friends forest hike

Hikes and Walks

Plettenberg Bay and environs offers a spectacular range of hikes and walks ranging from 1 hour to 6 days, from historical interest to nature and birding interests.

For your safety we do recommend that you choose a walk that suits your level of fitness, set out early and tell someone where you are going. You should also wear good comfortable shoes and a hat and take along a jacket (especially in winter), also pack binoculars if you have them.

It is advisable to keep to the marked trails and walk with a friend. If you follow these basic rules you will find that this is one of the most pleasant ways to explore Plettenberg and environs.

Informative guides can be hired to accompany you.

The trail is remote of detachment
Narrow for chosen company
Winding for leisure
Lonely for contemplation
The rail leads not merely North and South
But upwards to the body, mind and soul of Man
Harold Allen

Nature and Marine Reserve is a rocky peninsular which juts out into the sea. It has three of the most popular day walks in Plett, showing the ‘wild side’ of the coastline with views of dramatically churning seas from its cliffs, contrasting with serene secluded bays where seals, dolphins and whales are often spotted frolicking in the waves.

Other day hides in the area will take you through forest and fynbos, through wetlands and rivers along coastal escarpment, rocks and sandy beaches. These include:

  • Kranshoek Coastal and Forest Walks
  • Garden of Eden Forest Walk
  • Hikers Paradise Trail
  • Natures Valley Network
  • Stinkhoutkloof Trail
  • Keurboom Grootbank
  • Storms River Mouth Trails
  • Diepwalle Jonkersberg
  • Harkerville Trail
  • The Big Tree and Ratel Trail

Overnight hikes
The most popular hiking trail in the area is the Otter Trail. It is a difficult 44km long trail and takes five days to complete. It starts at Storms River Mouth and takes you along the coast, across rivers and through forests with a rich variety of bird and animal life and breathtaking views over the ocean to Nature’s Valley Beach. You will have to book well in advance to secure a place.

Another well-loved hike is the Tsitsikamma Trail. It is 60km long and takes 5 days to complete. The trail starts at Natures Valley and guides you inland through fynbos and indigenous forest in the Tsitsikamma Mountains and ends at the Storms River Bridge. Booking is essential.

The Harkerville Trail is a difficult circular 26km two day hike which takes you through forest, coast and fynbos.

Portaged hikes
If you are not very fit, another option is the Elephant Gorge Hiking trail on one of Plettenberg Bay’s Private Game Reserves or the Dolphin Trail along the Tsitsikamma Coast. A new alternative is one of the Eden to Addo initiative hikes. These are all guided and fully portaged, with meals and accommodation included.