KwaZulu-Natal
Hiking

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Our most recommended KwaZulu-Natal Hiking

Drakensberg Kamberg Cave Art & Mandela Capture Site Day Tour

1. Drakensberg Kamberg Cave Art & Mandela Capture Site Day Tour

Your tour starts off with a visit to Pietermaritzburg, the capital of KwaZulu-Natal. There you will stop at Pietermaritzburg's City Hall, which claims to be the largest brick building in the southern hemisphere. Visit the Gandhi statue before heading towards the Drakensberg mountains. Your main stop is Kamberg Nature Reserve which forms part of the Maloti- Drakensberg Park World Heritage Site and is situated centrally in the foothills of the mountains. The reserve was proclaimed in 1951 and is 6,300 ha in extent. This reserve is particularly scenic, with many walks throughout the area. The natural landscape has many rock shelters, containing San rock paintings. These were created by the San people over a period of at least 4,000 years. The rock paintings are outstanding in quality and diversity representing the spiritual life of the San people who no longer live in the region. From there, head to the small town of Howick and visit its waterfall. Howick Falls is approximately 95m high and lies on the Umgeni River. The Zulu people called the falls KwaNogqaza, which means "Place of the Tall One".   We visit the Nelson Mandela Capture Site Statue and Apartheid Museum. The Nelson Mandela sculpture comprises of 50 steel column constructions – each between 6.5m and 9.5m tall – set into the Midlands landscape. The approach to the site leads you down a path towards the sculpture where, at 35 meters, a portrait of Nelson Mandela, looking west, comes into focus. The 50 linear vertical units, line up to create the illusion of a flat image. The museum is dedicated to Nelson Mandela’s life and his struggle against Apartheid.

Sani Pass: Day Tour from Durban

2. Sani Pass: Day Tour from Durban

Beginning early at 6:00AM from the coastal city of Durban, your professional driver will collect you from your hotel in a well maintained vehicle, before you head out of the city towards the mountains. After passing the historical city of Pietermaritsburg, your tour will turn towards the Southern Drakensberg Mountain Range. For the next hour you will pass through mountains and valleys, which are dotted with small rural villages steeped in traditions. At approximately 9:00AM, you will arrive at the tiny mountain town of Underberg, which lies at the base of the Sani Pass. Here you will transfer to a comfortable 4-wheel-drive vehicle. Without a doubt, the Sani Pass is one of the most spectacular and scenic mountain passes in Africa. It lies between the Southern Drakensburg Mountains and the landlocked country of Lesotho, and your highly experienced and professional guide will take you through the South African border control. For the next 8 kilometers, the gravel road winds steeply up the pass towards the summit of the Drakensberg to the Lesotho border post. The sharp bends and panoramic mountains make this a photographer's paradise, in an area which has been described as "Southern Africa's Switzerland". Once there you will visit a local living Basotho village where you can learn about their customs and traditions. This village was originally built to care for the shepherds in the mountains, who tend flocks the year round, you may even be lucky to catch a glimpse of these tough blanket-clad men. Following this you will head towards the "highest pub in Africa" for some well earned refreshments, and perhaps even a taste of the local Maluti Beer if so inclined. Following your adventure is a gentle drive back to Durban, which will will see you at your destination at approximately 6:30PM depending on weather and traffic conditions.

Drakensberg Giants Castle Cave Art & Mandela Capture Site

3. Drakensberg Giants Castle Cave Art & Mandela Capture Site

The tour starts off with a visit to Pietermaritzburg, the capital of KwaZulu-Natal. Stop at Pietermaritzburg's City Hall, which claims to be the largest brick building in the southern hemisphere. Visit the Gandhi statue also before heading towards the Drakensberg mountains and Giants Castle Reserve. Giant's Castle is situated on a grassy plateau among the deep valleys running down from the face of the High Drakensberg, offering glorious views. At Giants Castle reserve, there is a large sandstone cave containing prehistoric San rock art. The San and Khoekhoe people were hunters and gatherers who roamed South Africa for thousands of years. This cave is one of the biggest and best-preserved painted sites in southern Africa. This cave is an easy 30 minutes’ walk from the camp office and regular guided tours are taken through this unique exhibition. A visit to Giant's Castle offers the privilege of entering the world of the San as well as the opportunity to study a varied and exciting range of habitats. From there, head to the small town of Howick and visit its waterfall. Howick Falls is approximately 95m in height and lies on the Umgeni River. The Zulu people called the falls KwaNogqaza, which means "Place of the Tall One".   Then visit the Nelson Mandela Capture Site Statue and Apartheid Museum. The Nelson Mandela sculpture comprises of 50 steel column constructions, each between 6.5m and 9.5m tall, set into the Midlands landscape. The approach to the site leads you down a path towards the sculpture where, at 35 meters, a portrait of Nelson Mandela, looking west, comes into focus. The 50 linear vertical units, line up to create the illusion of a flat image. The museum is dedicated to Nelson Mandela’s life and his struggle against Apartheid. After the tour, head back to Durban by late afternoon.

