Experience the Desolate Beauty of the Kagga Kamma 4x4 Trail

While the Western Cape is dotted with 4×4 trails, the routes in the Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve offer up perhaps the most desolate beauty.

While you could go and rent a 4×4 for a day, it’ll be worth your while to visit for multiple days to get the most out of this magical destination.

Tucked away in the Cederberg Mountain Range, this part of the Western Cape is simultaneously sparse and abundant, and keeps adventurers coming back time and time again.

At about three hours from Cape Town, it’s not too far out of reach. Join us as we hit the hairy roads of the Kagga Kamma 4×4 trail.

Above: Night time landscape in the Cederberg, Western Cape, South Africa.

Renting a 4×4 in South Africa is a lot easier when knowing your requirements for the 4×4 terrain you are wanting to go on.

The trail itself spans some 100 kilometers through the Cederberg and reserve, crossing mountains and valleys set against jaw dropping backdrops.

It takes about six hours to complete – that’s if you can resist the temptation to stop and take in the magnificent surroundings.

With such exquisite areas to explore though, you’ll want to take on the route over a couple of days.

Above: 4×4 trail over rocky terrain in the Cederberg, Western Cape, South Africa.

 

The Kagga Kamma 4×4 trail comprises a network of off-road tracks that consist of gravel, stone, and sand, with plenty of steep areas for adventurous fun.

Ample twists and turns test both driver and vehicle, and multiple hair-raising ascents and descents add to the challenge.

Professional off-roaders suggest walking the drop into Joubert’s Werf before you attempt to drive it to scope out the terrain and its unexpected turns.

Above: 4×4 in the Cederberg Wilderness

 

Various accommodation options are available, such as bush camping rough in the wilderness, camping close to amenities, luxury cave dwellings, a selection of thatched rondavels or an open-air room.

 

Fauna

Antelope species in the reserve include, but are not limited to, Burchell’s zebra, eland, gemsbok, White-tailed gnu, Blue wildebeest, bontebok, springbok, Grey rhebok, duiker, klipspringer, and steenbok.

You’ll also find smaller animals like Dassies, rock rabbit, Cape hare, and striped polecat.

The reserve also plays host to the aardwolf, lynx, aardvark, black-backed jackal, caracal, and cape porcupine.

Above: Close-up of a four-toed elephant shrew sitting on a rock in the Cederberg Mountains.

Key predators include leopards, especially in the western canyon. On the plains, bird watchers should keep an eye out for ostrich, secretary birds, and kori bustards.

Closer to the resort, you can expect to find the cape robin, cape bulbul, cape sparrow, and house sparrow.

Above: Yellow Billed Black Duck, Cederberg Mountain Range.

Over winter and spring, Egyptian geese, red billed teal, black duck, and South African shelduck make open waters their home.

 

Rock Art

Bushman/San rock art, from 200 to nearly 6000 years old, can be found in a variety of places around Kagga Kamma.

A number of images depict the medicines the San used and others describe the trance experienced by shamans during tribal rituals.

Above: Elephant Rock art in Stadsaal Caves, Cederberg

The San and their ancestors inhabited this area for over 20 000 years, so the paintings are tough to date exactly.

 

 

 

 

Trail Details

  • Province: Western Cape
  • Terrain: Grade 4 in places with a mixture of soft sand and rocks
  • Guided/Unguided: Unguided, although guides are available at a fee
  • Open/Closed: Open all year round
  • Will I get lost? There’s a slim chance that you’ll lose your way – the 4×4 routes are on the Tracks4Africa map set.
  • Difficulty: Grade 2 mostly; some Grade 4
  • Nearest town: Prince Alfred Hamlet
  • Nearest fuel stop: Prince Alfred Hamlet
  • Bring: A hat, sunblock, camera, and swimming gear

 

 

Vehicle Requirements

  • Low-range? Yes
  • Diff-lock? Yes
  • Minimum Ground Clearance: 220mm
  • Tires: All-terrains
  • Recovery Points? Advisable
  • Underbody Protection? Advisable

 

Other Attractions

  • Rock art tours
  • Spa
  • Game drives
  • Quad biking
  • Cycling
  • Hiking
  • Stargazing
  • Observatory
  • Night drives
  • Bar
  • Restaurant
  • Bushman cultural tour
  • Sundowner trips

 

 

Directions

  • Take the N1 north
  • At Worcester, turn off to Ceres
  • In Ceres, follow the directions to Prince Alfred Hamlet and Citrusdal
  • After ascending Gydo Pass, turn right at the Kagga Kamma sign just after the small town of Op-die-Berg
  • After 18 km, turn right at the next Kagga Kamma sign onto a gravel road
  • Turn left at the sign after another 19 km
  • The entrance is another 15 km

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