Eastern Cape Highlands Camino
Rhodes, Eastern Cape
This is a completely tailored made hike to suit the needs of the hiker, couples, or groups
The route starts in Barkly East where you also can leave your vehicle in secure parking (or you can do the route in reverse and start in Rhodes).
Depending on what time of the day you arrive, you have an option to sleep over in Barkly East, or to immediately start walking (again with the option to be shuttled to Rhodes for your first night).
The first day is about 25km to the farm Franschoek of Gerrie du Toit, where you will be greeted and given dinner and breakfast.
You will stop about 15km’s into the route at Hazeldell, (1 km from the main road), where you will have your lunch.
The 2nd day is another 23 km to the farm Steepside of Karen Buitendag – she will also give you dinner and breakfast with a snack pack. You will stop about 10km from Franshoek at Meloney Giddy for lunch in her garden.
The last day is then another 23 km to the village of Rhodes, where Elizma will greet you and you will sleep over at Rubicon Bed and Breakfast with dinner and breakfast.
Elizma will then take you back to your vehicle in Barkly East after breakfast
The whole hike follows the gravel road from Barkly East to Rhodes and is very safe and scenic. You walk over rivers / low water bridges and the mountain scenery with sheep and cattle everywhere.
The summer months are mostly the prettiest if and especially when we get rains – then you have all the flowers coming out, but all the seasons have got something about them, and you can do the route at any time. In drier times, streams are limited with water, so you need to carry enough water per day with you.
You also have an extra option, of choosing to stay more than 1 day on a farm, and to only carry a day pack, while your luggage gets transported from stop to stop.
You have got a whole day to reach the next point, and if interested, there are farms on the way where you can stop and see some interesting features, for example the Cave on the farm The Caves of Piet Steyn
You need to specify when you want to incorporate some extra stops, or if you want to stay longer than a day on a farm, and explore the mountains, etc on that specific farm (Franshoek or Steepside).
Royal Manor Hotel
Royal Manor is a charming hotel situated in Barkly East, a quaint town set amidst the mountains of the southern Drakensberg.
The hotel offers accommodation in a choice of 2 Family Rooms on the first floor, 6 Queen Size Rooms on the first floor, 1 Pet Friendly room on the ground floor and 5 Queen Size Rooms on the ground floor.
Each bedroom is equipped with tea- and coffee-making facilities, a heater, bar fridge and TV. Guests have access to the communal dining room where meals are served while conference facilities are also available.
The area offers activities and attractions such as hiking, cycling, 4×4 trails, angling, trout fishing, San rock art, historical attractions, and a variety of natural attractions.
Depending on whether you have arrived at Barkly East and slept over first, Day 2 would be you night 2 and Day 1 of hiking.
If you arrived at Barkly East and started hiking immediately to Gerrie which will be your 1st overnight.
Steepside Guest Farm
Steepside is owned by Kobus and Karen Buitendag. The farm is situated half-way between Barkly East and Rhodes in the picturesque Southern Drakensberg.
There are 2 cottages on the farm:
The Oudestal cottage accommodates up to 6 people comfortably.
3 bedrooms, all en-suite, Fully equipped kitchen, Living area with large fireplace, Dining area,Outside Braai (under roof) and porch, Covered parking for 1 vehicle, No TV
The ROCK Retreat cottage accommodates between 6-7 visitors.
3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, Fully equipped kitchen with lovely woodburning stove as well as a gas stove, Living area with large fireplace, Dining area, Inside Braai, Large front porch
Covered parking for 1 vehicle, No TV
During the winter, the Tiffendell ski-resort is a mere 50km away from the farm.
Steepside now also offers a campsite for the more adventurous folk. The campsite has 2 ablution blocks that sport toilets, warm-water showers and washing basins. There is no electricity at the campsite, but deepfreezes at the main house will be available to store spoilables.
Rubicon Bed and Breakfast
The old school building, designed by Sir Herbert Baker, was built in 1924 and has been converted into holiday accommodation. Each unit is fully equipped for self-catering with own kitchen, bathroom and fireplace.
Our attractive Restaurant and Pub offer elegant seating for 40 guests. It features custom made furniture, a well-appointed bar and a state of the art kitchen.
The building was designed to complement the old sandstone school that makes up the rest of the complex.
- R4000.00 pp – Rough estimate
- Complete hike can be made by telling us what your needs are as a hiker and how many days or nights you would like to hike or overnight.
- The route can also be extended to about 10 days, depending on how many days you have available and how fit you are – the longer route takes you up to Ben MacDhui, the highest point in the Cape Province and down to the Wartrail Farm area.
- There is no min
- Max 13 hikers
- Dinner, tea and coffee, light breakfast and light lunch included. Please ensure you cater for your own refreshments and snacks for each day walking. Any dietary requirements must be arranged via email with the hosts.
- R55.00 once off per reservation.
Royal Manor Hotel
Steepside Guest Farm