The small Soetdoring Nature Reserve and Predator Park covers approximately 75km² and makes a great day outing less than 45 minutes' drive from Bloemfontein, Free State. Although it isn't one of the most scenic parks in the country, you can observe cheetahs in their fenced enclosures which always makes for a great experience. The reserve has minimal infrastructure, so expect gravel roads and few signposts. Make sure you request a map at the gate.
Wildlife and birdlife
The reserve is home to more predatory game (including wild dogs), but these animals are kept separately in their own enclosures. Wildlife to be spotted include gemsbok, eland, springbok, blesbok, black wildebeest, zebra, and red hartebeest. If you're lucky you will spot impala, kudu, steenbok, duiker, and mountain reedbuck. The park is also a fantastic bird watching location, with over 284 species recorded.
Best time to visit The reserve is great most times of year, but summer is usually the best time to visit (September to March). Please note bird sightings vary according to season.
Most visitors come to Soetdoring Nature Reserve to picnic and braai. The picnic site consists of several cement tables, 2 portable toilets, and a water tank with a tap.
Soetdoring Dam closed
While the dam was previously a popular spot for fishing, it is no longer open to the public.
Day and night hikes One day hikes follow the Modder River and are suitable for families with young children. Night excursions give visitors an intimate look into the night life of the many nocturnal creatures that inhabit the reserve. However, these excursions must be booked in advance.