Royal Natal National Park

sights / Parks & gardens

Royal Natal National Park information

Prices
adult/child R30/20
Opening hours
5am-7pm summer, 6am-6pm winter
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Lonely Planet review

Spanning out from some of the range’s loftiest summits, the 8000-hectare Royal Natal National Park has a presence that far outstrips its relatively meagre size, with many of the surrounding peaks rising as high into the air as the park stretches across. With some of the Drakensberg’s most dramatic and accessible scenery, the park is crowned by the sublime Amphitheatre, an 8km wall of cliff and canyon, that is spectacular from below and even more so from up on high. Here the Tugela Falls drop 850m in five stages (the top one often freezes in winter). Looming up behind is Mont-aux-Sources (3282m), so called because the Tugela, Elands and Western Khubedu Rivers rise here; the latter eventually becomes the Senqu (Orange) River and flows all the way to the Atlantic. The park is renowned for its excellent day walks and hiking opportunities.

Other notable peaks in the area are Devil’s Tooth, the Eastern Buttress and the Sentinel. Rugged Glen Nature Reserve adjoins the park on the northeastern side.

The park’s visitors centre is about 1km in from the main gate. There’s also a shop selling basic provisions. Day walks are well explained in Royal Natal Walks & Climbs and Royal Natal Walks & Hikes .