About Sentinel Peak trail

Start: Sentinel car park (almost 3 000 metres above sea level)
Finish: Sentinel car park
Duration: a whole day
Fitness: fit (the hike may be shortened, but it is a slog nonetheless)
Our tip: if you suffer from vertigo, the vertical ascent up the cliff face might be a challenge

The Sentinel Peak trail in the Drakensberg is also known as the 'chain ladders' hike.

What would usually be a rather tough and arduous multi-day slog from the Mahai campsite in the Royal Natal National Park is converted into a day's hike. The difference: a drive across the border into the Free State, to start the walk from the Sentinel car park.

In this way, the hike is shortened to about seven hours – if you allow yourself enough time for a break at the top for lunch and to gasp at the views.

One should not venture up the mountain without being prepared (food, water, clothes and even a tent, in case a storm arises).

The initial walk (the trail is self-guided and well marked but if you are in the least inexperienced, best to do this with a guide) is on a good, but steep, path that skirts in a series of zig zags (pause at the top to take in the views) to the base of the Sentinel where you reach the chain ladders. These are high enough up the mountain to immediately scale the vertical face of the Mont-Aux-Sources massif.

The chain ladders will more than test your metal – if you are even slightly frightened of heights, then don't look down.

There is the alternative of hiking up the steep gully to the top of the Beacon Buttress (it is only fair to warn you that it is pretty steep).

Once up the escarpment the scenery now flattens out. It is a half hour walk to the edge of the Amphitheatre where the Tugela falls over its edge (provided it has rained).

You can now either head back down the way you have come, or you can return via the Beacon Buttress gully.

Need to Know

WhereStart and finish at the Sentinel Peak car park, Drakensberg, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa

WhenDaylight hours.

How muchPrices on request.

Telephone+27 (0)82 855-9767

OvernightThe closest town is Mont-aux-Sources, in KwaZulu Natal

Disclaimer

Please note, business details can change. While we endeavour to ensure all information provided by the service provider is correct at the time of publication, we do not assume any liability caused by errors or changes, such as price, cost, time, and location. Please check with the provider that the activity/business is still offered as described, before making any travel plans.

Feedback?

Please let us know if anything on this page is outdated or contains inaccuracies. Click here to send us feedback if this is your service/activity.

Additional Reading

For even more information about the Sentinel Peak Trail, the following article may interest you: Sentinel Peak Hike, Drakensberg.

Find Sentinel Peak trail in these collections

In the vicinity

Hotels & other accommodation options in Mont-aux-Sources

Other things to do in the area

Noteworthy attractions

Accommodation convenient to Sentinel Peak trail

FIND / South Africa Accommodation / KwaZulu Natal Accommodation / Drakensberg Accommodation / Mont-aux-Sources Accommodation

Mont-aux-Sources as a destination

Want to stay overnight?

Number of Guests

  • Secure your booking
Our Payment Protection Guarantee only applies if your deposit payment is made via SA-Venues.com
Things To Do
  • Mont-aux-Sources

SA-Venues.com has been assisting travellers with their South Africa travel plans since 1999, and is the largest, independent online travel guide for South Africa available in both English and German.