The Great Fish River Reserve is a hidden gem located in the valley of the Great Fish River, between the towns of Grahamstown and Fort Beaufort. It stretches eastwards all the way to the Kieskama River and comprises of three reserves: Andries Vosloo Kudu Reserve, Double Drift Nature Reserve, and Sam Knott Nature Reserve. The reserve is a malaria-free area, which makes it a perfect destination for nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts.
The reserve boasts a rugged landscape that offers spectacular views and an abundance of big game. Visitors can expect to see a wide variety of wildlife, including hippos, kudus, Cape buffalo, elephants, lions, and over 100 critically endangered black rhinos – one of the fastest growing populations of the black rhino in South Africa.
Amakhala Game Reserve
The Great Fish River Reserve offers a wide range of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy. One of the main attractions is the day safari at Amakhala Game Reserve. The safari is guided by experienced rangers on open Land Rovers, and provides visitors with an opportunity to experience the diverse wildlife and landscape of the reserve. Visitors can expect to see the Big 5 (lion, leopard, rhinoceros, elephant, and Cape buffalo), Black Wildebeest, Cheetahs, Giraffes, Zebras, and numerous other antelope.
The day safari itinerary begins with an orientation and welcome drinks at Reed Valley. Visitors then go on a game drive through the reserve, enjoying spectacular views and descending into the Bushman’s River Valley. After the game drive, visitors can enjoy a mouth-watering buffet of authentic African cuisine served in a true African way. Next, visitors will embark on a tranquil 45-minute river cruise, before returning to Reed Valley for a further game drive through other parts of the reserve.
This safari is suitable for children 6 years and older, making it a great activity for families. Great Fish River Reserve offers a variety of activities and attractions that provide visitors with an opportunity to experience the diverse wildlife and landscape of the reserve. With something for everyone, Great Fish River Reserve is a must-visit destination for nature lovers, wildlife enthusiasts and families.
The Great Fish River, which bisects the reserve, holds significant historical importance as it served as a border during the Frontier Wars of 1779 – 1878 between the Dutch settlers and the Xhosa people. Along the banks of the river, a beautiful riverine thicket forms a narrow band which provides a thriving environment for Cape bushwillow, karee, sweet thorn and the vulnerable blue crane.
Makana Botanical Gardens
Great Fish River Reserve offers a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the tranquil and peaceful experience of visiting the Makana Botanical Gardens. The gardens are located on the Rhodes University campus and are home to a wide variety of bird species. To fully enjoy the experience, it is recommended to visit the gardens on a weekday morning, when there are fewer people around.
Visitors can enter the gardens by passing through Rhodes University’s Eden Grove. The gardens are home to a wide variety of birds, including Cape weavers, greater double-collared sunbirds, red-winged starlings, yellow-fronted canaries, bronze mannikins, rock kestrels, grey sunbirds, olive woodpeckers, and southern black flycatchers. Visitors may also see the African harrier hawk, lesser honeyguide, and Klaas’s cuckoo. The Makana Botanical Gardens is a great place to relax and enjoy the peaceful environment while observing the beautiful birds. It’s a perfect complement to the natural experiences provided by the Great Fish River Reserve, making it a perfect destination for bird-watching enthusiasts and nature lovers.
Haricots Deli & Bistro
Great Fish River Reserve offers a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the delicious dining options at Haricots Deli & Bistro. Haricots Deli & Bistro is located in The French Quarter of New Street in Grahamstown and places an emphasis on simple, delicious and high-quality food. The wine list is one of the most comprehensive and discerning in Grahamstown, making it the perfect spot for a meal or a glass of wine after a day of exploring the reserve.
At Haricots Deli & Bistro, visitors can enjoy freshly baked breads and cakes that are available daily in the deli. The bistro offers a range of delicious lunches and dinners, and the shoppe is filled with a variety of wonderful goodies. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite or a sit-down meal, Haricots Deli & Bistro has something for everyone.
In addition to the day safari and dining options, Great Fish River Reserve offers other activities such as hiking and biking trails, bird watching, and river cruises. The reserve also offers accommodation options such as luxury lodges, cottages, and camp sites. With so much to see and do, Great Fish River Reserve is a perfect destination for nature lovers, wildlife enthusiasts and families looking for a unique and off-the-beaten-path destination.
Albany Museum Complex
Great Fish River Reserve offers a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the historical and educational experiences at the Albany Museum Complex. Established in 1855, the Albany Museum Complex is the second oldest museum in South Africa and comprises of five museums. The museums offer a wide range of resources and educational programs in cultural studies, history, and natural sciences.
One of the unique features of the Albany Museum Complex is the Mobile Museum service, which offers portable exhibits, resource packs, and objects for curriculum-based studies. An education program is printed yearly and is available on request. The complex also offers a range of other activities such as Identification services, public lectures, film shows, open days, walking tours, and special events throughout the year.
