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The Giant’s Castle area of the uKhahlamba-Drakensberg is a hiker’s paradise. The escarpment here is dominated by a number of well-known landmarks such Giant’s Castle, Carbineer Point, The Thumb and Bannerman Face.
There are in excess of 25 walks in the Giant’s Castle Game Reserve. The 285km network of trails here includes 3km to 30km hikes, spanning from 1 hour to overnight.
The 3.2 Km Bushman’s River Trail is one of the most popular walks in the reserve. Points of interest along this route include Sandstone View and the historic Rock 75, where a cook from the 75th Regiment on Foot carved the figure 75 into a boulder during the Langalibalele rebellion in 1874. The highlight of this trail is the Main Caves, with one of the best known rock-art sites in South Africa.
The 58km, 4-day trail is one of the most rewarding in the whole of the Drakensberg. The steep climb to the summit of Giant’s Castle is challenging, but hikers are rewarded with a relaxing evening spent at Giant’s Hut. The first night is also spent at Giant’s Hut, as it is the base for the second’s day’s summit of Giant’s Castle. Day three is a fairly easy route along the escarpment to Bannerman Hut, taking in landmarks such as the Long Wall, The Thumb and Mount Durnford. The fourth day is an easy backtrack along Secratary Bird Ridge to the Main Camp.
Trail info: There is an entrance fee to the Giant’s Castle Game Reserve. No permit required for hiking. Maps available at the Reservation Office. Self-catering cottages available at Giant’s Castle.
Getting there: From Durban, take the N3 to Estcourt. Here, follow signs to the Giant’s Castle Game Reserve in the uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park. Trails start at the Main Camp.
Tel: +27 (0)36 353 3718