An hour’s drive from Johannesburg, near the town of Heidelberg, lies the 11 595-hectare Suikerbosrand Nature Reserve. The Reserve gets its name from the Transvaal suikerbos or sugarbush that is found in abundance.
Between Vosloorus and Heidelberg, just off the N3 highway to Durban, you will find an unspoilt haven of nature. A reserve was established among the Suikerbosrand hills in 1974 to preserve an important water catchment area and its indigenous flora and fauna as well as irreplaceable historic and archeological sites. The ‘Race for Victory’ fun ride in May is a good opportunity to ride more of the Suikerbosrand that the options described below. [div2 class=”highlight1″]
On your bike
The main focus of this reserve has been environmental education, so it is only very recently that two pilot bicycle trails were introduced, confined to the Tambokies area near the main gate and Diepkloof farm house. There is also an 8 km off-road trail through the Tamboekies area which is confined to jeep tracks used to patrol the perimeter fence and aimed at novice riders. This is an extensive 13,337 ha reserve and the perimeter fence alone is 90km long, so Suikerbosrand has the potential to develop a three-day 100 km+ hut-to-hut type MTB trail. The entire reserve in all its splendour may be enjoyed astride the most environmentally responsible conveyance known to the world.
By road: The 11 km “Tamboekies” circuit is on part of the 60 km network of tarred tourist roads and will delight road cyclists for about one hour. This could – and should – be further developed into a respectable two-day road route.
- Phone: +27 (0) 11 904 3930
- Website: www.footprint.co.za