Camdeboo National Park, which surrounds the town of Graaff-Reinet in the Eastern Cape, will open its long-awaited Nqweba Campsite on 1 March 2012.
Although there were a number of delays after South African National Parks (SANParks) first announced its intention to construct a tented camp and campsite in 2010, construction is finally drawing to a close.
“The Campsite and Tented Camp will provide visitors with a rustic overnight nature experience within the Park’s Game Viewing Area,” said Park Manager, Peter Burdett.
Traditionally Camdeboo National Park – which surrounds the town of Graaff-Reinet - has not offered visitors accommodation facilities due to the large variety of accommodation on offer in the town.
However, in response to tourism demands and trends, SANParks decided to develop the campsite and tented camp which would complement but not compete with the established business interests in the town.
The Park’s Lakeview Tented Camp is set to open on 1 April and will offer four furnished safari-type tents situated within an area originally used as a lapa for group functions.
The campsite, which is located on the floodplains of the Nqweba Dam, offers fifteen sites for caravans or tents with a maximum of six people allowed on each site. Each site has a power supply and braai unit, while the centrally located communal kitchen conveniently provides a deep freeze, microwave and stove plates for campers and caravanners. The campsite’s communal ablutions provide shower and toilet facilities and are universally accessible.
While the sites do have some shade from Acacia trees, SANParks has an ongoing web-based donation campaign aimed at purchasing established karee (Rhus lancea) trees to ensure that the shade cover on the gravelled sites improves in the future.
Bookings for the campsite and tented camp are already open on the SANParks website www.sanparks.org and via SANParks central reservation offices.
Those who wish to donate shade trees for the campsite can access the SANParks donation portal via the GivenGain website.
Camdeboo National Park’s major tourism draw card is the scenic Valley of Desolation, a national monument, while its game-viewing area is home to buffalo and antelope such as eland, gemsbok, red hartebeest, springbok and blesbok.