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Lesotho
Lesotho Trail

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from £1,655 or €1,840

Horse Riding Holidays Africa – Lesotho Trails, Lesotho

PRICES & DATES top

Lesotho Trails: Prices 2019

Suitable for intermediate plus riders. 

8 nights  – £1,655/€1,840/$2,095 per person sharing

Small Group Supplement 1 – 4 Riders – £275/€305/$350 per person sharing

No single supplement, single rooms subject to availability.

Lesotho Trails: Dates 2019

24 February – 4 March

16 – 24 June

10 – 18 November

Note: Rates are subject to daily exchange rate fluctuations, please refer to our ‘Terms & Conditions’ for full details.

Includes – All the riding, full board accommodation, wine & beer with dinner.

Excludes – Flights, drinks, transfers & tips.

Getting There
International flight to Durban Airport.

Transfers
£90/€98/$112 per person return. It’s about a 3 hour drive to the start of the ride in Lesotho.

All our horse riding holidays hold a price guarantee. We believe in your piece of mind on price when you book one of our horse riding holidays and will refund the difference should you find the same horse riding holiday elsewhere at a lower price.

SUMMARY OF THE TRIP top

Lesotho is a country in Southern Africa. Known as the Kingdom in the Sky because of its lofty altitude — it has the highest lowest point of any country in the world at 1,400m and is the only country to be entirely above 1,000m. Lesotho is totally surrounded by South Africa and is a fantastic adventure holiday destination.

Originally, the Sotho-Tswana people lived in what is now Free State in neighbouring South Africa. They were a farming people, and when the Zulus started attacking villages and the Voortrekkers started encroaching on their land, they fled up into the Lesotho mountains. Here, continuous attacks from the Zulus forced local tribes to join together for protection, and by 1824, King Moeshoeshoe had established himself as king and Thaba Bosiu as his mountain fortress.

Moeshoeshoe allied himself with the British Cape Colony government in a bid to protect the Basotho from the Boers’ rapidly increasing presence in the area. Much fighting followed, forcing Moeshoeshoe to go straight to the imperial government of the British, and in 1868, Basotholand (as it was then called) became a protectorate of the British Empire. It was granted independence from the British Empire on October 4th, 1966.

The Kingdom of Lesotho was formed through the pursuit of peace, and this peaceful nature still exists in the Basotho, they are a friendly and welcoming people.

It’s here you will travel from South Africa on a once in a lifetime, off-road, off-grid, cross-border, horse riding adventure and expedition for those wanting to witness the untouched wilds of Lesotho. Climbing the breath taking Bushmans Nek mountain pass – right through the heart of the Sehlabathebe National Park – explore parts of two countries most tourists never get the chance to see. Breath taking scenery and unparalleled access to the Southern Drakensberg in both South Africa and Lesotho.

You can expect remote, wilderness riding with no fences, to step back in time where people are still living in mud huts, ploughing their fields with oxen and have no electricity. Your horse will take you to places no other form of transport can reach and you will see the cave paintings, from some 1,000 years ago that the local Bushman and San people drew to illustrate their lives.

History of Horses in Lesotho
King Mashoeshoe was given a Thoroughbred horse by the British, which sadly soon died in the harsh conditions. As a result they gave him a stronger, stockier pony which was a cross between a North African Barb, an Arab, a Thoroughbred and an Australian Brumbie, along with a woollen blanket. This horse thrives today, now called the Basotho pony, with it’s Basotho woollen blanket in place and still remains the main mode of transport in the country.

THE RIDING top

Horses – A mix of Basotho & Boerperd horse, ranging from 14 – 15hh.

Level of Riding & Pace – Intermediate to Advanced.

Tack – English style with South African trail saddles.

Weight Restriction – 14.2 stone / 90 kg / 198 lbs.

Group Size – Maximum 8

ACCOMMODATION top

There is a mix of accommodation along the trail, starting off at a 1,300 hectare working farm in the foothills of the Drakensberg 1,300m above sea level, followed by a couple of hostel style lodges with dormitory rooms, then a proper style hotel with pool and bar and finishing back at the staring point of the working farm.

We have travelled the world testing a huge variety of horse riding holidays to make sure we offer you, our client, the best horse riding holiday experience possible.

Our horse riding holidays are thoroughly researched – we consider all the elements that go towards making our horse riding holidays collection the best in the world. We check the quality of the horses, if they are fit for the job, well produced and looked after. We make sure the riding terrain is good going, the countryside is interesting and, for example, on Classic Dressage horse riding holidays, the arenas are in good condition. We make sure the accommodation, whether it’s a five star hotel, a farmhouse or camping, is clean and comfortable, and offers a great night’s sleep. The food is all important too – we take the time to make sure we tell you if it’s cordon bleu, home cooked, or regional and locally sourced – above all it has to be delicious, plentiful and nourishing. Last but not least, we choose the horse riding holidays that have the best hosts, who are friendly, warm and welcoming.

