When we found out we were headed to the Drakensberg, we knew we were going to take a day or two to go camping. What we didn’t know, was where. Injisuthi was still an unfamiliar name to us…
Not only is camping an amazing, budget-friendly way to explore an area, but it also comes along with many other health benefits for your mind, body and soul. However, the actual hunt for the ‘right’ campsite proved to be a lot more difficult than we expected.
Byron grew up as a scout, which means he has been camping and hiking his whole life. On the other hand, I’m a definite newbie and since we only began camping together in Thailand, we, or “I” don’t know much about the South African camping terrain.
Information about the campsites is very limited online, especially for a person who is very visual and needs to know everything, so we thought we would start a series of blogs that set out to discover the different campsites that South Africa has to offer.
Let us begin with Injisuthi – which, by the way, turned out to be the ‘right’ choice!
Our Experience At Injisuthi
Let’s catch you up. We had just spent two lovely evenings at Antbear Eco Lodge and were now on our way to The Midlands Meander. Before we began our journey through the Meander, we really wanted to stop over at Injisuthi. So that’s what we did.
After a short, but beautiful, drive into the mountains and we arrived at the Injisuthi gates. We followed the signs further and parked. When we went to check-in, it looked like the office was closed (because it was), but we waited a little bit until a lady came and opened up and checked us in.
Next, we drove down to the campsite and found that there was nobody there. So we had our first choice pick of where to set up camp. We continued to explore, play, roast marshmallows, drink wine and enjoy the stars. Sadly we only stayed over for one evening, but it was wonderful and we will definitely be going back!
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Let’s Talk About The Actual Campsite
The campsite itself was absolutely lovely. It is spacious and separated into semi-private campsites, each with their own immaculate view of the mountain range.
The area was very clean and tidy, as was the ablution block. The ladies bathroom even came equipped with both a shower and a bath. It happened to rain on the night we were there and we had trodden mud into the bathrooms, but the very next morning they were already getting cleaned up!
There is also a beautiful stream that surrounds the camp. It is a little bit of a mission to get down to it, but definitely possible if you have the will power.
We visited in November and the camp was very quiet. It was just us and one other family camping out (who we never saw, they were on the opposite side of the campsite, we only knew they were there because of our explorations).
The Amenities Include:
- Semi-Private Campsites
- Self-Catering Chalets
- Basic Safari Tents
- All Vehicle Access
- Braai Stands
- Hot Water Ablution Block with Bath & Shower
- Drying Racks
- Curio Shop
N.B.: No Power Available (except at the chalets for a few hours each night).
What Other Accommodation Options Are There At Injisuthi?
Not only is there the option to camp, but you can also rent out a 4 – 8 person self-catering chalet or already-set-up rustic safari tent. You would still need to bring your own linen and crockery though, as that is not provided with the tents.
This is a great solution for those looking to camp who don’t have their own camping equipment. (They are also right on the stream which is really nice).
Then there is also the option of doing the over-night hikes. These are really cool as there are five natural caves that you can stay over in!
What Hiking Trails Can I Do There?
Since we only stayed over at the Injisuthi campsite for one night before we needed to head off to our next destination, we, unfortunately, didn’t get to do any of the hikes.
So this information is based on what was provided by the Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife Injisuthi Campsite page, and from the pamphlet that we purchased upon arrival. (Which we suggest you also do as they are packed with information about the different routes.)
Please note that we cannot confirm the routes and trails ourselves until we journey back – which we will be doing – so be on the lookout for us!
Day Hikes And Overnight Hikes
|Route||Time To Do A Roundtrip|
|Junction Pool||50 minutes|
|Yellowwood Forest||1 hour|
|Grindstone Caves||1.5 hours|
|Tanglewood Forest||1.5 hours|
|Poachers Stream||2 hours|
|Van Heyningen’s Pass||2 hours|
|Old Huts – Dipping Tank||2 hours|
|Wonder Valley||5 hours|
|Cataract Valley||6 hours|
|Contour Path Beneath Monks Cowl||10.5 hours|
These Are The 5 Caves That You Sleep In
- The Lower Injisuthi Cave
- Upper Injisuthi Cave
- Wonder Valley Cave
- Marble Baths Cave
- Grindstone Cave
We also found this site to be quite informative ➪ Drakensberg Hikes
However, we still suggest that you purchase a pamphlet on arrival and detailed map (R50) if you’re going to be hiking.
