Swart Tobie Coastal Trail

Koekenaap, Western Cape

Coastal trails have always been popular with the hiking fraternity and there are several to be found along the Southern Africa coast. Kosi Bay, Mziki and Emoyeni at St Lucia, Otter Trail, Dolphin Trail are just some that come to mind. A recent addition to the list is the Swart Tobie trail that traverses the beautiful Atlantic coastline, north of Cape Town

The Swart Tobie (Red Beak Oyster Catcher) Trail is about 4 hours traveling time by road from Cape Town and close to the small town Vredendal. The trail is 92 km long over a period of 5 days. The days are quite long but your equipment is transported for you from camp site to camp site, leaving you to walk with a day pack, enabling you to accomplish the distances in adequate time. This is a wilderness trail  and therefore a certain amount of experience is needed.

  Day 1 - 18km 6 hours-moderate

The first and last night of the trail is spent in the Kliphuis Bushman Cave.

Departing from Brand se baai the trail passes along a beautiful section of the shore that is a showcase of colourful succulents. These plants perform an important task in preventing wind erosion.

Day 1 finishes at Jakkalshok




Day2 -  18km  6 hours-moderate

Jakkalshok to Gert du Toit Bay

The day takes one along desolate beaches and rocky shoreline. Take time along the way to view the marine life that abounds in the rock pools.

Day3- 18km 7 hours - Strenuous

Gert du Toit Bay to Helga's Heights

On this route you see Duiwegat with its awesome potholes that look down on whirling waters. Geelwalkaroo with its variety of colours is visible from where the old coastline was 10 million years ago.


Day4 - 18km - 6 hours- Moderate

Helga's Heights to mouth of the Olifants River

This day takes us to Bakoond and past Rob Island where thousands of seals are within sight. Closer to the mouth of the Olifants river, the Red Beak Oyster Catcher will be found in great numbers. At the mouth of the Olifants river a large variety of wading birds will be seen.


Day 5- 20km- 7 hours- Moderate

Mouth of the Olifants River to Kliphuis Bushman's Cave

The trail now turns upstream on the banks of the river and one soon notices a different eco system to that found along the coast. An abundance of birds such as the Fish Eagle, African Coot are to been seen along this stretch of the trail.



Most of us love and have a certain affinity with the sea and love the coastal hikes. This is a welcome addition to growing list of trails that stretch along our beautiful coastline. Whales are often seen close insure as they hunt for their food in one of the richest fish areas in the world.


The Swart Tobie Coastal Trail can be booked through

Jacana Marketing and Reservations

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Telephone  0861Jacana (0861 522262) or +27 12 734 2978


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 e-mail info@jacanacollection.co.za

Footprint Hiking Club

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