Drakensberg Hiking Trails

This area incorporates portions of the natal Drakensberg and the Maluti Mountains and is dominated by the Amphitheatre, Sentinel, Eastern Buttress, Malutis round to Babagibona.

This fascinating mountain range rises approximately 3,475 meters and it extends itself for 1.125 km’ s parallel to the south-eastern coast of South Africa. For hikers, this means an almost endless wonder through rocky terrain with breath-taking views. Rock paintings have been found in the area dating back several thousands of years and are worth looking out for. For those with a little bit more experience, a hike to Sentinel Peak will see you at the highest free standing peak in the Northern Drakensberg.

The main rivers are the Tugela, the Namahadi, the Mesti Matsho and the Mahai, which have numerous tributaries and to name but a few: The Vemvaan River & The Gudu River. All of these streams have many beautiful pools and waterfalls.

This area has some spectacular caves and in some of these are excellent Bushman’s paintings. The entry area is vast and includes some of the most beautiful scenery in the world.

Hiking Mont aux Sources:

This mountain range forms one of the highest portions of the Drakensberg mountain range. Most of the range is located within Lesotho and it is accessible from the Sentinel car park near Witsieshoek. It is often described as a mountain block due to its irregular bulge-like shape. It was given its name by French missionaries during the 1830s. This is a challenging hike and some parts of the route involve short- chain ladders and very rugged terrain. The result of your efforts will be the view from the top which will literally take your breath away once more.

Important Notes:

The difference between summer and winter walking is “chalk and cheese”. In summer, dehydration and the heat can be dangerous, whilst in winter the cold and avoiding being “caught out” are the big hazards. Summer storms can also drop the temperature to below freezing, so ALWAYS carry anoraks. The time taken along the same path in summer is usually 20 to 25% longer than in winter. This is especially apparent when carrying a large “pack”; so when calculating the time with a pack, add a further 25%. The times quoted in the descriptions are all for cool weather.

Drakensberg Hiking Trails, Walks and Climbs

In order to assist the novice or the “first time” visitor to the Drakensberg hiking trails accessible from Witsieshoek, the climbs are listed with their respective time:

Amphitheatre

This walk around the top is only a pleasure and one can spend hours exploring the many features of this area.

Time: 7hrs
Type: Climb
Grade:

Fika Patso Dam

This is the Fika Patso Trail and can be done via this “organized” trail, with the Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge.

Time: 5/7hrs
Type: Walk/Climb
Grade:

Metsi Matsho Dam

A long walk, but can be achieved in a day for anyone who is reasonably fit.Rated 5 stars for the flora & fauna in this area.

Time: 9hrs
Type: Walk/Climb
Grade:

Angel’s Cove & Waterfall

This walk can be done by anyone; it is one that has a magnificent solitude to it, in addition to wonderful scenery.

Time: 3.5hrs
Type: Walk
Grade:

Gorge

This is probably the most walked trail in the whole of the Drakensberg and it is still one of the most popular and most beautiful walks to do.

Time: All Day
Type: Walk
Grade:

Protea Pass

This is the return route from the Fika Ptso Trail.  The path is located along the road behind the Lodge.

Time: 3hrs
Type: Walk
Grade:

Broome Hill/Cold Hill

This path follows the boundary fence of the Royal Natal Park, leading down to Broome Hill and Cold Ridge.

Time: 3.5hrs
Type: Climb
Grade:

Gudu Falls

This small valley has beautiful swimming pools, within 20 metres of the actual falls, with a lovely lunch area and one tends to relax too much, at this very picturesque spot.

Time: 6hrs
Type: Walk/Climb
Grade:

 

Sentinel

This is NOT a walk for novices, From the Car Park, one proceeds on the normal Amphitheatre route, until just before the Beacon Buttress Gully.

Time: 6hrs
Type: Rope Climb
Grade:

Chain Ladder

This is one of the most scenic and rewarding of all hikes accessible to day visitors anywhere along the escarpment of the Drakensberg.

Time: All Day
Type: Walk/Climb
Grade:

Mahai Falls Valley

This walk can be done by young and old, is one that has a magnificent solitude to it, in addition to wonderful scenery.

Time: 3hrs
Type: Walk/Climb
Grade

The Sentinel Car Park

The road between Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge and the Car Park is well worth the little effort to walk.

Time: 3.5hrs
Type: Walk
Grade:

Gallery