South Africa, Fugitives’ Drift Lodge, Oct 2015

What our happy honeymooners have to say!
South Africa, Fugitives’ Drift Lodge, Oct 2015
On a recent business trip from England to Western Cape, I decided to take the opportunity to cross something off my “Bucket list” namely a visit to the 1879 Zulu War battlefields at Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift.

I contacted Webtours who took care of every aspect of the trip. I was met at King Shaka Airport, Durban and driven the 300 Kilometres to Fugitives’ Drift Lodge, a 5000-acre game reserve in close proximity to both battlefields.

As we drove from the reserve entrance toward the Lodge we saw Giraffe, Zebra, Impala and Blesbok. The welcome at Fugitives Lodge was very cordial and after checking in I was shown to my bungalow on the grounds. The accommodation is all in semi-detached bungalows comprising a large bedroom with sofa, writing desk, en-suite bathroom and verandah – mine with a view over the Buffalo River Gorge to the mountain at Isandlwana. My early morning wake up calls were courtesy of a monkey thumping up and down on the verandah roof! Breakfast and dinner were served each day in a large colonial style lounge/dining room with wonderful pictures and memorabilia of the Zulu War; lunch was on the balcony of the Library- another very impressive room with many books relating to the war and the region. The food and drinks were all of excellent quality and my fellow guests and I had nothing but praise for the catering. Special mention should be made of Grace, our waitress, who has a wonderful singing voice and entertained us with renditions of traditional Zulu songs.

South Africa, Fugitives’ Drift Lodge, Oct 2015
South Africa, Fugitives’ Drift Lodge, Oct 2015
South Africa, Fugitives’ Drift Lodge, Oct 2015

A number of tours can be arranged, each with a very knowledgeable guide. I did the battlefield at Isandlwana one morning, that same afternoon I walked to the graves of Lts Coghill and Melvill (who attempted to save their regimental colours) which are situated on the game reserve. The next morning I went to Blood River wherein 1838 the Voortrekkers repulsed a large army of Zulus and on the way back viewed the memorial to Napoleon, the French Prince Imperial, who was killed in a skirmish with the Zulus in 1979. In the afternoon it was a memorable visit to Rorke’s Drift where eleven VCs were won.

The whole trip was a wonderful experience with nothing too much trouble for Andrew Rattray and his staff all of whom went above and beyond to ensure it was a memorable event. All too soon the car arrived at the Lodge to take me back to King Shaka Airport for the homeward flight to London. I have wonderful memories of the hospitality, the tours and the staff at Fugitives’ Drift Lodge and would heartily recommend the experience to anyone.

Terry Bobbett

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