Hiking and Walking

The reserve’s walking and hiking trails have a rich history and it is common to see the markers from early explorers and pioneer settlers carved onto rock faces along the route.

Hiking trails

The beautiful hiking trails on this reserve head through forests, up mountains and alongside dams.

Help us protect nature

No fires/no picking of flowers or collecting of seeds/no hunting/no litter/dogs allowed on leashes.


Outeniqua Nature Reserve operates on a self-permit basis. Please download the self-permit document here.

Trail preparation

  • Wear comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a hat.
  • Do not hike alone.
  • Carry enough food and water with you.
  • Make sure you know what the weather conditions are before you depart.
  • Take a warm jacket/raincoat in winter.
  • Make sure you have a relevant map of the area.
  • Take a field medical kit with you for emergencies.
  • Obey all signage.
  • Stay in a group and on the trails.

Cradock & George Peak Day Walk

Trail distance: 19km to Cradock Peak; 17.2km to George Peak
Estimated time: 8 hours (Cradock Peak); 7 hours (George Peak); 9 hours combined

This is a strenuous and steep walk, but well worth it for the fantastic views of the Swartberg Mountains and the Garden Route coastline.

Pass-to-Pass Day Walk

Trail distance: 7.3km (including 2.6km detour to Losberg)
Estimated time: 3 hours

Offering fabulous views of the Outeniqua Mountains and the town of George, this short walking trail connects the Montagu and Outeniqua passes. There are steep climbs along the way.

Cradock Pass Day Walk

Trail distance: 24.8km
Estimated time: 8 hours

The trail follows the Cradock Pass, one of the first routes across the mountains, and is quite strenuous.

Cradock Peak Walk

Trail distance: 17km
Estimated time: 6 hours

The trail heads to the summit of George Peak. The steep climb provides fantastic views!

Forest Buzzard Walk

Trail distance: 2.2km
Estimated time: 1 hour

This is an easy circular route that passes through pine plantations, indigenous forests and a beautiful waterfall.

Witfontein Plantation Walks: Emerald Cuckoo Walk, Cross Walk, Burchell’s Coucal Walk, and Blackheaded Oriole Walk

Trail duration: Between 8km and 11km
Estimated time: Emerald Cuckoo Walk – 45 minutes, Cross Walk – 1.5 hours, Burchell’s Coucal Walk – 2 hours, Blackheaded Oriole Walk – 3 hours

These shorter trails wander through the Witfontein Forestry Station’s pine plantations and indigenous forest.