Bergville & the Northern Drakensberg

    S'phe Mabaso (Contact Person)
    (036) 488 1988 (Telephone)
    036 488 1194 (Fax)
    (036) 488 1194 (Fax) (Email)

Physical Address

Winterton Museum Building
Church Street

Postal Address

PO Box 223


Less than 40km from the towering Amphitheatre of Royal Natal National Park, this ideally situated, agricultural and trading centre was laid out in 1897 by a retired sea captain. British forces built a blockhouse in the settlement two years later at the onset of the Anglo-Boer War - that building is now a Monument and Museum within the grounds of the local Court House. The nearby Rangeworthy Military Cemetery contains graves of British soldiers killed in the battles of Spioenkop and Bastion Hill. It's on private land, however, and the farmer's permission should be sought before venturing in.

Bergville - Historical & Cultural Attractions

Cannibal Cavern, Northern Drakensberg When Shaka's impis raged through natal in the 1820s, smaller clans were forced to flee. Some took refuge in overhangs in the little Berg and had to resort to cannibalism to survive. Sidinane was the chief here.

Kaalvoet Vrou (Barefoot woman), Drakensberg

At Voortrekker Pass there is a monument of a woman walking away from Natal. This is in memory of Susanna Smit, sister of Gert Maritz, who declared that she would rather trek barefoot back over the Berg than live in Natal under British rule.This is located in Voortrekker Pass near Bergville.


This settlement was built by the Zizi people who lived there until the Mfecane of the 1820s. The site appears to have been occupied for several decades and there is evidence of four phases of construction. The site was declared a national monument in September 1995.The settlement is located on the Farm Zuur Lager 1040, at the base of Mgodanyuka Hill overlooking the Thukela river. For more information on the above or the following attractions please contact Drakensberg Tourism

Oliviershoek Laager

The construction of a proper laager began in March 1879, incorporating the magistrate's court and the gaol. After the war the laager became a police post. It is now a ruin. South West shores of the Woodstock Dam.

Retief's Pass, Drakensberg

In 1837 Piet Retief's party of Voortrekkers braved the Drakensberg in their quest for freedom and a land (Natal) of their own. The original trail carved by their ox wagons is known as Retief's pass.The pass was declared a national monument in February 1977. From Bergville take the R74 and proceed up the Oliviershoek Pass for 42 km follow signs - Retief Klip. Follow the dirt road for 1 km.

Retiefklip (Retief's Rock)

Upon arriving in the Free State, there was a dispute amongst the Boers as to the final, proposed destination of the great trek. Piet Retief chose Natal. Here at the foot of the Kerkenberg, he left his laager on 7 October, 1837 with 14 men to reconnoitre Natal in advance. His daughter Deborah painted her father's name on a rock to commemorate his birthday.

Upper Thukela Blockhouse

Built by the British during the Anglo-Boer war, this unique structure is now a Moth Shellhole. It is situated in the courthouse grounds and is a national monument.

Other areas in Bergville & the Northern Drakensberg