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Classic KwaZulu Natal self-drive tour

10 days from $2,060pp

What is tailor made? 100% custom | Exceptional experiences | Hand-picked guides | Lodging with character | Designed to your schedule, budget & interests

    Places visited:

  • Durban
  • The Midlands
  • The Drakensberg (North)
  • The Battlefields
  • Zululand Rhino Reserve (Manyoni)
  • Visit local artisans and sample some of the excellent food on offer in the Natal Midlands.

  • Follow hiking trails independently or with a guide in the striking Drakensberg Mountains.

  • Discover the history of the Battlefields area on a guided tour of two battle sites.

  • Spot the Big Five on morning and afternoon game drives in Zululand Rhino Reserve.

Audley Travel specialist Devon

What our specialists say...

This self-drive itinerary sees you explore the turbulent history and epic landscapes of South Africa’s KwaZulu Natal region. Begin in the Natal Midlands, visiting craft shops, breweries and cheese makers as you sample some of the area’s delicious cuisine. You then head into the towering Drakensberg Mountains, hiking through some of the country’s most striking scenery. Your focus shifts to the region’s past as you pay a visit to the historic Battlefields and learn about the clashes that took place here from a knowledgeable guide. Your trip ends with a few days on safari in the Zululand Rhino Reserve, where guided game drives give you an opportunity to see the Big Five.

We recommend this trip for:

  • Durban
  • The Midlands
  • The Drakensberg (North)
  • The Battlefields
  • Zululand Rhino Reserve (Manyoni)

Itinerary idea in detail

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Ask us if you would also like us to arrange your international flights at our preferred rates.

Day 1 The Midlands

Durban , The Midlands

On arrival in Durban, you're met at the airport by an Audley representative and assisted with collecting your hire car. Your car hire package includes all insurance, road maps and a sat-nav. You then drive for around an hour and a half northwest to your accommodation in the Midlands, enjoying views over the green countryside and rolling hills along the way. One you arrive, spend the rest of the day relaxing after your journey, enjoying your beautiful surroundings while sipping a glass of wine.

Accommodation

Day 2 The Midlands

The Midlands

Spend the day exploring the area. Recent years have seen many local artisans set up craft shops, breweries and food outlets, which are dotted around the region. You can stop to visit them as you wind through the countryside, sampling some of the local cuisine and browsing traditional African handicrafts. You may also wish to visit the nearby Mandela Capture Site. An art installation marks the spot where Nelson Mandela was taken into custody by the apartheid government in 1962. The piece of art consists of 50 steel poles that make up a portrait of Mandela's face and represent the 50 years that he spent in prison.

Accommodation

Day 3 The Drakensberg (North)

The Midlands , The Drakensberg (North)

Drive for around two hours up to the Northern Drakensberg today, enjoying some of the best scenery in South Africa as the mountain peaks rise up in the distance. Along the way, you may wish to stop at Giant's Castle Game Reserve, set within a UNESCO World Heritage Site area. The surrounding mountains and escarpment resemble a sleeping giant, and there are many hiking trails to explore. There are also some examples of San bushman rock art, with a museum that tells you more about the lifestyle of these people.

Accommodation

Day 4 The Drakensberg (North)

The Drakensberg (North)

Strap on your walking boots and follow some of the hiking trails through the Drakensberg Mountains today. Experienced guides can select the best trails for your fitness level and tell you more about the region and its wildlife as you walk, or you can head out on your own. Depending on where you're staying, you may be able to explore the area on horseback with a guide, following gentle trails over flat fields, riding through river valleys or ascending the escarpments, depending on your level of experience.

Accommodation

Day 5 The Battlefields

The Drakensberg (North) , The Battlefields

Your drive to the Battlefields today takes around three hours, passing through more rugged scenery as you travel northeast. After arriving at your accommodation, spend the rest of the day relaxing in your beautiful surroundings, perhaps taking a dip in the pool or heading out on a gentle walk to see what wildlife you can find - various species of antelope can often be seen grazing out on the plains.

Accommodation options

Day 6 The Battlefields

The Battlefields

Today you will be taken to the famous Rorkes Drift, you will be taken on an inspiring tour of these famous battle grounds and here the true story behind the famous film 'Zulu'.

Accommodation options

Day 7 Zululand Rhino Reserve (Manyoni)

The Battlefields , Zululand Rhino Reserve (Manyoni)

Drive to the Zululand Rhino Reserve today - the journey takes between three and a half and four and a half hours, depending on where you're staying. Arriving in the early afternoon, settle into your accommodation before heading out on your first game drive with experienced guides. The park is home to endangered black rhino as well as white rhino, elephant, buffalo, blue wildebeest, impala and kudu. The experience includes sundowner drinks and snacks before driving in the dark to spot some of the reserve's nocturnal species.

Accommodation

Day 8 Zululand Rhino Reserve (Manyoni)

Zululand Rhino Reserve (Manyoni)

Enjoy a full day on safari today. Your early morning game drive sets off before breakfast, giving you the best chance of spotting the animals at their most active. You then return to your accommodation for a hearty breakfast. The afternoon game drive doesn't set off until the late afternoon, so the middle of the day is free for you to relax, enjoy a leisurely lunch and perhaps head out on a bush walk. This gives you a different perspective of the reserve as your guide points out some of the smaller wildlife species, such as birds and insects, and explains their role in the local ecosystem.

Accommodation

Day 9 Zululand Rhino Reserve (Manyoni)

Zululand Rhino Reserve (Manyoni)

Spend your last day on safari trying to spot any species you've missed on the previous days. Hyena, suni and leopard are all rare sightings here, but you may get lucky. Your guide will know the best places to go to see the wildlife that interests you the most. This evening, after your afternoon game drive, share stories of your travels with fellow guests over dinner and drinks.

Accommodation

Day 10 Return home

Zululand Rhino Reserve (Manyoni)

Today you leave the reserve and drive for around two hours to Richard's Bay airport, where you drop off your car and board your onward flight.

Audley Travel specialist Luke
Audley Travel specialist Margaret

Contact a specialist

The specialist who designs your trip to South Africa will have explored the country many times and, in some cases, lived there. Their first-hand knowledge gives us the belief that no other travel company can match our expertise in helping you plan your trip. Your dedicated specialist will take the time to understand your preferences and build them into an itinerary to match, working to your budget. He or she will keep perfecting it until you’re completely happy and ready to book.

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When to go

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Durban
 
 
 
The Midlands
 
 
 
The Battlefields
 
 
 

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