Group Size: 2 - 16 passengers
Departs: Scheduled departures during the year
Discover this region’s natural and cultural history in a way you’ve not experienced before. This seven day tour was designed to cover the best that KwaZulu-Natal has to offer – the Drakensberg Mountains, Battlefields and Zululand. You will be spellbound by the gifted story-telling of the Battlefields and re-live the legendary battles on the sites where Zulus, Boers and British fought it out at Isandlwana, Rorke’s Drift and Spioenkop. It is a tour that brings together the magnificent scenery, historical, cultural and natural heritage of this province.
Day 1 Durban – Pietermartizburg – Drakensberg
Depart the cosmopolitan city of Durban and travel inland to Pietermaritzburg, the administrative capital of the KwaZulu-Natal Province. Pietermaritzburg, set amidst forested hills and the rolling countryside of the Natal-Midlands, is one of the best-preserved Victorian cities in the world. Enjoy a brief city tour, including drives past Publicity House which is opposite one of South Africa’s best galleries – The Tatham Art Gallery. Stop outside the Legislative Building which typifies the colonial heritage of a past era. Visit the glorious St Peter’s Cathedral and the charming lanes and byways of South Africa’s largest pedestrianised heritage retail area – the Church Street Mall. In savouring the uniqueness of this area, one takes in the significance of this high character city and its captivating past. The Mahatma Gandhi statue is visited outside the Colonial Building – where he targeted many of his concerns about human rights issues. (D)
Continue the journey through the midlands to Howick and the site where late former President Nelson Mandela was captured on August 5th, 1962. His capture marked the start of Mandela’s 27-year imprisonment and the journey that he would later call ‘the long walk to freedom’.
The Natal-Midlands is a beautiful region filled with stretches of farmland, charming little towns, a wonderful arts and crafts route and picturesque scenery bordering on the sublime. You would not be found to be at fault should you request that your guide take it easy on the drive to your accommodation which is considered to hold one of the finest locations in the entire Drakensberg range. Check into the hotel and enjoy some time at leisure before enjoying dinner.
Champagne Castle Hotel is nestled below the second highest peak in South Africa, Champagne Castle (3,377m), part of the main escarpment within the uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Mountain Range, the highest mountain range in South Africa. Due to its diversity of plant, bird and insect life and the richest collection of San rock paintings in Africa, it has been declared a Mixed World Heritage site. Your stay will be characterised by the proximity you gain to the most dramatic and immediate views of the Drakensberg Escarpment and the ‘Barrier of Spears’. Whether you walk or hike, trout fish or horse ride, play golf or tennis, swim or bowl, everything here has been configured to embrace this unparalleled setting.
Day 2 - Drakensberg
Today is dedicated to enjoying the magnificent scenery on offer in the Drakensberg, as well as discovering the cultural significance of this UNESCO World Heritage site – the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park. These mountains once offered shelter to the San people for thousands of years before being exterminated in clashes with the Zulus and white settlers. All they left behind was their story painted in the rock, in the shelters, the story of sacred animals and journeys to the spirit world. At Giant’s Castle we enjoy a 45-minute walk to the main caves for a short tour and interpretation of the paintings and artifacts on display in the museum. After the San experience, spend the remainder of the afternoon enjoying the facilities on offer at the hotel, including tennis courts, an animal farm, aviary, hiking trails, bowling green, swimming pool and so much more. (BD)
Day 3 - Spioenkop – Dundee - Isandlwana
Enjoy a delicious breakfast followed by check-out formalities. Make your way to the summit of Spioenkop Mountain. Your guide shall recount and bring to life the Anglo-Boer 9-day battle in January 1900 – the third and bloodiest attempt by the British to relieve Ladysmith. Witnesses to this battle include Louis Botha (the first Prime Minister of the Union of South Africa), Winston Churchill and Mohandas Ghandi, who led the heroic British stretcher bearers and later became the Mahatma. (BD)
Continue to the town of Ladysmith, a town which made world headlines at the end of the 19th century when it was besieged for 118 days during the most crucial stage of the Anglo-Boer War. Its historic heritage gives many fascinating sites to discover. Visit the Seige Museum where a diorama excellently depicts Ladysmith and its surrounding hills at the time of the Siege. Artefacts, documents, uniforms, firearms etc. are on display.
