This was an excellent week of walking. The paths are steep in some places but well defined and Jose guided us with care and attention on the challenging ascents and descents of the Sierra Aitana. The walks were well-paced by Jose but the days are long so you do need to be fit. We trekked through a number of landscapes illustrating the historic and current use of the area and Jose with his local knowledge enhanced our understanding of how this area has evolved over the centuries as well as the current challenges. The views from the walks were amazing – one way you could see the coast from Alicante to Benidorm and beyond and the other the folding valleys and mountains of the interior. The skies were blue and the days sunny and warm and we experienced very little wind even on the summits. We were based at the Hostel Rincon de Pepe where we had a wonderful week being looked after by Raquel. The food was amazing and hearty (three courses plus wine). The terrace was also great place to have breakfast every morning as the sun rose out of the Med, as well as a beer or two after the walk as the sun disappeared behind the mountains.
Walking Holidays in South Africa
South Africa Walking Holidays
Top 5 Wildlife Experiences on Walking Holidays South Africa
Game Drive in Kruger National Park: One of the most famous and oldest wildlife parks on earth, Kruger National Park was founded in 1898 by Paul Kruger, the South African president of the time. As you embark on a game drive through Kruger, you’ll have the opportunity to see awesome animals in their natural environment. With the likes of giraffe, hippo, lions and leopards occupying the plains, this is one of the greatest wildlife adventures you’ll ever experience. Setting off early in the morning will optimise your chances of spotting more game and watching the sun rise over the park is simply breath-taking.
Walk in Royal Natal National Park: Home to some of the most impressive mountain scenery in South Africa, Royal Natal National Park is a great place to explore on foot. Spanning an incredible 5km, the world-famous natural Amphitheatre is one of the most notable sights of the park alongside the Drakensberg escarpment which forms the border between Lesotho and Kwa-Zulu Natal. There are various hiking routes in the Royal Natal National Park with some leading you among ancient bushmen paintings and the incredibly beautiful Fairy Glen.
Hike to Tugela Falls: Laying claim to being the second tallest waterfall in the world, Tugela Falls is a phenomenal sight that thunders down the rugged sides of the Drakensberg Mountains. You can begin the hike from Sentinel Gate and make your way along the side of the mountains. Look out for the endemic mountain baboon or the bearded vultures en route. Climbing up the ladders to the dizzying summit of Tugela Falls presents you with 360-degree panoramas of the Amphitheatre and the surrounding landscapes.
Walking in Malolotja Nature Reserve: Covering 18,000 hectares of mountain wilderness, Malolotja Nature Reserve is one of the most impressive natural parks in South Africa. The diverse ecosystem is home to a wide variety of flora and fauna which can be seen on one of the many walking trails through the reserve. An incredible 280 bird species as well as antelope can be found throughout Malolotja. To the east of the reserve is the Malolotja River which flows over several waterfalls, including the Malolotja Falls, the highest in Swaziland, before reaching the Nkomati River. From Malolotja Falls there are uninterrupted views over the valleys and gorges.
Game Walk at Letaba Ranch Game Reserve: Spanning 42,000 hectares and making up part of the Greater Kruger National Park, Letaba Ranch Game Reserve is home to buffalos, wild dogs and elephants as well as other species of wildlife. Along the Letaba River you might spot crocodiles and hippos sheltering in the water and if you’re lucky, the elusive leopard may even make an appearance. A local guide will lead you to many of the best game viewing locations in the reserve as you track the movement of the animals.
Jane Hallett Sierra de Aitana Trek
Michael Dunford Sierra de Aitana Trek
This is a great week’s walking in a little-known (and underrated) part of Spain. The Aitana range is a compact set of mountains so you get to tick off almost all of it, and there are great views from the top of all the peaks, out to the coast and across to the surrounding peaks. Most of the walks are reasonably demanding, but also rewarding.
Being based in one location, with very short transfers (or none) for each walk makes for a very relaxing week aside from the walking. It’s also a fairly short transfer to/from Alicante Airport.
The vast majority of meals are included which makes it much better value than some other (apparently similarly priced) holidays.
Jose the guide is exceptional: hard-working, helpful, supportive and deeply knowledgeable about the area.
Sally James Sierra de Aitana Trek
Thank you to our leader, Chandra, guides Prasan, Sagar and Mingma and helpful group of porters for an amazing trek. Our group was also amazing, great company and full of interesting travel stories!
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