Waterfall and Canyon
The waterfall at Papkuilsfontein, for the use of our private guests only, is situated on the edge of an impressive 180m canyon on the farm. Gazing into the canyon from the look-out point, you can see how eroding forces have carved out this fall, (and continue to do so) and here you can experience the greatness of nature. The waterfall only runs in winter, as we are in a winter rainfall area, or after good summer rains. Enjoy a sundowner at the canyon edge in summer and watch the setting sun intensify the ochre colour of the rocks. The canyon is a two hour walk from the cottages or you can also drive down to the canyon.

Swimming
After a hot day, cool down in the natural rock pool, or if you are staying at Gert Boom opt for the swimming pool (built to resemble a farm dam) next to your cottage.

Hiking Trails
A circular hiking trail of 12km has been laid out, with the turning point at the waterfall, through lovely sandstone rock formations and fynbos, the Bokkeveldsberg being the northern extremity
of the Cederberg. Have your hiker's lunch in solitude while gazing down the incredible gorge.
Don't forget your mountain bikes to explore the farm tracks. Rock paintings are to be seen.

There are three nature reserves in our area, the Oorlogskloof Nature Reserve, the Waterfall Reserve (not to be confused with the canyon and waterfall at Papkuilsfontein) and the Nieuwoudtville flower Reserve. You can also find the Hantam Botanical Garden, the first
botanical garden in Northern Cape, situated just outside of Nieuwoudtville.

Birds
Ornithologically, Papkuilsfontein supports a wonderful array of feathered friends, from Cape Sugarbirds in the Fynbos area to arid area birds such as the larks and sandgrouse in the Shrub Karoo. A wonderful array of raptors in the area iclude the Martial and Verreauxs’ Eagle to the Kestrels and very special, the rare and endangered Black Harrier which actually nests on the property. Papkuilsfontein is truly a birder's paradise and 145 species can be encountered at various times throughout the year on Papkuilsfontein. A check list in the cottages on the farm will support you.

Farm Tour
As a service to our guests, Papkuilsfontein now provides small personalized tours, which are designed to enhance their experience of this area. Willem van Wyk will be your host for approximately 2.5 hours which includes rock art, the canyon, waterfall and its geology, birds, the diversity of veld types, farming and conservation, and of course flowers in season.

Please see our Rates page for tariffs.

Flora and Flower Route
Parts of Papkuilsfontein have been managed as small pockets of flower reserves for many years and a 5km flower route has been developed on one side of Papkuilsfontein, taking you through Renosterveld and some Fynbos, where a profusion of annuals and endemic bulbous plants grow.

Nieuwoudtville has earned itself the title of Bulb Capital of the World, as this very small area has the highest speciation of indigenous bulbous plants in the world. In a west-east transect of only 20km, starting at the escarpment edge and stretching east, you travel through 4 different
soil types, supporting four different vegetation types, True Cape Fynbos, Renosterveld, shrub Karoo, and a  Dolerite sill. This wonderful diversity owes much to the unique convergence of five different geological forms about which you may read in a file provided in your cottage.  

On Papkuilsfontein you will find all soil types represented in the Nieuwoudtville area. Papkuilsfontein is amazingly biodiverse with at least 1,350 floral species on the Bokkeveld Plateau, 80 of which are endemic. Over one third of the endemics are Red Data species threatened with extinction.

Although the greatest shows of flowers are in spring, autumn has its surprises too. After a good summer rain in March/April, you are awarded by a wonderful display of the Amaryllidaceae species, and a few others too.

The Brunsvigia bosmaniae are then out to dazzle you with their bright pink candelabra flower heads, and it sisters, the scarlet paint brush, the pienkkwas and the C flava, are viewing for attention while the Crinum variabile near rivers bend their graceful trumpets to enchant you.

The poisenous Boophone haemanthoides with their lovely scented flowers were widely used for medicinal purposes. Don't overlook the violet-blue Syringodea longituba and a few more, but come and see for yourself. As this is dependent on autumn rains, we have a contact list to phone you every year and warn that the show will start in three week's time.

A new short flower route (which is opent ot he public) has been laid out on the northern side of the farm, to maintain the privacy of our own guests at their cottages. This flower route has been designed to take you through a huge variety of bulbous plants in the Renosterveld, just bordering the Fynbos section of the farm.

Fauna and Reptiles
An interesting spectrum of animals may be seen, from the Small Elephant Shrew to the endangered and red Data Cape Clawless otter , African Wild Cat, Aardvark, Porcupine, Klipspringer, Steenbok, Duiker , Baboon, and Caracal (Rooikat).

Files in the cottages assits you with to identify tortoise, agama and other reptiles.

Geology
An estimated 220 million year ago, at  the time when dinosaurs roamed the earth, mountain formation in the Cape Fold Belt came to an end. What followed was a spectacle on a scale nowadays, is nowhere to be found on earth. Around 180million years ago, hot black basaltic lava poured out over the whole of the southern continent as Gondwana started to be placed under enormous  intercontinental tentional stresses. The lava that did not make it to the surface are today seen as the thick dolerite sheets (sills) and associated dykes, which give the Karoo its ‘’ysterklip’’ ridges and spectacular scenery. Read about the geologyof this area in the files you will  find  in the cottages

San Rock Art
The Cederberg, in South Africa, is home to more than 2 000 painting sites that vary in style and chronology.

For thousands of years, the stained sandstone mountains of this area formed a canvas on which the San, and later, the Khoi and colonial inhabitants of the area recorded their own unwritten history. The San used finely ground stones (ochre) and other natural pigments to paint the white
crested eland and rust brown people figures of that historical landscape and mythological tradition.

At Papkuilsfontein we take special care to ensure the longeviy of our sites. We invite visitors to share in the cultural richness of this precious cultural heritage, as we explore together the artistry of the San who left of this legacy.

Night Sky
The Southern Hemisphere offers some unique objects not visible from the Northern Hemisphere such as the two closest visible galaxies to our own Milky Way, namely the Large and the Small Magellanic Cloud. The mariner Ferdinand Magellan first described these as two clouds that rose higher above the horizon each night as he sailed further south. We now know that they are not clouds or nebulae but are in fact two satellite galaxies gravitationally bound to our galaxy and that they are being tidally disrupted and will eventually be absorbed by the Milky Way. They are currently at a distance of 180 000 and 210 000 light years away, respectively. The facts are fascinating and mind-boggling. But, one can simply enjoy the absolute brilliance of a sky uninterrupted by any light other than your own candle.

4x4 and Campsite
The 4x4 trail and campsite were developed on the extreme right side of the 6,000ha property so as to be of no hindrance to our other guests on the farm. It has a difficulty rating of 4-5 and is about 15 km long. It extends over rocky mountainous ground, which can be wet in winter. The
road climbs gradually to the edge of a 180-meter canyon with a breathtaking view. It then follows the edge of the canyon with a view to both the left and right of Oorlogskloof and also the Oorlogskloof Nature Reserve. Groups will be accompanied on request.