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antbear Guest HouseDrakensberg accommodation review

Antbear Guest House is rated as the TOP Drakensberg accommodation. Superb food, comfortable and artisticly styled this boutique hotel is perfectly positioned to experience all that the Drakensberg has to offer.

 

Northern Drakensberg
- Royal Natal
- Cathedral Peak
- Bergville
- Ladysmith
- Oliviershoek
- Van Reenen

Central Drakensberg
- Monks Cowl
- Champagne Valley
- Injasuti
- Giants Castle
- Highmoor
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- Estcourt
- Mooi River
- Weenen

Southern Drakensberg
- Lotheni
- Vergelegen
- Sani Pass
- Cobham
- Bushmans Nek
- Drakensberg Gardens
- Underberg
- Himeville

Natal Midlands
- Rosetta
- Nottingham Road
- Balgowan
- Howick
- Lidgetton
- Currys Post
- Karkloof
- Lions River
- Fort Nottingham
- Hilton
- Dargle

Drakensberg Attractions
- Bushman Rock Art
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- Drakensberg Boys Choir
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Royal Natal National Park - Northern Drakensberg

Royal Natal National Park is renowned for its spectacular scenery and fabulous mountain trails which explore the heart of this KwaZulu-Natal nature reserve in South Africa.

Royal Natal National Park is a leading KwaZulu-Natal nature reserve that offers wonderfully scenic views, lofty mountains and waterfalls in a prime location within the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park. Royal Natal is situated in the Northern Drakensberg. Royal Natal National Park offers many trails to explore on foot and on horseback. Walkers and hikers can enjoy short journeys which take about an hour, or longer excursions over a half or full day. The Mont-aux-Sources hike takes two days to complete.

The main feature of Royal Natal National Park is the world famous Drakensberg Amphitheatre, a rock wall 5km (3 miles) long and 500 metres (546 yards) high. Standing above the rock face is Mont-aux-Sources peak where the Orange River starts its incredible journey west across South Africa to the Atlantic Ocean.The Tugela Falls cascades down the face of the Amphitheatre, forming one of the highest waterfalls in the world as it travels east to the Indian Ocean.

Royal Natal National Park attractions

  • Tugela Falls
  • The top of the Drakensberg Escarpment
  • SterkfonteinDam
  • All Out Adventures for Flying / trapeze / Foofy slide / Bungee Bounce and the Gorge Swing (036 4386242).
  • DIDIMA Rock Art Centre
  • Cape Vulture restaurant
  • Bushman Rock Art It takes about 30-40 minutes to walk up to the Bushman paintings in Sigubudu Valley, a round trip of an hour or a little over without counting the time taken to look at the paintings (6km). Royal Natal has trained people from the local village who act as guides and can explain the origin of the paintings and also point out some fossils embedded in the rock. There are paintings of eland, and many people, as well as hand prints - all very interesting, and reasonably well preserved.

Royal Natal National Park hiking trails

  • Amphitheatre to Cathedral
    4 to 5 days (62kms) The route passes parts of the Drakensberg including the Amphitheatre, Mbundini, Mnweni and The Rockeries, The Saddle and The Cathedral range.

  • Devil's Hoek Valley
    A fairly easy hike of 1hr(3km) The path gets progressively steeper and the views more spectacular. Royal Natal National Park. The route takes you from the Tugela River Carpark along the the Tugela Valley and then up the Devil's Hoek tributary

  • Mckinley's Pool, Gudu Falls, The Grotto
    Moderate distances, the route is well marked and fairly easy to hike and explore. There are many clear rock pools where you could enjoy a swim. Royal Natal National Park, numerous trails leading off from the Mahai Campsite up the river valley to Mckinley's Pool.

  • Mont-Aux-Sources via Basutho Gate and The Chain Ladder
    10hrs (20kms) The hike starts from the Mahai River Campsite, follows the Mahai River Valley, passes the Witsieshoek Mountain Resort, to the Sentinel carpark and up the Chain Ladder to the escarpment.

  • Otto's Walk & Bushman Paintings
    An easy walk of 1hr (2kms) The path leads up the Sigubudu Valley to some fine examples San rock paintings. Royal Natal National Park, begin at the visitor's centre and takes you along the Tugela River and continues towards the park gate.

  • Rugged Glen to Mahai
    5-6hrs (14kms) Rugged Glen is a nature reserve connected by road to the Mahai Campsite.

  • Sigubudu Ridge and Valley
    A moderate hike of 4-5 hrs (12km) The path takes you through Protea Veld, past Sunday Falls to Fairy Glen. Royal Natal National Park. This is a round trip from Mahai Campsite via Sigubudu Valley.

  • Tugela Gorge
    A moderate hike of + 2 hrs (7km) The route goes through alternative stretches of protea veld and forest, and the scenery beyond the gorge is rivaled only by the view from the top of the Tugela Falls.

  • Vemaan Valley
    A fairly easy hike of 1hr. 45mins (4.3km) A rare species of protea, known as protea nubigena has been found here. Royal Natal National Park. Follow the same route as for Devil's Hoek Valley, but 1 km after turning right at the junction leading up to Devil's Hoek, the Vemaan Path leads off to the left over the Devil's Hoek River.

Restaurants and Coffee Sops near to Royal Natal

  • Coyote Café
  • Tower of Pizza
  • Catapillar Catfish Cookhouse
  • Little Switzerland

Accommodation in Royal Natal National Park

The Royal Natal National Park offers accommodation at Thendele Lodge and cottage or chalets at Thendele Camp. Camping and caravanning can be enjoyed at two popular sites, one has a riverside setting and the other has stables for horse riding activities. From horse back, visitors can cover plenty of ground and travel into the mountains for stirring views and sightings of resident wildlife. Another popular activity at Royal Natal National park in is hiking in the Northern Drakensberg Mountains.

How To Get to Royal Natal National Park

From the north, turn off just south of Ladysmith and follow the Bergville road for 55km. The road from Bergville is clearly signposted, and the park is 46km further along the Bergville/Harrismith road. From the south, turn off the main national road (N3) at the Winterton/Berg Resorts turn-off, and pass through Winterton and Bergville. Turn left at the Drakensberg North signboard. It is approximately 16km from there to the Royal Natal National Park entrance gate. Both these routes are tarred. The park is also accessible from Harrismith (72km) via the Oliviershoek Pass. From Harrismith take the Bethlehem Road for 6km, and turn onto the Witsieshoek / QwaQwa road. Follow the signs to Oliviershoek Pass, Royal Natal National Park and Bergville. The road is tarred all the way.