How to enjoy the amazing scenery and the wildlife of the Drakensberg in South Africa
The Ukahlamba Drakensberg Park is an important conservation area in Southern Africa.
The Drakensberg is not only a major tourist attraction with its scenic appeal and its extraordinary diversity of characteristic plants and animals, but it is also a supplier of water to the rural and urban areas of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
Your behaviour in the Drakensberg can help maintain the beauty, ecology and the water production capacity of the entire Park.
Graffiti - please don't be tempted to leave your name, messages or arrows on any rocks or trees, rather leave them in the visitors' book!
Litter - please keep your litter with you until you reach an en exit pint or home (would be better). Dont even throw items that will break down quickly, and never throw down your cigarette ends, these things contribute to eye pollution! Help us by picking up the litter that you encounter and speak up if you see someone drop litter.
Toilets - Please consider the other users of the Drakensberg. Over night hikers, take a small shovel with you, defecate well away, at least 5 minutes walk, from streams, caves, paths and forests. Preferably defecate in the grasslands in a hole that you cover up afterwards!
Fires - unscheduled fires are devastating to the animals and plants. To reduce the risk of accidents, no fires allowed. This applies to all caves too. Only the use of gas/camping stoves is allowed.
Rock art - the Drakensberg is one of the richest sites of rock art in the world. Do not touch, wet, trace or interfere with the rock art in any way. Report anybody you see doing this to the nearest conservation office.
Paths - if you do not stick to the paths, you will cause unnecessary erosion, which will spoil the quality of the water in the drakensberg catchment and the plant cover. Only leave a path for a very good reason, like toileting or avoiding a snake!
Flowers - leave the flowers so that everybody can enjoy them and so that they can produce seeds.
Noise - most people visit the Drakensberg to enjoy the peace it offers. Shouting, whistling and loud music can shatter this peace. Spare a thought for other users.
Rocks - Take extreme care not to dislodge rocks as they can endanger the lives of others, damage vegetation and even start erosion.
Remember to tell the host or reception desk of your lodging where you are going. Fill in the mountain register accurately, it could save your life!
Watch the weather, as it can change quickly.
Always carry water and warm, waterproof clothing with you.
Dont feed any animals.
Dont kill snakes, they play an important role in the ecology of the park.
Report all emergency situations to the nearest KZN Wildlife office.
Report any misbehaviour to a KZN wildlife employee.
Most importantly, enjoy your visit to the Drakensberg!
Written and contributed by Trailsafari