Coleford Nature Reserve

Coleford Nature Reserve is a hidden gem located near the town of Underberg in South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province. The reserve gets its name from the original European settler to the area, James Cole, who despite owning the land, neither farmed nor lived at Coleford. The reserve is situated south-east of the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park, and is home to a variety of natural features and wildlife.

One of the major features of Coleford Nature Reserve is the Ngwagwane River, which flows through its southern section. The reserve also protects Drakensberg Foothill Moist Grassland, which is a unique and fragile ecosystem. The area is beautiful and has for years been popular as a destination for fly fishing because of the availability of rainbow trout in the Coleford reserve’s river.

Although the rest camp in the reserve is closed to the public for some years, it is rumored that camping is still allowed in the reserve. The reserve also has four dams which are well-stocked for fishing, where you can expect to catch Natal yellowfish, chubbyhead barb, and longfin eel. Fishing permits can be picked up at the Coleford reserve’s office.

In the north-western parts of the Coleford Nature Reserve are a series of high hills with cliffs of Beaufort Sandstone that lead up and away from the Ngwagwane River. The river is joined by the Ndawana River (its major tributary) in the south-eastern corner of the reserve.

The reserve is also home to a variety of wildlife, including black wildebeest, blesbok, southern reedbuck, grey rhebok, grey duiker and oribi. These animals can be sighted while hiking or bird watching in the reserve. The reserve is also a haven for bird enthusiasts as it is home to the endangered wattled crane and white winged flufftail.

Popular attractions and touris destinations at Coleford Nature Reserve

Coleford Nature Reserve offers a variety of activities for visitors to enjoy. One of the most popular activities is fly fishing in the Ngwagwane River, where visitors can catch rainbow trout, Natal yellowfish, chubbyhead barb, and longfin eel. Fishing permits can be obtained from the Coleford reserve’s office.

Fly-Fishing

Fly-fishing at Penwarn, located near Coleford Nature Reserve, is a popular activity for visitors. Imagine the early morning mist lifting off a berg river, the trout rising, Penwarn is a premier fishing location with seven dams (one is two kilometres long) and eight kilometres of river, and 6-9 pounders are regularly hooked.

Five dams are stocked from the Penwarn’s own trout hatchery and two are bass dams. Penwarn supplies boats and rods, and arranges a fishing clinic for those who wish to perfect the art of fly-fishing. This makes it an ideal destination for both experienced fly-fishermen and those who are new to the sport. The fishing clinic provides an excellent opportunity to learn from experienced guides, and to discover the best techniques and methods for catching fish in the area.

Fly-fishing at Penwarn is a great way to experience the natural beauty of the area and to catch a variety of fish. The dams are well-stocked, and visitors can expect to catch rainbow trout, Natal yellowfish, chubbyhead barb, and longfin eel. Fishing permits can be obtained at the Penwarn office.

Penwarn is also a great destination for those who want to combine fly-fishing with other activities. Visitors can explore the surrounding area, and take part in activities such as hiking, bird watching, and rock climbing in the nearby Coleford Nature Reserve and the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park.

Penwarn’s fly-fishing is a must-try activity for visitors to Coleford Nature Reserve. The combination of well-stocked dams, experienced guides, and beautiful natural surroundings make it an ideal destination for fly-fishing enthusiasts.

Horseback Riding

Coleford Nature Reserve and the surrounding area offer a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, and one of the most popular activities is horseback riding at Khotso Horse Trails. The horse riding trails take off at 9.00am daily for either a full day, or 1 to 3 hours, into the foothills of the Drakensberg. The rides are scheduled according to the needs of guests, so visitors just have to call and tell the team when they would like to ride.

Professional guides will lead visitors into the mountains with extraordinary views, bubbling crystal clear streams and pristine lakes. Visitors can linger at various viewpoints, canter along the plains, or simply soak up the silence. The trail includes a light meal or refreshments and a cliff jump off the waterfall. The ponies used for the trail are hardy Basotho and Basotho-Arab cross, bred to be friendly, obedient and sure-footed on mountain paths. Beginners are teamed with gentle horses and given a short explanation on the basics of horse riding before a leisurely stroll along the ridge begins. Advanced riders can test their skills on more lively horses and a faster pace.

Horseback riding at Khotso Horse Trails is a great way to experience the natural beauty of the area and to get a different perspective of the Coleford Nature Reserve. It’s a perfect activity for those who want to combine adventure and nature. After the horseback ride, visitors can also explore the reserve and take part in activities such as hiking, bird watching, and fly-fishing.

