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AAfriski has established itself as a top skiing and snowboarding destination. Situated 3 222m above sea level, high up in Lesotho's Maloti mountains, the resort is one of only a few ski resorts on the African continent.
There are a number of chalets and other forms of accommodation at Afriski, and the clientele is a mix of seasonal residents and first-time visitors. Various ski and snowboarding competitions are held at Afriski in the winter months, attracting many top international competitors.
A good time to visit is towards the end of July, when the snow is at its thickest and the school holiday rush is over. This is also the nest time for natural snowfalls.
It is now compulsory for all novices to take at least one 4-hour lesson before they are allowed on the slopes, to avoid unnecessary accidents. The ski school has local and international instructors available throughout the ski season to teach alpine skiing and snowboarding.
It is advisable to book lessons in advance during busy times, such as early June when most South African schools are on holiday. Lessons can also be booked at the instructors' office on arrival.
As important as the skiing, is the after skiing fun, with plenty of hilarity in the bar or pub at Afriski. One of the highlights is the ‘snowboard challenge’ whereby a snowboard is attached to the roof of the bar at Afriski and it is a popular tradition for guests to see how many shooters they can manage to down while hanging upside down from the snowboard. You have to be there to experience the fall down laughter it generates.
In the summer months, the resort welcomes mountain bikers, trail-runners, fly fishermen as well as ensure and off-road enthusiasts.
TTravel tips & planning info
Who to contact
Tel: +27 (0)861 237 4754
How to get here
Afriski is approximately 5 hours' drive from Johannesburg. Travellers must cross the Caledonspoort border post between South Africa and Lesotho, which is in Fouriesburg in the Free State.
Best time to visit
The best months to ski and snowboard are June and July. The resort, however, is beautiful at any time of the year.
The King's Cup snow championships take place in early July.
Things to do
There are plenty of outdoor and artistic activities in and around the Fouriesburg/Clarens area.
There’s an annual ‘Winterfest’ music festival in August.
What to pack
Warm clothes! And even though it's chilly, the sun can still be fierce so don't forget to pack plenty of sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses. Ski and snowboarding equipment can be hired from Afriski. Afriski has a ‘Gone Skiing’ shop in Johannesburg for you to kit yourself out before visiting.
Where to stay
Various forms of accommodation, including self-catering chalets and camp sites, are available at Afriski. See their website for details.
What to eat
All meals are provided at the resort.