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Things to do in

Underberg

Our most recommended things to do in Underberg

From Underberg: Sani Pass Day Tour

1. From Underberg: Sani Pass Day Tour

The Sani Pass is regarded by some as having the most spectacular views in South Africa. Originally a bridle path, it has become a ‘bucket list’ experience that is not to be missed. Walls of sandstone, cascading rivers, and hair-raising bends are just some of the highlights as your 4x4 vehicle takes you through the Barrier of Spears and into the Kingdom of Lesotho.  Visit a living Basotho village and meet its people for a true cultural experience. The highest pub in Africa welcomes you with a hearty lunch and refreshments before your journey back down the pass to Underberg. 

From Durban: Sani Pass, Lesotho and Basotho Village Day Trip

2. From Durban: Sani Pass, Lesotho and Basotho Village Day Trip

Pack your passport and head up into the Mountain Kingdom for the day. At 3,240 meters (10,630 feet) above sea level, Lesotho can get a tad icy so wrap yourself up in an authentic Basotho blanket, which is yours for the day. You'll be taught how the blanket is tied and worn. After pickup from Durban or other available locations in the eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality, make your first stop at Himeville, at the base of the mountains. Here, climb into a rugged 4x4 and meet your specialist Basotho guide who knows the Sani Pass like the back of his hand. Then, embark on the steep climb up the scenic and daunting Sani Pass as you make your way towards Lesotho. Get your passport stamped at the border and head into no-mans-land which connects South Africa to Lesotho. Keep your camera on standby as you don’t want to miss a chance to capture these dramatic vistas. If you’re lucky, you may even score an eland sighting. Elands are believed to be mystical animals that were revered by the SAN or bushman people of Southern Africa. Once you enter Lesotho, your guide will introduce you to a Basotho village where you have the opportunity to try traditional bread and beer. Tip: the bread goes wonderfully well with the soup of the day at the pub nearby. Tick another thing off your bucket list by enjoying lunch at Africa’s highest pub (own cost). Later, it'll be time to head back the mountain for your drive back to eThekwini/Durban for drop-off at your accommodation.

Underberg: Overnight Lesotho Highlands Tour

3. Underberg: Overnight Lesotho Highlands Tour

Throughout this tour, you will enjoy all that the Sani Pass has to offer, including a trip to Makhapung, which is a small Basotho village deep in the highlands of Lesotho. This is your chance to experience the Sani Pass, Lesotho highlands, Basotho cultures and a visit to the remote trading town of Mokhotlong. You will overnight at the Principal Chief of Motkhotlong’s house, which is home to the Queen Regent ‘Mants’ebo Amelia Seeiso, the first and only woman to ever rule Lesotho. The "kingdom in the sky" provides spectacular mountain scenery, and a chance to experience the simplicity of a civilization of mountain people. This is an opportunity to explore nature still little changed by man, and unspoiled by crowds of tourists.

From Durban: Sani Pass Trail Day Tour

4. From Durban: Sani Pass Trail Day Tour

From the bustling City of Durban, Tour to Lesotho – “Kingdom in the Sky” The Sani Pass tour into Lesotho from Durban gives you the opportunity to experience an adventure of a lifetime – a comfortable and exciting journey up this famous pass. Starting off in Durban, our tour heads up through the KwaZulu-Natal midlands, to the picturesque town of Underberg, where the real adventure begins. Our luxury Sani Pass tour snakes up the mountain and takes you through a scenic valley along a crystal clear river, making for a breath-taking experience. Your personal Tour Guide will fill you in on all you can learn about the history of the pass and the surrounding area. Feast your eyes on the natural landscape that is dotted with many species of wildflowers, creating splashes of vibrant colors. The road itself is rough which is why only 4×4 vehicles are allowed to traverse it, but because of this and the hairpin bends, you are in for a fun and heart-racing trip. Once you reach the top your senses will be filled beyond your wildest dreams – breathe in the fresh mountain air, drink in the sweeping vistas that are nothing short of majestic, and enjoy this unique African experience in Lesotho – ‘Kingdom of the Sky’.

