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Se7en + 1 Discover the Boomslang at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens…

May 23rd, 2014 · 12 Comments

Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens, one of the most beautiful gardens in the world and a place we love to visit, is celebrating it’s centenary… And to celebrate, they have installed the new Boomslang Walkway. This is nothing short of a feat of engineering a winding bending walkway that takes you through the canopy and above the trees of the Arboretum. After months of anticipation the walkway was opened to the public this week and it is incredible.

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We were up way before normal on a rainy day and eager to explore…

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We arrived at Kirstenbosch just before opening time and we were allowed to take a peak at the new feature to show to our readers. They were still busy adding the sinage to the sign poles when we got there, but we were confident that we would easily find the walkway…

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To say that they have very carefully hidden this feature in the gardens is an understatement… you would think that a 130 m long winding walkway above the tree tops would would literally “stick-out,” if not impede the view of our mountain…

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But we were wrong, and until you are right underneath it you will not spot it…

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And even from directly underneath it is aesthetically pleasing and interesting to look at…

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You can immediately see why it is called the Boomslang, which is the Afrikaans name for a poisonous “tree snake,” common to our area.

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The Skelton of the snake winds through the trees as an elevated bridge,

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The ribs and the back bone, clearly holding the structure together…

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Once we had found it we were very keen to find the start and get on board…

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And very much a case of… “oh look”…

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“Oh look” wherever we turned…

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With cameras out…

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We wound our way along the path…

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Between the tree tops…

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Enjoying the gentle sway… yes it does sway a little bit… and yes it does feel a bit like you are flying…

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There are plenty of places to stop and listen… the bird sounds are incredible.

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We followed the path some more…

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And suddenly… You round a corner and you feel like you are on top of the world…

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On a clear day you must be able to see for miles,

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We were not put off by a still and misty morning and the quiet after the rain…

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There is something very magical about being above the trees…

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And a miniature world far below. We loved looking down secret corners of the garden…

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And the not so secret corners…

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Wandering on…

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You are above the arboretum…

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So trees, trees and more trees…

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The trees are labeled, it is a fabulous opportunity to brush up on your tree knowledge…

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What intrigued us the most was the bird song… we loved it, and were curious to find out who the owners of these pretty songs were…

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But these little birds were so clever and well hidden that we couldn’t see them!!!

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We were lucky enough to have a tour… and learn the ins and outs of building an aerial walkway… how hard it was to bring a crane into the gardens, without damaging the plants around them… the thrill of hanging above the ground and putting the whole thing together… the obvious care they have taken to have the least possible impact on the surroundings just adds to the magic of it all…

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And just like that we found ourselves back in the heart of the forest…

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Honestly it is like being in a different world of greenery…

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Magical indeed, inspired to be sure… we will definitely be back armed with our drawing equipment and our nature guides… this is a good place to easily be carried away from city life and straight into the heart of nature…

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The Walkway makes full use of the slope of the mountainside and you walk from the level onto it, as you wander along, you wander out over the trees and then back towards a the hillside and smoothly off again.

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I was thrilled to see that it is completely accessible to everyone, there is a hill to climb to get there, but they do have carts that can take the frail and wheelchair bound, to the very start of the walkway and there are no stairs, only gentle slopes and plenty of places to stop and have a rest along the walkway. I know my parents would love this, my dad is a tree-man and this would be his heaven. So, for his sake, I am especially pleased that this is completely open and accessible to everybody.

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That’s us… and a new spot on our “must visit when you are in Cape town” list…

Just to say thank you to Hippo Communications for organising our entrance tickets and tour, and also Kirstenbosch, particularly Adam Harrower, for showing us around. This was not a sponsored post and we were not paid for this review, opinions are as usual entirely our own.

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Tags: Outings · Saturday Spot · Visit Cape Town

12 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Marcia (123 blog) // May 23, 2014 at 5:32 pm

    That looks magnificent and I can’t WAIT to bring the babies!!!!

    Years ago (10 actually) D and I went to Australia and one of my must-dos at the time was the Otway Fly (very similar but made of steel). Somehow I got this into my mind that if I could do that, I could do anything, and then I got myself a new job, at the now ex-secret company.

    So I wonder if this will be my next thing.???

    Now, K is on my lap and said “where is that?” I said, “Cape Town”. She said, “OH, Cape Town is so beautiful”. It is indeed.

    She also made me tell her the names of all your kids (fortunately, I remember)!


    Happy weekend!
    Marcia (123 blog)´s last blog post ..I’m obsessed with the fitbit

  • 2 se7en // May 24, 2014 at 11:23 pm

    Oh K… and Marcia… Cape Town is beautiful indeed, we would love to meet you and your brother one day!!! Hope you are all having a good weekend… we are freezing away in the pouring rain – just can’t bring myself to love the winter time!!! Lots of love to you guys!!!

  • 3 Nita // May 26, 2014 at 9:51 am

    Another fabulous reason to tour beautiful Kirstenbosch 🙂

  • 4 se7en // May 26, 2014 at 9:58 am

    Nita, it is well worth a visit… we loved it!!! I think it would be good in all weather… even quite an adventure in the stormy weather we have been having!!! Hope you have a fantastic week!!!

  • 5 phillygirl // May 26, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    I am completely jealous! I was so excited to visit this when I was down in Cape Town in April but it was delayed 🙁 Oh well, it’ll have to wait for another trip. It looks amazing!!
    phillygirl´s last blog post ..The Excitement Brews …

  • 6 se7en // May 26, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    Oh Phillygirl… Sweet sweet revenge after your incredible road trip!!! I think you will love the Boomslang… it is really really cool!!! Hope you have a fabulous week!!!

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    […] The Boomslang above the Treetops: […]

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  • 12 Se7en + 1 Great Reasons to Visit Kirstenbosch This Summer... - se7en | se7enSe7en + 1 Great Reasons to Visit Kirstenbosch This Summer... - se7en // Dec 13, 2016 at 1:21 am

    […] The Boomslang: Follow the directions from the entrance to the Canopy Walkway, called the Boomslang, that stands high up the indigenous trees. the There are few things better than sitting right on top of a forest… most folk walk over the boomslang. Make use of the many benches along the boomslang and just sit and watch, you will spot birds, insects and butterflies that you would never normally see from the ground, looking up. It can be quite busy at times, but we have found that there are always gaps and if you just settle yourself in for some quiet time, maybe with a notebook and pencil for some nature drawing… you will see lots of incredible things that you can only see when you are at the top of a forest. […]

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