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Kogelberg Nature Reserve

Map of Reserve area

Kogelberg Nature Reserve is considered to be the most beautiful of CapeNature’s protected areas.

Where to Stay

What to Do

Limited parking at the start of trails is available on a first come, first served, basis.

In Kogelberg Nature Reserve, visitor numbers are limited and low-impact activities which are compatible with the wilderness atmosphere is encouraged. Hikers have several options, and should be prepared for fairly rough terrain and unpredictable weather. It is essential that hikers wear closed shoes while hiking in the Kogelberg. 

Easy to use trail maps for these hiking trails created by Forge can be downloaded here.

Day Walks

Various day hikes are available at R60 per adult and R30 per child. Permits may be purchased at the reserve office or bookings can be made via CapeNature Central Reservations office.

Multi-Day Hikes: The Highlands Trail is a moderate two-day overnight hike begins at the farm Iona. Accommodation is arranged with the owners. Bookings can be made via CapeNature Contact Centre on 087 087 8250. The trail takes approximately 6-7 hours on day and 8 hours on day two. The maximum group size is limited to 12 people.

The Highlands trail leads through private municipal and conservation land. Hikers on this trail are asked to make their own booking arrangement for overnight accommodation. Please take care when walking the trail and consider all parties involved.

Hiking Trails:

Palmiet River Walk

The Palmiet River Walk is an easy venture along the Palmiet River

Trail distance:  10 km

Estimated time: 3 hours

Trail Preparation: Wear comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a hat. Make sure to carry sufficient water and take along your swimwear and binoculars. In winter, a raincoat/pancho is advised. It’s recommended that the route is started no later than 14h00.

Oudebosch-Harold Porter

This is a moderate hike up Oudebosch gorge into Harold Porter Botanical Garden.

Trail distance:  6 km

Estimated time: 3 – 4 hours

Trail Preparation: Wear comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a hat. Make sure to carry sufficient water and take along your binoculars. In winter, a raincoat/pancho is advised.

A vehicle should be left at Harold Porter Botanical Gardens as this is a one-way route. Guests also have the option to backtrack on the trail after reaching the waterfall at the top of Oudebosch gorge. It is recommended that the route is started no later than 14h00 as the gate at Harold Porter Botanical Garden is locked at 18h00 if hikers choose to do the full hike.

Kogelberg Trail

This is a moderate to long walk along Oudebosch gorge passing through Oudebosch montane forest patch and passing in close proximity to the Platbos and Louw’s bos montane forest patches.

Trail distance:  24 km

Estimated time: 8 hours

Trail Preparation: Wear comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a hat. Make sure to carry sufficient water and take along your binoculars. In winter, a raincoat/pancho is advised. It is recommended that the trail is started no later than 10h00 in summer and 08h00 in winter.

Perdeberg Trail

This is a moderate to long walk starting from the Iona Wine Estate to Perdeberg peak lookout point.

Trail distance: 22km

Estimated time: 7 – 8 hours

Trail Preparation: Wear comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a hat. Make sure to carry sufficient water and take along your binoculars. In winter, a raincoat/pancho is advised. It is recommended that the trail is started no later than 10h00 in summer and 08h00 in winter.

Three Sisters Trail

This is a moderate walk starting from the Kleinmond Golf course.

Trail distance:  8km

Estimated time: 4 hours

Trail Preparation: Wear comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a hat. Make sure to carry sufficient water and take along your binoculars. In winter, a raincoat/pancho is advised. It is recommended that the trail is started no later than 13h00.

No permits are required for this trail, as it starts and ends on municipal property. Parking is available at Kleinmond Golf Course.

Houwhoek Trail

This is a moderate walk starting from the Houwhoek Inn

Trail distance: 8km

Estimated time:  3 hours

Trail Preparation: Wear comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a hat. Make sure to carry sufficient water and take along your binoculars. Permits are to be purchased via CapeNature Central Reservations, Houwhoek Inn or the reserve office prior to hike. In winter, a raincoat/pancho is advised. It is recommended that the trail is started no later than 14h00.

Rooisand Ramble 

This is an easy walk along the Rooisand boardwalk at the Botriver Estuary.

Trail distance: 5km

Estimated time: 2 hours

Trail Preparation: Wear comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a hat. Make sure to carry sufficient water and take along your binoculars. Permits are to be purchased via CapeNature Central Reservations or reserve office. In winter, a raincoat/pancho is advised. It is recommended that the trail is started no later than 15h00.

Highlands Trail

Moderate two-day overnight hike.

