Birding, Botany and Wildlife
Bordering on the Ukhahlamba-Drakensberg Park and at the base of the Sani Pass, our Hotel
is ideally situated to discover the unique flora and birds of this region. The area is home to the Wattled Crane, a moist grassland species of which just over 200 breeding pairs remain. Spot the attractive Bush Blackcap and the Gurney's Sugarbird which feeds from the Protea flowers. A thriving flock of rare Bald Ibises nests on the property. Three bird species are endemic to this area: the Drakensberg Pipit, the Orangebreasted Rockjumper, and a relic population of the once widespread Bearded Vulture or Lammergeier.
From spring through to autumn, you will enjoy a passing array of wild flowers. The Drakensberg boasts over 2 000 species of plants. The grasslands are richly sprinkled with a variety of Grass Orchids, Lilies, Irises and Compositae that bloom variously between spring and autumn. The Pass will take you through colonies of various Protea species, including the furry-leafed Protea Roupelliae and Protea Caffra which grow to up to three metres in height. Much loved are the splendid blooms of the Kniphofia or Red Hot Poker and Wild Irises which you will find scattered along stream banks. In the Sub-Alpine belt, Fynbos grows in protected river valleys. Ontop of the Berg the harsh climate is survived only by a unique collection of alpine plants making up a heath exclusively of Heather and Helichrysums.
The grounds of the Hotel and surrounding parkland are home to the renowned Eland, Mountain Reedbuck, Lesser Reedbuck and Duiker. The valleys and cliffs support troops of Baboon and colonies of Rock Rabbit. Snakes are also common- look out for the Berg Adder which is specific to this area.