Khotso Horse Trails is a must-try activity for visitors to Coleford Nature Reserve. The combination of beautiful natural surroundings, experienced guides, and friendly horses make it an ideal destination for horseback riding enthusiasts.

Hiking and bird watching are also popular activities in the reserve. The reserve offers several hiking trails that take visitors through the beautiful Drakensberg Foothill Moist Grassland, where they can spot a variety of wildlife such as black wildebeest, blesbok, southern reedbuck, grey rhebok, grey duiker and oribi. Bird enthusiasts can catch a glimpse of the endangered wattled crane and white winged flufftail.

The cliffs of Beaufort Sandstone in the north-western parts of the reserve are also a popular attraction. These cliffs offer beautiful views of the surrounding landscape, and are a great spot for photography.

The town of Underberg is located near the reserve and offers a variety of tourist destinations and activities. Visitors can take a trip to the Himeville Museum, which is dedicated to the history of the region and the people who have lived there. The Underberg Country Club is a great spot for golfers and offers a challenging 18-hole golf course. The town is also known for its adventure tourism, offering activities such as white-water rafting, rock climbing, abseiling, and horse riding.

The uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park, which is located southeast of Coleford Nature Reserve, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and offers a variety of activities such as hiking, rock climbing, and scenic drives. The park is also home to the Drakensberg Amphitheatre, a spectacular cliff face that is a popular destination for hikers.

The Underberg Studio

Coleford Nature Reserve offers a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, and one of the must-visit destinations in the area is the Underberg Studio. The Underberg Studio is situated in the picturesque farming village of Himeville at the foot of the Southern Drakensberg. The gallery and working studio specializes in Fine Art Photography and Ceramics, featuring the work of several leading South African fine art photographers and ceramists.

The Underberg Studio is owned by two artists, Lawrance and Catherine Brennon. Lawrance is a fine art landscape photographer, while Catherine is a ceramic artist and potter. The gallery was set up primarily to exhibit their own work but also includes the work of more than 30 other selected South African ceramists and photographers. All the work on show is available for purchase, making it a great destination for art lovers and collectors.

Visitors to the gallery are welcome to come into the studio area to see Catherine at work. Many of her fine earthenware pieces make use of impressed antique lace and there is often work in progress to be seen. The ceramic studio also offers Raku workshops from time to time along with regular pottery classes for adults. No previous experience is needed in order to participate, making it a great opportunity for visitors to learn and experience the art of ceramics.

The Underberg Studio is a great destination for those who want to combine their love for art and nature. Visitors can explore the beautiful surrounding area and take part in activities such as hiking, bird watching, and fly-fishing at nearby Coleford Nature Reserve and Penwarn.

The Underberg Studio offers a unique blend of art and nature, making it a must-visit destination for art lovers and outdoor enthusiasts visiting Coleford Nature Reserve.

Old Hatchery Restaurant

Coleford Nature Reserve and the surrounding area offer a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, and one of the must-visit destinations is The Old Hatchery Restaurant. The Old Hatchery Restaurant is located in the most beautiful part of the Drakensberg in KwaZulu Natal, and visitors can experience the warm Southern Berg hospitality. It is just 10km from Underberg nestled amongst some hills overlooking rolling farmlands and the Mzimkulu River on the Drakensberg Gardens Road.

The Old Hatchery Restaurant is a magnificent thatched restaurant with panoramic views across the dam and on to the farmlands in the distance. It is situated just next to the waterfall that flows into the trout dam, providing a beautiful and serene atmosphere. The restaurant serves delicious food and drinks, and it’s a perfect spot to relax and enjoy the beautiful views after a day of exploring Coleford Nature Reserve and the surrounding area.

Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities and attractions in the area, such as hiking, bird watching, fly-fishing, horseback riding and visiting art galleries. The restaurant is also a great destination for those who want to combine their love for nature and good food.

The Old Hatchery Restaurant is a must-visit destination for visitors to Coleford Nature Reserve. The combination of beautiful views, delicious food and warm hospitality make it an ideal spot to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of the area.

Coleford Nature Reserve and the surrounding area offer a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, from fly fishing and hiking to cultural and adventure tourism, making it a great destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.

Coleford Nature Reserve offers a unique blend of natural beauty, fishing opportunities, and wildlife, making it a must-visit destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.