HIKING – Postberg Flower Trail (2-Day Hiking Trail)

September 2021

According to the calendar, spring is finally here in South Africa. But for us, living on the West Coast of South Africa, there is another way to determine whether spring finally arrived except looking at the calendar … suddenly, wildflowers pop up everywhere!

We are fortunate to live on the doorstep of the West Coast National Park. And within this park is the Postberg Nature Reserve. This reserve is only open for visitors during August and September – in particular to view the exceptional wildflowers in full bloom.

There is a great circular route one can drive to see these flowers (we have done this last year and you can read about it here), but this year we decided it was time to do the popular two-day hiking trail.

Ready to start our overnight hike in Postberg Nature Reserve

Information on the trail:

  • Distance – Day 1: 15.5km (9.6 miles)
  • Distance – Day 2: 11.8km (7.3 miles)
  • Maximum number of people on the trail per day: 12
  • Hiking in Postberg is only allowed in August & September
  • Bookings already open in June
  • Overnight camping spot: Plankiesbaai (on the beach)
  • You will have to carry everything you’ll need – i.e. tent, sleeping bag, food & water
  • The West Coast National Park staff supply wood, grids & kettles for use at Plankiesbaai
  • Water is available at Plankiesbaai
  • The trail is strenuous and you should be reasonably fit

When we left home, we could already feel the famous southerly wind for which this area is so well-known during this time of year … but you can’t always have the perfect conditions on a hike. We were happy though that the sun was out, because that meant we would be able to see the flowers.

Just after 9:00, the park’s friendly ranger welcomed us and explained the route. After she handed us a map, we took off with our backpacks to enjoy this beautiful reserve.

It was already evident from the beginning of the trail that we would be seeing a lot of wildflowers

The trail is marked with route markers featuring a white flower and/or white poles. At the beginning of the trail, some of the poles are red and white and together with the flower is the head of a steenbok (the red poles and steenbok indicates the one-day hiking trail).

The trail marker

When you are walking this trail, you won’t just see beautiful flowers, but you could also be fortunate to see game that is not that shy of humans. Zebra, wildebeest, antelope, ostrich, mongoose, snakes, birds and tortoises are just among some of the wild animals that can be spotted … let’s hope not to see (or come across) any of the snakes!

Early on the trail we spotted some zebras and antelope
These rocks were the first indication that we were starting to climb a hill

As mentioned earlier, we have enjoyed a drive through the reserve before and were under the impression that this trail would be (fairly) flat … but oh no, don’t think that for a minute! There were a couple of hills to climb – and with a heavy backpack loaded with camping gear, this was quite a challenge!

The trail sometimes crosses a jeep track

Almost at the top of the hill, we could stand still for a moment to appreciate the view (and to catch our breaths)! We could see the cold Atlantic Ocean on our right and the beautiful Kraalbaai on our left. Kraalbaai is a lovely sandy beach in the West Coast National Park (and their houseboats are very popular accommodation for tourists).

Kraalbaai in the distance

Since this is a “flower viewing” hiking trail, it will just be fitting to show you some of the beautiful flowers … and I’m afraid, you will get an overload of “flower viewing” towards the end of this post 😊.

When we reached the top of the hill, we had the most beautiful view of the Langebaan lagoon. Another couple from our hiking group joined us and we stayed here for a while to take photos and just admire the view.

View over Langebaan Lagoon

At this point, the two-day route separates from the one-day route and we walked towards Perlemoenpunt (loosely translated, Abalone Point).

The white pole & flower is the way marker for the two-day trail

For a few kilometers we enjoyed a beautiful jeep trail that literally follows along the lagoon.

Jeep track along the lagoon
A large flock of birds fly across the lagoon

The trail now makes a u-turn at Perlemoenpunt and that’s when we felt the strong southerly wind in our faces … and it was now uphill as well! That called for only one thing – time to break for lunch!

Backpacks off and time to cook water for a cup of coffee in nature

I must admit, I thought we had quite a nice lunch … Portuguese rolls filled with cold meat and cheese with a nice sauce as well as some sausages we baked in the oven the previous evening. That was until our fellow hikers took out their lunch … there was a spread of different cheeses, biscuits and strawberries … wow, we need to learn how to do a proper lunch break in nature!

