The area around Estcourt (Afrikaans: Eskort) in Kwazulu Natal province has a turbulent history. It forms the southernmost point of the so-called ‘Battlefield Route’ that extends further north to Ladysmith and Dundee. This route takes you past various places where there is fighting between the British, the Boers (Voortrekkers) and the Zulu’s. Visit Fort Dunford in Estcourt, which was built in 1875 and today houses a museum.

Estcourt is a good base for visiting the Drakensberg. You can choose from a wide variety of hiking / hike and climbing routes or choose a nice spot for a picnic and watch the sun set behind the mountains. In particular, Giant’s Castle Game Reserve, which is so called because of the shape of the rock points and belongs to the central part of the Ukhahlamba Drakensberg Park, is worth a visit. Giant’s Castle is about 60 kilometers away from Estcourt. At the Main Office (head office) they can inform you well about the routes and from this point there are excursions several times a day to the rock drawings of the San-Bushmen. These former inhabitants of the region have provided some caves with so-called Rock Art, which gives us a good insight into the wildlife that lived in the Drakensberg at the time. It is half an hour’s walk from the Main Office to where the Rock Art is located, this is one of the largest and best-preserved places with rock paintings in South Africa. It is possible that during your visit to Giant’s Castle you will see monkeys, moose or bearded vulture. In the winter the vultures are fed at a fixed place and you have even more chance to see these huge birds.

You can rent lines at the head office for fly fishing in the Bushman River and in some places you can also swim in this river. There is a small shop, a restaurant and accommodation, from the main entrance it is about 7 kilometers to the entrance of Giant’s Castle.
The nearby Viennese Game Reserve is worth a visit for spotting rhinos, giraffes, moose, zebras, kudus, ostriches, ibex, hyenas etc. There are more than 250 bird species here and the landscape is beautifully hilly. You can explore the reserve both from your car and on foot, bush walks with a guide are also possible. Along one of the water places is a shelter from where you can see the animals that come to drink. There are three picnic areas in the reserve with bbq facilities. To spend the night there is a campsite with 12 pitches and there is one cottage. This small game reserve, which has a rich flora and fauna, is a nice day or day trip when you stay in this area. Remember that in the winter months (especially June-July) it can freeze at night in the mountains, during the day it is almost always dry and the sun provides a pleasant temperature. The hottest months are January and February, when heavy thunderstorms can occur.
To the south of Estcourt you will find the village of Mooirivier which is the start of the Midlands Meander, also known as the Arts and Crafts Route that takes you past a variety of craft shops and studios.
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