Tag Archive for Ts’ehlanyane National Park

Lesotho Ultra Trail Ready To Go!

It’s a full house for LUT2014

 lut

The 2014 Lesotho Ultra Trail will see a full field of 180 runners toe the start line on Saturday 29th November as runners from all over the world sign up for the second edition of “Africa’s first Ultra SkyMarathon®”.

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Things to see in Lesotho – Katse Dam

The Story Of Katse Dam

 

The Katse Dam, built high in the Maluti Mountains and named after a revered man who once lived at the site, is at the heart of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project. This is the land of the “blanket people”, who ride their sturdy ponies, build picturesque houses and greet visitors with a dignified salute (Go Lesotho; 2014) . 

Basotho pony and rider at Maliba Lodge, Lesotho.

Basotho pony and rider at Maliba Lodge, Lesotho.

All the major rivers of landlocked Lesotho are well-stocked with the finest trout, and with the exception of the Tugela, flow west into the Atlantic Ocean. (The Orange River starts as the Senqu River near Cathedral Peak). The Lesotho Highlands Water Project has changed all this, with water now being diverted north by gravity (Go Lesotho; 2014). 

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New virtual tours added to the Maliba website

Another visit by Andrew Martens, with his special chopper, to take more high altitude photos of the snow capped mountains at Maliba Mountain Lodge.

Andrew Martens from RC Helicam on horse backThree new videos have been added this time.

  • The High altitude snow shot – showing the snow on the mountain peaks around Maliba.
  • The High altitude Black pools – showing the snow on the mountains well and gives the feeling of being tucked away in the mountains and park
  • Low altitude Black pools – A Closer view of the rock pools and surrounding mountain side. Read more

Get Lost in Lesotho – Maliba Road Trip

Get Lost in Lesotho..

‘We need to promote Lesotho as a whole – as its own destination.’ These were the words of my wife who is the marketing manager for Maliba Mountain Lodge, a 5 star lodge in the mountains of Lesotho. She was referring to the fact that Lesotho is one of the lesser known destinations on the tourism map – even for us South Africans. It is generally seen as a country which is hard to get to – as a place more suited to those looking for a hard core adventure with their rugged off road vehicles.

We therefore decided to set out on a road trip ourselves, to see the highlights of the country, and to determine the accessibility of this small, mountainous kingdom. To gain first-hand experience – as a group of young South Africans, with little time between work days for travelling– of the people and their cultures, the landscape and perhaps to learn a bit about the country and its history. At the same time, to film the entire adventure to try and capture some of the spirit and culture of the country and its people.

Our goal, as a group of five friends, was to travel over four days into the easily accessible parts of the country, without the need for serious back up and support. Read more

Bird Watching In Lesotho

Birding in Lesotho will come as a fascinating and surprising entertainment for all the bird lovers as well as ordinary tourists from all over the world, who will be able to view its astonishing variety and beauty first hand.

the Fairy flycatcher sitting on a branch

Fairy flycatcher - Photo Johann Grobbelaar

Lesotho is shelters an impressive number of species of birds. Over 300 varieties have been recorded in the country and vary from residents, that stay all year around, to breeding birds, that spend a good part of the growing season in Lesotho to raise their young, migrants who pass through Lesotho with the seasons, to wintering birds who like to spend a the winter in Lesotho to escape even colder conditions up north. However, many species of birds are relatively common as they are part of the ecosystems of the country.

The Lesotho Drakensberg and Maluti are among the most sought after by bird watchers who come for Birding in Lesotho. You will be bowled out by the sheer variety and number of these colorful birds, some of which are extremely rare. The birds can be seen in the natural parks in the region, with its well known avifauna, as well in isolated spots which host a variety of fauna of Lesotho. Read more

Top 10 places to visit in Lesotho

Although a small country, Lesotho boasts an assortment of fantastic attractions that tourists can visit and discover the history and heritage of both the Basotho people and the Mountain Kingdom.

 

1. Sehlabathebe National Park

Rocks pools at Sehlabathebe National Park Lesotho

Rocks pools at Sehlabathebe National Park, Lesotho

The Sehlabathebe National Park in the south eastern region of Lesotho, although fairly inaccessible (a 4 wheel drive vehicle is required) is definitely well worth the effort. This was the first designated National park in Lesotho. This hidden gem is full of wonderful rock formations unique to this area, massive rock overhangs, small lakes, rock art, rock arches and a beautiful and unique ecosystem of plants, birds and animals.

The Prime Minister of Lesotho at the time, Chief Leabua Jonathan, loved trout fishing and, since the dams and rivers are a fisherman’s paradise, this may explain the park’s existence.

The Ts’ehlanyane National Park and Bokong Nature Reserves are both far more accessible and well worth a visit in their own right. Read more

Maliba Lodge – Vulture Restaurant Project

www.ewt.org.za
Maliba Mountain Lodge, with the help of vulture specialists Sonja Kruger and Andre Botha from KZN Wildlife and the Endangered Wildlife Trust, have started a vulture feeding site in the Ts’ehlanyane National Park, with the aim to attract the rare Bearded and Cape vultures for protection and research. In the past vultures have been seen as vermin- spreading disease and killing livestock and have thus been killed, virtually driving them to the brink of extinction.KZN Wildlife Vulture Program

Vultures form an important ecological component of our natural environment, cleaning up dead carcasses and decreasing the spread of some diseases and therefore need to be protected. The main cause of the demise of this important raptor group is a declining food source, although other issues such as loss of foraging areas, electrocution by electricity pylons, and inadvertent poisoning also have a strong negative influence on their numbers. Read more

Lesotho a hiker’s paradise

Lesotho is without doubt a hiker’s paradise.

Lesotho mountain trekking with MalealeaAlthough very few dedicated hiking trails exist, the face that the entire country is a network of bridle and foot  paths. You will also not find a single fence in the mountains, meaning that you can hike pretty much anywhere you like.

A typical hike will include:
• Riverside walk, swim, caves, gorges and rock formations
• Bird and wildlife sightings
• Stunning views
• Bushman rock art sites
• Picnics and packed lunches can be provided on request

Some wonderful trails can be found in the various Lesotho national parks and nature reserves.

Sehlabathebe National Park is rough, rugged, yet incredibly scenic with rolling grasslands and wild flowers,  perfect for bird watching and hiking. Accommodation can be booked with Jonathan’s Lodge. Read more

Maliba Lodge 4×4 Trails with Roads to Roam Adventure Holidays

Through one of the off-road forums, I heard that Maliba Lodge wanted to investigate the 4×4 trails in their area and offered my assistance. All was set up and pretty soon I headed for Ts’ehlanyane National Park to boldly go where no vehicle has gone before. At the time I did not know how true those words would be!

The original plan was to explore the tracks in two vehicles, but due to an unfortunate mishap, the second vehicle had to be withdrawn. This meant taking extra care not to get into trouble on these trails, as there was no vehicle to assist should there be a recovery situation.  It has been an extra-ordinary wet season and rained almost every night during my stay at Maliba. It made for some interesting off-road driving the next few days, but the driving conditions were probably at its worse and should only improve in dryer conditions. Read more

Lesotho a photographers dream

Africa never ceases to amaze me. Over thirty years of living on this continent and there are still surprises to be had and many roads to be more travelled. And so it was when my husband and I travelled to Lesotho for the first time for a weekend at Maliba Mountain Lodge.

Sand Stone cliffs of Golden Gate NP

Sand Stone cliffs of Golden Gate NP (Photo by Sharon Bishop)

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