The Akkerendam Nature Reserve is 2 750 hectares in size and forms part of the water catchment area for the Karoo town of Calvinia. It stretches from the edge of the plateau of the Hantam Mountain, down its steep slopes and runs onto a section of undulating foot slopes and flats lying just north of the town.
What makes the Hantam Mountain plateau unique is that it is well known for its endemic species. It is located within the fynbos biome, whilst its upper steep slopes and lower slopes of the Hantam Mountain and flats to the north of Calvinia are considered succulent karoo biome vegetation.
There are walks for both the fit and frail. These include two hiking trails across the Hantam Mountain which offer great views - all the more so in the spring when the entire reserve is filled with colour.
Around 65 species of birds can be seen in the area, and twitchers can be on the lookout for Karoo larks and Fairy flycatchers. Be sure to also note the star trees (sterboom), which are unique to this region.
The reserve is open daily and there is no entrance fee. It is located 2 kilometres outside of Calvinia.