Hiking in the Helderberg Nature

Reserve

The Helderberg Nature Reserve is found in Somerset West. That is about an hours drive from Cape Town. Surrounded by beautiful wine farms and with wonderful views over False Bay, The Helderberg offers some wonderful walks and hikes suitable for everyone.

Entry to the reserve costs R10 per person and R5 per vehicle. Once inside you are reminded of Kirstenbosch gardens as there are well manicured lawns, picnic areas, a tea shop and a gift shop. On a weekend there are numerous family picnics taking place whilst in the evenings there are a number of concerts on offer. Also like Kirstenbosch is the mountain in the backdrop.

Once past the picnic and parking areas, you are in the reserve itself. There are 7 main hiking trails which are well marked by different coloured feet. Most are circular and most interlink. So you don’t need to decide which path you will follow right at the beginning.

The initial part of all the trails leads you through a maze of smaller paths on the lower slopes of the mountain. After 15 minutes (if you go straight up) you come to the main gate to the reserve.

From here the views over False Bay are already terrific.

To get to the top of the mountain you follow the jeep track straight up. This is an out and back walk that should take you around 4 to 5 hours to complete. Most of the trails take a left turn here and follow a jeep track up the mountain. Depending on the time you want to spend walking you can take a right hand turn and follow a circular route back to the gate.