Cameron & Rhoda McMaster's

Botanical Tours

Wildflower Tours in the Eastern Cape

Most tourists to South African visit us in spring (August/September) for the Cape and Namaqualand flowers, and so miss the wonderful offerings of the summer rainfall regions in the East of the country. With this in mind we have arranged a number of Wild Flower tours in the Eastern Cape over the past few years.   The months of November to February are the best time for summer rainfall flora in South Africa. 

There are many special destinations well off the usual tourist routes that may be visited, staying mostly on farms and in small villages so as to be right in the countryside.  Each day hikes or 4X4 excursions to areas that would not normally be accessible to ordinary tourists form part of the package.  Visits to San Rock Shelters and rock art sites as well as game viewing in private reserves form important additions to the botanical experience.  While farm accommodation is excellent, it comes at a fraction of the price of the 4 and 5 star establishments used by tour operators, making such tours most affordable.  The home-cooked farm meals are fabulous.  The personal contact with the hosts around the farm dining table in the evenings is a great spin-off for overseas visitors

There are a number of major vegetation types in the East Cape from Valley Thicket and Karroo/Namib vegetation to Alpine grassland and Sub-Tropical coastal flora.  The tours comprise a round trip of 10 to 14 days, depending on the client's requirements, starting and ending Port Elizabeth.  During this time all the vegetation types are sampled and clients are shown all the specialties in the Eastern Cape, including many rare endemics.  Succulents, Geophytes including the Clivias and  Cycads are some of the more interesting flora to be seen and guided hikes through Alpine flora, Afromontane forest and Subtropical coastal bush are highlights.

The East Cape not only has spectacular flowers but a wide variety of habitats and magnificent scenery - well worth a visit at any time in the spring and summer.  Contact Rhoda and Cameron at African Bulbs for details and for a CD illustrating the scope of the tours they offer.

Ways of Obtaining Our Tour Brochure
You can download our 73 page Adobe PDF "Tour Brochure" (20Mb) from this website. Persons interested in more information about our tours can request the same presentation on Compact Disc at a nominal fee to cover postage. Contact Us

If 20Mb is too much for you to download the brochure pages have been turned into pictures, Click Here to view.

More information can also be found on
our Eastern Cape Tours page. Click Here.

Botanical Guiding
Rhoda and Cameron are qualified Field Guides registered with the Field Guides Association of South Africa (FGASA). Cameron has the qualification of Specialist Wild Flower Guide. Customised tours can be arranged to cater for special requirements or particular plants or genera. Our area of expertise is primarily the Eastern and Western Cape. Tours can be arranged at any time of the year but August and September are the best months for spring flowers in the Western Cape with February and March the best times for Amaryllidaceae.
November to February are the best times for the summer rainfall flora of the Eastern Cape, Lesotho and the Eastern Free State.

Also see the following articles:
Botanical Tour of the Eastern Cape January 2006

Wildflower Tours in the Eastern Cape

Andrew Lanoe's account of the East Cape Tour in February 2009

In search of Wild Nerines April 2010

Also see - External Links
Botanizing in the Eastern Cape and Lesotho by Ellen Hornig

AGS Tour of the Eastern Cape with
Cameron January 2009 by Stephen Cotton

Gallery of Images by Michael Charters
on our tour of the Eastern Cape, January 2008.