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LOCAL TIME: 04:50 am | Thursday, 28 October
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Klapperkop Nature Rerserve

Klapperkop offers visitors panoramic views of Pretoria in all directions. Not only is it fast becoming a popular jogging, cycling and mountain biking destination, but with the introduction of game, you’re able to do a quick game drive for free, right here in the heart of Pretoria.

Text and photos by Charl Steenkamp

Access to Klapperkop is via Johann Rissik Drive and you can either enter the reserve via the R21, just past Fountains Circle or from the suburb of Waterkloof via Rigel Avenue (See map below).

The drive meanders through the nature reserve and has many spectacular viewpoints along the way. Access is free and the whole area has been fenced. There are cattle grids at both entrances to prevent game from exiting the reserve.


Klapperkop’s animals

There are small mammals like mongoose, hedgehogs, hares and porcupines on the reserve but these are seldom seen. Larger game have been reintroduced and include zebra, blue wildebeest and red hartebeest.


Fort Klapperkop

Right at the top of the hill you will find Fort Klapperkop. Completed in January 1898, it’s one of Pretoria’s four forts build to protect the then capital of the South African Republic (ZAR). The fort has been restored and is now a museum. A small entrance fee is charged.

Related article: Fort Klapperkop Museum,

A view of the Jacaranda City

From late September to middle November, the almost 70 000 jacaranda trees in Pretoria start to bloom and the whole landscape turns purple. Klapperkop is one of the must-see stops for those wanting to see this spectacular sight. From Klapperkop you’re also able to see the lesser-known row of hundred white jacarandas along Herbert Baker Street, right at the northern foot of Klapperkop hill in Groenkloof.



Johan Rissik Drive, which is approximately 4 km in length, can be walked, hiked, jogged or cycled (See map below). You’re also allowed to do self-guided hikes in the reserve.

 Mountain Bike trails

There are a marked trail within the nature reserve which is said to be among the most climbing of the three Pretoria MTB trails (the others being at Groenkloof Nature Reserve and the Voortrekker Monument Nature Reserve).

The trail goes up, down and around Klapperkop with some fairly long steep climbs and steep technical downhills, while offering great views over the city.

The trail is a combination of technical rocky tracks and some flowing singletrack.


Take the R21 highway from Fountains Circle and turn into Johann Rissik Drive. The entrance is about 900m from the turn-off. Alternatively approach Johann Rissik from Rigel Avenue through the suburb of Waterkloof.

Visitor information
Pretoria Nature & Outdoors Local Information Pretoria’s top nature reserves

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