Cape Columbine Nature Reserve

Declared in December 1973, the Cape Columbine Nature Reserve covers 263 hectares of beautiful rocky and wild Atlantic coastline and endangered Sandveld Fynbos vegetation, which it is claimed is an absolute delight to behold in the spring flower season – we’ll have to visit again then to confirm! The reserve offers hiking trails and the possibility to kayak, fish, dive for crayfish, scuba or – if you are brave enough to enter the cold water – swimming. Picnic areas are available for day visitors. What the reserve lacks in the way of large animals it more than makes up for in awe-inspiring scenery and a rich variety of birds and smaller creatures.

The Cape Columbine Lighthouse inside the reserve was the last South African lighthouse built to be manually controlled (it dates back to 1936). Apparently this lighthouse is usually the first seen by incoming ships from Europe and the Americas on their way to Table Bay and the Cape of Good Hope and its light is visible up to 50km away.

Cape Columbine Lighthouse

The camping area at Tietiesbaai has ablution blocks with hot water and flush toilets available for campers pitching their tents or caravans on one of the 60 available campsites (no electrical points at the sites though).

The Cape Columbine Nature Reserve and the camping area at Tietiesbaai is managed by the Saldanha Bay Municipality. Rustic accommodation is available inside the Cape Columbine Nature Reserve, but remember that DeWetsWild can also assist you with bookings if you are planning a visit to the West Coast – either in the West Coast National Park or at the Port Owen Marina in nearby Velddrif. The Seekombuis is a restaurant specialising in sea food located right at the reserve’s entrance, which is less than 2km along a gravel road outside the very pretty West Coast town of Paternoster, where there are shops and other restaurants available too.

Paternoster

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19 thoughts on “Cape Columbine Nature Reserve

  1. wetanddustyroads

    Lekker ou Tietiesbaai … ons het vir jare daar tydens Paasnaweek gekamp (deesdae gaan ons bietjie verder noord). Ons het ook in 2019 ‘n heerlike week by die Sea Shack gebly (ons noem dit sommer “luxury camping” 😄). Jy’t pragtige foto’s hier … dis altyd lekker om ons omgewing, waar ons bly, deur ander se oe te sien.

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  2. Reflections of an Untidy Mind

    I definitely think you will be going back, Dries. It has a harshness about it that it is equally as beautiful as your inland national parks. If those mussel shells weren’t an indication of the abundant marine life – great photo, Joubert – then the seal colony shows that clearly.

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      1. Reflections of an Untidy Mind

        There is much that is very similar about our two countries, Dries. Our western most state is world renowned for its wild flowers. It has something to do with the poor soil quality and the consequent short duration of favourable spring weather causing the flowers to bloom so spectacularly in their desire to attract pollinators. Don’t quote me on that though. Perhaps there is a similar phenomenon occurring on your west coast that produces the wildflower displays of the fynbos?

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      2. DeWetsWild Post author

        You are spot on, Tracy. Harsh environment with (little) winter rainfall makes for ideal conditions at the start of spring for annuals to flourish for a short period, develop their seeds and die off again before the high and dry temperatures of summer.

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    1. DeWetsWild Post author

      Oh absolutely, Anne. I’m very pleased we spent a December morning at Cape Columbine and Tietiesbaai. I’d love to revisit in the flower season though, I imagine the flowers, rocks and sea would make a beautiful picture.

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    1. DeWetsWild Post author

      Ek hoop regtig voor my vlammetjie uit is sien ek darem meeste van ons land se mooi plekke, Ineke. Maar dit gaan harde werk kos in n land so ryk aan mooi plekke!

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