Saturday, 17 January 2009

Adventure in Karkloof

While in the Natal Midlands yesterday afternoon, I happened to stop in at the Karkloof Conservation Centre. My business partner Di is forever telling me to take time to stop and smell the roses, having found an excellent venue for it; I do concede there is merit in what she says.

Karkloof is an incredibly scenic forest region, just outside of Howick KZN and is a nucleus of adventure activity that includes mountain biking, fly fishing, Hiking, birding, canopy tours and more.

The Conservation Centre incorporates a well known mountain biking trail while bird watching of the feathered variety, is among the best you will find. The centre is a non profit organization and is situated on the farm Gartmore. Available are two very knowledgeable bird guides as well as an information and education centre.

The conservancy covers an area of 40 000 hectors that include wetlands as well as huge tracts of mistbelt forest which is a protected biome. Some of the farmers in the district are registered crane custodians and all three species occur in the area, most notably the critically endangered Wattle Crane, which can be viewed from either of the two world class bird hides, the centre proudly boasts.

I personally rate the Karkloof region as one of the best non-coastal areas in South Africa to visit. It is somewhat of a hidden gem comprised of landscapes that are breathtaking, along with peace and tranquility that’s great for the soul. If you do ever visit that part of the world, try the Karkloof Canopy tour, it is a more than worthwhile adventure experience.

Photo, “Karkloof Forest Canopy Tour Zipwire” by Evans in Africa, found on

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