Our 5 Favourite Hiking Trails in Stellenbosch
We’ve donned our boots and tested the trails close to our doorstep, (and some further away) to get you inspired. We love the Jonkershoek First Waterfall hike in the proximate Jonkershoek Nature Reserve, a leisurely hike compared to the 17km Panorama trail, which requires more stamina, but delivers on views. Pain is gain if you want to collect the best aspects of mountain peaks and fynbos – and here’s where the Botmaskop, Berg River and Boland Hiking trails offer big rewards for effort.
Jonkershoek First Waterfall Hike
We’re so lucky to have the Jonkershoek Nature Reserve on our doorstep. We also love the fact that we can gather in the best panoramic mountain views and collect our breaths at the first waterfall on this gentle trail, after only 15 minutes of walking. Overhangs of foliage next to the Eerste River banks generate the perfect picnic spots along the way.
The 17 km Panorama Trail in the Jonkershoek Nature Reserve is for nature lovers who prefer a moderate to strenuous outing. The trail takes its name from the views of the Jonkershoek valley, more dramatic with every kilometer.
This big brother of mountain peaks, Botmaskop Mountain, is said to be the 578th highest in the Western Cape. Hiking to the top is short in hours (2-3) but steep in gradient. It’s worth the breathless anticipation and pain in the calves, because the views at the summit are inspiring.
Berg River Hiking Trail
This 7 hour trail traverses scenery that is worthy of intermittent “wows”. The start is the Jonkershoek Nature Reserve, and enquiry at the office will get you more detail on the specifics of the route. Hikers will traverse the Panorama tails over the saddle into Franschhoek, inviting views of the valley, pristine fynbos and the Berg River along the way. An early start is a must-do as well as a healthy penchant for the outdoors.
While all routes begin and end at the Nuweberg offices, not all paths are equal. There are 5km trails for those who enjoy leisure hiking and a return to creature comforts at the end of the day. For the adventurous and fit, longer hikes intervened by overnight hut stays at Landroskop or Boesmanskloof are popular.