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Namaqua Flower Hike

  • Carry only your daypack as you hike the 'blooming' desert
  • Enjoy Namaqualand hospitality from our excellent support team
  • Fire-side dining under a canopy of stars each night
  • Hike in the Schaap River Canyon
  • Marvel at the unique geography, fauna and flora

Overview

A journey through the unspoiled Schaap River Canyon

Find your balance again and adopt to the slow living pace of this five-day, fully-catered, slack-packing hike in the Namaqualand. In partnership with Nigramoep Slowliving Farm, we are proud to present this hike into the heartland of Namaqualand, operated only three times per year. Although it is called the Namaqua Flower Hike, you will soon realise that the area is so much more than just flowers.

Your eyes and soul will feast on the beauty of the Schaap River Canyon that stands witness to millenniums of geographical changes. Unique plants and flowers that has to be tough enough to survive the harsh conditions, bestow this area with their rare and delicate beauty. Carefully selected wild camping sites will leave you in awe of the nights full of stars.

The expert knowledge of our local Namaqualand-born guides on the geography and the fauna and flora, as well as their stories about the cultural history and heritage of the area, will make this hike an authentic experience.

True to the LIVE THE JOURNEY WAY, you can expect hearty hospitality from our support team, set against a backdrop of ancient, ocher-coloured valleys, mountains and canyons, accompanied by like-minded souls.

Carry only your daypack and come “home” to a tent pitched in the wild, a hot shower, excellent food and good wine. Also true to the LIVE THE JOURNEY WAY, we will only leave our footprints.

Take a break from the digital and techno world of every-day life and escape to a remote area as old as time.

Group size: 16 -20 hikers (tailor-made options available for private groups)

Duration: 5 nights, 6 days (of which day 1 is arrival and days 2 to 6 are hiking)

Distance: Approximately 70 - 75 km

Rating: The total elevation is about 850 m. The hiking surface differs from one-track donkey gravel roads to rocky areas where stability and good hiking shoes are required. This five-day, slack-packing hike with a total distance of between 70 – 75 km, varies in difficulty from easy to moderate, giving it a rating on average of between 5 and 6. (A rating of 1 being easy and 10 being difficult.) It is not a casual stroll through the wild flowers and although it is not a difficult hike, you definitely need a certain level of fitness to do this hike and enjoy each day. 

Guest Feedback:

“This hike was one of the highlights of my life!  I will treasure every moment in my heart.  The unspoiled nature, no cell phone signal, the support and camaraderie of my fellow hikers and the qulity and presentation of the total event was just excellent.”  - Zaan du Plessis 

“The guides and the support team are excellent.  Their passion  and love for Namaqualand is so easy to see. This hike made a lasting impression on me and a highlight was the beautiful scenery and the majestic Schaap River Canyon.” - Merwe Erasmus

Itinerary

DAY 1: ARRIVAL NIGRAMOEP

Arrival at Nigramoep from 14h00 onwards. We will meet and greet and you can settle in. A briefing of the Namaqua Flower Hike will be held before you enjoy dinner tonight.

O/N Nigramoep Farm – Some of farm houses, outbuildings and the old school were renovated into authentic farm accommodation, each with shared bathroom facilities. (Enjoy dinner and good company)

DAY 2: HIKING (DISTANCE APPROXIMATELY 21 KM)

Enjoy breakfast at the main homestead. Pack your picnic lunch for later in the day. Our hike starts from the main homestead on a jeep track framed with beautiful flora, winding towards the old copper mine. The track then leads onto the pipeline road with breath-taking vistas of the Schaap River Canyon on the left and the escarpment of the Buffels River and the West Coast to the right. This is followed by a fairly steep downhill hike to Grace's Puts, ending day one of the hike at Bakkrans bush camp.

Difficulty: 6

O/N Wild camping – (enjoy a warm shower and a hearty dinner with a glass of wine)

DAY 3: HIKING (DISTANCE APPROXIMATELY 18 KM)

Enjoy breakfast. Pack your picnic lunch for later in the day. We start from Bakkrans on the open plains leading towards a goat herding outpost where we can still see traditional farming activities. We continue towards the old workings of the Spektakel Copper Mine. It is an eye opener to experience something of the copper mining operations from the past. Pop-in for a well-deserved cold beverage at the Spektakel Pass local cash store.

On this day we also visit aunt Johanna’s farm where simple but true Namaqualand farm hospitality will welcome you. This farm stands guard to the beginning of the spectacular Schaap River Canyon. As we enter the canyon, the promise of the wonders to see the next day is already there. Our day ends at our bush camp at the canyon entrance.

Difficulty: 5

O/N Wild camping – (enjoy a warm shower and a hearty dinner with a glass of wine)

DAY 4: HIKING (DISTANCE APPROXIMATELY 14 KM)

Enjoy breakfast. Pack you lunch box for the day. We start from the canyon camping area and enter the vastness and beauty of the Schaap River Canyon that winds between burnt orange rock faces and rock pools. Not many people have had the privilege to set eyes on the magnificent beauty of this canyon. It is truly untouched and unspoiled. Enjoy the amazing fauna and flora on the route, stop for a cooldown in one of the natural pools and listen to the silence… and the birds.

