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Drakensberg, Lesotho and Wild Coast Hiking Tours & Packages

  • Lesotho
  • Wild Waterfalls
  • Berg & Beach
  • No Man's Land
  • Bird Watching
  • Horse Trails
  • Team Building

Visit the kingdom in the sky with our 5 day tour along the roof of southern Africa and Lesotho highlands

The view from the top

The Sani pass is a spectacular mountain road that is the gateway to the "roof of Africa" scenic route, which links the breathtaking scenery of the southern Drakensberg with the mountains of the Lesotho highlands, and is the only border post between Kwazulu-Natal and Lesotho. A common truth of this area is that you can have four seasons in one day.

Sani Pass pub

Sani top chalet is located on the border between South Africa and Lesotho at a height of 2874 m and has been described as one of the best-situated hotels on earth with unparalleled views of the pass and surrounding mountain peaks. The only access to the chalet is via the Sani pass and adventure travellers regard the venue as one of the best kept secrets in Africa. Join other explorers at the "Highest Pub in Africa" for their famous gluhwein and a wholesome dinner.

mountain pass

Our journey continues along the black mountain pass at an altitude of 3240m to view the highest mountain peak in southern Africa, that of Thabana-Ntlenyana, which reaches 3482m into the sky. A short climb will take you to the top. This remote part is also a world heritage site, the majestic and stark beauty of the mountains being testament to all that has passed before them over the ages. The pass and surrounds is popular for pony trekking, trout fishing and bird watching while the variety of fauna and flora in the area will keep enthusiasts spellbound. Skiing and snowboarding are popular during the winter months (providing it snows).

Katse dam

Visit Katse dam, on the Malibamat'so River, which is part of the highlands water project and which supplies hydroelectric power to Lesotho and is Africa's largest double curvature dam.

Lesotho dance

Enjoy a trip to the past by visiting the age old trading post, where in the past tough old drivers brought wool and mohair down the pass on donkeys and mules to be exchanged for blankets, clothing, maize meal and other essentials for life in this remote unforgiving country. Experience a unique African cultural interaction while you visit the mohair tapestry and traditional dancing in the local village.

En route we stop off at Maletsunyane falls which plummets 192m off a spectacular v shaped rock face. The location is stunning and peaceful and is ideal for a hike up the gorge to the base of the falls or you can abseil from the top. The less intrepid can enjoy the scenic hikes and pony trails for unlimited photographic opportunities in this piece of paradise.

YOUR ACCOMMODATION

Your accommodation will vary from sheer luxury to the more rustic.

Accomodation

Your Guide has decades of experience in this area, and will point you to the most amazing, off the beaten track places and even to dinosaur footprints and Bushman paintings. You will rediscover the tracks of the original inhabitants of Lesotho - the San as they left us a rich heritage of their rock art.

Seven Day Waterfall Walk.

Magwa Fallls, Transkei, South Africa Waterfalls Bluff, Transkei, South Africa

Day One.

Our waterfall meander begins in the rolling green scenery of the Magwa tea plantation, one of two tea plantations in the Transkei that were started as an experiment and proved successful.

The nearby Magwa Falls, being part of the Goso Fault are the highest falls on The Wild Coast, falling 146m. The lesser falls in close proximity are Fraser Falls, Visitors, Little Falls and Picnic falls are also all reached with hikes along the fault line, which runs parallel to the coast. This fault has resulted in the formation of precipitous cliffs and narrow gorges which makes for the stunning scenery of the area.

Day Two.

We depart on an early morning walk to see Cathedral Rock, which is a free standing cliff-sided monolith complete with arch which looms out of the sea, we then continue to Waterfall Bluff, a magnificent rock amphitheatre where the Mkozi River runs straight over the cliff face and plummets 60m into the sea below. Here the intrepid hiker can refresh himself behind the falls.

Days Three and Four.

Mkambati Nature Reserve consists mostly of open grasslands, dissected by perennial streams and small waterfalls, and is flanked by the splendid forested ravines of the Msikaba and Mtentu Rivers. These two rivers are the only place in the world where the Pondo Coconut 'Jubaeopsis caffra' (Mkambati Palm) is found.