Drakensberg World Heritage Tour

4. Drakensberg World Heritage Tour

The Bushman cave paintings are almost as old as humanity itself. They date back 2,000 years and are a fascinating look into the history and culture of the Bushmen or San people of South Africa. This full-day sightseeing heritage tour goes through the Drakensberg mountain range, a full 3-kilometer round trip hike. The cave paintings can be seen in the World Heritage Site Giant’s Castle. After the hike enjoy a hearty, well-earned lunch, which is included in the tour. On the return to Durban, visit the Nelson Mandela Capture Site, a significant monument that marks an important moment in South African history. Today it is commemorated as a world-class sculpture, in memory of Nelson Mandela and his heroic role in the struggle against apartheid.

From Durban: Oribi Gorge & Lake Eland Adventure Tour

5. From Durban: Oribi Gorge & Lake Eland Adventure Tour

The first stop will be a visit to the Leopard's Rock which is set on a rocky incline with sweeping views over the majestic Mzimkhulu River Gorge. You'll then visit the Oribi Gorge Nature Reserve which is a wonderfully scenic area offering excellent hiking opportunities. The wildlife in the Oribi Gorge consists of many antelope, although the oribi (after which the gorge is named) is rarely seen. A photographer's paradise, Oribi Gorge Nature Reserve encompasses forests, rivers, rapids and ravine. High sandstone cliffs dominate this 24 kilometers long gorge carved out by the Umzimkulwana River. Leopards, troops of baboons, various small antelope and a prolific birdlife, including five species of kingfisher and seven species of eagle inhabit the reserve. Activities at Oribi Gorge include the Wild Swing and the Wild Slide. The Wild Swing is one of the most popular big swings in South Africa and the highest in the world. It entails a heart-stopping leap off the top of the waterfall that leaves you swinging more than 100 meters to the gorge below. You can take a walk on the suspension bridge which is 48 meters – a spectacular opportunity to be suspended between heaven and terra firma, as you hover 100 meters above the gorge floor enjoying views of Lehr’s Waterfall, Baboon’s Castle and the World’s Highest Gorge Swing. Professional instructors are available to assist with all activities and the highest safety standards are adhered to. All safety equipment, including full-body harnesses, is provided.

Sani Pass and Mokhotlong in Two Days

6. Sani Pass and Mokhotlong in Two Days

Day One:  Depart from Underberg, or be collected along the route, in a 4x4 vehicle and travel via the Sani Pass, with a stop for early tea at Sani Top Chalet. Travel up Black Mountain Pass for a short walk to a vantage point to view Thabana Ntlenyana, the highest peak in Southern Africa at 3482 meters. Continue on to Mokhotlong via the stunningly beautiful Sehonghong Valley and stop at 10 Riverside for an ethnic Basotho experience, including a visit to the Ngaka, a traditional healer, and the artifact house. Afterward, go to Mokhotlong for dinner and your overnight stay. Day Two:  After breakfast, drive through Mokhotlong, which was once billed as the most remote village in the British Empire. Stop for a short walk down the main road to view the rare Spiral Aloe, the National plant of Lesotho. Travel to St James Mission to see the fascinating ceiling of their church. Drive back up the Sehonghong Valley, looking for the rare Bearded Vulture on the route. Reach Sani Top and go for lunch at the Sani Top Chalet before descending the Sani Pass back to Underberg.

Lesotho: Sani Pass One Night Special

7. Lesotho: Sani Pass One Night Special

Day One:  Meet at 9:00 AM or be collected from your accommodation. Depart at 9:30 AM and trek for approximately two and a half hours to reach the summit, a grand 2874 meters above sea level. Stop at breathtaking lookouts and border posts. Once at the top, visit a living Basotho Village. Here, your experienced mountain guide will teach you about Lesotho and the hardy mountainous Basotho folk. After this interesting cultural experience, drive back to Sani Mountain Lodge, which is the highest pub in Africa, for lunch at your expense. Then enjoy a night at the Lodge for dinner, bed, and breakfast.  Choose to go horse riding or for a guided walk in the mountains in the afternoon or on the following morning. The Lodge will make all the necessary arrangements for you. Day Two: Meet at the Sani Top Chalet at 1:30 PM for lunch at your own cost. Head back down to the famous Sani Pass and arrive in Underberg around 4:30 PM. 