After a well-deserved rest and full tummies, it was time to hike the last 7km … and we knew the most beautiful carpet of flowers were awaiting us just over the hill!

A slight uphill after lunch
Reaching the 10km mark on our trail

At first, we walked through a yellow garden of flowers … spread like a carpet in front of us.

Pathway through yellow wildflowers

At the top of the hill we had the most spectacular view of purple flowers covering the ground as far as the eyes could see – quite amazing! And to our right we could see the road leading to the Atlantic Ocean, where we were going to spend the night.

A purple carpet of flowers
Plankiesbaai, our overnight spot in the distance

We have done many hiking trails before this one, but I have to admit, this trail must be close to the top of our list when it comes to scenic views! To walk between these wildflowers, was a wonderful experience.

Tiny purple wildflowers covering the ground
And an absolute bonus – a zebra posing in the middle of the flower field
More yellow flowers covering our track
The field displays different colours of flowers

After walking through the field of flowers, we reached the beach. Plankiesbaai, our overnight spot, was located along the coast.

Reaching Plankiesbaai at the Atlantic Ocean

Blown away by the wind (but also blown away by the beauty of this trail), we arrived at Plankiesbaai. Here are just basic facilities available – ablution, basins and cold water. Oh, and don’t forget about the ‘braai’ (barbeque) area … that came in very handy later in the evening!

Our tent is pitched and we’re ready to relax

The rest of our hiking group arrived shortly behind us. Tents were pitched and fires were lit in order to prepare dinner. There was a wonderful camaraderie between us and it was a lovely evening around the fires. Still, I just have to mention that a very strong wind sent us all to bed pretty early!

Berto keeping an eye on the fire where we have prepared dinner
A beautiful sunset after a wonderful day on a flower-covered hiking trail

The wind only calmed down at around 3:00 the next morning and we woke up on a beautiful (windless) morning. After having breakfast next to the fire and putting our tents back in our backpacks, it was time to walk the last stretch of this amazing hiking trail.

Breakfast time – hot coffee & a bowl of oats … I’m sure this will take us to the end!
Time for a group photo before we leave – thanks guys, it was great to share this trail with you (Photo credit: Bart van der Ryst)

The second day on this trail is mostly along the coast (with one uphill – of course – just to get the blood pumping)!

Walking next to the sea on our second day
Still seeing pretty wildflowers
A small island close to the shore

We ended this trail with a short walk on the beach and another cup of coffee at the Tsaarsbank Picnic Area.

A walk on the beach to end our hiking trail

How would we rate this hike? Excellent and a must do, that’s for sure! It’s only open for two months of the year and you will not even think about your heavy backpack when you’re walking between the bright and beautiful wildflowers!

We enjoyed this trail so much! (Photo credit: Bart van der Ryst)

And once again, here’s a short video clip of our two-day hike in Postberg … we hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Postberg Two-Day Hiking Trail

77 thoughts on “HIKING – Postberg Flower Trail (2-Day Hiking Trail)

  1. Most envious of you doing that walk. Loved the photos and the final video. Daily distances were not too far it would seem and impressed by the carpets of wildflowers, reminiscent of wildflowers we saw in Western Australia 3 years ago. We hope to get out hiking soon, just waiting for the current lockdown in Melbourne to end.
    Cheers, Mark

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your welcome thoughts Mark! A great hike indeed … and the distances each day was just enough that you don’t get (too) tired 😉. I’m glad that you could also experience something similar in Western Australia and do hope that you can soon go out for more hiking!

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  2. What an absolutely gorgeous national park! I love the idea of it only being open for a few months a year, they must really look after it. The beds of purple and yellow… the sea views… waves crashing against the rocks. Cool video, I like your choice of music. Even my coffee is swooning to the vibes.

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    1. Thanks Leighton! Yes, hikers are always anxiously waiting for these two months to visit the reserve … and you never know (when you book) whether you will see flowers or not, it’s such a gamble … but we were lucky! My husband composed the video and music – I will pass on your compliments to him 😉.

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    1. Yes, the wildflowers are pretty special (and I also like the mixed ones) … it sometimes felt like we were looking at a painting, so surreal. I think the park made an excellent choice with only allowing 12 people a day – it really feels like you’re the only people there. And I think it’s also a great way to make sure the environment is not disturbed too much. Thank you for walking with us – much appreciated.

