Champagne Castle Drakensberg Hike
- Great Value and Stunning Highlights!One of the many questions we get asked on this popular Drakensberg hike is ‘why is it called Champagne Castle?’ Is it because of the incredible colours that emerge as the first rays of the South African sun gently caress its summit? Is it because many a romantic trekker took their sweetheart to the summit to celebrate their love for one another? Well we had to burst your bubble and tell you the real unromantic story around Champagne Castle. It happened back in the early 1900’s by two intrepid mountaineers named David Gray and Major Grantham. They slogged their way to the summit with a bottle of Champagne that they intended to pop on the summit to celebrate their successful climb. But as fate would have it, as they pulled out the bottle, it unceremoniously slipped from their hands and shattered on the rock. Hence the name given. Champagne Castle (3,337m) is situated in what is known as the central Drakensberg and is officially the second highest mountain in South Africa. Trekking to the summit can be done in 3 days and covers 45km. The summit is attained by a 1200m scramble up Grays Pass via Blindmans Corner. Some of the spectacular scenery includes the Dragons Back, Cathkin peak and the back of Monks Cowl. Hikers are required to have a moderate level of fitness due to the altitude and ascent rates of the trek. Our base for the 2 nights is at Keith’s Bush Camp which is nestled in a valley with the surrounding mountains souring over 1000m above the camp. One of the most spectacular camp sites in the Drakensberg.
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(SELF DRIVE OPTIONS AVAILABLE)
Travel day. Our scheduled trekking tour of the Drakensberg starts at 05H00. Your trekking guide duration of your vacation will meet you at your hotel. We load up the vehicle, bid the city farewell and drive down to the Monks Cowl Nature Nature reserve which is situated in the heart of KwaZulu-Natal in the central Drakensberg area. The drive down takes about 5 hours. Upon arrival, we check the gear and start the hike by about 11H30. Today’s hike lasts about 5 hours and sees us covering a distance of about 12km. We contour around the massive bulk of Cathkin Peak and into the valley between Cathkin, Monks Cowl and Champagne Castle where we set up our ‘bas camp’ for the next 2 nights. When we get into camp known as Keith’s Bush Camp, we set up the tents and settle down to a scrumptious meal, followed by some trekking stories about the Drakensberg and bedtime.
Second Highest mountain in South Africa
Secluded and wild mountain scenery
The Drakensberg is a world heritage site
Authentic South African hiking experience
Return transfers Johannesburg to Monks Cowl Return (unless self-drive option selected)
Hotel Pick Up
2 Nights accommodation in tented camps in Drakensberg
All climbing permits
Tents, sleeping mats, cooking and eating utensils
Breakfasts and dinners on the mountain
1 nights’ accommodation at 3 star climbing lodge
dinner on the last night at the lodge
Basic first aid kit
Guide for the duration of the tour
Dedicated Trip Planner
Flights and airport taxes
Hiking Equipment (can be hired)
lunch on the mountain
Items of a personal nature
Visas for South Africa
Health requirements (if any)
Optional but highly recommended travel and medical insurance.
Snacks, personal medicine
Meals & drinks not specified