Lesotho is a landlocked country which is located in South Africa and is famously known to have a rich culture that can be seen in the way of life of the people the kingdom and the many historical sites that are found in the country. The country has 2/3rds of the whole country covered with hills and Mountains, Lesotho has a lot to offer to tourists who would want to explore the Southern Part of the African continent. And since it is a landlocked country, you can easily access it from the neighboring countries of South Africa, Eswatini and Botswana.
Tourist attractions in Lesotho
Although Lesotho is a relatively small country, it is a home to a wide range of tourist attractions that show both the historical and cultural side of this Southern country and the tourist attractions that you should definitely check out while in Lesotho include the following.
The Maletsunyane Falls also known as the Semonkong Falls are the highest waterfalls in Lesotho and are in the Guinness book of records as the highest abseiling point in the whole world. Located just five kilometers away from the Maletsunyane River, the Falls cascade down for 204 meters creating a beautiful scenery around the area. You can hike to the falls, go abseiling at the falls and also get to swim in the pool that is created after the falls reach the ground.
Sehlabathebe National Park
The Sehlabathebe National Park is located in the Eastern part of Lesotho and a home to various birds and animal species. The National Park is also filled with lakes, rocks for those that love rock climbing and you can also take a walk around the rocks and admire the rock paintings that cover almost every rock that is found in the park among other things. The best way to get around the National Park is by game drives however you will need a four wheel drive vehicle to get around due to the nature of the roads within the Park.
Lesotho is known to have the largest dinosaur footprints in the whole world and these can be found in Ellenberger’s cave house, Morija subeng and Leribe Moyeni. It is the one stop Centre for all archeologists who want to learn more about these animals that lived on earth over 280 million years ago during what is known as the Jurassic era. The fossils were found by the early missionaries who came into the country and some of the discoveries included bones, plants and other materials that belonged to that ear. There is a dinosaur that was actually named after Lesotho and this is the Leosothosaurus and it is believed to have been a meter long. Going to the Dinosaur footprints will be like stepping back in time and you do not want to miss out on this opportunity.
The Katse Dam which has the highest wall dam in Africa is worth your visit while you are in Lesotho. It was built so that it could provide electricity and at the same time act as a water transfer project to the highlands of Lesotho. Some of the things that you should look out for while here include the dam itself, a boat trip, go exploring in the botanical gardens that are not far away from the dam and the Lake that was crested when the dam was being constructed. You can also go into the village and enjoy some of the cultural activities portrayed by the locals and also get yourself a souvenir.
The Kome are believed to first have been inhabited by the San and the Basia group of people even before the colonialists came into the country. The caves were constructed in the sand stones that are found in the Kome cave village and it is said that these were used by the Basia people to protect themselves from the cannibals who once inhabited the country during the hunger times. At the moment you will find the descendants of the Basia people still living in the village in their huts that are constructed using rocks and cow dung. The Kome caves also have rock paintings on them that are believed to have been done by the San and at the moment they have been declared a UNESCO heritage site and tourists who visit the caves get to learn more about the culture of the Basia people and Lesotho as a country.
Major Bell’s tower and Fort
The Major Bell’s tower was constructed by the British in the 1800s and it was used as a fort during the colonial times. It was also used during the Gun war in Lesotho and at the moment you will be shocked to find that the Fort is still standing with a statue of a colonialist at the front. It is really a nice place for tourists who want to learn more about the history of Lesotho and the whole of southern Africa from the colonial times until the country got her independence.
The Thaba-Bosiu which also means the Mountain of the night is believe to be where the Basotho people originated from. It was named Mountain of the night due to a story that has been passed from generation to generation indicating that although the mountain was a fair height during the day, it would grow to an enormous size during the night and that was one of the reasons as to why Moshoeshoe failed to win an attack on it. It is a place where you will get to learn the origin of the Basotho people as it is considered one of the most important monuments in the country and also get to see the grave of the famous Moshoeshoe.
The Sani pass was a popular route for carrying goods with donkeys during the 1950’s and at the moment it is a hot spot for tourists who would want to engage in diving, Mountain bike cycling and hiking and with its steep nature, the activities get more interesting. When you get to the top, you will have a clear view of the Drakensberg Mountain in the neighboring South Africa and after engaging in either one or two activities, you will get to relax at the pub that is found at the top of the Sani pass. The route leading to the Sani pass before was extremely hard to use and that is why animals were used but at the moment it can easily be accessed by a four wheel drive car although you sill still be able to see an occasional donkey or camel carrying goods.
