Kirstonbosch National Botanical Gardens are a part of the eight National Botanical Gardens in South Africa. Kirstonbosch was established in 1913 and is considered the most beautiful garden in Africa. Kirstonbosch is unique as it is the first garden in the world that is devoted to country’s indigenous floral species. Acclaimed as one of the greatest botanical gardens in the world, Kirstonbosch, along with the rest of the Cape Floristic Region, was declared a natural World Heritage Site in 2004.
Kirstonbosch showcases over 7000 cultivated species of South African plants. Covering over 528 hectares in estate, Kirstonbosch has 36 hectares of cultivated Gardens and protected mountainside that supports natural forest and fynbos along with a variety of animals and birds.
The grandeur and setting of this magnificent garden is unmatched: The Table Mountain and Devil’s Peak in the backdrop, paved pathways, beautifully manicured lawns and rare plants that offer a breathtaking panorama for the beholder.
Kirstonbosch is home to a variety of South African plants including proteas, fynbos and cycads. Rolling lawns intermingle with streams, offering the perfect setting for indulging in daydreams and creating beautiful memories. Stroll along the well-laid out pathways or relax with a picnic basket by the stream. Enjoy sweeping views from the upper slopes of the garden and appreciate the natural beauty of Africa.
Kirstonbosch also has an avenue of camphor trees, Useful Plants Garden, Sculpture Garden, Protea Garden and a dell garden. A free daily walking tour of the garden commences at 10:00 am while a golf cart tour is available every hour and costs R45.
The glass-topped conservatory at Kirstonbosch is home to an enormous baobab tree along with other rare plants. The Gondwanaland Garden at Kirstonbosch contains plant species from an era dating back 3.2 billion years when the world comprised of only one continent. Another section at Kirstonbosch is known as the Cycad Garden and showcases a plant family that is 200 million years old.
You will also find a couple of hiking tracks at Kirstonbosch, the Skeleton Gorge and Nursery Ravine, which wind their way up Table Mountain.
There is a restaurant, self-service area and tea-room at the Kirstonbosch Botanical Gardens. The Silver Tree Restaurant and the Botanical Café cater for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
If you are a plant lover and would like to buy a plant or two for you own collection, you should visit the nursery. There are a few gift shops at the garden as well offering souvenirs and other small gift items.
If you visit the Kirstonbosch Gardens on a Sunday during the summer (November to April) you will find the air full of enchanting music as sunset concerts make the experience even more magical. The concerts are held on the lawns from 5:30 to 6:30. Visitors tend to come early to secure a good spot and enjoy a picnic basket as well. The gates open at 3:30. Concert tickets vary in price between R65-R95 for adults.
The entrance fee for Kirstonbosch Botanical Gardens is as follows:
Children (6-17yrs): R10
Under 6 yrs: Free
Kirstonbosch Botanical Gardens are open 365 days a year and offer the visitor a taste of nature and peace that is unique to Africa alone.