Fugitives Drift

Survivors from Isandlwana crossed the Buffalo River at a place forever after named ‘The Fugitives’ Drift’ and this spectacular property, a Natural Heritage Site, overlooking the ‘sphinx‘ of Isandlwana and the Oskarberg at Rorke’s Drift, includes the site where Lieutenant Melvill and Lieutenant Coghill lost their lives saving the Queen’s Colour of the 24th Regiment.

Owner, Nicky Rattray, pioneer of Heritage Tourism in South Africa, have created an award winning lodge for visitors to savor this extraordinary saga, with accommodation offered at Fugitives’ Drift Lodge itself and their beautiful guesthouse several hundred yards away.

Accommodation in the reserve is offered at the lodge and the guesthouse. Both facilities are owned by Nicky Rattray who have extensive experience in the hospitality industry and whose love of South Africa, its people and its unique history is evident in every corner of Fugitives’ Drift.

Fugitives’ Drift is renowned for its battlefield tours to all the Zulu War and Anglo-Boer War battle sites in the region. The flagship tours to Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift are led by registered tour guides who are superb storytellers, making the history of that day come alive, and long, family associations with the area and its people allow Fugitive’s to offer visitors some unique, Zulu perspectives.

Learn in gripping detail of the bravery and mobility of the Zulu army that defeated the British, on the Day of the Dead Moon. Listen at sunset to the famous story of Rorke’s Drift, where 100 British soldiers were attacked by 4,000 Zulu warriors, winning more Victoria Crosses than in any other battle in history.

Fugitive’s Lodge also now offers horse riding. There are ten horses and both beginners and experienced riders can be accommodated. Ride amongst game down to the river, visiting the graves of Melvill and Coghill on the way. Guests are also able to fish on the 20km frontage of the Buffalo River

The Lodge:

The lodge is situated on the site of the original Rattray homestead where David’s parents, Peter and Gillian, came for their holidays and here the seeds of this unique operation took root in those early years.  Spacious, luxury en-suite cottages each have a private verandah affording views over the plains flanking the Buffalo River Gorge. 

A feature of the lodge is the beautiful, shady well established garden, home to innumerable birds, and the most spectacular large swimming pool situated on a secluded spur on the lip of the Buffalo River Gorge.

Enjoy sundowners around a fire under a canopy of Paperbarks, with magical Isandlwana looming on the skyline, and superb cuisine, a unique fusion of home and modern flavours, in the splendid atmosphere of a veritable museum of Zulu War memorabilia.

The Guesthouse:

In its original state, the guesthouse was the home of Mr Johan Potgieter and his family. ‘Mr Pot’ was immortalised in Gillian Rattray’s award winning tome ‘The Springing of the Year’. He was one of the great storytellers of this area.
Mr Pot’s house has been turned into the most charming sitting and dining room filled with fascinating memorabilia. The original verandah has been retained. It also has an outside eating area that has a stunning view across a plain with Isandlwana in the distance.

Cottages have large en-suite bedrooms that are individually decorated and all have private verandahs with sweeping views of the reserve and surrounding battlefields. The guesthouse has a small swimming pool.

Superb food and personal service are a feature of this outstanding facility.


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