Baviaans and gamkaskloof

Lets go local…..

Time to explore…..

  • 20 – 28 August 2022 R5 250 p/p sharing

Let’s go local and explore the hidden gems in our backyards

We must go beyond textbooks, go out into the bypaths and un-trodden depths of the wilderness and travel and explore and tell the world the glories of our journey –  “John Hope Franklin”

Come share our passion to travel to lesser and sometimes unknown locations, meet local people, experience their worlds and in the process – creating life-enriching experiences and making memories to last a lifetime, all while having the most fun you can. Come live this adventure without just being a spectator.


The Baviaanskloof Wilderness Area lies approximately 120 km west of Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa and comprises of approximately 270 000 ha of unspoiled, rugged mountainous terrain. Starting in the East at Komdomo, the road leads through the rugged beauty of the “Grootrivier” Gorge on its winding path through this pristine conservancy, all the way towards Willowmore in the West. A total distance of about 203 km. The area offers a wide range of eco-recreational opportunities as well as an unique wilderness experience.

Set in the Karoo Midlands, the Baviaans area features majestic mountains rising from rolling plains, with lush green valleys providing stark contrast. With stunning sunsets and clear, starry nights, the Baviaans offers a taste of life at its unspoilt best.


Gamkaskloof or “Die Hel” as it has become known, is a hidden valley, deep in the heart of the formidable Swartberg Mountain Range. The fertile valley runs in an east-west direction and is approximately 20 km long and 600 meters wide.The Kloof gets it’s name from the Khoisan word for Lion – Gamka – also the name of the river that enters the valley from the north. There are about 153 species of bird-life in Gamkaskloof, even the fish eagle makes it’s appearance from time to time. Wildlife includes – Klipspringers, Grey Rhebuck, Rooikat, Porcupines, Leopard etc. The Valley features the Gamka River, several historic houses and outbuildings, a school, a cemetery and old norse watermill a landing strip and a curious history.

Swartberg switchbacks

Places to visit….

  • Kudu Kaya
  • Doodsklip
  • Doringkloof
  • Baviaanskloof
  • Die Hel
  • Gamkaskloof
  • Many farm and roadside stalls
  • Hiking
  • Birding
  • Kango caves (opsional)
  • Swartberg Pass
  • Schoemanspoort Pass
  • Elands Pass
  • Swimming in rock pools

Lets do adventure…

This adventure will start in Keurboomstrand from where we leave en-route to Kudu Kaya for our first night. A large variety of birds, including Knysna Loeries, can be observed on the farm and walking trails.

A distinct ecological community

A UNESCO World Heritage Site as well as a Cape Floristic Region protected area, Baviaanskloof (Valley of the Baboons) is a magnificent mountain kingdom spanning 2 040km, boasting seven of South Africa’s
nine biomes – fynbos, forest, grassland, succulent Karoo, Nama-Karoo, subtropical thicket and savannah. At the eastern entrance to the reserve is the World Heritage Site Interpretive Centre with dedicated displays that showcase the reserve.
Guides are on hand to show us around the centre and explain all about the rich biodiversity, cultural heritage and natural wonders that make
Baviaanskloof one of the most spectacular regions in the country.
In addition to the scenic splendour of the region, Baviaanskloof is fast gaining recognition as one of South Africa’s premier adventure destinations. Traversing this reserve by 4×4 up rugged mountain passes, through rivers and across the plateau, is an unforgettable true wilderness experience.


Dag 1… Kudu Kaya (Vol Ablusies)
Ons ontmoet mekaar die oggend om 7:30 by Thyme en Again oorkant die Keurboomstrand afdraai waar daar ‘n “briefing” gehou sal word voor ons vertrek na Nature’s Valley en die Tsitsikamma-woud se Groot Boom.
Volgende stop is die Bloukrans Pas en-route na Stormsrivier waar ons by die Marilyn’s 60’s diner gaan brunch
eet (opsioneel).
Na ete vertrek ons na Hankey waar ons gaan loer na die grootste sun dial in Suid Afika asook die graf van Sarah Baartman. Patensie en sy padstalletjies is volgende voor ons verder reis na Kudu Kaya waar ons gaan oornag.
Day 2… Doodsklip (Only Toilet)
We will leave camp at 9:00 for our first day in the Baviaans. We will do occasional stops for photos and the very interesting cableway. We have booked Doodsklip in the Park to call home.
Dag 3… Doringkloof (Vol Ablusies)
Ons vertrek om 9 uur na ons volgende kamp te Doringkloof. Ons sal nie ver van waar ons geslaap het, by Smitskraal of Doringkraal, stop vir brunch.
Day 4… Pienaarsrivier eco camp (Bush Toilet and shower)
Today is a very busy day with lots to see and do. We will have an early start leaving camp at 8. Breakfast /brunch will be available at Bavijaans Padstal and Wifi for those in need to contact the outside world for the first time in 4 days. We will go via Willowmore and vissit Kapoet to stock up on true Karoo products before we find our way to Katot Meyer’s farm – Pietersrivier via the Prins Alfred pass. He has a surprise waiting for you.
More things to do and see:
• Cambell memorial
• Sewefontein
• Wildfig Forest
• Babe’s se winkel
• Willowmore for lunch
• Uniondale
(Depending on our time frame we might skip Willowmore and go direct to Uniondale)

