If you are a keen walker and you would appreciate the challenge of hiking the mountains, valleys, gorges, and riversides of this remarkable region, Marataba Trails Lodge is very highly recommended for you!
ACCESS & LOCATION:
Marataba Trails Lodge has a spectacular location on the side of a mountain within the Drakensberg range. Trails Lodge is accessible via road transfer from Johannesburg, a journey of approximately three-and-a-half hours. An air taxi service is available from Grand Central Airport, and Marataba Reserve has a helicopter landing pad.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES:
Constructed in ‘Scandi-Safari’ style, the lodge blends beautifully with its natural surroundings and uses exclusively solar power. The communal areas comprise an open-plan lounge and dining area, flowing gracefully onto a deck. The lounge contains comfortable seating around coffee tables, while the dining space provides a long table for communal meals. Both areas boast amazing views of the reserve, as does the deck, which incorporates a fire-pit. This is the perfect place to mingle with your fellow travellers and swap your safari stories!
Guest accommodation at Trails Lodge consists of five eco-suites, all set out to one side of the main building. These are raised on stilts, to maximise views of the stunning scenery! Each suite offers 35 square metres of floor space, divided into a bedroom, a bathroom, and a balcony. The bedroom contains a double bed or twin beds, a ceiling fan, bedside tables and lighting, a double wardrobe, a fireplace, and long sliding windows. Just off this area, the bathroom has a separate toilet, a vanity unit, and a raindance shower. On the balcony, you will find a couple of comfy chairs and a table. Each suite also comes with air conditioning, a telephone, and a safe. The décor throughout is simple yet stylish – we love it!
Activities from Trails focus on hiking, but game drives and river cruises are possible too. Guests are invited to join morning and afternoon hikes every day, and if you visit in winter there is the option of enjoying a full-day hike complete with picnic! Four types of trail are available – mountain, gorge, interest, and riverine. Mountain trails take you up into the Drakensberg range and deep down into the valleys, while gorge trails offer the exciting opportunity for you to swim in a freshwater pool! Interest trails are ideal for keen historians, as they include Stone Age relics, Iron Age ruins, and cave paintings.
And the riverine trails meander alongside the reserve’s water courses and bring you close to the resident wildlife. This comprises a fine assortment of predators and herbivores – lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo, zebra, wildebeest, antelopes, and hippo! All these species may also be spotted on game drives and river cruises, both taking place during the afternoon. The birdlife of the reserve is plentiful too, featuring one of the largest breeding colonies of Cape vulture in the world!