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Central Drakensberg

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Giant's Castle

Giant’s Castle is an important rock art site with 40% of all known rock art in the Berg being found here. The reserve is a panoramic delight, ranging from grassland to mountains, with streams, waterfalls and beautiful wild flowers. The rare lammergeyer nests in the cliffs and in winter they dine at the vulture restaurant in the reserve. It’s a great opportunity to see one of these magnificent birds – they were thought to be extinct in Southern Africa until fairly recently. 11 species of antelope live in the reserve, along with baboons, black-backed jackals and serval.

Injasuti

Injasuti lies to the north of Giant’s Castle and has a variety of day hikes, a cave with rock art and plenty of swimming spots in the river. The Injasuti buttress forms a 3000m high wall at the northern end of Giant’s Castle and below it the Injasuti River flows through a forested valley bordered by sandstone cliffs. In autumn the foliage is a riot of colour and in winter the buttress becomes a looming wall of ice and snow.

Champagne Valley and Champagne Castle

This is the heartland of the Berg, one of the last areas to be penetrated by white settlers. The valley is bounded by the spectacular mountains of Champagne Castle, Cathedral and Cathkin peaks, all over 3000m high. The Ndedema Gorge with its hiking trails and 147 rock shelters of San paintings lies at the foot of Cathedral Peak.

What's in a name?

The fierce thunderstorms that occur in the heights are the origin of some of the Zulu names given to the mountains. Ndedema means place of rolling thunder and Ndumeni means mountain of thunderstorms.