De Hoop Nature Reserve – The Whale Trail Experience.

Discover the enchanting wonders of De Hoop Nature Reserve, a dazzling gem among Cape Nature’s flagship reserves. Nestled in Africa’s southernmost point, this magical environment seamlessly merges sea and mountains, creating a harmonious blend of freshwater and marine ecosystems teeming with a remarkable variety of aquatic and terrestrial life. As one of the largest natural regions under Cape Nature’s stewardship, this World Heritage Site spans approximately 34,000 hectares.

Witness the awe-inspiring annual migration of southern right whales from June to November, as they return to these abundant waters for mating and birthing. Offering an exceptional way to observe this natural spectacle is the renowned Whale Trail Hike, where Cape Nature provides the ultimate slackpacking experience.

Trail Highlights:
Embark on a 55km trail celebrated for its diverse fynbos vegetation, stunning dunes, and unparalleled whale-watching opportunities. Revel in breathtaking views of the Indian Ocean and the Breede River Valley as you navigate the trail’s challenging terrain. After two days of invigorating hiking, descend to the coast to explore the pristine southeastern coastline, part of one of Africa’s largest Marine Protected Areas.

The five-day trail spans from Potberg to Koppie Alleen and features five overnight stops. Leave your vehicles at Potberg, and a convenient shuttle service ensures a return to Potberg from Koppie Alleen. The trail is clearly marked, and this is slackpacking at its finest—your extra luggage is transported daily to the next hut, allowing you to carry only a day pack.

Trail Logistics:
70-litre transport containers are available at Potberg hut.
Up to 14 units per group of 12 or seven units per group of six are allowed.
Hikers pay for each container transported to the next hut, including units used as cooler boxes (CapeNature provides cooler boxes upon request).

Wild Card Loyalty Program:
Explore Southern Africa’s national parks and nature reserves with the Wild Card loyalty program. Enjoy unlimited access to picnic spots, swimming pools, waterfalls, hiking trails, mountain biking paths, birdwatching havens, and vibrant fynbos landscapes. This initiative, a collaboration between CapeNature, SANParks, Msinsi Resorts, Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife, and Big Game Parks, Swaziland, offers a gateway to the region’s natural treasures. For more information, visit