Royal Natal Park
Royal Natal boasts some of the most splendid mountain scenery in Africa. The main feature is the world famous Amphitheatre, a rock wall approximately five km in length, and 500m high.
Above the amphitheatre is Mont-aux-Sources peak where, as its name implies, the Orange river starts its long journey to the Atlantic ocean and Thukela river cascades down the face of the amphitheatre, in one of the highest waterfalls in the world, on its way to the Indian ocean.
The most popular activity at Royal Natal is undoubtedly hiking.
A comprehensive hiking guide is available for purchase at the Visitor Centre, at Thendele camp office and at the main entrance gate. The brochure shows a map of the park and the network of hiking paths which visit every part of the park from the gentle walk to Fairy Glen to the challenging hike up the Crack and down the Mudslide.
Trout fishing at Royal Natal is available in a dam in the park and in the Mahai and Thukela rivers, and picnicking and swimming in the clear mountain streams are popular pastimes.
The award-winning Thendele camp is situated in one of the most picturesque settings in the country, with views of the Amphitheatre from every bungalow.
Camping is available at Mahai Campground, catering for 400 campers and caravanners, and at Rugged Glen Campground which accommodates 45 visitors.
The stables at Rugged Glen provide opportunities to ride into the mountains for unique views and sightings of mountain reedbuck and grey rhebuck that seem to have no fear of people on horse back.
Thendele hutted camp is situated in one of the most picturesque settings in the country with a view of the world famous amphitheatre from every chalet.
The camp nestles below the brooding sandstone cliffs of Dooley among yellowwood forests and protea savannah where visitors can often hear the rumble of boulders in the Thukela river below after a fierce summer thunderstorm.
This beautiful camp has the distinction of being the closest of the KZN Wildlife Berg camps to the main Drakensberg escarpment.
Dominated by the amphitheatre which changes mood with weather and season, often covered in snow in winter or with up to eighteen waterfalls cascading down the vertical cliffs after a storm, Thendele is a very special place to visit and is KZN Wildlife's most popular camp.
Home to the Bearded Vulture(Lammergeyer) and Black Eagle who often disport themselves for visitors in the thermals that rise above the Mont aux Sources plateau, the surounding valleys and ridges offer superb walks through an ever changing landscape with many upland birds and flowers.
The camp, which is split into upper and lower sections, consists of 26 comfortable self contained chalets that accommodate either two or four people each.
There are also two delightful 6 bed cottages and the luxurious Thendele Lodge with 3 en-suite bedrooms and a full range of facilities in its own special space well away from the main camp.
The camp shop has a wide range of curios and sells basic groceries and supplies for visitors convenience.
All units are equiped with satellite TV. 14 Channels Only, DSTV Compact
Thendele Lodge is a tranquil, exclusive lodge nestled into the side of the hill with magnificent views of the Amphitheatre from every window within its own secluded garden.
The six-bed lodge has a lounge, a kitchen, and three bedrooms each with their own private bathroom.
Satellite television is also available.
This is the ideal place for those wanting to enjoy a sense of secluded privacy in the midst of scenic mountain splendour.
A resident cook prepares excellent meals with food supplied by the guests. Visitors can amble out on a variety of walks that lead from the lodge into the mountains and valleys or indulge in a strenuous ascent of the Amphitheatre via Mahai valley and the Sentinel Zigzags to take in the most spectacular view of KwaZulu-Natal below.
Relaxation is key and the attraction of whiling the day away with a good book with the magnificent view just a glance away is the best remedy for the jaded city dweller. The lodge is only available for single group bookings.