Goukamma Nature Reserve and Marine Protected Area is situated on the Cape south coast’s scenic Garden Route, lying approximately 40km east of George and 25km west of Knysna. The Reserve covers an area of about 2500ha, while the Marine Protected Area extends along approximately 18km of coastline from Buffalo Bay towards Sedgefield, and one nautical mile (1,85 km) out to sea. Goukamma highlights include an extensive dune field with some of the highest vegetated dunes in South Africa and the unique Groenvlei lake which has no inflowing rivers and only an underground link to the sea.
The Blombos Trail’s design is aimed primarily at bird spotters. It also has three different options: a short route (6.5 km), medium route (13 km) and long route at 15 km (all of them circular).
Things you can look forward to during your hike include the ocean, fynbos, panoramic views from inclines, beach walking, seaside pools and miles of uninterrupted sand.
The Blombos hiking route starts from the reserve’s second entrance (Groenvlei turn-off), taking you almost immediately across the large dune visible from the N2. The views from the lake from here are exceptional.
Combining the Blombos with the Cape Clawless Otter route makes a good 20 km day’s hike, but you will need an early start. Keep an eye on the tides, as some places are difficult to pass during high tide.
You don’t need to book ahead to hike, but you will need a hiking permit from the reserve. Go in September/October when the spring flowers add colour to the fynbos.
Start: Goukamma Nature Reserve
Duration: 15 km