By travelling further up the Msikaba Gorge by canoe a colony of rare Cape Vultures can be viewed, breeding on the sheer cliffs of the gorges. Endemics like tree ferns, palms, proteas and erica's grow along these lush banks.

The nature reserves upper grasslands are home to herds of herbivores such as eland, red hartebeest, blue wildebeest, zebra and blesbok. Carnivores like lynxes, jackals and elusive leopards have been sighted.

Day Five.

The view south of Waterfalls Bluff

The richly forested areas around Port St John's are a hiker's paradise with many stunning elevated viewpoints, forest hikes and shoreline routes to explore.
The picturesque Bololo Falls is situated in fairytale surroundings and is an hour's hike from the picturesque Second Beach, The Gap and Blowhole.
It has been said that the view from Mt. Thesiger of the Umzimvubu River mouth is unsurpassed.

Day Six and Seven.

After experiencing the enchanting charm of Port St John's we travel south through the round topped hills and past rural communities to Twseleni and the coastal village of Mpande.
This sleepy hamlet is located between the Mpande and Sinangwana Rivers and offers an elevated 180 degree view of the unspoiled coastline and beaches, the ocean a stone's throw away from your accommodation.
A 5km walk takes you to forested Mpande Waterfall and the return along the river is a birdwatcher and naturalists paradise.
Mpande is a place of pristine natural beauty and traditional rural Xhosa life, it is a place to meet the locals, have beer in a shabeen or visit a Sangoma. The shoreline offers superb snorkelling in protected pools and lagoons and the scope for photography is limitless.

An exhilarating 11 days of adventure in the Berg & Beach (Full 11 day Tour)

Visit the Majesty of the Drakensberg Range. It is a mountain chain that divides South Africa in two, forming a natural boundary between KwaZulu-Natal and Lesotho. On this journey you will ponder this range. You will experience the Maluti's at Golden Gate National Park and then you will experience the splendour of the Wild Coast, which is one of Africa's jewels. The most beautiful rugged coastline boasts some of the most spectacular scenery in Southern Africa. A stunning journey.....

Day 1 - Tugela Gorge:
This is a 14 km hike which takes five to six hours and is a moderate to strenuous walk. The gradient on the Tugela Gorge winds through mountainous terrain with sporadic indigenous forests. A chain ladder takes you over the final stretch from where you have a stunning view of the falls rushing down the Amphitheatre. Sleep with the Northern Drakensbergs Amphitheatre in the background.







Day 2 - Mount-Aux-Sources:
Mount-Aux-Sources via the chain ladder. This 10 to 12 km hike takes about six hours and is strenuous. The chain ladder is a challenge to those fearful of heights. Mount-Aux-Sources (3 282 m above sea-level) is the highest peak in this part of the Berg. Mount-Aux-Sources is the source of the Tugela River which plunges 948 metres over the escarpment in a series of cascades making it the second highest in the world. Rest near the Drakensbergs Golden Gate to finish off your day.






Day 3 - Golden Gate National Park:
Travel through the Golden Gate Highlands National Park which is renowned for its superlative scenery and invigorating climate. Visit the town of Clarens. The village of Clarens is situated in the foothills of the Maluti Mountains in close proximity to the Golden Gate National Park and the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho. Clarens is an artist's haven with many well known artists either living in or frequenting the village on a regular basis with many art galleries scattered around the village square. The tranquil village ambience combined with scenic views and a mild climate makes for the ideal getaway destination. Golden Gate derives its name from the brilliant shades of gold cast by the sun on the region's imposing sandstone cliffs. The landscape also encompasses wooded ravines, gullies and grasslands. Accommodation at Golden Gate.


Day 4 - Travel to Central Drakensberg:
Visit Champagne Castle Valley in all its splendour. See the Raptors in action. Champagne Valley offers you a relaxed stay.









Day 5 - Drakensberg Canopy Tour:
Experience nature in a new way by sliding through the forest! The inspiring nature of the Drakensberg, the forest, waterfalls and cascading stream will make this an experience you will not easily forget. This tour is a fun and safe eco-adventure. Sleep in No Mans Land, an experience that you will never forget.








Day 6-7 - Mighty Magwa Falls:
A journey back in time. . .
2 days in Pristine Nature. . . Goso State Forest; Mighty 144m Magwa Falls and gorge. Interactive Traditional Xhosa Tribal Village tour; Lunch prepared the Xhosa way; Singing children; Superb Adventure Hike; Friendly Pondo People!!! The real African Experience!!! Hear the rushing of the might Magwa as you doze off.






