Drakensberg means “dragon mountain” in Afrikaans, and the Zulus call it uKhahlamba or “barrier of spears”. For all its ferocious names, the Drakensberg is home to one of South Africa’s most beloved and spectacular natural parks.
Recently proclaimed South Africa’s fourth World Heritage Site, the newly-named uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park features magnificent geological features up to 200 million years old, as well up to 35,000 rock art paintings. The peaks of the mountain range are often covered in snow in winter, while in summer clouds blanket the escarpment and brief but violent storms shake the gorges.
Spring proclaims its arrival by the wild flowers that carpet the slopes and the animals provide as much of a spectacle as the flowers. The uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park scenery includes a huge, four mile wide amphitheatre, dramatic cliffs and the spectacular Tugela Falls. Several peaks in the area attract climbers from around the world, and the adjoining Rugged Glen Nature Reserve is well worth visiting.