Things To Do in Monks CowlNandi's Falls Hike
Where? Start and finish at the main gate in the Monks Cowl Reserve, Drakensberg
When? Daylight hours.
How much? Price on request
Start: Monk's Cowl Reserve main gate
Finish: Monk's Cowl Reserve main gate
Duration: 8 km, roughly 3 to 4 hours
Fitness: easy to moderate
Our tip: despite being 'easy', in the heat of the day this walk can feel taxing and is a little more difficult than a mere stroll to the falls and back
The beginning of the hike is not difficult to find. As you enter the main gate of the reserve, head right and past the buildings until you find signposts to Nandi's Falls.
For the seasoned hiker, reaching Nandi's Falls is a walk in the park. Adding a loop on the northern banks of the Sterkspruit that then contours below the V, is a good idea if you want to add spice to the hike.
For those not used to hiking in the 'berg, this is good hike to do as it is not difficult, the path is clear, and the gradient easy. It has been described as a meandering hike. Include the Hlatikulu Loop and you will head through forests of towering trees that provide shade not only for hikers but various forest life, ferns, toadstools and moss.
Not many hiking accounts mention the beauty of the forest – it is without doubt the highlight of this walk.
The hike does head up a shallow valley, crossing the stream a couple of times, and a fair number of other paths can lead one from the main route, so having a map to hand is a good idea.
After crossing the Sterkspruit or iMpofane stream, the hike then climbs to the falls. If you head to the ledge behind the curtain of the falls, you can sit here quite comfortably, out of the heat of the day, and eat your lunch.
Return on the far side of the Sterkspruit, crossing it to climb, rather steeply, up to the Hlatikhulu Loop.