From Durban: Lesotho Highlights 4-Day Trip with Meals

5. From Durban: Lesotho Highlights 4-Day Trip with Meals

Itinerary Day 1: Depart at 08:00 from Durban and head to the aptly named town of Underberg under the Drakensberg mountains. In our guided 4wd vehicle in Underberg we proceed into Lesotho Via Sani Pass The Sani Pass climbs from 1500m to 2874m ASL. The famous switchbacks overlooking the South African valleys are spectacular. Go on a hike of the escarpment overlooking the Sani Pass or pony trek along the cliffs. Day 2: Climb further to the top of Black Mountain Pass at 3240m ASL. The remote villages of the Sani Top and Mokhotlong areas are some of the most remote villages in Lesotho. Get an inside look at the people living in this tough environment with a visit to a village. Picnic lunch is over a beautiful vista of the Senqu river, which becomes the Orange river in South Africa. An important river for several Southern African countries makes the perfect lunch stop. The route from Sani Top to Thaba Bosiu is often called the Roof of Africa route, we have already conquered the Sani Pass as well as Black Mountain Pass. After lunch we tackle Taeeng pass at 3225m and Motebong pass at 2820m. Along the way you will see Letseng Diamond mine–the world’s highest diamond mine and Afriski Moutain Resort and countless villages and other picturesque scenes. We will head to our overnight accommodation in Hlotse. Check-in at Bird Haven at approx. 18:00. Day 3: Breakfast at 07:00, departure at approx. 08:00-30. We backtrack slightly to visit a riverbed close to our overnight accommodation, where there is evidence of prehistoric life forms. If the river is in flood these ancient footprints are hidden to the world but usually the water levels are low enough for us to look at the Dinosaur Footprints We now leave the main road to Maseru and travel to the Kome Caves, home to modern cave-dwellers, these caves were originally inhabited by clans escaping the Lifqane wars and cannibalism. We make our way to Thaba Bosiu along the back roads which go through many rural villages. Thaba Bosiu is a cultural centre of utmost importance to Lesotho and its history. From Thaba Bosiu we drive into the capital city Maseru for lunch at approx. 13:00, this gives one a good understanding of modern-day city life in Lesotho and its mix with Lesotho’s strong culture. By 15:00, We head back into the highlands of Lesotho going through the Mantsa Pass to highland town of Semonkong. Check-in at Semonkong at approx. 17:30 Day 4: Breakfast at 7:30am Hike/4wd Drive to the Maletsunyane Falls Depart the Lesotho highlands via passes that enter South Africa at Qacha’s Nek. We snake our way through the last remote villages of Lesotho. We cross the Senqu river again–which we first saw on day 1 and then follow it along the Senqu river valleys toward the border town of Qachas Nek. Once back in South Africa we are normally in Matatiele around 13:00 for lunch. From Matatiele we skirt alongside the Drakensberg mountains and return to Underberg along scenic back roads, returning usually around 15:00-16:00

From Underberg: 5 Day 4 Night Lesotho Overland Private Tour

6. From Underberg: 5 Day 4 Night Lesotho Overland Private Tour

Underberg to Oxbow on Day 1 Around 9:00 a.m., we will depart from Underberg and go toward the notorious Sani Pass, where your journey through Lesotho will begin. Before visiting a Basotho household to learn more about the way of life of the Mountain People of Lesotho, we will first have an early lunch at the Sani Mountain Lodge (The Highest Pub in Africa). You will get to view a lot of the Lesotho Highlands on the way to your overnight lodging, passing the Letsing Diamond Mine and Lesotho's highest pass, Tlaeeng. You will spend the night at the cozy Oxbow Lodge, which is tucked away high in the Maluti Mountain Range and gives visitors a genuine taste of African mountain life. Day 2: Katse - Oxbow On Day 2, we travel to the utterly stunning Katse Dam. You will have the option to get out of the car on the way there and learn more about the Bushmen who lived in this region by looking at their more than 300-year-old paintings. We'll also stop by an Anglican Church job program and sheltered workshop. Young Basotho women have been taught cooking and needlework skills as well as how to spin and weave mohair from the mountain goats that reside in Lesotho since 1911 by the Sisters of the Holy Name. We move back up into the mountains near Katse Dam after descending in height. There, we decide to have lunch in a lovely location. Day 3: Mohale - Katse On Day 3, we will begin the morning with a trip within the wall of the Katse Dam, which is the second-largest dam in Africa and is a concrete arch dam on the Malibamat'so River in Lesotho. After that, you may take in all that Lesotho has to offer, from expansive views of the Lesotho mountains to its distinctive flora and fauna, as you enjoy the magnificent drive from Katse to Mohale. Along the way, we'll stop at a peaceful location to eat our picnic lunch for the day. We will have a leisurely boat trip on the Mohale dam in the afternoon. The Mohale Lodge, where we'll be staying overnight, has a variety of amenities. Day 4: Semonkong to Mohale On Day 4, as we return to Lesotho's capital, we stop at Thaba Bosiu, a must-see attraction. King Moeshoeshoe built and administered the Kingdom of Lesotho from this mountain stronghold in the 19th century, where he also fought several wars to defend his Kingdom. The Kings and Queens of Lesotho are buried here today. We hike up the hill to the graveyard if you're up for it so you can see them. The Maletsunyane Falls is our first stop before continuing on to Semonkong, where we will spend the night. It holds the distinction of being Africa's highest single-drop waterfall at 192 meters. Semonkong to Underberg on Day 5 On Day 5, we leave the Mountain Kingdom via Qacha's Nek and return to Underberg via the Southern Drakensberg's backroads, where the mountains' stunning splendor continues to astound.