Travel via Dundee to your accommodation which is located in at the heart of the battle sites between the Zulus and the British.
Enjoy dinner at the hotel.
At Rorke’s Drift on the River Buffalo, the views from the Hotel are spectacular and full of interest and gentle walks or hikes in the natural bush surroundings will revive and stimulate. The wagon drift that gives the area its name is within the grounds, and of course there is the Battlefield, just 5 minutes or a short walk away, where 11 Victoria Crosses were awarded. The dramatic field of Isandlwana that was fought on the same day is just a 20 minute drive, and the poignant memorial at Fugitive’s Drift, 15 minutes downstream.
Day 4 - Battlefields
Today is dedicated to the exploration of the most famous battlefields of all the many in KwaZulu-Natal. Your guide shall recount the Anglo Zulu War battle of Isandlwana where 20,000 Zulu warriors wiped out almost an entire British regiment and their firepower within 2½ hours. Visit Rorke’s Drift Mission where British soldiers, outnumber 35 to 1, fought off 4,000 Zulus for 12 hours. This battle generated the award of 11 Victoria Crosses – the highest number to a Regiment in a single action. Return to the hotel for dinner and overnight. (BD)
Day 5 - Battlefields – Hluhluwe
After an early breakfast, travel across the various battle sites of KwaZulu-Natal to Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Game Reserve where you complete your discovery with an African safari experience. (BLD)
Depending on your time of arrival, enjoy lunch followed by an afternoon open-vehicle game drive which yields exciting game viewing opportunities. The highly qualified rangers have a wide knowledge of the rich bird and animal life of the region, as well as the indigenous trees and plants. Return to the lodge for dinner.
The privately owned Falaza Game Park & Spa offers luxury tented accommodation and an array of authentic bush experiences in a lush indigenous setting. Luxury tented accommodation provides true safari ambiance, with every comfort catered for, including spacious dressing rooms, en-suite bathrooms and private sundecks. All tents are equipped with modern amenities, including fans, hairdryer, tea and coffee making facilities, while heaters and additional blankets are available on request for the chillier months.
Day 6 - Hluhluwe
Start the day with an early morning game drive when the animals are at their busiest, before the harsh African sun beats down and they take shelter from the sweltering heat in shady areas. Return to the lodge for breakfast and spend the remainder of the day at leisure. Enjoy the facilities on offer at the lodge including the well-equipped Spa on the reserve (treatments at own expense and subject to availability). End the day with an afternoon open-vehicle game drive before enjoying dinner. (BLD)
Day 7 - End of KwaZulu-Natal Highlights Tour
Embark on a final game drive followed by breakfast and check-out formalities. Travel via the Elephant Coast back to Durban where the tour ends on arrival at your Durban based hotel or with drop-off at King Shaka International Airport for your onward flight arrangements. (B)
Dates and Pricing
- 14 Nov 17 $2,200 $2,710
- 28 Nov 17 $2,200 $2,710
- 12 Dec 17 $2,200 $2,710
- 23 Jan 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 13 Feb 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 27 Feb 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 13 Mar 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 27 Mar 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 10 Apr 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 24 Apr 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 08 May 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 22 May 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 07 Aug 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 21 Aug 18 $2,465 $3,040
- 11 Sep 18 $2,635 $3,250
- 25 Sep 18 $2,635 $3,250
- 09 Oct 18 $2,635 $3,250
- 23 Oct 18 $2,635 $3,250
- 13 Nov 18 $2,635 $3,250
- 27 Nov 18 $2,635 $3,250
- 11 Dec 18 $2,635 $3,250
Prices shown are per person based on twin share. Seasonal supplements and minimum night requirement may apply. Solo traveller and extra night prices available on request. Luggage restrictions may apply. International flights not included.