Hiking in Mont Rochelle Nature ReserveFranschhoek
The spectacular Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve in Franschhoek offers a number of day hikes varying in difficulty. The Reserve is part of the UNESCO declared Boland Biosphere reserve and is home to a great diversity of fynbos including erica’s, proteas, pincushions and restios – as well as many bird species and some other small wildlife. Entrance to the reserve is at the top of the Franschhoek pass and entry permits (R20 p/p) and maps can be obtained at the tourism office in the Main Street, as well as from the Protea Hotel and the Huguenot Museum. Within the reserve, the pathways are well maintained and signposted.
The moderate walk to the View Point is 8km and takes about 3-hours. Hikers are rewarded with fantastic views. For the slightly fitter, a moderate to slightly strenuous hike to Du Toitskop takes about 5-hours and is 14km return. The walk is hilly and can be challenging in places. There are small rivers and rock pools to enjoy along the way, as well as good bird watching opportunities. A walk to Perdekop requires a high level of fitness and the 15km return route should take about 8-hours.
For those who would prefer a guided walk, these are available from Koringberg Toere. Retired professor Izak Rust is a registered field guide with a many years’ experience of nature guiding and extensive knowledge of the surroundings. For prices and details, email or telephone + 27 21 876 2659 or mobile 072 712 7784.