A 4×4 Holiday in the Drakensberg’s Passes

Spin up some dust and soak in the views from up high! Our Drakensberg passes will give your 4×4 a run for its money, offering up exciting gravel, tar and dirt road adventures for every kind of petrol head. And when you’ve had your spin, stay at Oaklands Country Manor for a spell.

4×4 Passes:


Muller’s Pass

This short, but steep, gravel route between Newcastle and Memel is roughly 2.5 hours’ drive from Oaklands Country Manor, but well worth the distance. Muller’s Pass boasts two lush waterfalls and stunning views of Cathedral Peak and the Lost Valley area from its summit. You don’t need a 4×4 to tackle this 5.7 km pass, but an off-road vehicle would be safer in wet conditions.

Normandien Pass

This 12.5km gravel pass is a favourite among 4×4 enthusiasts. Normandien Pass promises twists, turns, steep climbs and slippery gravel, with breath-taking views of the Drakensberg’s Die Ark Valley. A 4×4, or at least a 4×2 with diff-lock, is recommended for this route.

Colling’s Pass

Well-known for its war stories and memorials, Colling’s Pass is a must for history enthusiasts. Normal cars can handle this 4.8 km gravel route in dry weather, but a 4×4 is recommended in winter to handle the heavy snowfall.

De Beer’s Pass

The De Beer’s Pass is an alternative route to the N3. You don’t need a 4×4 for this 4.1 km tarred pass, but take care in winter – snowfall makes this road very dangerous.

Van Reenen’s Pass

This 36 km tarred route meanders through stunning scenery as it descends into the Natal Midlands. Van Reenen’s Pass forms a stretch of the N3 that passes through the town of Van Reenen, less than 10 minutes from Oaklands.

Tintwa and Middledale Passes

Tintwa Pass is a gravel route on the KZN/Free State border roughly half an hour from Oaklands. With an average gradient, this is a relatively safe Drakensberg pass for all most vehicles except in wet weather conditions.

Bezuidenhout’s Pass

Perhaps the slowest pass in the Drakensberg, Bezuidenhout’s Pass is a rough one for only the toughest 4x4s. It takes between 60 and 90 minutes to drive the 5 km gravel route, so drop your tyre pressure to 1.0-1.2 bar and brace for the rocky rumble.
Whether you’re planning on creating memories with your family or just craving some alone time with your bakkie, why not stay at Oaklands and drive any number of the nearby 4×4 passes this winter?