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Birding in the Drakensberg


Soukous

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Soukous

I'm looking for some recommendations for places to visit / stay in the Drakensberg, ideally with some good birding close by.

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Peter Connan

Hmm, tough one.

 

I presume you know about the vulture hide at Giant's Castle? I got some nice smaller species at Royal Natal National Park and at Berghouse and Cottages which is not too far away.

 

Unfortunately I know nothing of the area further south.

 

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mvecht

@Soukous The Cavern is a popular hotel with South Africans. Good birding in the hotel grounds, the areas above and the nearby mountains. The hotel grounds have nesting Half collared kingfishers and many other exciting species.

Further north Wakkerstroom is a good option with many specials including Bald Ibis and Blue/Grey/Wattled cranes.

Edited by mvecht
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lmSA84

I would really recommend the Thendele Upper Camp - the view of the amphitheatre is unbeatable and birding in the upper and lower camp is excellent.

 

Albeit outside the berg, Karkloof is on the way to the berg from Durban and is one of SA's birding gems. I haven't stayed there but I've heard good things about Rockwood Forest Lodge.

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Soukous

many thanks @mvecht & @lmSA84, now I'm poring over the map to find the places you've mentioned. Great fun.

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pedro maia

I think @xelas went birding in the Drakensberg earlier this year.

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xelas

Indeed we were birding around Royal Natal Park, and it was a great experience. Already the landscape is amazing, rolling hills and towering mountains, roads are empty so one can stop whenever a bird is nearby, and while not as prolific as northern Kruger, it was a delight to be there. 

 

We have stayed at this cottage: https://www.berghouse.co.za/accommodation-drakensberg/item/1-phinda-return-again.html . Very comfortable, great covered porch with braai. Best asset is crisp clear air. Highly recommended.

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