One of the SANParks reserves that offers solitude, dramatic geological landscapes and some interesting escarpment biomes is the Mountain Zebra National Park near Cradock in the Eastern Cape. Established in 1937, the reserve boasts Black Wildebeest, Springbok and Red Hartebeest as the main game attractions with Mountain Zebra contributing to the parks name. To establish balance to the ecosystem two apex predators have been introduced, namely Cheetah in 2007 and Lion in 2013. Brown Hyena were introduced in 2008.
While most reserves in South Africa are spoilt with a diverse abundance of wildlife, often the landscape and botany are under played. Fortunately Mountain Zebra National Park provides balance with the landscape dominated by arching dolomite domes leveling off to grassland terraced plateaus. The thicket clad Wilgerboomrivier valley is fed by numerous tributaries with some wonderful birding for those prepared to wait.
The reserve offers three interlaced self drive routes with two enclosed picnic sites. While the pursuit of game viewing is catered for, the primary attraction has to be the remoteness and scenic beauty in an environment that encourages time merely relaxing and absorbing the stillness governed by the schedule of sunrise and sunset.
For the energetic nature lovers there is a three day hike through the more dramatic mountainous section of the reserve.