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  3. A great privilege to be able to to walk in such a special place and good that the groups are small and time limited. I am particularly fond of wildflowers. Those are so beautiful. And the wind…yes it can be exhausting! It’s lovely that you share your expeiences. Thank you.

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    1. You’re absolute right – it was a great privilege and we loved every moment of this hike. Those wildflowers are so gorgeous, although, when they get dry, it’s a trigger for my hay fever 🤧 … but I guess that’s a small price to pay for the beauty we got from them. I’m glad you’ve enjoyed our hike with us Carolyn, take care.

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    1. This is so true … a country with so many different facets! It’s great to rediscover parts of our country during the lockdown – we suddenly realised just how many beautiful places we had not yet visited! Thank you for stopping by 🌸.

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  4. Ek is besonder lief vir stap en ons stap graag sommer in die berg agter ons huis. My groot beperking is my rug waarop ek nie meer eintlik gewig kan dra nie en het jare gelede al besluit om slegs roetes te doen waar my sak vervoer word. Maar nou het jy my so lus gemaak vir rugsak koop! Julle kos klink so lekker. Ek is nie ‘n goeie kosinpakker nie.

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    1. Ons is baie lief vir stap (jy sal so agterkom as jy deur ons blog se bladsye blaai 😉) … eintlik enige iets waar ons in die buitelug kan wees! Ek hou ook nie eintlik van rugsak dra nie, maar het nie so ‘n goeie verskoning soos jy nie (maar tog, as ek daardie rugsak opsit, voel ek pure pelgrim)! My man is die groot kosmaker in ons huis en hy glo, selfs as mens gaan stap, moet jy kan lekker (en gesond eet) … ek laat dit in sy bekwame hande!

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      1. Ek dink eintlik dat ‘n goeie rugsak nie ‘n simpel rug behoort te affekteer nie. Dra jy nie meestal op jou heupe nie? En dan kan my man due swaarder goed dra en ek die ligter goed of so iets.

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      2. O ja, my dierbare man het my mooi geleer van “dra jou rugsak op jou heupe, dan raak jou skouers nie seer nie” (hy’t wel eenkeer iets genoem van dis waarom vroue sulke oulike heupe het … maar ek dink dit was die eerste en laaste keer wat hy dit gese het 😉). Ons het ook so ‘n reeling – ek dra die ligter goed en Berto die swaarder goed – die groot geheim is mos dat jou rugsak net nooit meer as 10% van jou liggaamsgewig moet wees nie, eerder ligter as dit moontlik is.

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      3. My seun het ‘n baie goeie rugsak. Dalk moet ek dit ‘n bietjie leen, sommer as ek die dag bergop stap en kyk wat dit aan my doen. Gelukkig is daar mos darem baie staproetes waar ek nie my bagasie hoef te dra nie, so dalk bly ek by my besluit dat ek eerder sulke roetes sal doen.

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      4. Dit is ‘n goeie vraag Toortsie! Dalk was dit maar nog altyd daar … maar ek dink ook Suid-Afrikaners begin al meer tyd in die natuur spandeer (wat wonderlik is) en sodoende kom staproetes meer in die soeklig.

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      5. Ons vertrek oor 2 weke Nieuwoudtville toe om die Oorlogskloof staproete te gaan doen. Dis ‘n 5-dag staproete van (ek dink) 56km. En hoekom, vra jy? Dis een van daardie staproetes wat ook mooi is om gedurende die lente te doen … ek dink nie ons gaan meer baie blomme sien nie, maar dis gelee in ‘n pragtige omgewing. En ons wil ook graag ‘n langer staptog as net ‘n dag of twee doen en hierdie een is relatief naby. So, ons pak weer ons rugsakke binnekort 😁.

