Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve

  • Chalets

    There are 10 semi-detached Chalets and can accommodate two people per chalet in twin beds only. They are self contained with electricity, a kitchenette (with crockery and cutlery), bed linen and en suite ablution facilities.

    Situated near the reserve entrance, they make an ideal stopover site. The zebras are regular visitors to your verandahs too.

  • The cottages are 5kms from the office, overlooking the spectacular Umgeni Valley. They are an ideal getaway with convenient access to walking trails. They do not have electricity, but have gas appliances (stove and fridge, with small freezer compartment) and solar lighting. The cottages are equipped with bed linen, crockery and cutlery and have twin beds. There is a braai area at each cottage, please supply your own fire-wood and charcoal or purchase firewood from reception during office hours. Cottages are not serviced during one's stay. Cottages must be vacated by 10am on the last day and are available from 2pm on the day of arrival.

    There are three cottages:

    UmgeniMhlangenicottage uMhlangeni Cottage is a secluded 4-bed cottage nestled between two streams. It looks across the escarpment onto the Dwarf's Dawdle trail where zebra and blesbuck are common. There are two separate bedrooms with a bathroom and toilet.



    UmgeniHepburn Hepburn Cottage is a family cottage with large living room and fireplace. It has three bedrooms, sleeping 6 people in total. A separate shower and toilet are provided. The cottage is perched on the edge of the cliff line looking east over the Umgeni River towards Albert Falls Dam. In the summer, the sunrise is a sight to see.


    UmgeniAnniversaryAnniversary Cottage is a small comfortable two-bed cottage situated close to the Hepburn Cottage. Boasting a wonderful view it is popular with young couples and pensioners. Its proximity to Hepburn Cottage allows larger family groups to flow over into Anniversary Cottage, yet it still retains its own privacy.

  • Rustic camps are suitable for large groups of school children, church groups and families. There are three large camps accommodating up to 60 people. The fourth (Cycad Camp) sleeps 30 people. There is no direct vehicular access other than 4x4 vehicles to any of the camps, but parking is provided at the top of the hill. All camps have wooden bungalows raised off the ground, with open doors and windows. Mattresses, showers and flushing toilets are provided. A separate teachers hut is provided with a toilet and shower.
    Visitors are required to bring the following:
    • sleeping bags
    • pots and pans, crockery and cutlery
    • firewood
    • candles, matches, rubbish bags and
    • toilet paper
    • collect hiking mattresses at the office

    UmgeniShelterFallsShelter Falls is the closest camp to the offices. A short, steep walk gets you to the camp which is nestled in a narrow valley with a bubbling stream. It is an ideal camp for a quiet weekend and swimming, but hikes within this area are limited.


    UmgeniInkonka Inkonka Camp is reached by a narrow winding footpath with numerous steps, making the descent very steep. This is about half a kilometre in length. The camp is sheltered by Celtis africana trees, and has bungalows arranged in a semi-circle with a central fireplace. It is close to the river spot known as Fish Jump Falls and has access to three trails.


    UmgeniIndulo Indulo Camp is nestled on the side of the valley slopes at the end of a steep road. The position of its bungalows lends itself to being used by two separate family groups without any imposition. Dombeya trees dot the wooded slopes above the camp. Sunrise Rock which is situated below the camp is an ideal spot from which to greet the mornings. This camp is centrally placed allowing easy access to five trails.


    UmgeniCycadcamp Cycad Camp is the fourth and smallest camp, sleeping a maximum of 30 people. It has communal showers and toilets, and a basic kitchen all upgraded in 2009. There is no separate staff accommodation. Parking for the camp is above Indulo camp. A walk of about 3km past Indulo Camp and eastwards towards the grasslands gets you to Cycad Camp where antelope and giraffe may be seen. Large boulders covered by sprawling Fig trees surround the camp, and numerous old Cycads can be found at the back of the camp.

  • In addition to the Chalets and the cottages described above, Umgeni Valley can offer guests two other self catering units and Goldfields Centre dormitary accommodation.
    Baumann CottageBaumann Cottage - a doubled bedded, thatched roof building located near the Reserve Managers' house.





    Teachers accommodationThe Garden Cottage - a four bedded self-contained flat situated adjacent to the Chalets and Goldfields Education Centre.




    UmgeniGoldfieldsGoldfields Centre - a conference facility with dormitory accommodation sleeping 50-60 people, a fully equipped kitchen, (where tasty, value for money meals are prepared) a diningroom, hall and small meeting room. The Centre is easily accessible by bus. It is essential to bring your own sleeping bags/blankets. Catering is provided. The Chalets are close to the centre and are suitable for occupation by teachers and facilitators.

  • Map
    WESSA Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve Map compressed thumb
  • Rates
    All accommodation rates are per person per night.
    Conservation levy
    • R30.00pp – Adult
    • R15.00pc – Child under 12yrs
    • No charge – Child under 2yrs
    Chalets and Cottages
    • R340.00pppn – Adults sharing
    • R420.00pppn – Non sharing
    • R200.00pcpn – Mattress only, not bed
    • R240.00papn – Mattress only, not bed
    Rustic Bush Camps
    • R90.00pppn – Indulo Bush Camp
    • R95.00 – Cycad Bush Camp
    Goldfields Dorms
    • R100.00pppn
    Goldfields Teachers Room
    • R200.00pppn
    Goldfields Conference Facilities
    • R380.00 half day -Small Meeting room
    • R530.00 full day – Small Meeting room
    • R590.00 half day – Main Hall
    • R825.00 full day – Main Hall
    • Conservation levy included for attendees included.
    WESSA members
    • Conservation levy as per above
    • Accommodation less 10%
    Umgeni Valley Season Ticket
    • R300.00 (for 2 pensioners)
    • R580.00 for a family max 5
    • R300.00 for an individual
    • R240.00 for an individual pensioner
    • R420.00 for 2 adults (not pensioners)