The original Albany Museum was established in 1855 by the Grahamstown Medical-Chirurgical Society (later the Literary, Scientific, and Medical Society). The Albany Museum Complex is a great way for visitors to learn more about the history, culture and natural science of the area. It’s an ideal complement to the natural experiences provided by the Great Fish River Reserve, making it a perfect destination for history buffs, students, and families.
Great Fish River Reserve offers a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the historical and architectural experience of visiting the Grahamstown Cathedral. The Cathedral of St Michael and St George, also known as the Grahamstown Cathedral, was built in the 1800s and first opened its doors in 1830. However, the current tower and spire is not the original, as the first was deemed to be a danger and the new one was completed in 1879, designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott.
When visiting the church, visitors may find a number of memorial plaques that are covered. These plaques commemorate the fallen soldiers during the conflict between the original Xhosa residents and the European settlers. Some of the plaques do not reflect the diversity of the Anglican Church of South Africa today and are covered in acknowledgement of this. Many memorial tablets telling the history of Grahamstown as a frontier post can be found at the lectern, pulpit, road screen, and organ. Visitors may also find the belfry of interest, as it holds a part of African history. It was the first to house the heaviest and first full ring of 8 bells on the continent, which were cast in London in 1878, and are made up of metal from the 3 bells that hung in the original tower. The Grahamstown Cathedral is a great place to learn more about the history and architecture of the area. It’s an ideal complement to the natural and cultural experiences provided by the Great Fish River Reserve, making it a perfect destination for history buffs and architecture enthusiasts.
1820 Settlers National Monument
Great Fish River Reserve offers a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the historical and cultural experience of visiting the 1820 Settlers National Monument. The monument is located in Grahamstown, near Rhodes University, and is a huge square structure at the top of the hill. The original monument was opened in 1974, but it burnt down in 1994 and was then rebuilt. The memorial was built to commemorate the English settlers who arrived on the continent and as a venue that would contribute to the surrounding community.
The monument features the Fountain Court Statue, which is built out of yellowwood and the scaffolding design is representative of the British flag. The 1820 Settlers National Monument is also a key player in the Grahamstown National Arts Festival, it is used every year as the anchor of the event and is one of the largest venues used. It’s an ideal place to learn more about the history and culture of the area, making it a perfect destination for history buffs and culture enthusiasts. The 1820 Settlers National Monument is a perfect complement to the natural and cultural experiences provided by the Great Fish River Reserve, which together offer a unique and diverse experience for visitors.
Oldest Letterbox in South Africa
Great Fish River Reserve offers a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the historical and nostalgic experience of visiting the oldest official letterbox in South Africa. Located in Grahamstown, on the corner of St. Andrew’s College, at the northwest end of Worcester Street, where it intersects with Somerset Street, this letterbox is a piece of history that dates back to between 1857 and 1859. The box is painted in the traditional post office red and is an interesting reminder of a time when sending letters and postcards was a common practice.
This letterbox no longer displays the letters “V.R” denoting the monarch, Queen Victoria, as it was stolen many years ago. Visitors can still use it to send letters and postcards to friends and family, making it a unique and special way to connect with loved ones. It’s a great way to relive the nostalgia of sending mail the old fashioned way, and it’s a perfect activity for visitors who want to experience a little bit of history while in Grahamstown. The oldest official letterbox in South Africa is a fascinating and unique attraction that is definitely worth a visit.
Cory Library For Historical Research
Great Fish River Reserve offers a variety of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the historical and research experience of visiting the Cory Library for Historical Research. Located at Rhodes University, the Cory Library collects materials of all kinds to support research into the history of South Africa, related fields in the social sciences, and the preservation of Eastern Cape history. It houses rare and modern books, periodicals and newspapers, maps, microforms, video and audio recordings, Cape and other government publications, as well as manuscripts. It is also home to the archives of the Methodist Church of Southern Africa.
The initial collection was thanks to Sir George Cory, and since then there has been a particular focus on the history of the Eastern Cape and Grahamstown itself. Visitors will also be able to find a map from 1895 of the Colony of the Cape of Good Hope which is signed by J. Templar Horne, Surveyor General and it contains details of mission stations, military posts, schools, post offices and more. This is only a small section of the phenomenal collection housed in this library.
The library is maintained by Rhodes University primarily for its faculty and students, however, the Cory Library staff are always friendly and willing to assist both researchers and visitors to the Library. The Cory Library for Historical Research is a great place to learn more about the history and culture of the area, making it a perfect destination for history buffs, researchers, and students. The Cory Library for Historical Research is a perfect complement to the natural and cultural experiences provided by the Great Fish River Reserve, which together offer a unique and diverse experience for visitors.
The Great Fish River Reserve is a spectacularly beautiful, malaria-free area of enormous potential that has managed thus far to remain largely off the major tourist radar. It provides visitors with an opportunity to experience an uncontested union with nature and see a wide variety of wildlife, including the critically endangered black rhino. If you’re looking for a unique and off-the-beaten-path destination, the Great Fish River Reserve is definitely worth a visit.