Mid-July to mid-August
WHERE Carpets of orange daisies transform Springbok and its normally dusty environs – even the road verges in town dazzle the eye. The garden at the Dutch Reformed Church on a koppie in the middle of town is worth visiting. HOTSPOT The 15 000-hectare Goegap Nature Reserve just outside Springbok is where you’ll see real springbok grazing amid the flowers in valleys surrounded by rugged hills. The Hester Malan Wild Flower Garden at the interpretation centre will make you look at succulents with new eyes. There are shaded picnic sites dotted around the valley and a 4x4 trail. Entry is R30 pp. It stays open until 6pm in season. BACK ROAD From Okiep to the old mission village of Concordia is an easy drive on tar through farmlands where some farmers generously leave their gates open so that visitors can get up close to the flowers. SPECIALS Quiver trees or kokerbome look like trees because they grow up to nine metres tall, but they are actually succulents ( Aloe dichotoma). Their patterned bark and yellow flowers in spring make them very photogenic. LOCAL CURIOSITY The smelter smokestack at Okiep is a reminder that this was the world’s richest copper mine back in the 1870s. SECRET SPOT At Concordia, take a signposted detour to Orbicule Kop to see orbicular granite (or diorite), a rare rock texture with concentric internal bands in a matrix, formed about a billion years ago. EAT HERE Springbok Lodge’s restaurant serves pizza and burgers galore. Open 7am to 9.30pm daily, Sundays from 8am. Also check out its wonderful display of minerals and rocks collected in the area. 027-712-1321 STAY HERE Goegap Nature Reserve has a campsite (R90 for two), a basic fourbed unit with no electricity (R160 for two) and new, fully equipped chalets (R320 for two). 027-718-9906, email@example.com
Along the road from the forgotten mining town of Okiep to Concordia, some farmers give access to visitors to stop and see the flowers up close.