Escourt, Kwa-Zulu Natal

Giants Castle Drakensberg Slack Packing Trail” is perfect for an easy to moderate hiking experience.  It includes some of the most scenic and biodiverse parts of KwaZulu Natal with dramatic views of the Drakensberg and Giants Castle. This hiking trail provides access to the Lowlands Conservancy and Zulu Waters Game Reserve. Special places where hikers simply have not had access to till now.

This is a 3-day hike that includes 3 nights of accommodation in 3 very different lodges each offering a 3 course dinner, hearty breakfast and a picnic lunch to enjoy under a shady tree along your way. The daily hikes are gentle in distance and gradient making this hike a perfect beginner’s hike for families and for those less experienced and fit. You are in good hands with your own personal hiking guide.  The lodges offer locally grown, home cooked meals as a bonus.  In the summer, there are rivers and dams to swim in and plenty of picturesque picnic spots on route.

Your first night is Antbear Lodge, quite possibly one of them most sustainable lodges in South Africa. Here you will find homemade cheese from milk from their own cows, eggs from their own home grown chickens and a wonderful organic garden.

Explore the Drakensberg foothills without the drama of a backpack walking from lodge to lodge, having your luggage transported for you and looking forward to excellent 3 course meals. The Giants Castle Drakensberg Slack packing trail is a luxury hike offering comfortable and varied accommodation experiences for each night including luggage transfers, guide/ranger, park/conservation fees and delectable catering.

The Giants Castle Drakensberg slack packing hiking trail includes some of the most scenic and biodiverse parts of KwaZulu Natal. This hiking trail provides access to private land, a game reserve and a locally forged conservancy. Special places where people normally would not have access. Trails consist of small intimate groups of 6 persons. All you need to do is organise a group of friends or join one of our prearranged trips and look forward to a gentle stroll carrying nothing more than a packed picnic, some binoculars and a good birding book.

This is a three-day round hike encompassing curated paths through the Zulu Waters Private Game Reserve and the Lowlands Conservancy. Well known for its rich biodiversity, the daily hikes are gentle in distance and gradient making this hike a perfect beginner’s hike for families and for those less experienced and fit. The lodges offer locally grown; home cooked three course dinner as a bonus.

In the summer, there are rivers and dams to swim in and plenty of picturesque picnic spots on route.

Drakensberg Slack Packing accommodation

Day 1:
13km
Antbear Lodge

Antbear Lodge – Sustainable Drakensberg accommodation
What makes Antbear Lodge special is that this is quite possibly one of them most sustainable lodges in South Africa. Here you will find homemade cheese from their own milk, own eggs from their own home-grown chickens and a wonderful organic garden. They also offer a luxury cave for accommodation.  Hiking starts heading up to the top of the mountain with spectacular views looking out over the Drakensberg Mountains. Then down into the valley where you feel far away from everywhere.  Hiking starts heading up to the top of the mountain with spectacular views looking out over the Drakensberg Mountains. Then down into the valley in the Lowland Conservancy where you feel far away from everywhere.

 

Day 2:
17.5km
Leopards Lair Lodge

Leopards Lair Lodge – Giant Castle Central Drakensberg
Leopards Lair is one of those lovely places full of family atmosphere offering a real agri tourism experience. Meet Lalie their hand reared eland, their rescue emus and ostriches and the rest of their farmyard menagerie.

Your walk from here starts off easy and then drops back down into the Mbogta Valley. And then the high light where you enter the Zulu Waters Game Reserve.  Your second night is Leopards Lair Lodge. Its one of those lovely places full of family atmosphere on a working farm offering a real agri-tourism experience. Meet Lalie their hand reared eland, their rescue emus and ostriches and the rest of their farmyard menagerie. Your walk from here starts off easy and then drops back down into the Mbogta Valley.

Day 3:
9-12km
Zulu Waters Shaka Lodge.

Zulu Waters Shaka Lodge – African safari luxury
Shaka Lodge offers the the lapse of luxury withing the Zulu Waters Game Reserve. Your own private chef will prepare delicacies that will make you want to stay forever.

Almost your whole day will be hiking inside the Game Reserve. You might see rhino, zebras, buffalo, ostriches, eland, water buck, wildebeest and so much more.  And then the highlight of the hike where you enter the Zulu Waters Game Reserve. Shaka Lodge offers the the lapse of luxury and is situated within the game reserve. Your own private chef will prepare delicacies that will make you want to stay forever. Almost your whole day will be hiking inside the Game Reserve.

You might see rhino, zebras, buffalo, ostriches, eland, water buck, wildebeest and so much more. Groups are limited to 6 persons and bespoke trails can also be arranged for organised groups with special interests like butterflies, birding, ecology, wild flowers, mediation and star gazing.

Fast facts:

  • Duration: 3 days, 3 nights
  • Recommended fitness level: Easy to Moderate
  • Average daily walking distances: 12-15km
  • Accommodation types: Lodges including dinner and breakfast. Lunch packs are supplied daily. All dietary requirements available.
  • Group size: 6 persons in a group
  • Guide: Deon Small registered mountain guide.
  • Bespoke tours can also be arranged for organised groups with special interests like butterflies, birding, ecology, wild flowers, mediation and star gazing.

Slack packing activity addons:

Add on a horse trail in the Game Reserve Add on a star gazing experience from a special star gazing hammock camp Spend some time in the Giants Castle Vulture Hide with a close and personal wildlife encounter

Rates:

  • R7900.00 pp – All inclusive of accommodation, all meals, luggage transfer, registered guide & conservancy fees.
  • R55.00 – Admin fee once off per reservation.

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Giant's Castle Drakensburg Slackpacking Trail
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