The Fynbos Retreat day hiking trails are found just after Stanford in the Western Cape. Getting there once off the tar road, is 10km by gravel road. The property forms part of the magnificent 2500 hectare Grootbos Nature Reserve and offers three fully furnished self catering houses overlooking a large dam.
You then have the option to do one of 3 day hikes in the area. I decided to do a combination of all 3. I started off with the circular 1.2km Milkwood trail.
This trail took me through an ancient milkwood forest with stunning milkwood, wild olive, ironwood and white stinkwood trees. Once out the forest I passed the spring that bubbles out of the limestone hills and around the dam back to the farm house.
I then started the waterfall trail. This took me down the Witvoetskloof valley through pincushions, proteas and an amazing diversity of fynbos. I crossed over boardwalks, across the stream and into a lush afromontane forest with ancient trees and a beautiful waterfall.
I then climbed out of the cool valley, up a path that connected me with the Grootberg trail. I then climbed on to the summit of Ben Lomond, the highest peak in the region. From the summit I enjoyed beautiful views of Dyer Island and Pearly Beach to the south and Walker Bay and Hermanus to the west. Also can be seen are the numerous protea farms in the region. The trail then leads back down to Fynbos Retreat from the summit and in total took me 3:30 to complete.