The Suikerbosrand Nature Reserve is a protected enclosure within the Suikerbosrand Range, situated an hour's drive from the hub of Johannesburg.
The reserve was originally named after a varietal of sugar cane that was discovered in 1836 by the Voortrekker general, Hendrik Potgieter. Today, however, 'suikerbos' is now associated with the Transvaal-Sugar Bush that grows rampant in the reserve.
Considered Johannesburg's premier 'eco-tourist' site, visitors to the park will be awestruck by the 134km of unspoiled vegetation that greets them. With its grassy plains and the vast collection of flora and fauna, holidaymakers can take part in a range of outdoor activities such as cycling, lazy afternoon picnics or a hike in amongst the vegetation.
While the vast collection of vegetation is an impressive sight to see, there is also an endless variety of game - from Eland and Zebra to Mountain Reedbuck, Red Hartebeest and Black Wildebeest. If you're a bird watcher, the park is home to over 200 species of bird species ready to be spotted by those with a good eye.
For the seasoned hiker, a networked 66 km's of backpacking trails is ready to be explored, with the route snaking around the towering Suikersbosrand Mountain Range. For those looking for a leisurely meander, the Cheetah Trail is a short interpretative route that provides scenic vistas along the way. If walking is not an attractive option for you, the 60km Motor Vehicle Tourist Route gives you the opportunity to explore the area without having to stretch those legs.
The nearby town of Heidelberg is a historically rich area. Having first been established as a trading post in 1862, Heidelburg was the site of a concentration camp that harboured Boer women and children during the Second Boer War. Visitors can pay their respects to mothers and children who died during the war at the monument that was erected in their honour. Another historical landmark worth a quick visit is the home of the acclaimed writer and much-loved doctor, A.G. Visser.
Due to the expansive size of the area and the many tourist attractions to explore, a worthwhile visit to Suikerbosrand cannot be done in a single day. To make your visit all the more meaningful, enjoy a night's rest at one of the many nearby establishments.
Distances are shown as the crow flies and not necessarily the actual travelling distance.