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  5. Oh you are so fortunate to live close by, and to think as a teenager we were on Langerbaan lagoon every weekend and roaming Postberg from the water’s edge regularly. Now I feel a different “homesickness”, a real pang in my heart. I am so glad you can enjoy and share these wonderful times with us. Thank you so much 🌷🌸💮🌺🌻🤗🙋‍♀️

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    1. Wow Morag, that must have been quite amazing in those days! Like I’ve said in previous comments, this hike compare brilliantly with some of our other hikes. I was astonished at the beauty of the flowers, the lagoon and the ocean in one view – a wonderful memory we’ll take with us … and hopefully do again in future! I’m glad you enjoyed this walk with us – thanks for your lovely comments 💌🌸.

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  6. Ooo, what a wonderful post!!
    Very beautiful sceneries and the yellow gardens of flowers reminds me of Malta in spring, yellow flowers all over the island!! 🌼🌻
    I love the image with the zebra standing in an ocean of ​​purple flowers as well as the flock of birds flying over the lagoon. All these amazing images makes me long for spring to come here in Cyprus.
    No doubt you had a very rewarding hike, thank you for sharing your experiences! 🦓🦓

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    1. Thank you so much Anita! This was a special hike indeed … I would love to see Malta in spring 😊. It was such a surprise to see the zebra so close to us – he was very alert because there was a little foal close by and he kept an eye on us for quite some time! And the flock of birds is definitely one of my favourite pictures as well – they were so close to us, it was such a wonderful moment.
      Oh yes, and I would love to see Cyprus in spring as well … can’t wait for your photo’s when the season arrive. Thanks for reading and have a great week.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Hannah 🌸. It was indeed a special hike – definitely rated as one of our top hikes thus far. I like that last photo as well 😉. The only problem with this hike, is the hay fever afterwards … itchy eyes and runny nose … but I dare to say, it was all worth it!

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    1. Lisa, you just make sure you come during September – in time to see the flowers in full bloom … we’ll take you any day 😄. Thank you for the compliment on the photo’s – the flowers do make beautiful pictures 🌸🌸. Thanks for reading and for your lovely comments as always – have a great week too.

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  7. Loved this hike for all the reasons you so beautifully describe. The bonus was meeting you both around the campfire! Thanks for great company and conversation ☺

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    1. That’s what make hikes so special … you never know what amazing people you’re going to meet! It was indeed a bonus meeting you and Alan – we will remember our night around the fire in a fierce southerly wind for a long time 😉. Hope to see you guys soon! Take care 🌸

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    1. Oh yes, the color was truly spectacular! I’m not so sure if we’re in good shape (but hopefully we’ll get there in time 😁) … I think our minds are more convincing! It was an amazing hike with amazing scenes – so glad we finally did this one!

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  8. Oh my goodness! This looks beautiful! I especially love the field that has multiple colors of flowers in it. What an amazing camping spot on the water. And I must admit, it sounds so very exotic to me that you can go hiking and just meander past some zebras!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, that field with the multiple colours are my favourite too! It was such a stunning hike … and the zebras was a definite highlight (not shy at all)! We were totally surprised by this hike and would love to do this again (next year 😉). Thanks for reading!

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  9. Wow wow wow, I’m blown away by the beauty in this post! I especially love the photo showing the two hikers, the love birds, holding hands in the yellow field, and loved seeing all the beautiful flower fields, lagoon, beach and just everything. I must admit that I’m not brave to do such a hike and especially appreciate this magnificent share, thank you so much Corna 🌼🌿💛 🌸💕

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    1. Ahh, thank you so much for your kind comments Henrietta! This was a really scenic hike indeed – it had everything like you said (flowers, lagoon and ocean). I can’t believe we have not done this hike earlier … but hopefully we’ll get another opportunity next year because it was such a special one! Enjoy your weekend 💌.

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  10. I’ve read about the amazing South African spring wildflower blooms, but your photos completely blew me away. The carpet of flowers and the backdrop of ocean and wildlife is simply incredible. I want to do this (as long as I can stay away from snakes). Is it difficult getting reservations when they open in June?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have to admit, the wildflowers were really spectacular this season (we had good rainfall during the winter) and this hike was at the right time … it’s sometimes a guess to know when the flowers will look their best ☺️ . We actually booked this hike in early September and there were a few more places open … so I’m sure if you book in June you will definitely find a place on this hike (and I think it’s also easier if you’re not part of a large group). As for the snakes … on the nature reserve pamphlet they mention that you can encounter snakes (and I’m no big fan either), but we did not encounter them …

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