Carnivorous Plants and Wildflowers of South Africa

Discover South Africa’s carnivorous flora 

South Africa’s Cape Floral Region represents just 0.5 % of Africa’s land area, but is home to almost 20 % of all plant species found on the entire African continent. Prominent amongst its spectacular and highly endemic flora are the sticky-leaved carnivorous plants of the genera Drosera (the sundews) and Roridula, both of which grow in close proximity to a variety of other native flora, including carnivorous Utricularia, wild orchids, as well as the iconic Protea.
This expedition visits a number of scenic areas where these plants can be found in abundance, as well as national parks of more general interest. The trip therefore offers excellent opportunities to photograph birds, insects and some truly memorable scenery.

Key Facts

COST: £1,650 per person for 9 days / 8 nights (all inclusive from start point to end point). Organised on a twin-room basis. Single room upgrade available for £350. Includes all transport in private charter vehicles, drivers, accommodation, all meals, non-alcoholic drinks, guide fees, entrance tickets to reserves etc

START POINT: Cape Town International Airport, South Africa.

END POINT: Cape Town International Airport, South Africa.

EXPEDITION LEADERS: Stewart McPherson and Hendre Barnard.

DATES: Sunday 22nd, September, 2024 to Monday 30th, September 2024.

Optional pre- or post-expedition extensions: We can organise bespoke treks to other carnivorous plant sites, visits to scenic locations and mini-safari trips to key wildlife areas. Please enquire for details.

Email sales@redfernnaturalhistory.com for more information and to make bookings.

see an abundance of these plants

visit a number of scenic areas

Getting there: As a major hub city, Cape Town is connected by regular international flights to cities around the world. We recommend you arrive at least one day before the trip begins, so you can have a night rest before the trip begins.
We have deliberately planned this itinerary to start on Sunday. You can fly out from your home country on Friday. Arrive on Saturday. Ahead of the trip beginning on Sunday.
Likewise, at the end of the trip, you can depart on Monday evening, and land home on Tuesday. Therefore, only seven week days (working days) are needed to complete this trip!

Itinerary

Day 1: Explore Table Mountain

Pick up in Cape Town at 9.00 am. We take a cable car up to the top of Table Mountain to find populations of Drosera admirabilis, D. aliciae, D. cuneifolia, D. trinervia and D. capensis, and possibly D. glabripes as well as orchids, including the iconic Disa, and other plants including Protea. The views are absolutely spectacular. We then return back to Cape Town. Today involves approx 50 km driving. 

We have dinner in a restaurant in Cape Town. Overnight in a local hotel.

Day 2: Visit to Hermanus

Today, we drive to one of South Africa’s most diverse and beautiful carnivorous plant sites – Hermanus  Along the way, we have the option of visiting African Penguins, then visit a site for Drosera hilaris, then visit Fernkloof Reserve near to see spectacular populations of D. admirabilis, aliciae, cistiflora, esterhuyseniae, glabripes, hilaris, slackii, trinervia, xerophila and zeyheri, as well as Roridula gorgonias, along with Protea, orchids and wildflowers. Today involves approx 150 km driving. We may be able visit vineyards on the way.

We have dinner in a restaurant in Cape Town. Overnight in a local hotel.

Day 3: Journey to Franschoek, Hermon, Malmesbury

Today, we drive to Elandsberg and along the way, we visit sites at Franschoek, Hermon, Malmesbury to see Drosera capensis, D. cistiflora, D. aff cistiflora, D. aff pauciflora and D. trinervia, along with many beautiful wildflowers. We can do a mini-safari in the evening (drive and dine) to see game including antelopes! 

We drive around 215 km today. We have dinner in a restaurant in Malmesbury. Overnight in a local hotel.

Day 4: Explore Darling, Porterville, Piketberg

Today, we visit several sites, including Waylands, Duckitt’s and Darling Brew for lunch. Along the way, we will see spectacular populations of Drosera cistiflora and D. pauciflora, plus many wildflowers and bulbs! 

We drive around 130 km today. We dine in a restaurant in Porterville/Pketberg. Overnight in a local hotel.

Day 5: Drive to: Citrusdal, Clanwilliam

We visit several roadside sites and undertake a hike at Petersfield Farm to see beautiful (and varied) Drosera cistiflora populations and beautiful wildflowers. 

We have dinner in a restaurant in Clanwilliam. Overnight in a local hotel. Approx 110 km of driving today.

Day 6: Visit Pakhuis Pass and Niuwoudtville

Today is a real highlight. We have a chance to see Roridula dentata (note: population varies greatly depending upon past seasons’ rainfall), Drosera alba and D. variegata. We have dinner in a restaurant in Papkuilsfontein. Overnight in a local hotel. Approx 120 km of driving today.

Day 7: Nieuwoudtville, Vanrhynsdorp

Today, we drive to Oorlogskloof and make several roadside stops to see Drosera alba and an undescribed species, D. sp. ‘Nieuwoudtville’, along with a plethora of wildflowers, including Clivia

We have dinner in a restaurant in Vanrhynsdorp. Overnight in a local hotel. We drive around 100 km today.

Day 8: Gifberg and Clanwilliam

Today, we drive up Gifberg Mountain to find stands of blood-red stands of Drosera capensis, as well and regular green forms, along with D. alba and Utricularia brachyceras. The views are spectacular. We then drive towards Clanwilliam and can visit stands of D. trinervia.

We have dinner in a restaurant in Clanwilliam. Overnight in a local hotel. We drive around 130 km today. 

Day 9: Malmesbury and return to Cape Town

For our final morning, we visit sites around Malmesbury to see stands of Drosera cistiflora, D. aff pauciflora, D. trinervia, various hybrids and Utricularia bisquamata. After a final lunch together, we then drive back to Cape Town (approx 250 km in total driving today). We should arrive back around 6 pm for drop off at hotels or at the airport for evening (9 pm or later) flights. 

We have dinner in a restaurant in Clanwilliam. Overnight in a local hotel. We drive around 130 km today. 

Included

  • All entrance tickets and permits to visit national parks, including all local guide fees.
  • All accommodation, food, and soft drinks.
  • All ground transportation.
  • Private charter vehicles and drivers.
  • Professional tour leader.

Not Included

  • Alcohol (participants purchase direct)
  • Tips (optional)