Durban: Drakensberg Rock Art & Mandela Capture Site Tour

8. Durban: Drakensberg Rock Art & Mandela Capture Site Tour

Get picked up bright and early at your hotel at 6 AM and start your trip toward the mountains. Make your way to Kamberg, part of the Northern Drakensberg mountain range and home to the Rosetta Stone of SAN (Bushman) rock art. Upon arrival, meet your anthropologist guide, Dr Jeremy Hollmann, a specialist in early civilization rock art in Southern Africa, and watch an introductory video to understand the context of the people who inhabited this area. Then, follow Dr. Hollmann through the rugged terrain all the way up to Game Pass Shelter where he will delve deeper into the anthropology of the SAN people. There are several spots along the way which he will bring to life with historical anecdotes and anthropological theories. At Game Pass Shelter, take in the mystery of Bushman rock art, and explore theories and beliefs that underpin the art and culture of the SAN/Bushmen of Southern Africa. Tuck into lunch at the Nottingham Road Brewery (at your own expense), and try out the local craft beer, if you like. Thereafter, continue along the Midlands Meander and visit the internationally acclaimed Ardmore Ceramics. Watch the ceramicists at work when the studios are open, and maybe even buy a keepsake. Your penultimate stop is at the iconic Nelson Mandela Capture Site for a peek into South Africa's notorious history and a bucket list photograph. Finish your tour witnessing the water gushing or trickling down (depending on the time of year) at Howick Falls as it flows into the Umgeni River. Finally, head back to Durban with your expected time of arrival set for 7 PM.

Durban: Mandela Capture Site & Howick Falls Day Trip

9. Durban: Mandela Capture Site & Howick Falls Day Trip

Start your tour at Pietermaritzburg, the capital of KwaZulu-Natal. Move on to the Mandela Capture Site, where Nelson Mandela was captured and sent into his incarceration. Head to Howick Falls, otherwise known as the place of the tall one. The waterfall is a 95 meter cascade into a broiling restless pool that the locals believe to be the place of the spirits of ancestor. To end the tour, visit the Valley of a Thousand Hills to experience and be mesmerized by the Zulu Culture and Zulu dancing at Phezulu Cultural Village and Reptile Park. Venture into traditional Zulu beehive–shaped thatched huts and learn about various artefacts, beliefs and rituals. Finish your tour with a visit to the Reptile Park where a qualified park guide will intrigue you with interesting facts about the resident crocodiles and snakes.

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What people are saying about KwaZulu-Natal

Overall rating

4.3 / 5

based on 8 reviews

Absolute madness!

What a mega great day ... We had hoped for a lot, but what came our way topped everything by far! Starting with a stop at a sugar plantation (with tasting), on to our swing adventure at Oribi Georg where the adrenaline level has shot up ... to Lake Eland whose viewing platform was worth the trip / excursion on its own! Just breathtaking!! In between, our guide always asked us about our well-being and gave us lots of details about the various locations. And although the description said that the entrance fees are at your own expense, he paid all costs out of his own pocket. Finally, we rewarded him with a generous tip at the connection. But the trip was worth every penny. Thanks also to the whole TEAM !! You can tell that these people are passionate about what they do! Even now at home, I am still in contact with our guide via WhatsApp ... It was an honor to meet you

We were picked up by our driver Moses at the property at 6:00 AM. Then it was almost 2.5 hours to Underberg, where we switched to the four-wheel drive vehicle. It was nice that there were only three of us (i.e. among us) - plus driver Moses, who was also a guest on the Sani Pass for the first time. Approximately For 2 hours it goes up the pass towards Lesotho. There we visited a typical village and were allowed to try freshly baked bread in a hut. Then it went to the pub for lunch and then the way back. We arrived back in Durban around 6pm. We really liked the tour and it was well organized - we can only recommend it!

I had a really awesome day and Ndu Nene was professional &informativei

My trip was a very interesting and fun one . Ndu Nene tour guide was jolly person and he taught us many interesting things.

Beautiful landscape and hike. Driving overland with real African village life

nice day trip, lots of driving but really worth it.