From Durban: 2-Day Lesotho Guided Trip with Lodging & Meals

7. From Durban: 2-Day Lesotho Guided Trip with Lodging & Meals

It’s the perfect mix of nature, culture and history; enjoy Lesotho’s natural flora and fauna, driving past Lesotho’s highest peak, dive into the culture of the Basotho people in this historical trading post and take a peek into history by getting to see the beautiful old buildings that pack lots of history into this small village. Lesotho is the only country in the world that is in its entirety above 1000m in elevation, making this an experience that you cannot enjoy anywhere else in the world! This tour ticks all these boxes – nature, culture and history – all in Lesotho, all in one day. 6.30 AM We pick you up from your accommodation in Durban. 2 9.00 AM We arrive in Undeberg, grab a coffee and head up into Lesotho for the day. 3 9.00 AM We head up to the highest pass in South Africa, Sani Pass. We travel through Himeville to the World Heritage Site of the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park, following the Mkomazana River up the scenic Sani Valley to the South African Border Post (border formalities) and the Lesotho Border. 4 10.30 AM After the Lesotho border formalities at the top of Sani Pass, we climb even further into the Lesotho highlands, all the way to the top of the Black Mountain pass. 5 11.00 PM At the top of Black Mountain Pass we get a chance to leave our vehicle, climb a short distance to a beautiful viewpoint of Thabana Ntlenyana. 6 12.30 PM We arrive in the town of Mokhotlong and enjoy lunch together 7 1.00 PM We visit a cultural Basotho village OR go horse-rinding into the Lesotho Highlands 8 2.00 PM We make our back to Sani Pass. 9 5 PM We watch the sun go down on the top of Black Mountain Pass before making our way to overnight accommodation DAY 2 1 8.00 AM After a hearty breakfast, we join up with you again for day two’s activities. 2 8.30 AM Choose between a visit to a cultural village, a hike at the top of Sani Pass or Come back down the pass to explore the villages of Underberg and Himeville and its museum. 3 12:15 PM We arrive back in Underberg, in time for lunch, if you aren’t in a hurry we’ll choose the best spot in Underberg to have lunch together. 4 13:15 PM Head back to Durban.

Other Sightseeing Options in Underberg

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What people are saying about Underberg

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 30 reviews

This tour was for the adventurous. The drive from Durban to the 4x4 vehicle just outside Underberg can be long but our driver kept the conversation moving, captivating and answered so many of our questions! The tour itself was a drive to the South African border, through no mans land with the sharp turns and steep cliffs. Our guide stopped along the way to allow us to take photos, explore and revel at the majestic pass. Up top through the Lesotho border you can explore a few small local shops, before heading to a local village to have some of the most delicious bread and beer I’ve ever tasted. You learn about the culture, challenges and history of the local Zulu people. You then head back towards to border for a lunch stop at the highest pub before making the slow drive back down the Sani pass to the SA border. Each way up and down the Sani pass is about an hour and half, and very bumpy!

Great tour with wonderful guides! The landscape of the area is fantastically beautiful, the trip over the Sani Pass brings the necessary portion of action. The tour was well organized and the guides gave interesting insights and valuable tips about the tour but also about all other topics. It was a very long day with a lot of time in the car, not a typical trip where you drive to a destination, but more "the journey is the destination" but highly recommended.

Impressive trip! We clearly have problems at the border . The reservation sheet stated to bring either your ID or your travel pass. We only had our ID with us. This proved insufficient at the border. We would then only be allowed in if we would pay extra. We declined this. In the end we were allowed to pass after much commotion . Strange that our guide didn't already inform us at the hotel that only a travel pass was needed.

What an amazing experience with this well-informed guide, Peter who took us safely up Sani Pass into Lesotho to see the snow and to the Highest Pub in Africa. All on my bucket list including the village visit in Lesotho. Emile was also most helpful. Well worth the money spent.

Ride on the Sanipass in persistent rain. From 2300 m transition to snowfall. On arrival at the pass about 15 cm of snow. Unfortunately no view on the pass, below the clouds imposing topography.