It’s only when all these elements come together that we add a horse riding holiday into our hand-picked collection of horse riding holidays.

Horse Riding Holidays at Lesotho Trails are part of the Zara’s Planet collection of Horse Riding Holidays South Africa.

Please Ask About

  • Combining with a riding safari in South Africa or Botswana
  • Combining with a beach trail on the Wild Coast of South Africa

SAMPLE ITINERARY top

Lesotho Trail Itinerary

Day 1
You are transferred early morning from Durban airport to the Lodge.
Upon arrival guests will be warmly welcomed by the team and have time to freshen up before lunch.
After lunch you meet your horses for a short introductory ride before returning to the lodge for sundowners outside the rondavels.  A traditional ‘braai’ with a variety of meats and salads will be served at around 19:00 after which there will be time to relax before the adventure really begins the next day.

Day 2
After a hearty breakfast you drive to Bushman’s Nek border post, about a 45 minute journey. The horses will have already been transported and will be saddled and waiting for you when you arrive. Once border formalities are taken care of (you will need your passport to hand), you ride across the border into Sehlabatebe National Park. Soon you commence the 1,000m ascent up Thamatu Pass, a steady incline where you may have to dismount on some of the steeper sections to relieve the horses. Once at the top, you enjoy stunning views of South Africa to one side and Lesotho to the other.
After lunch the trail continues deeper into Lesotho through a valley, with opportunities to pick up the pace a little. Except for the occasional shepherd, you are unlikely to see any people or vehicles until you arrive in Thamatu village where you spend the next two nights. (6-7 hours, c.24km)
Overnight: Thamatu Lodge

Day 3
Possibly the most beautiful ride of the trip, this day will start by heading back to the valley and continuing on until you enter the gorge. Ride along the river, where there is the opportunity to swim (weather permitting), and on to caves with Bushmens’ paintings. A truly stunning ride. After the gorge you climb to a large plateau (again there will be some walking with the horses). The plateau is an amazing place to take the horses for some long gallops. The trail takes you past a large mountain lake, which is a watering hole for a wide variety of rare birds. Throughout the trip you will encounter a variety of antelope, as well as birds of prey. You pass through a few villages where there will be time to stop along the way to meet the people and perhaps to try the local home-brew beer too. (5-6 hours, c.20km)
Overnight: Thamatu Lodge

Day 4
On this day, you summit the highest point of the trip, 3,000m above sea level.
Later you enter ‘Monument Park’, an area with astounding rock formations and rock pools. The trail continues on to the waterfall where those who wish can swim in the pool below (weather permitting). After lunch at the waterfall, you continue on for yet more beautiful riding through the mountains and valleys until you reach Sehlabatebe village and eventually your next lodge at Ha Semanyane. (5-6 hours, c.22km)
Overnight: The Project

Day 5
There is no rush today as you complete a round trip from The Project.
There is plenty of opportunity to meet the locals and check out the local ‘supermarket’, which sells everything anyone could need for basic living in the area. Lots of flat land between the mountains and through the valleys means a faster ride is on the cards today. Before returning to the accommodation you may stop at the local shebeen for a drink. (4-5 hours, c.18km)
Overnight: The Project

Day 6
Another epic ride en-route to your next accommodation at ‘St. Bernard’s Peak’. Following a river valley deep into the mountains, there will be sections where you need to lead the horses. As you leave the valley and climb high, the grasslands open up in front of you before reaching the Thuli Pass.  After lunch, rocky terrain and steep descents with stunning views of South Africa stretched out in front of you will mean you have to do some walking. (5-6 hours, c.22km)
Overnight: St. Bernard’s Peak Hotel

Day 7
A shorter, relaxing ride this morning as the trail heads through diverse landscape of farmland and forests. The horses stay at a point close to the base of the mountain for the night, whilst you return to St Bernard’s Peak for lunch and a relaxing afternoon. (3 hours, c.15km)
Overnight: St. Bernard’s Peak

Day 8
After breakfast you return to the horses. The trail continues through farmland along the base of the Berg until you climb steeply back into the mountains, with stunning views on all sides.
Eventually you will descend over a different pass with views leading you on, back to Bushman’s Nek Border Post.
When you meet the vehicle at the border, say farewell to your horses and transfer back to theo Farm for the final night where a real feast awaits! (6-7 hours, c.30km)

Day 9
A final breakfast is served before you say goodbye to your guides.
You will be transferred to Durban.

DESTINATION MAP top

Zara’s Planet Horse Riding Holidays Guarantee:

All our horse riding holidays hold a price guarantee. We believe in your piece of mind on price when you book one of our horse riding holidays and will refund the difference should you find the same horse riding holiday elsewhere at a lower price.

If you are having trouble finding exactly the right horse riding holiday for you from our horse riding holidays collection, please contact us directly using the form below and tell us in your own words what you would like to do and we will use our extensive knowledge to make sure we find that perfect horse riding holiday.

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