Adventure in the Winelands
Mountain Biking & Trail Running
If you’re prone to dirt trails, adrenaline, single tracks and sweat, we’ve got some ideas for mountain biking and trail running avenues that you can explore. We love that there are grades of punishment according to your fitness and fanaticism and there are companies creating some crazy adventures for you, including: Dirtopia Trail Centre, Ride In, Jonkershoek Valley Trails, Eden & Paradyskloof Trails and Bottelary Hills Mountain Bike Trails.
These are the go-to guys of trails. Whether on foot or mountain bike on the trails around Stellenbosch, Dirtopia organize permits, rent bikes and have all the knowledge to get you where you need to be if you love the sound of the sweetest single tracks to test the body and tame the soul. They’re well known for their extreme events – notching up 200 on their calendar for moon hikes to extreme lights night runs and MTB challenges.
Ride In is a relaxed one-stop shop for mountain bikers. You can hire your full-suspension bike here and there’s advice on trails and techniques. Located on a flower farm and close to the Jonkershoek Nature Reserve, it is a good launching spot for solo and family-size mountain bike trail rides. And a meal munch-in moment at its trendy café is a good way to reward and nourish post-ride.
Navigate the jeep and single tracks of the Jonkershoek Nature Reserve, located so close by we are virtually hugging its rugged ramparts. Everything from intermediate to technical over 10k or 45km routes on the Jonkershoek Valley Trails will activate the lactic acid and sure-fire the adrenaline. The reserve is all mountain and forest and a reminder that nature is necessary for the replenishment of the soul.
This is where the hardcore mountain bikers find their G-Spot, so named for its jumps and tight turns, usually reserved for those with a penchant for the technical. The Paradyskloof Pine Plantation is like a warren of tracks and trails, and single downhill riding is king here. The trails link up to the Coetzenberg zone or towards the Dalsig side of Eden. It may be paradise for some, and a version of not-paradise for the inexperienced.
This is a private collaboration of landowners in the name of conservation and in the interests of some serious jeep and single track fun. For intermediate to experienced riders, the trails all diverge off one main route in colour-coded loops that split off into vineyards, renosterveld, along jeep track, up panting-gradient climbs and down testy single tracks. Anyone for an adrenaline rush?
Hiking in the winelands
It’s such a boost to be slam dunk in the heart of hiking and biking country where short and longer trails skirt, meander and climb through nature reserves, vineyards, plantations, and valleys. From the novice to the seasoned hiker, this is trail heaven.
Waterfall Guided Hike
Aptly named the Adventure Shop, the hiking and guiding heroes of the day will help you navigate the Waterfall Hike, a short (6.5km) but audacious climb and scramble in parts. The good news is that the tricky sections can be bypassed by the faint of heart, and those who enjoy scrambling like mountain goats get to practice on the river rocks with vertical cliffs on either side as the sideshow.