Trail distance: Day 1: 16km (Moderate) and Day 2: 21km (Difficult)

Estimated duration: Day 1: 6-7 hours and Day 2: 8 hours

Entrance requirements: Permit holders only, maximum group size is limited to twelve.

Day One
The Highlands Trail starts on the farm Iona and runs through the farmland (do not pick any fruit) and along a dam wall. (Please park opposite the Iona entrance where you will see a CapeNature sign indicating where you may park. Do not park at the Iona farm house.) Hereafter it joins up with a jeep track which runs through the plantations. The trail is clearly marked with wooden footprint signs at every intersection to prevent confusion. The path then winds through Fynbos and skirts pine plantations. It overlooks the Bot River Vlei, wetlands and coastline.

The trail leads down the mountain toward the tar road and takes you through some private farmland towards the Bot Rivier Vlei, which you will need to cross (during winter the water can be waist deep) and head towards Kleinmond. Overnight accommodation to be arrange within the town of Kleinmond at own cost. Day 2 of trail starts from the Kleinmond Golf Course.

Day Two

The second day starts from the overnight hut. Painted footprints, on the road surface, can be followed. The hike traverses around the Three Sisters peaks and up to Perdeberg before leading back through private conservation land.

Please take care when walking the trail and consider all parties involved. The maintenance of this natural area is a shared responsibility of management and users.

Trail Preparation: Wear comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a hat. Make sure to carry sufficient food and water for the overnight trip. Permits are to be purchased via CapeNature Central Reservations. In winter, a raincoat/poncho and warm clothing is strongly advised.

Take a scenic self-drive along the coast in Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve, and you'll be able to enjoy a little whale watching.

Kogelberg is a bird haven for numerous species and a bird list can be requested at the reserve office. A boardwalk and bird hide is available on Rooisand Ramble. There is one small step at start of the boardwalk. Visit Stony Point, part of the Marine Protected Area, where you can see the African penguin colony. Entrance to the Stony Point area is R30 per adult and R20 per child over the age of 3 years, payable at the gate.

Rooisand Nature Reserve is about 12 kilometers drive from Kogelberg Nature Reserve on the R44 towards Arabella Estate.

View Bird list: 

A moderate 22km ride along the jeep track through the Kogelberg Valley starts at the reserve office. The route should take between 2-4 hours. Please use sunscreen, protected riding gear and make sure you have plenty of water on the trail. Permits can be purchased from the reserve office.

Please note mountain bikers must be wearing helmets at all times.


Small game can be viewed in the reserve. Wild horses can also be spotted on the Rooisand Ramble route. Permits may be purchased at the reserve office or bookings can be made via CapeNature Central Reservations office. Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve is part of the Cape Floristic Region and is a World Heritage Site.


Swimming is permitted on the Palmiet River Walk at the demarcated swimming spots. We politely ask hikers to only swim at these designated swimming spots for their own safety and refrain from going off-trail to swim.


Permits may be purchased at the reserve office, or bookings can be made via CapeNature Central Reservations office.

The nature reserve also has two eco-pools situated at the Oudebosch and Mbali Collection Eco Cabins, respectively. Guests are encouraged to take a shower before making use of the naturally filtered pools. These are available to overnight guests only.

White water kayaking is allowed each year on the Palmiet River. Bookings for white water kayaking can be made through outside operators.

Gravity Adventures, a certified river operator, is permitted to take members of the public on the river.

Their trips are designed so that they can offer clients an exciting experience in both seasons and enables them to run all year round.

At medium and high water levels Gravity offers thrilling white-water rafting in two-person inflatable 'crocodiles’ or four person rafts, and at low levels they offer tubing trips on inflatable 'geckos'.

This innovative inflatable craft has been specially developed for the Palmiet. If used in a reclining position, it provides a comfortable way to drift lazily along the pools and channels of the river and if used facing forward, an exciting way of tackling the small rapids.

The Palmiet River Experience is suitable for all ages and skill levels - Gravity provides qualified and registered guides with an intimate knowledge of the river and its environment and instruction on how to steer your craft. Gravity supplies you with wetsuits and all safety equipment for the trip. Please bring towels, dry clothes and closed shoes or booties.

To book, please contact Gravity adventures, click here.

There is limited parking for day visitors at Kogelberg Nature Reserve - availability is strictly on a first come first served basis.

At Kogelberg, a sensitive core of 18 000ha of the reserve has been kept pristine and wild. Here there is much biological diversity and conservation is the priority. Only activities which do not adversely affect natural processes and wildlife are allowed.

