Birding Routes

THEEWATERSKLOOF BIRDING - INTRODUCTORY COMMENTS Show details

THE ENDEMIC AND OTHER SPECIAL BIRD SPECIES OF THE THEEWATERSKLOOF REGION Show details

BIRDING IN THE OVERBERG WHEATBELT IMPORTANT BIRD AND BIODIVERSITY AREA - INTRODUCTORY OVERVIEW Show details

THE SIR LOWRYS PASS SITE Show details

THE KOGELBERG BIOSPHERE RESERVE Show details

THE HIGHLANDS AND VALLEY ROADS LOOPS Show details

THE ELGIN/ GRABOUW COUNTRY CLUB & EIKENHOF DAM Show details


(NB! This section is still under production and will be completed by middle January 2016. - Ed.)

 

Reaching the town of Grabouw entails a mere hour’s drive from Cape Town over the Hottentots Holland Mountains with a descent into one of the most beautiful valleys in the Western Cape - theElgin Valley - filled with flowers, fruit, fynbos and wine.
Grabouw lies in this green paradise, sandwiched between the Groenland and Kogelberg Mountains, with enchanting stretches of forest, vineyards and orchards as far as the eye can see. This is apple country - 65% of South Africa’s export apples are produced in the fertile valley and this has earned it the international reputation as the ‘valley of apples’. The valley is also home to the now famous farm, Applethwaite, on which Edmond Lombardi created the pure apple-juice drink that became known as Appletiser in 1966.
The locals refer to Grabouw as Elgin-Grabouw, probably because the local railway station, called Elgin, is better known than the town renowned not only for its apples and fruit but also for its wine and roses. Grabouw was named after the village in Germany, Grabau, by Willem Langschmidt who created the town on the farm Grietjiesgat in 1856. The father of some 23 children, Langschmidt and his wife - who also managed, between giving birth - to run a little trading store, Willem was to sell off parts of his farm, which later led to the little farming community of Grabouw. Today the town has become a commuter town for those wanting to live the country lifestyle and a perfect day trip from Cape Town, particularly as it is only 70 km outside of the mother city.
Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve, known as the ‘heart of the fynbos’, borders on Grabouw and the Groenland Mountain on its inland boundary and stretches the entire coastal area from Gordon’s Bay to the Bot River vlei. An incredible range of 1 600 different plant species, of which 150 are endemic, make this their home and the reserve encompasses one of the richest displays of diversity in the world. There are also a number of animals that live in the reserve, including antelope, a prolific number of birds and leopards.
Grabouw holds its annual festival at the country club with some of the most incredible views over the Eikenhof dam at the foot of the Nuweberg. Thousands of visitors descend on the town at this time of year to sample the flowers, fruit, wines and local products. Grabouw is not far from the coastal towns of Gordon’s Bay, Kleinmond and Hermanus, and Strand and Somerset West are only a short drive away.
Additional Reading 
To find out more about Grabouw see articles on our blog at: 
• "Grabouw for a Day" 
• "Top 10 Things to Do in Grabouw".
Here are the top 10 Things to Do in Grabouw:

(Note that there are links to more information, trip reports and the like below the photographs that may be used to further plan a visit to the area).

Purple Heron  (Image by AO)
Lesser Swamp-Warbler  (image by AO)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

African Darter nest study  (Image by AO)

 

 

 

White-backed Duck  (Image by CM)

 

 

 

HOTTENTOTS HOLLAND NATURE RESERVE Show details

VILLIERSDORP Show details

THE THEEWATERSKLOOF DAM Show details

BOTRIVER VILLAGE AND VAN DER STEL PASS Show details

THE KARWYDERSKRAAL AND SWARTRIVIER ROADS Show details

CALEDON VILLAGE Show details

THE CALEDON WILD FLOWER GARDEN Show details

THE OUDEKRAAL ROAD AND TESSELAARSDAL Show details

THE R326 BETWEEN STANFORD AND RIVIERSONDEREND Show details

THE R406 TO GREYTON Show details

GREYTON VILLAGE AND NATURE RESERVE Show details

THE R406 BETWEEN GREYTON AND RIVIERSONDEREND Show details

BIRDING IN AND AROUND RIVIERSONDEREND Show details

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Show details