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Boosmansbos Wilderness Area

Map of Reserve area

Indigenous forest, mountain fynbos and rare birds make Boosmansbos a hiker’s paradise.

Where to Stay

What to Do

Birders should keep a keen eye out for the rare striped flufftail and other unusual species, such as the black and martial eagle and Knysna woodpecker. The crowned and booted eagle, red-winged and redneck francolin, Layard’s titbabbler and black-rumped button quail are also regularly spotted in the area. There have been more than 180 species of bird recorded in this region.

Paths are unmarked and hikers may choose their own routes. It is important to note that overnight huts provide basic shelter and there are no toilet facilities, so all waste and toilet paper must be buried. All refuse must be carried out. Fires are permitted in designated spots. Only 12 hikers are allowed on the trails each day.

Overnight Hiking

There are plenty of options to choose from given the 64km of marked paths in the Boosmansbos Wilderness Area. Hikers are welcome to follow their own route; however, it is important to be prepared with enough food and water, warm clothing, appropriate shoes and a good map. Hiking trails need to be booked in advance through CapeNature's Contact Centre on 087 087 8250.

Wilderness Trail

Trail distance: 27km

Estimated time: 11 hours (5 hours on first day and 6 hours on second day).

This is a two-day trail that follows an old jeep track making its way up Loerklip and back down Saagkuilkloof through indigenous forest, kloofs and mountain fynbos. Terrain can be difficult and hikers should prepare for bad weather conditions. A good map is essential. Birders will particularly enjoy this trail.

This is an exclusive hiking destination and advance bookings are essential, as only 12 hikers a day are allowed on the 64km of marked trails traversing the conservancy’s 14 200 hectares. Hikers pass through fragrant mountain fynbos, beautiful proteas and ericas before descending into the kloofs and the shade of the forest canopy. Look out for a variety of buck, mongoose and genet. Shy leopards seldom make an appearance. This is a birder’s paradise with nearly 200 species regularly spotted, including eagles and the double-collared sunbird.

Download the Boosmansbos Wilderness Area brochure below.

How to get there

From Cape Town: Take the N2 from Cape Town towards George. Just past Swellendam and Buffelsjag River, take the left-hand turn-off for Suurbraak/Barrydale. Turn left and continue through the town of Suurbraak and past the turn-off for Barrydale via Tradouwpass. The tar road becomes a dirt road. Continue till a T-junction, turn left and keep left at the next fork in the road. Follow the signs for the Grootvadersbosch Nature Reserve. The road ends at the entrance gates to the reserve; enquire at the office for directions to Boosmansbos.

GPS: 33 56 9.50 S 20 52 46.25 E

Office hours: 07:00–16:00

Tel: +27 (0)28 722 2412

Accommodation and permit bookings Tel: 087 087 8250

Conservation Fees


Overnight fee = R70


No children under 12 allowed

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