De Hoop Nature Reserve Hot
Comments (0)
Southern Right Whales

De Hoop Nature Reserve comprises a Marine Protected Area and a terrestrial Nature Reserve. It is a World Heritage Site and Ramsar Wetland site. It is considered as one of the flagship Fynbos Biome reserves.

De Hoop is world renowned for it's Southern Right Whales that can be see off the coastline from April to November each year. The reserves holds numerous endemic, bird, mammal and plant species. The rocky, weathered, coastline with numerous sandy beaches and tidal pools is full of photographic potential.


Best Time to Photograph
De Hoop is great for both sunset and sunrise photography. You can explore the old buildings at "Die Opstal" at any time of the day. The coastal landscapes are best at sunrise.
Type of Photography
  • Landscape
  • Birds
  • Macro
  • Seascape
  • Mammals
  • Plants
Best Time of Year
  • Autumn
  • Spring
Photographic Tips
De Hoop Nature Reserve caters for most types of wildlife and outdoor photography.From wide open seascapes and coastal dune systems to Cape Mountain Zebra, Blue Cranes, African Black Oystercatchers, Great White Pelicans, Southern Right Whales and numerous endemic flowering plants.
Recommended Gear
Tripod and remote release
Bean Bag
Medium telephoto lens (e.g. 70-200mm)
Wide angle
Macro lens
Sunscreen, water and wind breaker jacket


Site Highlights
The De Hoop Nature Reserve is one of the top destinations to view breeding and breeching Southern Right Whales.
The De Hoop Vlei holds up to 30000 breeding water birds on occasion.
Herds of Eland, Bontebok and Cape Mountain Zebra.


Season and Weather
The climate is Mediterranean with warm summers and mild winters. Wind is present throughout the year, with rain falling mainly in the winter months. The weather can be unpredictable and changes rapidly. The summers are dry and dusty, while winter is the time when the Fynbos is lush, green and in flower. The best months to visit are April through to September.
Other Activities
  • Mountain Biking
  • Hiking
  • Birding
  • Snorkling
Featured Guide/s


Closest Town
Getting There
Take the R319 to Swellendam. After approx. 5km's turn right at the De Hoop/Infanta T junction. Travel approx 60km's along the road. Turn right at the signposted T junction.
De Hoop Nature Reserve


Swap Start/End

User comments

There are no user comments for this listing.

Please enter the security code.
Arne Purves
Author: Arne PurvesWebsite: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Arne's passion for the environment, wildlife and conservation was instilled from an early age, leading to a career in nature conservation, first as a game ranger in the Natal Parks Board, a conservation officer with CapeNature and today in the City of Cape Town's Environmental Compliance Department. Photography is his creative medium of choice.