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Extreme Challenge: Drakensberg

South Africa | Oct 6th – 14th 2024

Appreciate the sheer beauty of the Drakensberg in South Africa while pushing yourself to the limit for an incredible cause. Change the lives of people trapped in modern slavery and who have survived human trafficking.

View to the Sentinel mountain, Drakensberg mountains, South Africa

About the trek

There are two options for this trek: portered, or self-carry. There is some overlap but also some differences in the route and itinerary depending on your choice.

While the trek is not technical, it passes over rugged terrain in a pristine wilderness area, and you will be off marked trails except when ascending or descending the major passes.

You will experience extensive views of the high Drakensberg and the Maluti Mountains of Lesotho and have the opportunity to ascend a variety of short summits in excess of 3000m as you progress. You are likely to meet Basotho herders en route and experience a variety of mountain birds, including the magnificent Bearded Vulture (previously named the Lammegeier, or “lamb killer”), whose wingspan can reach 3m. You will be travelling along the African Watershed where the water in the streams is the purest on the southern continent.

The classic 1964 film Zulu, which depicts the battle of Rorke’s Drift, was filmed below the Northern Drakensberg escarpment because of the stunning views (though the real location is 200km away!)

This is a strenuous, medium-altitude trek requiring good walking stamina. You should be comfortable covering 15 kilometres per day over undulating territory between 2,500m and 3,300m off marked trails, and be comfortable ascending 850m in a single day (with porter support, 500m in a single day for self-carry) and descending 1,500m in a single day. This is likely to equate to around 8 to 10 hours of walking each day.

Costs & Fundraising

The estimated cost is £1,495 per person – the precise total will depend on exchange rates. £295 is needed in advance to confirm a place, with a further £300 needed by 6th October 2023, another £300 by 31st December 2023, and the final balance (approximately £600) due by June 2024. Payment plan options will be available.

Additionally, there is a mandatory fundraising minimum requirement of £5,000 / US$6,000 / €6,000 euro. To ensure your place on the trek, 80% of the total must be raised by 30th July 2024. You will get all the support and advice you need to help you hit your fundraising goal!

What is included in the cost you pay?

  • Bus transport between Johannesburg ORTIA Airport and The Cavern Hotel, each way
  • 3 nights at The Cavern Hotel in standard rooms (sharing) on a full board basis
  • Guided day hike on the first day in the Royal Natal National Park (Tugela Gorge walk or similar), including return transport between the Hotel and the park and day hike park permits
  • Mountain guides / porters
  • 5 night / 6 day trek, either portered or self carry
  • All food provisions for the trek, using specialist freeze-dried camping meals
  • Gas for stoves
  • Packed lunches on day 1 of the hike will be included in The Cavern’s full board rate.
  • Fundraising pack with suggestions on how to raise sponsorship and access to Hope for Justice fundraising team for advice and ideas and resources for fundraising events
  • Physical training plan
  • Team nights (online) in run-up to challenge, covering fundraising, training and to answer any questions

What is not included?

You should budget to pay separately for:

  • Your flight to and from Johannesburg ORTIA Airport
  • Any food whilst travelling on the first day down to The Cavern (packed lunches can be provided on the return to Johannesburg as part of the full board rate)
  • Your own tent for the main trek
  • Travel insurance – we recommend insurance for baggage, cancellation, medical costs and helicopter rescue
  • Any gratuities
  • Any meals or services not mentioned


Sunday 6th October:
Land in Johannesburg, transfer to Drakensberg region

Monday 7th October:
Warm-up hike, practice putting up tents

Tuesday 8th to Sunday 13th October
Extreme Challenge: Drakensberg, main trek

Monday 14th October
Transfer back to Johannesburg, fly home

Note: for most participants, this will mean flying out to South Africa on Saturday 5th October and arriving home on Tuesday 15th October.

Cathedral Peak, Credit:

Key Facts

  • Sentinel to Cathedral Peak in 6 days
  • 48 total participants, with two groups of 24 – portered and self-carry (separate teams on main trek)
  • Total distance approx. 90-100km, walking at altitudes of 2,500m-3,300m
  • Sleeping under the stars (in a tent!)

Is this experience right for you?

We are putting out a call for people with a passion for ending modern slavery and human trafficking, who want to push themselves physically as part of this demanding trek. We also want people comfortable in a team and willing to encourage others. You must be willing to use this experience as an opportunity to raise funds and awareness about this devastating issue, and connecting with everyone who you know to encourage them to support your fundraising.

How can I sign up or find out more?

Email organiser
with your questions or to request an application form.

young girl