Lesotho is known to have some of the best rock art in the whole world and these were painted by the San Bushmen who settled in the country hundreds of years ago during the 19th century. It is like though almost every rock hanging, mountain or cave in Lesotho has the paintings which have different things which include wild animals, a family and the tools that they used for hunting and farming. Some of the places where you can and enjoy the rock Art include:
- The Butha Buthe, this is located in the north western part of Lesotho and there is a cultural Centre where with a guided tour you get to see all the unique rock art that is found within the Centre.
- The Ha Baroana Buthe, loosely translated as the home of the Bushmen, the ha Baroana Buthe is a home to some of the best rock arts in Lesotho with rock paintings showing animals like leopards, elephants, elands and others showcasing the unique culture of the Bushmen.
Liphofung nature reserve
The Liphofung nature reserve which is also known as the land of the eland is a top destination for tourists in Lesotho. It is a place where tourists get to learn about the Basotho culture and how they came to live in Lesotho.
Where to stay in Lesotho
Lesotho has quite a number of accommodation facilities ranging from hotels to guest houses and bed and breakfast accommodation facilities. Below are some of the accommodation facilities that you can book for your stay in the country.
The karona guest house and lodge
This is a perfect accommodation facility for families that are visiting Lesotho. It is a bed and breakfast type and the minimum days that are to be booked should at least be one day. They have free WI-FI, 44 self-contained rooms available for booking and a conference hall where you can have meetings. They have an airport shuttle that can pick you up and a restaurant that provides both local and international cuisines. The languages that are mostly spoken at the Karona are Sotho and English and the rooms go for 47dollars per night.
The san Antonio Guest House
The San Antonio Guest house is located in Maseru and one of the accommodation facilities that you should try out while in Lesotho. All the rooms at San Antonio are self-contained, have Wi-Fi access and each room goes for 58 dollars per night. While at the guest resort, you can also go for golfing at the nearby Maseru sports club, enjoy some great meals prepared by the bed and breakfast and a night out in one of the bars. The San Antonio only has room for 13 people and you will need to book in advance that is a week before jetting into the country. They accept credit cards and cash and the languages spoken include English, Tswana and Sotho.
The Maluti stay lodge
The Maluti stay lodge can be found on the banks of the Makhaleng River in Lesotho. It has twenty standard self-contained rooms, a restaurant that provides all meals, WI-FI, parking space and power. However since the electricity is self-generated, it is only available between 6:00pm to 10:00pm. Each room goes for 38 dollars per two people and you will need to book a week before you arrive.
The Thaba Bosiu cultural village
The Thaba Bosiu cultural village also offers accommodation facilities to tourists and it is the perfect place to stay in if you are visiting the famous Thabo Bosiu which is believed to be the origin of the Basotho people. They have double rooms, single rooms and rooms with twin beds and all these are self-contained with the basic things a person can do with. A room at the Thaba Bosiu cultural village goes for 70 dollars per night.
Is Lesotho safe to visit?
Lesotho is a safe place to visit all year round but just like any other country, you will find that there are some petty crimes that are committed every day and that is why it is advisable that while going to the different tourist destinations you leave all your valuable possessions inside your rooms.
Where is Lesotho found?
Lesotho is located in Southern Africa in the country of South Africa and it is the only kingdom that is left in South Africa.
How do I get to Lesotho?
Lesotho is very easy to get to that is you can either fly into the country or drive from the neighboring countries like South Africa but note that if you are driving you will need a four wheel drive vehicle to get you around the not so good roads in the country.
Best time to visit Lesotho
Lesotho experiences two seasons that is the winter and the summer seasons and in both seasons the weather is extreme that is during summer, the temperatures are extremely hot and during the winter season it becomes too cold especially at night. The best time therefore to travel to Lesotho is in between the months when the seasons are changing.
During the winter season, the best time to visit is between June to September and the best time to visit Lesotho during the summer season is from November to March.
Like Morocco and Swaziland, Lesotho is one of only 3 remaining intact kingdoms in Africa and is known as the kingdom in the sky since it is tucked within massive mountain ranges. Lesotho is totally bordered by South Africa and several majestic snow capped mountains.
Maseru Lesotho is the capital city and is the main town bustling with activity, business and travel. You’ll find plenty of accommodation like from Lesotho Sun hotel with affordable accommodation.
