Keurbooms River Nature Reserve

The reserve incorporates a river and overlooks the Keurbooms River estuary, one of the prettiest estuaries along this stretch of the Garden Route. Situated on the outskirts of popular Plettenberg Bay, the river gorge is spectacular. Canoeing upstream on the spectacular Keurbooms River, you will experience the unspoilt beauty of the gorge and its riverine vegetation. 

Main attractions

  • Whiskey Creek canoe trail and overnight in a secluded log cabin
  • Picnicking on the banks of the river

The Whiskey Creek Canoe Trail can be enjoyed in slow motion, making it quite feasible for those who would perhaps not normally consider themselves fit enough for a ‘strenuous’ paddle. Providing you set out early enough, there is always plenty of time to enjoy the birds, take a dip, explore the beaches and to have a lovely picnic.

– Dale Morris, Wild 14


  • Walking
  • Water sports
  • Fishing
  • Birding
  • Picnicking

Top sightings: Look out for the endemic Knysna touraco and the western Keurboom tree (Virgilia oroboides) which gives the reserve its name. Other top bird sightings include narina trogon, little grebe, malachite and giant kingfisher, black-headed oriole, Cape batis, Knysna woodpecker, reed cormorant, hamerkop and African fish eagle.

Accommodation: Overnight cabin (reachable on the canoe trip)

Office times: 08:00 – 17:00.

Nearest centre: Plettenberg Bay is 5km away (about 5 minutes).

Know before you go

  • You can waterski and use speeds of more than 10km/h between the N2 and the first picnic site between 10:00 and 16:00.
  • No entry to the breeding colony bordering the Keurbooms River mouth.
  • The Robberg Nature Reserve is close and great for a day trail and information about Plettenberg Bay’s environment.

Contact reserve: +27 (0)44 533 2125

CapeNature Central Reservations: +27 (0)21 483 0190, [email protected] 

Visit the Keurbooms River Nature Reserve’s home page.