New Germany Nature Reserve is a hidden gem located just twenty minutes away from the bustling city of Durban. Nestled on Mountain Ridge Road (which becomes Methven Road) in the suburbs of New Germany, the reserve offers visitors the unique opportunity to experience wildlife on their doorstep.
The reserve forms part of the larger New Germany Commonage, which was once a farm known as Clermont back in 1948. It is divided into two parts: the nature park, which includes a walk-through aviary of largely indigenous birds, and a live snake display, on the north side of Mountain Ridge Road, and the nature reserve proper to the south.
The reserve is home to a variety of wildlife, including the little blue duiker, common duiker and the banded mongoose. Birders will be delighted to find Shelley’s francolin, zitting cisticolas, the Cape grassbird, little bee-eaters, African goshawks and African pipit in the grasslands. The forest is filled with robins and flycatchers, and the flowers attract numerous sunbirds.
One of the highlights of the reserve is the bird hide, where visitors can overlook the dam and spot a variety of birds. Rumor has it that there is a resident crocodile in the area, adding to the excitement of the experience. Picnic sites are also available for visitors to enjoy.
Activities and popular destinations near New Germany Nature Reserve
In addition to the natural beauty and wildlife of New Germany Nature Reserve, there are also a variety of activities and attractions to enjoy in the surrounding area.
For history buffs, the New Germany Heritage Centre provides a glimpse into the area’s past, with exhibits that showcase the history and culture of the local community. The center also offers guided tours of the area, highlighting important historical sites and landmarks.
Nearby Nature Reserves
For those looking for more adventure, the nearby Pinetown and Kloof areas offer a variety of outdoor activities such as hiking, rock climbing, and mountain biking. There are several parks and nature reserves in the area that offer a wide range of trails for visitors to explore, including the Krantzkloof Nature Reserve, and the Paradise Valley Nature Reserve.
For those who prefer a more relaxed pace, there are also several golf courses in the area, including the New Germany Country Club, which offers a challenging 18-hole course set in a picturesque natural setting.
For shoppers, the Westwood Mall offers a variety of shops and stores, as well as a food court and a cinema. The Westville Mall is also nearby, which is a great place for shopping, dining, and entertainment.
Food and Culture
Finally, for those looking for a taste of local culture, the area is home to a variety of traditional Zulu markets and craft centers, where visitors can purchase traditional crafts, textiles, and souvenirs, as well as sample local food and drink.
New Germany Nature Reserve, is surrounded by a variety of activities and attractions that cater to different interests, whether it be history, adventure, relaxation or culture. The reserve serves as a perfect starting point to explore the surrounding area, making it an ideal destination for a weekend getaway or a day trip.
The reserve is open every day of the year, bar Christmas, between 7.30 am and 5pm, making it perfect for locals to enjoy late afternoon and weekend walks. Dogs are not allowed, as the wildlife is protected. Guided walks can be arranged through the nature reserve, and school outings can be arranged through the environmental education center.
The best part is that there is no entrance fee to the reserve, so visitors can enjoy the beauty and serenity of the reserve without breaking the bank. Binoculars will come in handy as the walk-through aviary has over 120 species of local birds. Come and explore the natural beauty of New Germany Nature Reserve and discover why it is known as “wildlife on your doorstep.”