North West – Vredefort Dome Conservancy
About the Birding
This route discusses the three ‘main’ roads to take for birding in the North-West Province side of the Vredefort Dome:
1. Koedoeslaagte Road (starting point: 26°53’14.0″S 27°23’56.8”E, or -26.887233, 27.399105). Beginning a short distance off the R53 Potchefstroom/Parys road, just north of Parys, follow the road westwards until the above coordinates where the tarred road goes to gravel (see above) – this is used as the starting point for this route, and it continues for 10km.
About the Birding Site
The Vredefort Dome was declared a World Heritage Site in the early 2000s, due to the unique geology in the area – the dome itself is the site of the largest known crater-impact. The Vaal River crosses right through the heart of the ‘Dome’, and together with the fascinating geology and mountains present here, make this a very scenic area. This area is a very popular tourist destination – attested to by the sheer number of lodges, accommodation establishments and activities available in the area.
Other Related Information
Access and facilities:
This area, and conservancy, is mainly of private lands and farms, which have a number of lodges and accommodation options available on them (and host some great birding), and is otherwise best accessed by the network of public roads that cross the area. Almost all of these roads are gravel, and they are well maintained, and suitable for any vehicle-type.