Dag 5… Oppi Dam (Vol Ablusies)
Vandag gaan ons bos toe, Knysna bos toe. Daar waar Ninna groot geword het. Ons verlaat Katot se plaas om 9 uur via Kom se Pad na Knysna en stop by Knysna Heads. Volgende is George en Oudshoorn. Ons tuiste vir die volgende 2 aande is by Oppi Dam buite Oudshoorn. Lekker winkeltjie en klein drankwinkeltjie by kampplek.
Ons ry die ou Montagu Pas tussen George en Oudshoorn en ons eet pannekoek by Herold se ou poskantoor.
Day 6 … Oppi Dam (Full Ablusions)
On our to do list for day 6 is the Rust en Vrede Waterfall as well as the Raubenheimer dam view point. We’ll
leave Oppi Dam at 9 to view the waterfall.
The rest of the day is open for those wishing to visit either:
• Cango Caves
• Ostrich Farm
• Cango Wildlife Sanctuary
• Oudshoorn
• Wilgewandel Padstal
Tonight is braai night where I will put my culinary skills to the test to treat you with a lekker braai and sides.
Day 7… Gamkaskloof en Die Hel (Bos Toilet en stort)
Vandag is weer ‘n besige dag met n vroeë begin. Ons verlaat Oppi Dam om 8 uur na De Rust en Meiringspoort waar ons gaan stop by die Meiringspoort Waterval.
Volgende is Klaarstroom en sy hotel waar ons sal koffie drink of ‘n bier vir die wat nie van koffie hou nie. Prins Albert is ons “eet stop” en die Hotel op Prins Albert is bekend vir sy lekker kos.
Vandag is ook Swartberg Pas dag. Ons doen die eerste deel van die ongelooflike mooi pas en dan weer af met die Gamkaskloof pas na Die Hel toe. Ons ry maar redelik stadig en stop gereeld vir fotos.
Dag 8… Matjiesvlei (Vol Ablusies)
Laaste dag, dis hier waar ons nie kan glo hoe vinnig tyd gevlieg het nie. Ons verlaat die campsite om 9 uur na Die Hel museum en ou plaasopstalle waarna ons dan weer ons pad uit Die Hel vind om die laaste deel van die Swartberg Pas te gaan aandurf. Ons stop vir iets om te eet en drink by die baie bekende Kobus se gat.
Ons ry dan ook die Huis Se Hoogte pas asook die baie mooi Kruisrivierpoort Pas na Calitzdorp.
Matjiesvlei plaas is baie bekend en was die verbygaan plek vir die destydse mense wat nog uit Die Hel moes stap beskawing toe.
Day 9… Good bye after coffee.
This is a good opportunity to continue your journey further south on Route 62

What do you need:

  1. A good reliable, serviced 4-wheel drive vehicle or high clearance 4×2
  2. Fuel range of app. 350km
  3. Camping equipment and cooking/braai accessories.
  4. Fridge/Freezer
  5. Last but not least – A good sense of humour and a positive outlook.

2 way radios will be supplied by ourselves.

Price includes:

  • All camping fees
  • Conservation fees
  • Park entry fees
  • 2 dinners
  • Tour guide with vast knowledge of area and qualified paramedic
  • Use of 2 way radios for communication, constant updates and history

Not included:

  • 4×4 vehicle hire
  • Fuel
  • Food
  • Daily activities
  • Transfer fees
  • Game drives

Travel and tour company guiding self drive adventures in Southern Africa

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