If you have driven along the R44 between Gordon's Bay and Kleinmond, you would have marveled at the beauty of the Kogelberg. The reserve’s pristine beauty abounds all year round - during the blazing heat of summer when green is not what you expect, or in rains and mists of winter when torrents of water cascade down rock faces that were bone dry only weeks before.

The whole area is inspirational and one of more than 400 biosphere reserves worldwide. Kogelberg was South Africa’s first registered biosphere reserve and it encompasses the entire coastal area from Gordon’s Bay to the Bot River estuary, and inland to Grabouw and the Groenland Mountain. 

To find out more, download the Kogelberg Nature Reserve brochure, cabin map, and survival guide below.

How to get there

From Cape Town, take the N2 north. Just before Sir Lowry's Pass, turn right on to Sir Lowry's Pass Road. At the T-junction in Gordon's Bay, turn left on to the R44, following the road along the coast, past Pringle Bay and Betty's Bay. Just before you reach Kleinmond you will see the sign for Kogelberg, taking the dirt road to the left.

Kogelberg Nature Reserve contact information

Reserve office hours: 07h30 – 16h00

Gate Times:

07:30 – 18:00 April – August

07:30 – 19:00 September - March

Emergencies: 

Report any emergencies to the Kogelberg welcome centre during day time hours, and the overnight security located in the trailer at the welcome centre – during night time hours.

Accommodation and permit bookings Tel: 087 087 8250

Cell phone reception: No reception, last reception point is at the turn from the tar road onto the gravel road.

GPS: 34 19 21.0 S 18 57 58.2 E

Explore our hiking trails

What Our Guests Say

Everything was superb, the Pamiet Honeymoon suite was a highlight. Good value for money and on same level as private luxury accommodation at double the price per night.
Chris Meiring 13 Jun 2024
Stayed at the Palmiet Cabin. This one is incredible with that view. It fells like a luxury retreat for a small price. One of the best experiences we had on our South Africa trip. And the stuff is friendly and competent - in out experience this is not often the case in capenature or san parks.
Dan 15 Nov 2023
It was perfect!
Jennifer Harburn 1 Sep 2023
Our stay at the reserve was perfect. The service is world class - we were greeted by Brian at the Kogelberg nature reserve who checked us in and answered all our questions. He is excellent at his job.We were also assisted by the security guard named Avela and one of the staff named Isagk, they were both extremely helpful.
Ivana Abreu 1 Sep 2023
We had a fantastic experience. The staff was extremely welcoming and helpful.
14 Jun 2023
This place was fantastic in every respect, and the staff are all brilliant and professional.
14 Jun 2023
The stay was absolutely wonderful, the nature reserve is beautiful and we will definitely be coming back! An amazingly, relaxing weekend away!
14 Jun 2023
Everything was perfect, we will come again and again!!
14 Jun 2023
Kogelberg is really one of my favourite places in the world and this was my third trip and I will be back. The work you do to preserve this special place is so important and I really appreciate it. ||The cottages are part of the experience and add to my enjoyment of my visit. I really appreciate that they are so well designed and so much attention has been paid to the details. I have some inkling of how much work must go into maintaining them and I applaud the job you are doing and urge you to keep it up. This visit for the first time there were one or two things that we not working and I just want to say that although it didn't materially affect my stay - I urge you to address those small details so that it remains such a high level experience. I was in the Strooibloometjie pod and the mirror was off the wall and just leaning on the floor and the water filter wasn't functional.||The previous two occasions I stayed at Kogelberg there was an internet hotspot available for limited use at the office. While I don't want full internet access or cell phone signal - in fact that would be most unpleasant . I love that I can totally unplug and do a digital detox. Having some limited access at the office was ideal so I could just keep in touch with family once a day so that they knew I was safe. I was traveling on my own and it was not ideal that I had to drive to the gate to let family know I was okay. Please consider having the limited hotspot - even if it was at an additional charge as a service especially for solo travellers.
14 Jun 2023
Lovely stay, thank you!
4 Jul 2023
Wouldn't change a thing. Escape from reality is needed!
4 Jul 2023
We loved every minute. The Reserve is amazing and the accommodation is really well designed and well equipped. We just feel that there should be better waste separation considering it is an eco cabin. We'd love to see compost and recyclables separated.
2 Jul 2023
Beautiful accommodation, well equipped kitchenette, clean towels and bedding. A lovely place.
24 Jul 2024
The Eco Pods were world-class! Great value, extremely well appointed, tastefully decorated and well designed!
24 Jul 2024
We had an excellent debriefing when we arrived and had all the cooking and lighting equipment in the cottage for load shedding. I appreciated the phone call we received before we arrived to let us know that the oven was not working so that we could plan our meals.
24 Jul 2024
Tariffs

Experience a sustainable stay in our eco-cabins at affordable rates. Our rates start at R1 330 per night for two persons, R1 410 per night for up to four persons, and R2 900 per night for up to six persons. In addition, you can also participate in our activities for a nominal fee of R60 per adult and R40 per child per day.

