doe & ervaar

Berg River Dam, Franschhoek – a great place for outdoor activities

Nature lovers dog owners and sporty people who love to hike run walk swim cycle, this is the place to do so in Franschhoek, The Berg River Dam. Nature Reserve beautiful outside is free

In 1989 plans were made to build a big water storage dam, to capture rain fall water during winter to supply Cape Town during the dry South African summers. Location of the new project: Franschhoek. Years and years of planning, approving and building later, in 2007, the dam was constructed and in use. After the first winter in 2008 the dam was full of rain fall water. The dam nowadays increases the supply to Cape Town from 768 to 898 million cubic metres. (Source: Wikipedia)
Beautiful nature area in Franschhoek is the Berg River DamBesides the main function of the Berg River Dam (capture and store rain fall water), the whole area around it is beloved and frequently used by nature lovers, sporty people and dog owners. You can walk, cycle, run, jog, swim, (not really legal I recently heard, but many people – including me – swim here) soak up the sun and enjoy nature and quiet moments. From the center of Franschhoek it is a 20 minutes cycle or a 45 minutes walk. By car to the gate it’s about 5 minutes from the village.
Berg River DamMe and the Other Half visit the Berg River Dam sometimes for a walk, run or we cycle up there. We actually should do this at least once a week. It is such a peaceful, quiet and beautiful place!
Berg River Dam Bridge House Mile Swim Franschhoek South Africa waterOn the photo above you see me during an extremely hot summer day in January, swimming in the Berg River Dam. So refreshing! Not sure how legal it is by the way. Some people say it’s legal, some say it’s not. What for sure is legal, is to join the Bridge House Mile, the swimming event in Berg River Dam, which is organised once year by Bridge House School. But for walking the area around Berg River Dam is also perfect:
Nature lovers dog owners and sporty people who love to hike run walk swim cycle, this is the place to do so in Franschhoek, The Berg River Dam. Nature Reserve beautiful outside is freeNot to forget about cycling! The Berg River Dam is very popular by cyclist of Franschhoek and surrounded areas. I took the photo below on Christmas Day 2015. Other Half & myself decided to start Christmas with an early tour by bicycle, with in our backpacks tea and the original Christmas Stollen from Germany. For me as a Dutchie still – after five years SA – it feels a bit strange to celebrate Christmas in summer weather. So this year I decided to go with the flow and to do things different. No formal big sit down Christmas Day breakfast, but outdoor activities and a very simple breakfast with a view. And it felt so good, this new Christmas Feeling South African Style! <3
Nature lovers dog owners and sporty people who love to hike run walk swim cycle, this is the place to do so in Franschhoek, The Berg River Dam. Nature Reserve beautiful outside is freeThe Berg River Dam is situated at the end of Robertsvlei Road and free to access. Turn right at the Franschhoek Monument, first right again and follow this road all he way until there is a gate with a dirt road behind. Park your car, or if you are by feet or bicycle continue, and make your way on the dirt road. You can go around the water and up the hill for the best views. Unfortunately it is not possible (as far as I know) to go around the Dam completely, but for me it doesn’t matter. What you can do, is take the Robertsvlei Road back via the other way, passing the Glenwood winery. Once back on the R45, turn right toward the center of Franschhoek. This is what we often do by bicycle for a good round loop. Berg River Dam and surroundings is quite safe, but be aware of the sun (hat and sun block is advised in summer), don’t take too much valuables with, or in your car (again it is quite safe but I hear once there was an incident with a broken car window at the parking space in front of the entrance gate), and keep an eye on snakes! I never ever saw a snake here but I know some people in the past who did.

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