• Lesotho,
    © iStockphoto.com/ Sergey Korotkov
  • Lesotho
    © Johan Swanepoel / 123RF
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Lesotho

By Dmitry Petrounin Dmitry Petrounin Section editor Profile
It is so small that it is easily forgotten! Lesotho covers 11,583 sq mi in the southeast of Southern Africa. Independent since 1966, it has come a long way! The whole country is about 3,280 ft above sea level. Hikers love trekking along the Maluti chain to end at the peak of Thabana Ntlentyana, the highest point in Southern Africa. Travel to Lesotho is not common among tourists, but those who do venture to the country will not be disappointed.

Our Editorial team's advice

If you wish to camp close to a village, or take pictures, politely seek the village Chief's authorisation (which is generally easy to do).
Do not miss pony trekking; the ponies tread very smoothly over steep ridges and they're very docile and gentle, even with the worst riders!

pros

  • +Its untouched, wild nature offers you spectacular views.
  • +? It is possible to swim in the rivers (there is no risk of bilharziasis as there are no flatworms in the water).

cons

  • -Mountain footpaths are unmarked: a compass and a map are essential when you go hiking.
  • -There is no railway network in the country.

Food

There is international cuisine in the capital, which is home to several French, Chinese and Italian restaurants. However, a lot of the food here is from South Africa and freshwater fish is abundant throughout the country. The local beer is excellent and luxury establishments here offer a wide variety of alcoholic drinks and wines.

Souvenirs

Craft shops offer a variety of items including the famous straw knitted cone-shaped hat that has become the country's emblem. There are also brightly coloured carpets and tapestries made of wool and mohair; items made of gold, silver and ebony; jewels; pottery and copper chess games. Shop opening hours: Monday to Friday 8:00 am to 17:00 am and on Saturday 8:00 am to 13:00 am.