See Tariffs
Conservation Fees

Adults

Day Access = R60 ; Overnight fee = R40 (18+ years)

Children

Day Access = R40; Overnight fee = R20 (4-17 years)

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Filming
Kogelberg Nature Reserve Filming

The Western Cape is world renowned as being able to offer almost every possible cinematic location imaginable. CapeNature offers film producers a wide selection of the most breathtaking landscapes including mountains, dams, waterfalls, rivers and roads.

Find out more
What our guests say
Good value for money and on same level as private luxury accommodation, 13 Jun 2024
Everything was superb, the Pamiet Honeymoon suite was a highlight. Good value for money and on same level as private luxury accommodation at double the price per night.
Stayed at the Palmiet Cabin. This one is incredible with that view., 15 Nov 2023
Stayed at the Palmiet Cabin. This one is incredible with that view. It fells like a luxury retreat for a small price. One of the best experiences we had on our South Africa trip. And the stuff is friendly and competent - in out experience this is not often the case in capenature or san parks.
Kogelberg Review 9, 01 Sep 2023
It was perfect!
Kogelberg Review 8, 01 Sep 2023
Our stay at the reserve was perfect. The service is world class - we were greeted by Brian at the Kogelberg nature reserve who checked us in and answered all our questions. He is excellent at his job.We were also assisted by the security guard named Avela and one of the staff named Isagk, they were both extremely helpful.
Kogelberg Review 7, 14 Jun 2023
We had a fantastic experience. The staff was extremely welcoming and helpful.
Kogelberg Review 6, 14 Jun 2023
This place was fantastic in every respect, and the staff are all brilliant and professional.
Kogelberg Review 5, 14 Jun 2023
The stay was absolutely wonderful, the nature reserve is beautiful and we will definitely be coming back! An amazingly, relaxing weekend away!
Kogelberg Review 4, 14 Jun 2023
Everything was perfect, we will come again and again!!
Kogelberg Review 3, 14 Jun 2023
Kogelberg is really one of my favourite places in the world and this was my third trip and I will be back. The work you do to preserve this special place is so important and I really appreciate it. ||The cottages are part of the experience and add to my enjoyment of my visit. I really appreciate that they are so well designed and so much attention has been paid to the details. I have some inkling of how much work must go into maintaining them and I applaud the job you are doing and urge you to keep it up. This visit for the first time there were one or two things that we not working and I just want to say that although it didn't materially affect my stay - I urge you to address those small details so that it remains such a high level experience. I was in the Strooibloometjie pod and the mirror was off the wall and just leaning on the floor and the water filter wasn't functional.||The previous two occasions I stayed at Kogelberg there was an internet hotspot available for limited use at the office. While I don't want full internet access or cell phone signal - in fact that would be most unpleasant . I love that I can totally unplug and do a digital detox. Having some limited access at the office was ideal so I could just keep in touch with family once a day so that they knew I was safe. I was traveling on my own and it was not ideal that I had to drive to the gate to let family know I was okay. Please consider having the limited hotspot - even if it was at an additional charge as a service especially for solo travellers.
Kogelberg Review 2, 04 Jul 2023
Lovely stay, thank you!
Kogelberg Review 3, 04 Jul 2023
Wouldn't change a thing. Escape from reality is needed!
Kogelberg Love, 02 Jul 2023
We loved every minute. The Reserve is amazing and the accommodation is really well designed and well equipped. We just feel that there should be better waste separation considering it is an eco cabin. We'd love to see compost and recyclables separated.
Beautiful accommodation, 24 Jul 2024
Beautiful accommodation, well equipped kitchenette, clean towels and bedding. A lovely place.
Eco Pods, 24 Jul 2024
The Eco Pods were world-class! Great value, extremely well appointed, tastefully decorated and well designed!
We had an excellent debriefing, 24 Jul 2024
We had an excellent debriefing when we arrived and had all the cooking and lighting equipment in the cottage for load shedding. I appreciated the phone call we received before we arrived to let us know that the oven was not working so that we could plan our meals.
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Events Calendar
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27 Jun 2024
CapeNature Conservation Review 2024
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2 Feb 2024
World Wetlands Day 2024
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23 Sep 2023
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7 Sep 2023

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