Malealea Lodge & Ponytrekking

Malealea Lodge is situated in a remote part of Western Lesotho, breathtaking in its beauty and a chance to experience traditional Basotho life.

“Wayfarer, Pause and Look Upon
A Gateway of Paradise”

Lesotho is a world without fences. Breathtaking scenery abounds and every season has unique attractions. Malealea Lodge is run by the Jones Family, Mick and Di Jones both born in Lesotho and credited with more local knowledge than anyone. Jacqui, Glenn and Debbie Jones grew up in Lesotho and Michael Deutschmann have joined the team.  Various Basotho Children’s choirs and a Local Basotho Band, using their local homemade instruments, entertain the guests in the evenings around a campfire.


  • Outings range from 1 hour to 6 days or longer tailor-made to your requirements;
  • The treks are usually approximately 7 hours each day. No riding experience is necessary;
  • The huts and horses are hired from the Basotho people in remote areas;
  • The huts are very basic and are equipped with a gas cooker, cooking and eating utensils, mattresses on the floor. On trek you experience ‘The Real Africa’;
  • The trails traverse spectacular mountain passes and some of Lesotho’s highest waterfalls exploring Bushman paintings and experiencing ‘Basotho culture’;
  • Basotho guides and a packhorse accompany the treks;
  • Treks and trails are tailor made to suit your requirements; and
  • All is flexible and can be arranged at a moments notice.

Specialised outings at Malealea Lodge:

  • Local museum and school visits;
  • Village walks and garden project; 
  • Sangoma – Traditional healer appointment; and
  • Local childrens choir and band.

Day hikes and pony treks:

  • Botsoela Waterfall hike, pony trek or scenic drive;
  • The Pitseng Canyon and rockpool hike;
  • The Bushman paintings and Echo Cave hike or pony trek;
  • The “Gates of Paradise Pass” hike along the ridge of the Matelile Ridge; and
  • Hikers: Take the ‘donkey work’ out of backpacking by hiring horses to carry your luggage.

Overnight pony trek and hiking trails routes:

  • The Ribaneng Waterfall trek – Two days and one night in a village;
  • The Ribaneng and Mountain Pass trek – Three days and two nights in villages;
  • The Ribaneng and Ketane Waterfall trek – Four days and three nights in villages;
  • The Ribaneng, Ketane and Maletsunyane trek – Five days and four nights in villages; and
  • The Ribaneng, Ketane and Maletsunyane trek – Six days and five nights in villages.

Lesotho adventures start at Malealea, exploring the day outings before travelling across the country. Companions can be arranged at Malealea to accompany your trip, introducing you to local chiefs, helping in locating night camping sites, and ensuring your safety.

Malealea offers “Lesotho in a nutshell”.  Malealea is perfect for a two or three day stay en-route from Johannesburg to the Cape.

Suggested food list for horse treks and trails:

  • Breakfast:  Muesli, rusks, longlife milk, fruits like apples and oranges;
  • Lunch:  Provita, seed loaf, processed cheese, carrots, cucumber, lettuce, tinned tuna, mayonnaise, tinned ham and beef, mussels and chocolates;
  • Dinner:  Cup-a-soup, Chinese noodles, smash, pasta sauces, canned tomatoes, vegetables and fruit, custard and biscuits.

Basotho guides accompany all pony treks and a pack horse is included in the price for the overnight treks. A pack horse carries 50kg: approximately 12.5kg per person or 4 -5 people per pack horse. Extra pack horses together with extra guides are hired at R300.00 per group per day. 90kg maximum weight per person or hire an extra horse for the trip.

Local attractions at Malealea Village:

Reclamation of a washout or donga – soil erosion: This is an outstanding example of hard work, determination and love of the country. Approximately 10 years ago this area was a 3m deep washout or (donga) caused by soil erosion. Mr Musi has single headedly, using a leather apron to cart rocks, reclaimed the donga by building dams, planting trees, reeds and made numerous vegetable gardens. There is now a new eco system established with birds, reeds and new springs of water bursting out of the ground. Below you can witness a dried out donga of how his land used to look.

  • Children’s choir:  This choir is a group of children who got together on their own to enter local competitions in nearby towns. They now sing at the lodge on visitors request;
  • Basotho children’s band:  This group uses handmade instruments; and
  • Horses are hired from Basotho horse owners and overnight villages are hired from Basotho families.

Overnight pony treks and hiking trails from Malealea Lodge:

These treks are usually about seven hours each day.  No riding experience is necessary. The huts are very basic and are equipped  with mattresses, crockery, pots and pans.  Spring water is supplied in a bucket at each hut.  On trek you stay in remote Basotho villages. The trails traverse spectacular mountain passes and three of Lesotho’s highest waterfalls.     

A Basotho Companion can be arranged at Malealea to accompany your trip, introducing you to the local chiefs, where you might like to camp for the night, ensuring your safety or general curiosity from inquisitive children.

Full day outings and drives from Malealea Lodge:

• A scenic day drive to Thaba Bosiu, Maseru, Morija museum and the archives;
• A full day drive to Maletsunyane Waterfall – this is the highest dingle drop in South Africa; or
• Full day scenic drive past Mpharane, Mohale’s Hoek, Quthing (dinosaur footprints) and up the magnificent passes towards Mphaki.

*For the more adventurous traveller, please enquire about their add-on itinerary to Moorosi chalets.

”Lesotho’s Best Kept Trout Fishing Secret” at Ha Liphapang Village where Chief Jobo will host visitors in his Basotho Village or camping on the Sebapala River. Moorosi Chalets is three hours of tar road from Malealea with the last 4km gravel road.  Ha Liphapang is a 4×4 route.

Ha Tlhaku, 4×4 route, where Chief Mpiti will host you,  is a great village to stay off  the main route from Qachas Nek to Moorosi to Malealea.

Driving in Lesotho:

Please take two red road triangles in your car.  At police stops, stop at the STOP sign and wait there until beckoned by police.  Check that the vehicles licence disc has not expired.

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