Day 8-10 - Mbotyi to Port Grosvenor:
This is the commencement of the hike.
Waterfall Bluff:
The walk is in a northern direction with magnificent views, and with the occasional cows as company. Swimming in pristine river pools and seeing the magnificence of a waterfall that drops directly into the sea. Hear the breakers as you drift into dreamworld.






Day 11 - Depart for Port St Johns:
Port St Johns is a superb hiking area, with forests and trails and more than 250 species of birds. Port St Johns also offers a unique mix of cultural richness. This unique town is a magnet for hippies, eccentrics and backpackers. The Umzimvubu River cuts a huge gorge straight to the sea.









(Full 11 day Tour or select 5 days of your choice)

No Man's Land

Birding Weekend

Two Day Birding Tour to Ntsikeni Nature Reserve.
Ntsikeni Nature Reserve comprises 9000ha of pristine flower-filled grasslands 60 Km's from Creighton and 30 kms from Franklin in Southern KZN. It features a large and very important wetland of some 1200 ha at 1800m amsl (the same height as Wakkerstroom so it can get cold!). It is surrounded by impressive buttresses with evocative names like Mangeni, Tsawule, and Elephant Hill. Visible forever, Ntsikeni Mountain towers above all, with its unmistakable shape making sense of the name. The central support of a traditional home is an 'ntsika'. The reserve has enjoyed natural protection and secrecy due to its remoteness, isolation and inaccessibility Yellow Breasted Pipits, Cape and Bearded Vultures, Black and Montague's Harriers, African Marsh and even the rare Western Marsh Harriers and other exciting large species like breeding Wattled Cranes, can be found.

Bird Watching Tours



Day One
Ntsikeni Lodge - Hikers to arrive at Ntsikeni Lodge by midday. After lunch you visit the Vulture Restaurant for Cape and Bearded Vultures. Thereafter head out for the reed-beds and walk 1.5 kilometres carrying your folding chair, binoculars, cameras, telescopes and insect repellent. Here you will sit at the edge of reed beds waiting for the Great Bittern to Boom and show itself.!!!
Dinner will be enjoyed at the lodge listening out for night birds such as Striped Flufftail, African Snipe and Cape Eagle Owl.
Overnight Ntsikeni Lodge.

Day Two

Early morning Tea or coffee and rusks. Once again head out to the wetlands for the Great Bittern Hunt Return at around 07h00 for breakfast at Ntsikeni Lodge before hiking up Ntsikeni Mountain to look for Barratt's Warbler, Sentinal Rock-thrush, Eastern Long-billed lark, Drakensberg Rock-jumper and Red-winged Francolin.

Lunch
Drive out to the grasslands for Pipits, Yellow-Breasted and Short-Tailed (hopefully), and Harriers, African Marsh-, Montague- and Black-.
Back at the lodge you will set out late afternoon for a birders bash searching for the elusive Striped Flufftail and Grass Owl.
Overnight Ntsikeni Lodge.

Horse Trails (Drakensberg Ventures)

Visit the Majesty of the Drakensberg Range. It is a mountain chain that divides South Africa in two, forming a natural boundary between KwaZulu-Natal and Lesotho. On this journey you will ponder this range. You will experience the Maluti's at Golden Gate National Park and then you will experience the splendour of the Wild Coast, which is one of Africa's jewels. The most beautiful rugged coastline boasts some of the most spectacular scenery in Southern Africa. A stunning journey.....

Drakensberg Horse Trails4 Day Horse Trails Rides:
This ride will take you through breathtaking mountain scenery and the most remote areas of Bushman's Neck in the Southern Drakensberg. Your guide is John Michaux, one of the most experienced endurance riders in South Africa, who has had over 30 years of riding experience in the mountains of the Drakensberg & Lesotho.

Horse Riding experience is essential!





Drakensberg Horse Trails

Drakensberg Horse Trails
Team Building
Field Guides Association of Southern Africa
© 2009 - 2011 Drakensberg Ventures

Nico Els is a FGASA Certified Guide with many years experience guiding in the Drakensberg and Wild Coast.

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