The Battle Cave Hike To See Ancient San Rock Art
Injisuthi is said to have some of the most beautiful and best-preserved San Rock Art in Southern Africa. You can organise guided walks to the Battle Cave daily, but you must book in advance. Unfortunately, you cannot make the journey without a guide as the rock art is protected and in fear of people defacing the art, they have taken the trail off of public maps and built a fence around the area.
The Short Walk To The Gorge
There is a short walk / trail that you will see on your way into the Injisuthi campsite. There is a sign on your right, as well as a small area where you can park your car. This trail leads you down to this quaint waterfall and possible swimming spot.
If you’re spending a few days at the Injisuthi campsite, we’d recommend coming here for a picnic for one of your lunches.
How Much Does Injisuthi Campsite Cost?
We went camping in November 2019 and paid R200 p.n. for an open campsite.
If you are a South African Citizen and can provide a valid South African ID/ Passport you will need to pay a conservation fee of:
R45 per adult, per entry.
R20 per child, per entry.
Otherwise, there is a Standard Conservation Fee of:
R70 per adult, per entry.
R35 per child, per entry.
*costs accurate as of early 2020
What To Bring With You
It gets pretty dark at night since there is no electricity on-site, minus the bathrooms, so we suggest packing proper lighting, like lanterns, headlamps or even a string of battery-powered fairy lights to create some ambience…
If you are camping out, don’t forget to pack your tent, some camping chairs, sleeping bags, inflatable pillows and some extra blankets in case it gets cold. And if you book a safari tent, don’t forget to bring linen and crockery with you!
Food And Cooking Equipment
There is a curio shop that stocks a few essentials in case you forget to bring something. We did, however, run out of gas for our gas stove and that they didn’t have (well they had, but not for our stove).
Otherwise, besides your actual food and what you need to prepare it, just make sure that you pack some hiking snacks.
Hiking Gear And Important Extras
- A Good Hat
- Sun Block
- Mosquito Repellent
- First Aid Kit
- Drinking Water (And Reusable Bottle)
- Durable and Comfortable Hiking Clothing
- Trekking Pole
- Strong and Comfortable Shoes
- Swimming Costume and Microfibre Towel
- Day Pack (Hiking Bag)
- Gaiters, If You Have
Getting To The Injisuthi Campsite
Injisuthi Camp is located in central Drakensberg, near the Giant’s Castle. It is a Maloti-Drakensberg Park World Heritage Site too!
If you are heading down from Johannesburg, it will take you around 5 hours to travel down.
From Durban, it’s about a 3 and a half-hour’s drive away.
The Road To Injisuthi
The road to Injisuthi will take you through a rural community in the mountains. You will need to be on the lookout for crossing cows, goats, sheep and playing children.
Once you have passed the rural farmlands, you will have to drive through an unmarked farm gate – drive through it, you are not entering a farmers private property. A while later you will see the Injisuthi sign pop up.
The road after that is all dirt road and it is preferable to go down in a 4×4, however, we did make it driving slowly in our small sedan.
Eventually, you will come across a directory sign. This will lead you to the campsite, reception, the curio shop and parking for the day hikers.
You can book online, however, we decided to phone on our way there and they were very helpful. We sent one or two emails to each other and paid via EFT.
|Website:||➪ Click Here|
|Phone Number (Injisuthi) :||➪ +27 (0) 36 431 9000|
|Phone Number (Central Reservations):||➪ +27 (0) 33 845 1000|
|Rates:||➪ Latest Rates (2020)|
|Book Online:||➪ Book|
What Else Can I Do In The Drakensberg?
Well that’s not a question that can be easily answered! Instead, we offer you this:
➳ 13 Reasons Why You Need to Take a Road Trip through the Drakensberg
Which is the list of amazing activities that we included in our personal itinerary for our road trip. From the Drakensberg, we headed straight on through to the Midlands Meander, which was also awesome! Here’s what we’d recommend including from there:
➳ The Top Attractions Along The Midlands Meander
Now the only thing we could imagine that you’re still wanting is some genuine hiking. As such, we graciously point you towards:
➳ The Giant’s Castle Slackpacking Trail
We really hope that you found this article helpful and would love to hear from you! Have you been in Injisuthi before? Are planning to go? Let’s chat in the comments!
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Loved it! What a great guide!
We are really glad that you found it informative!✌?☀️