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Malealea Lodge & Pony Trek Centre

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Lesotho is a world without fences. Breathtaking scenery abounds and every season has unique attractions. Malealea is situated in a remote part of Western Lesotho that is breathtaking in its beauty. This is a chance to experience traditional Basotho life. Malealea is perfect for a 2 or 3 night stay en-route from Johannesburg to Cape Town, East London or Port Elizabeth and en-route from the Drakensberg to Graaff-Reinett. For an ideal stopover between Lesotho and the Cape, visit the Royal Bethulie Guest Lodge on Lake Gariep in the southern Free State. For accommodation in Bloemfontein visit Matanja Guest Rooms. Malealea Lodge is run by the owners, the Jones family. They are credited with more local knowledge than anyone. Various Basotho children\'s choirs and a local Basotho music band using their local homemade instruments entertain the guests in the evenings around a campfire.

Pony Trekking Day Trips

Pony trekking - day treks

No visit to Lesotho would be incomplete without a pony trek. It is the transport of choice for most Basotho as the sturdy ponies handle the narrow trails better than any 4X4 can.

Malealea supports community tourism. Ponies used on our treks are hired from Basotho owners.

Please read the notice board in the middle dining room for riding tips and overnight trek details and rates.

NB - the weight limit for Basotho ponies is 90kg.

Day treks

Pony treks can be arranged in the morning or the afternoon. Beginner riders can ask for the village children to accompany their horse and lead them at a rate of R10.00 per hour. This gets paid to the guide.

•Bushman Painting Pony Trek

2 hours riding and 1 hour steep hike to the paintings

Level: easy

Rates: R220.00pp for 2 people or R200.00pp for 3 people

•Gorge Trek

Very easy 2 hour ride to the top of a gorge. Good for beginners

Level: easy

Rates: R200.00pp for 2 people or R175.00pp for 3 people

•Botsoela Waterfall

4 hour trek. It is advisable to take a packed lunch

Level: for adventurous trekkers

Rates: R240.00pp for 2 people or R220.00pp for 3 people

•Bushman paintings and the Botsoela waterfall

5-6 hour trek. It is advisable to take a packed lunch

Level: for adventurous trekkers

Rates: R280.00pp for 2 people or R240.00pp for 3 people

•Makhaleng Plateaux Ride

5-6 hour trek. It is advisable to take a packed lunch

Level: for experienced riders

Rates: R200.00pp for 2 people or R175.00pp for 3 people

Pony Trekking Over Night

Pony trekking - overnight treks

Overnight treks are tailor-made to your requirements. They can last from one day to six days and even longer. On your trek you will experience "THE REAL AFRICA". Trails traverse spectacular mountain passes and some of Lesotho's highest waterfalls. You can explore Bushman paintings and experiencing Basotho culture.

Accommodation on treks is provided in huts hired from the Basotho people in remote areas. The huts are very basic and are equipped with a gas cooker, cooking and eating utensils and mattresses on the floor.

No riding experience is necessary for an overnight trek. Basotho Guides and a packhorse accompany the treks.

The catered option involves clients heating up food supplied.

Expect about 7 hours of riding time each day.

Maximum weight = 90 kg Luggage = 12.5 kg pp

Rates: 2 riders - R380.00 pp per day, plus R75.00pp for village huts.

3+ riders - R350.00 pp per day, plus R75.00pp for village huts.

Trek Routes

•The Ribaneng Waterfall - 2 days and 1 night in a village

•The Ribaneng and Mountain pass Trek - 3 days and 2 nights in villages

•The Ribaneng and Ketane Waterfall Trek - 4 days and 3 nights in villages

•The Ribaneng and Ketane and Maletsunyane Trek - 5 days and 4 nights in villages

•The Ribaneng Ketane and Maletsunyane Trek – 6 days and 5 nights in villages

•"Go Anywhere Trek" - Bring your own cooking equipment and mattresses and explore Lesotho with a Basotho Guide, discovering new routes and remote villages.

2 Day Ribaneng Waterfall

After a 6 hour trek, you stop at a cafe selling cold beer and drinks at Ha Lebona. You leave your gear in the overnight hut and hire a guide for a walk to the bottom of the Ribaneng Waterfall. The guide costs about R10.00pp. The duration of the hike is about 3 hours return. You can do this hike the following morning if you prefer or if you’re in no hurry to get back to the lodge. You return to the lodge the next day. Insist on the circular route back to Malealea. It’s a slightly different route alongside the Ribaneng River.

3 Day Ribaneng

This trek is similar to the 2 Day Ribaneng Waterfall trek, except that you do the hike to the bottom of the waterfall on the second day in the afternoon. On the morning of the second day, you ride to the top of the Ribaneng Waterfall, up “Slide Your Ass Pass”. The ride is about 4 hours and there are magnificent views from the top. You sleep in the same hut that you did the night before and you return to Malealea Lodge on the third day.

Day Ribaneng, Ketane & Sekoting.

This is the best trek as you go through really remote villages.

Day 1: As for Ribaneng Watefall trek. You will need to hike to the waterfall in the afternoon.

Day 2: This is quite a long day, with about 7 hour or riding with stops. Insist on seeing the top of the waterfall on Day 2, although this will add another hour onto the duration of the trek. You will arrive at the village of Ha Hlalele (Chief Matias). After storing your gear in the hut, you hire a guide and hike to the Ketane Waterfall. The hike is about 2 hours return.

Day 3: The trek to Sekoting is about 6 hours long. Sekoting is a beautiful village surrounded by a ring of mountains known as “Sekoting sa lifarike” or “The trough which the pigs have dug!” Your hosts will be Chief Puli and his wife.

Day 4: You have a long ride of 7 hours back to the lodge.

Please note: Depending on the availability of hut space, this trek is often done the reverse way. When the Makhaleng River is in flood, we have to use the bridge (see the map on wall). This lengthens the trek time on Day 1 and Day 4 by about another 2 hours, making the trek really long.


Birdlife attracts most lovers of wildlife to Lesotho. Although there are less than 300 different species, many are montane rarities - the Orange-breasted Rockjumper, the Sentinel Rock-thrush and the Drakensberg Siskin - while others are simply spectacular



Malealea Lodge & Pony Trek Centre - Self Catering - Lesotho Accommodation