An African adventure

Come and see the spectacular battlefields and so much more at Rorke’s Drift Hotel.

Rorke’s wagon drift is within our grounds, and there is the Battlefield a short walk away, where 11 Victoria Crosses were awarded. The dramatic field of Isandlwana that was fought on the same day is just a 20 minute drive and the poignant memorial at Fugitive’s Drift is 15 minutes downstream.

If you come for the battlefileds, why not stay a little longer and enjoy some other adventures...

Hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, motorcycling, 4x4 excursions, helicopter trips, big game watching, local Zulu craft and arts and you can visit a local Zulu traditional village.

For information on activities, click here.

The hotel

Rorke’s Drift Hotel has a large and airy dinning and lounge area with views across the African Veld of Zululand.

There are 30 spacious bedrooms, each with en-suite facilities and a balcony with stunning views.

The hotel has a private swimming pool with sun loungers, a large sundeck with captivating 180-degree views, a fully stocked bar, a sports TV zone, a kids TV zone and a DVD library for families and children. The hotel also benefits from strong 4G in the area.

Buffets or a’la carte menus (accommodating allergies), are available throughout the day, seven days a week.

The library stocks more than 200 historical researched books and the local specialist and renowned historian and battlefield guide, Mr Paul Garner, is available to guide groups to all the historic areas and battlefields. These include Rorke’s Drift battle where circa 3,000 Zulus fought against 120 British soldiers, and the Isandlwana battle which was the biggest defeat of the British army by the Zulus.

To take a closer look at the hotel, please click the links below where most rooms can be seen.

The hotel can also accomodate conferences.
Rorkes Drift Hotel - main restaurant
Rorkes Drift Hotel - front terrace
Rorkes Drift Hotel - swimming pool
Rorkes Drift Hotel - front reception
Rorkes Drift Hotel - sitting-room
Rorkes Drift Hotel - bar-area
Rorkes Drift Hotel - bushman-room
Rorkes Drift Hotel - double-twin-room
Rorkes Drift Hotel -twin-room
Rorkes Drift Hotel room-view


TripAdvisor reviews

" I have travelled to 23 countries and have to rate Rorke’s Drift Hotel as one of the most pleasant and impressive places that I have been to; where you can rest awhile, enjoy the view, the food, the birdlife and the hospitality. And I don’t do battlefields. "

Beryl Teal
Washington State, USA

" Didn't stay but would want to in the future! The scenery is amazing and the staff very accommodating. Definitely recommend to all travellers. Within spitting distance of the Rorkes Drift site, which is worth a visit! Definite 5 stars for the hotel. "

Stephen J

I spent a week at the Rorkes Drift Hotel. Charles, the owner, and Paul the manager really have got a great combination. The ambiance is amazing, high volume ceilings and thatch wooden floors and a deck overlooking the famous Rorkes Drift itself. Sitting at the bar after a long day hiking around the battlefields and exchanging view points with some very knowlegable hosts was just great. Really enjoyable stay, I will stay there again, great value for money. "

Cape Town Central

The surrounding gardens were a picture of colour with a decent size pool to cool you down after an insightful day visiting the area. "

Worcester, United Kingdom

" I loved my visit and only wish it could have been for longer "

A TripAdvisor Member

" From walking through the door on the Friday evening and being greeted on First Name terms by Nisopho, and later by Paul, to leaving on the Monday morning, the experience was one of warmth and friendliness. The views across the Buffalo River and Rorke's Drift are incredible, especially as twilight falls. For a serious history buffs looking to take in the battlefields of Isandlwana and Rorke's Drift, or the casual aficionado, or just looking for somewhere to stay for a few days to chill out, I would thoroughly recommend this hotel. "

Livingston, United Kingdom

" The original Rorke's Drift across the Buffalo River is in the grounds of the Hotel and the battle site is a short drive away (you can also walk there). The evening meal was included, there was a good choice and it was well cooked. "

Burbage, UK

" Even better, take the key from reception and make your way down to the banks of the Buffalo River where you can actually stand alongside the drift. Now you cannot get closer to history than that. It is an expansive and lovely area to relax, share a drink and to dine. It is tastefully decorated and furnished and the bar is a great place to meet and share experiences with the other guests. Just before dinner on our second evening there was a power cut but the staff somehow produced a superb meal by candlelight whilst all of the guests plus Charles and Paul congregated by the bar and made an enjoyable and unforgettable occasion. Paul who was also acting as Assistant Manager at the time . . . was amazing. His knowledge, not just of the battlefields but of South African history was immense "

Worcester, United Kingdom

" The hotel is situated right on the buffalo river and only a 10min walk from the Battle of Rorkes Drift. The hotel is truly special and I am just glad I got the opportunity to visit this wonderful place "

Stuart B

"We stayed in Reynolds which was a lovely clean big room with fantastic shower and all amenities. The hotel is a little off the beaten track but well worth the visit! We will be back! "

Johannesburg, South Africa

"What a beautiful setting it is. Simply furnished but with everything you could need and a lovely balcony to watch the sunset. Paul is a master raconteur. His historical knowledge of the battles and the personnel involved is second to none This trip was a special birthday treat for my husband and I can honestly say it lived up to my hopes and expectations. "

Maidenhead, United Kingdom

"The Rorke’s Drift Hotel is not trying to be 5 Star, it's better than that. It's personal , friendly, the food is excellent ,the staff obliging and Charles's passion for his subject infectious. The rooms are spacious with a lovely bathroom and shower. "

rodney d

"This place is located right on the money at Rorke's Drift itself. It is new, finished to a high standard and serves very good food. The staff could not have been more helpful "

Amman, Jordan

"Just a great welcome, with simple things in a lovely setting. "

Bristol, United Kingdom

"Everything was perfect, the staff were very efficient and friendly and the rooms are extremely comfortable and super clean. We were seated in canvas chairs in the shade of trees . . . for all our explanations and he made us feel the heat of the battle . I would thoroughly recommend this hotel and Paul as your guide " 

Christchurch, New Zealand

Sarah's diary


Our unique location offers group, meeting or conference facilities for many different needs. Small senior teams or group destination for delegates can all find the right size venue and breakaway rooms. Chose from our library in the Bushman Room (8) to the Mezzanine or take the complete main floor (below) for a dramatic setting for important business presentations for up to 100. We offer 21 accommodation rooms in twin/ double or single occupancy with full catering service. Our team building options can include hikes, river activities or the history dramas, that can inspire and test individuals and teams.
confereence room facilities


Hotel history

This hotel was the vision and dream of Charles Aikenhead, an ex-soldier, and retired businessman. His love of history and Africa drove him to build this incredible hotel here on the banks of the Buffalo River, overlooking the original site of Rorke’s Drift. His wish was to further open this part of Africa and the battlefield history to a wider audience while bringing some extra employment and income to the community. The hotel is partly owned by the Rorke’s Drift Community association and the staff come from the local area. 

It took Charles Aikenhead many years with a supportive and dedicated team to turn a boulder field on the most inhospitable ground into this hotel. 

Everything from power, water, drainage, access roads and complete infrastructure needed to be built and every challenge – environmental,  engineering and political was overcome to achieve this Hotel.

Charles’s passion for the history of this period and area, led to many fond relationships and discoveries. After his passing in July 2020,  we shall miss him hugely along with his enthusiasm, passion and stories of the Zulu and Boer war from a great raconteur.

The hotel is now being managed and run day-to-by the experienced team of Roz and Shane Evan from Isandlwana Lodge after their 7 years managing that hotel.