the vlei on a narrow well-marked trail to spot pelicans, flamingoes and migrant waders in season, fish eagles circling overhead, and, if you’re very lucky, a sleek Cape clawless otter cavorting at the water’s edge.

Whichever De Hoop trail you choose, you’ll be rewarded with unique memories.

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