If you visit the Silvermine Nature Reserve in the summer, you’ll be greeted with amazing hiking trails and picnic areas. But if you opt for the winter months, a blanket of mist is going to decorate the green wilderness. Whatever time you choose to visit, a Silvermine hike is not something you’ll quickly forget.
The name of the reserve comes from the mining that took place during the 1600’s. It was thought that the mountains contained silver, which is why shafts were sunk into the mountains. However, nobody found any silver and the name stuck. Years later (1898) a reservoir was built, which would then serve as a water supply. But from 1912 until now, it’s a haven for people and animals alike.
The Silvermine Nature Reserve was officially declared part of the Table Mountain National Park in 1998. This meant the area would be preserved, and it’s beauty maintained from there on out. Today, it’s the source of a regenerating getaway, whether you live in Cape Town or visit from abroad. Just a little time between the rich fynbos and wildlife is enough to make you feel like a new person.
The Silvermine Nature Reserve Map
A look on a different Silvermine Nature Reserve map will show that its divided by the Ou Kaapse Weg. If you’re coming from the city side, you’ll get the pleasure of seeing a very large part of Cape Town as you move up the mountain. But this is just one of many incredible views waiting for those who dare to experience nature at it’s best.
There are two main entrances to the reserve, namely Gate 1 and Gate 2. Just as the Ou Kaapse Weg splits the reserve, the gates lead in opposite directions. Gate 1 (turn right off the Ou Kaapse Weg) offers a range of mountain biking tracks in addition to great Silvermine Nature Reserve hiking trails. One of the hikes include going all the way to the top of Constantaiburg Mountain, where the view of Hout Bay is priceless. Alternatively, you can relax on the boardwalk, where you can make use of the great Silvermine Natural Reserve braai areas.
At Gate 2, which follows just a few hundred meters from Gate 1, you turn left into the parking area. It’s up to you if you want to hike to Kalk Bay, or alternatively, follow a circuit route. Some things to look out for on this side of the reserve include Afromontane Forests and waterfalls.
The Silvermine Dam
For many the Silvermine Dam is the main attraction. As mentioned earlier, you can make your way around the dam on the boardwalk, have a picnic, test the Silvermine Nature Reserve braai area, or simply enjoy watching the fauna and flora. And if not the main attraction, the Silvermine Dam is definitely where everything comes together. You can even arrange to camp there for the night if you really want to enjoy the reserve at it’s full potential.
What a Silvermine Nature Reserve map won’t show is the magnificent range of fynbos species. Within the reserve there are more than 900 of them, just waiting for you to study and explore. In fact, at the second gate there’s a display of flowers blooming within the reserve.
Not all the Silvermine Nature Reserve hike options are suitable for the family, but there are many trails that won’t require a high fitness level. At Walk in Africa we have all the information about the best hiking trails. Or if you prefer a mountain bike experience, there are several trails for these as well.
Who Will Like It?
Every single person in the family will probably love the experience. Thanks to the fact that the boardwalk has wheelchair friendly areas, people of all ages can visit the reserve and unwind together. Enjoy the great views of the Mother City and the surrounding ocean while standing between some of the most notorious plants in the world.