Lesotho safari and tours is in most cases an add-on African safari destination on any south Africa safari itinerary
The people of Lesotho called Basotho are one of the friendliest people you’ll meet on your Africa safari. The Basotho are skilled craftsmen often clad in the famous Basotho blanket. They are the only African people to adapt to a climate that is often below freezing and snow falls in the mountains at any time of the year and in the lowlands from May to August. Many of the men wear beautiful multi colored traditional blankets & conical basket hats to keep them warm.
The Lesotho plateau spreads the entire western border to a 6,000ft and the highlands to the east rising to 7,00ft. The rolling foot hills are rich volcanic soils separating the low highlands and the mountains that form part of Maluti Mountains and then the Drakensburg Mountains in the east. Semonkong and Malealea are also rugged mountains offering breathtaking views of the traditional Basotho Villages at the base.
Sehlabathebe National Park is Lesotho’s only national park occupying 6500 ha in the south eastern foothills of the protected area of the Drakensburg. Situated on a high plateau, scattered with small lakes, the Park offers fabulous views of the Drakensberg Mountains and Natal. The Park is home to abundant bird life, eland, reedbuck, wildebeest, baboon and oribi. It is more frequently visited for its scenery than for its game viewing.
Birding is also another activity to enjoy on Lesotho safaris with rare sightings of the bearded vulture, wattle crane and many other birds. Fishing is good on Tsoelinkana River and the lake.
Lesotho travel is good in the summer months of November to March when the temperature is quite warm between 18ºC and 30ºC. The rains appear October to April with heavy thunderstorms from May to September. Getting around is reasonably easy with Hired cars will get you most places. Hiking or pony trekking from village to village is the best ways of visiting Lesotho.
Lesotho hotels and accommodation
Sehlabathebe Lodge, which is the only accommodation Sehlabathebe park with a large self-catering house enough for max. 12 people, support staff and clean accommodation. Malealea lodge is located in the west part of Lesotho and gives you excellent facilities and closer interactions with Basotho people living nearby.
What to do on a Holiday in Lesotho
Lesotho is an African country found in southern Africa that has a number of natural wonders that have attracted several tourists from all corners of the world. The natural beauty of the country is complemented by the moderate weather within the country. Listed below are some of the main attractions in Lesotho that you can visit throughout your stay.
Sehlabathebe National Park
This national park was started in 1970 and is situated in south east Lesotho. The park covers a total expanse of 6500 hectares and has a diverse abundance of wildlife among which are the black backed Jackal, Eland, Wild cat and Oribi.There is also a wealth of bird species that have made the park a very ideal spot for bird watching among which are the Cape Vulture, Drakensberg Rockjumper, Yellow-breasted Pipit, Drakensberg Siskin, Southern Bald Ibis, Ground Woodpecker, Mountain Pipit and many others.
This is supposed to the among the major towns in Lesotho. The town is very rich in agricultural produces with crops like wheat, maize and sorghum being the most cultivated. Special about this town are the foot prints of the long ago dinosaurs which are opened to the public for viewing. There are quite a number of guest houses plus hotels to offer accommodation to tourists. The surrounding Mokhele Mountain adds glamour to the beautiful town.
Thaba Bousiu is another tourist destination found in Lesotho. The flat topped sandstone plateau is situated in a secluded area 24 km east of Maseru the capital of Lesotho. This popular tourist destination has an information center that clearly answers all the questions about the history of this country. The hospitable guides take you around the area detailing you on the historic events that occurred in this area.
The city of Butha-Buthe was named after the Mountain of Butha-Buthe which is found in the close by area. Located just adjacent to the border with South Africa, this city is famous for its booming cross border trade. Several traders frequently journey to thus city to be part of this business with the neighboring South African country. There are numerous public taxis plus buses to transport you around and very affordable accommodation facilities.
Lesotho has a very interesting nightlife with various nightclubs plus casino to entertain you all through the night. As the sun begins to set, so do the happy people of Lesotho plan to enjoy themselves as they visit different clubs, bars and casinos. The skilled DJs spin music all through the night as many take on the dance floors. Furthermore there are quite a number of restaurants all with yummy cuisines that operate all through the night.
Museums in Lesotho
Lesotho’s rich historic and cultural heritage which the people of Lesotho pride is well preserved in its Archives and Museums found in different parts of the country. The most prominent musesma include the Lesotho National Museum found in the capital Maseru which houses an assortment if geology, archaeology plus ethnography items, and the Morija Museum and Archives located in Morija which was majorly established as an educational centre for innovation plus excellence.