With nothing but rolling dunes in sight, De Hoop Nature Reserve lies just 3 hours from Cape Town. Along the southern coast of South Africa in the Overberg region is an unforgettable oasis that forms a member of the Cape Country Routes.

Spread across vast beauty and biodiversity, this protected area offers a picturesque blend of pristine landscapes, diverse ecosystems, abundant wildlife and a tranquil haven for nature getaway makers and adventure seekers alike.

Home away from home

A once working farm, the 36 000 hectares of paradise has been dubbed a World Heritage Site and will be your home away from home with the different accommodation options.

From suites and cottages to campsites, rondavels and villas, the reserve offers quaint accommodation options for everyone – even the ultimate family getaway. All accommodation is self-catering, however, centred at the hub of the reserve is The Fig Tree Restaurant which is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner that overlooks the pristine vlei.

Image credit: De Hoop Collection





A tapestry of ecosystems

One of the most remarkable features of De Hoop Nature Reserve is its rich tapestry of ecosystems, each contributing to the area’s unparalleled biodiversity. From the expansive dunes and limestone cliffs to ancient forests and fynbos-covered hills, the reserve encompasses a wide range of habitats, providing a home to an extraordinary array of plant and animal species.

A wonderland of wildlife

For the nature and wildlife enthusiasts, De Hoop is nothing short of a paradise. The reserve is renowned for its population of Cape Mountain zebra, bontebok, and eland, as well as other iconic African species, such as ostriches and baboons.

It is a sanctuary for birdwatchers. The bird life includes endangered species like the African black oystercatcher and the Cape vulture.

Image credit: De Hoop Collection

Image credit: De Hoop Collection

The hike to a view deck to watch the soaring vultures was an experience we will never forget. Being surrounded by the birds taking flight so high in the sky was the epitome of majestic. We sat in awe of them and marvelled at the wonder of these animals of the sky.

Marine marvels

The wonders of De Hoop extend beyond its terrestrial realms. The reserve’s coastline is a sanctuary for marine life as well, offering visitors the opportunity to witness the great annual southern right whale migration.

From June to November, these gentle giant creatures gather in the sheltered waters of the De Hoop Marine Protected Area to calve and nurse their young, providing a spectacle that is both awe-inspiring and humbling.

De Hopp Nature Reserve is claimed to be the best land-based whale-watching area and we can confirm this. Although no whales were spotted on our visit due to the time of year, the real-life stories don’t lie.

Image credit: De Hoop Collection

The adventures continue

Over and above its natural beauty, De Hoop also offers a plethora of outdoor activities for everyone to enjoy. Hiking trails meander through diverse landscapes, offering breathtaking views and encounters with various wildlife along the way. Mountain biking, birdwatching, interactive marine walks, and discovering the depths of ocean life brought to shore are among the most popular. The guided eco boat trip is a chance to step off land and be immersed in the vlei to discover more fun-filled history about this magnificent getaway.

Image credit: De Hoop Collection

Conservation at its core

At the heart of De Hoop Nature Reserve lies a commitment to conservation and sustainable management. The reserve plays a crucial role in protecting the region’s biodiversity and ecosystems, working tirelessly to preserve its natural heritage for future generations to enjoy. Through initiatives such as habitat restoration, anti-poaching efforts, and community engagement, De Hoop strives to ensure that its natural treasures remain intact for years to come.

Image credit: De Hoop Collection

Plan your visit

Plan your visit to De Hoop Nature Reserve today! Whether you’re embarking on a thrilling whale-watching adventure, exploring the reserve’s hiking trails, or simply basking in the beauty of its pristine beaches, one thing is for certain – a journey to De Hoop is an experience you’ll never forget. You can visit their website for more information at www.dehoopcollection.co.za


Early southern sapiens exhibition opens at De Hoop Collection

Feature image: De Hoop Collection

Originally published in Woman&Home Magazine.