The craggy heights of the Mountain Zebra National Park’s Bankberg embrace rolling plains and deep valleys, and has become an entrancing preserve for the Cape mountain zebra.

The proclamation of the park in 1937 saved these animals from extinction, and currently their population stands at 350.

The park contains a rich variety of plant species and in spring the veld is covered with flowers. Fynbos and renosterveld bush flourish in the temperate climate where the rains come mainly during early summer and winter.

Wildlife:

The highlight of the park’s mammalian fauna is obviously the Cape mountain zebra after which the park is named. These zebra differ from the plains or Burchell’s zebra, by having narrower stripes, absence of shadow stripes and orange facial colouration.

Mountain reedbuck and grey rhebok frequent the higher areas, whilst caracal occupy the niche of primary predator.

Other noticeable species of the mountain plateau are the red hartebeest, eland and springbok. In the more wooded valleys visitors should search for kudu, and two of the park’s more recent reintroductions, the African buffalo and the black rhino.

Accommodation:

Doornhoek Guest House, a restored Victorian homestead, accommodating 6 persons, three bedrooms, en suite bathrooms(bath), fully equipped kitchen.

They also have four-bed family cottages, each with two bedrooms, bathroom (shower) and partially equipped kitchen.

All accommodation in the park is serviced daily and provided with bedding, towels and soap.

Activities:

– Game viewing from own vehicle.

– Short nature trails.

– Day and night drives – bookings at reception.

– San cave paintings – bookings at reception.

– Picnic areas

How to get there:

The park is situated 12 km from the picturesque town of Cradock on the Middelburg-Graaff Reinett road, and is 280 km from Port Elizabeth, 800 km from Cape Town, 800 km from Johannesburg and 1 050 km from Durban.

The access route to the park entrance and most of the internal tourist routes are gravel, whilst certain sections are tarred or concrete.

Gate Hours:

1 October to 31 March: 07:00 – 19:00

1 April to 30 September: 07:00 – 18:00

Climate in the Mountain Zebra National Park:

Summers are warm, and winter nights are cold. Rainfall averages some 390mm per annum, with regular snowfall on high lying areas.