It is difficult to pin point one specific highlight of this hike, but THIS day will blow your mind. Today we mostly follow the zig-zag path of the Schaap River and the surface can vary from easy to the occasional riverbed rocks. Our day ends at a bush camp in the Schaap River Canyon.

Difficulty: 5

O/N Wild camping – (enjoy a warm shower and a hearty dinner with a glass of wine)

DAY 5: HIKING (DISTANCE APPROXIMATELY 13 KM)

Enjoy breakfast. Pack you lunch box for the day. We start from the overnight camping site, hiking further into the canyon and later exit the Schaap River Canyon and enter a narrow but spectacular ravine called Myn se Kloof. We follow Myn se Kloof until we reach another ravine called Wiese se Bakke where you will see beautiful rock pools and amazing flora. Today is a consistent but gradual uphill for about 5 km, crossing and climbing the occasional dry waterfall. Hiking Myn se Kloof and Wiese se Bakke ravines can be challenging.

Tonight is our last night of wild camping and we have certainly left the best for last as the views that you will see from tonight’s camp site is just so breathtakingly beautiful – truly unprecedented vistas!

Difficulty: 6.5

O/N Wild camping – (enjoy a warm shower and a hearty dinner with a glass of wine)

DAY 6: HIKING (DISTANCE APPROXIMATELY 4 KM) & DEPARTURE

Today you will not pack a lunch box after breakfast as it is only 4 km’s to Nigramoep Farm. We head back on a rocky jeep track towards Nigramoep where we started this extraordinary journey. You will arrive back at Nigramoep Guest Farm at around 11h00.

This short hike will give hikers a last appreciation and glimpse of the beautiful vistas of Nigramoep and the West Coast. Don’t rush, but walk slowly, taking the time to revisit and remember the beauty of the last few days in your mind. A special celebration awaits at the homestead. Afterwards, hikers can have a quick shower and still have enough time to start their homeward journey.

(Breakfast included)

Total distance: between 70 and 75 km.

END OF TOUR

Dates

2022 Dates:

  • 22 – 27 August 2022 
  • 29 Augustus – 03 September 2022
  • 19 – 24 September 2022

Rates

Tour prices valid from 01 January 2022 until 31 December 2022:

R 10,780 per person

Included

  • 1 night shared accommodation in beautiful renovated houses (with bathroom facilities) at Nigramoep Slowliving Guest Farm
  • 4 nights wild camping with your own tent
  • Local guides and support team
  • Transport and logistics of your luggage and camping gear to the overnight camps. Please make sure to pack light and use a soft duffle bag.
  • All meals included – from arrival dinner at main guest house on day 1 to all breakfasts, lunch packs and scrumptious veld dinners with local specialties and spoils prepared by our local team on hiking days.  Breakfast and a special arrival celebration on day 6 will be included, but all else after arriving at the main guest house on day 6 is for your own account.
  • You will pack your own lunch pack every morning. We will provide a variety of breads, cold meats, and snacks for you to choose from. Remember to bring your own lunch box with.
  • Coffee and tea with meals and limited wine at dinner every evening is included. A cash honesty bar is available for beers, ciders and cool drinks every evening.
  • Drinking and shower water.
  • Showers and chemical toilets, set up each evening.
  • Camping chair.
  • Wood.
  • A digital detox.

Excluded

  • Optional dinner, bed, and breakfast on day 6 at Nigramoep. Our hike ends upon return to Nigramoep Slowliving Guest Farm on day 6. For those who wish to stay an additional night to further enjoy some slow living, please let us know so that we can book an extra dinner, bed, and breakfast for you. This would be for your own account.
  • All pre and post travel to Nigramoep (travel by road, flights, accommodation).
  • Tent, mattress, sleeping bag and pillow.
  • Daypack and hiking gear like walking sticks, water bottles, lunch box container, first aid and blister kit, own medications.
  • We provide limited wine with your dinner. An honesty bar is available for beers, ciders and cool drinks during the hike, settled on your return to the guest farm at the end of the hike.
  • Extra snacks – don’t bring too much. Previous hikers commented that they packed way too much.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

Indemnity & Emergency Evacuation Insurance:
Participants require a good level of fitness. An indemnity form must be completed by all hikers.

Hikers will also be required to have emergency medical evacuation insurance, whether through your medical aid or travel insurance, proof of which will be required prior to the hike.

Pack list
A complete list of what to pack will be provided after your booking is confirmed.
Hikers must bring: a day pack; walking sticks (if preferred); hiking gear; lunch box; water bottles for carrying water during the day; plasters and blister-care goodies; all items of a personal nature; tent (pop-up recommended) and bedding.

Your hike includes coffee and tea with meals, and limited wine each night with dinner. Hikers may bring their own alcoholic beverages to enjoy, however keep in mind that space is limited as everything must be transported. There will also be an honesty cash bar available during the hike for beers, ciders and cool drinks. You are also welcome to bring your own snacks to nibble on in between meals, but there is ample food to pack every morning. Remember to bring your own lunch box container.

Pre-travel arrangements and accommodation
Hikers are responsible for their own pre-hike travel and accommodation arrangements. You are however, welcome to ask our consultants to assist with and to handle arrangements on your behalf.