CapeNature, a conservation authority in the Western Cape is unveiling a piece of protected land for visitors to access in the Gamkaberg Nature Reserve outside Oudtshoorn.
The Gamkaberg Nature Reserve was established in 1974, with this piece of land remaining closed off to the public. CapeNature CEO, Dr Razeena Omar, explains: “The rock art in Gamkaberg Nature Reserve is estimated to be between 1 500 and 2 000 years old and there are approximately 40 rock art sites scattered within the Protected Area. Each of these sites has spiritual significance and records lifestyles and stories of the Khoi and San people.”
The reserve is also ecologically important as it is home to three key biomes: Fynbos, Succulent Karoo and Albany Thicket. Provincial Minister for Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, Anton Bredell, says: “We need people to remain interested and invested in their natural environments so we need to make places like Gamkaberg more and more attractive for tourists who will bring their tourism dollars to places like these and plough them back into the local community.” The rare and endangered Cape Mountain zebra, leopard and honey badger are some of the reserve’s highlights.
A new two-sleeper glamping accommodation option has also opened.
The Xami Eco lodge offers guests wheelchair-friendly accommodation in a secluded part of the reserve, with minimal impact on the environment. The lodge has a private kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, open-plan lounge and braai (barbecue) area as well as a splash pool. The reserve also has accommodation facilities for larger groups, and campsites.
In addition to the new heritage sites, visitors to Gamkaberg can enjoy newly opened rock-climbing spots at Tierkloof.