Please do not attend parkrun if you display any COVID-19 symptoms.

The Course

The course is 5000m (5K) long. This has been accurately measured by us with a professional measuring wheel. The course is at Lizzy’s Store, Royal Natal National Park Road, Royal Natal National Park. The course is run on a mixture of trail paths, grass, sand and boulders. Some sections of the course may accumulate mud, leaves and puddles after rain. Dependent on availability, marshals will be at key sections of the course, or signs will be in place.

Please remember that the parkrun uses shared paths. For the continued success of the event, please give way to other park users. This won't hurt your time, it won't stop you from getting a PB and it will make sure everyone continues to enjoy the event.

Please, wherever possible walk, jog, cycle or use public transport when attending the event. If you do have to drive, please consider car-sharing to reduce our impact on both the environment and other park users. Please also watch out for other park users when arriving and leaving. Parking may be limited so try to arrive early.

Course Safety

The Cannibals Cave parkrun is a fun, free event organised by volunteers for the benefit of everyone. We wish to make the run as safe as possible, so runners, spectators and helpers are asked to take care about the following:

  • Please be considerate to the park and other park users at all times.
  • Children under the age of eleven must be accompanied (within arm's reach) throughout the run by a parent, guardian or appropriate adult of the parent's choice.
  • Please arrive by foot, by pedal-power or by public transport if you can - your efforts help to reduce our impact on the park and the planet.
  • Please consider volunteering to help occasionally - this event survives only because of your generosity - please visit the volunteer page for more information.
  • Take care near roads and car parks - some vehicles drive very quickly. Please congregate away from the cars and be careful in particular if you have children. If you’re driving to the run, please drive carefully even if you’re late!
  • When running, take care on uneven surfaces - whether on grass or on tarmac. Watch out for cyclists, other runners, pedestrians, children, dogs, wildlife, park animals, vehicles, park maintenance work, falling branches, bollards, posts and other obstacles around the course.
  • Please ensure that you are fit enough to walk, jog, run 5k (3.1 miles) with us. Health advice about running can be found at the excellent Runners' Medical Resource website (although this external website focuses on preparation for a race and does not describe parkrun events).
  • Remember to warm up before the run.
  • If you see a runner with a serious problem, please stop to help them out and get help as soon as possible.
  • If you’re watching, keep clear of runners on the course, and look after any children and dogs you may have with you.
  • It is not permitted to run with a pushchair and a dog at the same time.
  • You are welcome to take part with a dog, but please keep the dog on a short lead or short harness and under control throughout the event. Please also review the parkrun support page article about running with a dog at parkrun events.
  • Runners pushing buggies are welcome, but please take extreme care of other runners around you. If possible start from the back of the field and try to keep to one side of the main body of runners.

We hope these tips help to ensure that Cannibals Cave parkrun is fun and safe for everyone.

Age Grading

All parkrun events use Age Grading to help parkrunners compare results.

Age Grading takes your time and uses the world record time for your sex and age group to produce a score (a percentage). This score allows you to compare your personal performance against other people's performances even though they might be a different age and a different sex to you - the higher the score the better the performance. The scores can also be compared across different race distances - to allow you to, for example, compare a 5km time against a marathon.

For more information, please see our Support page.

Course Map

Course Description

Set at the foot of the Mighty Drakensberg Mountains, the wide sweep of the Amphitheatre, flanked by the Sentinel and the Eastern Buttress, towers over 3000 metres into the sky. Considered Africa’s finest mountainscape, this is the backbone of southern Africa. It is fascinating but true that if a raindrop falls on a specific spot on this mountain, one part of it will eventually end up in the Indian Ocean and the other thousands of kilometres away in the Atlantic.

The event takes its name from a local tourist attraction Cannibal Cave. During the Mfakane, Shaka Zulu displaced the local tribe, the Amazizi. They forced to vacate their lands and hide in the mountains. With their crops and livestock taken, the starving survivors resorted cannibalism to survive.

Start next to Thukela River bridge, follow road over the bridge and turn right into ‘Ruggered Glen Nature Reserve’, towards the Monte-Aux-Sauces Orion Hotel. This is the location where “Zulu” was filmed (with David Niven) to the turnaround at the entrance gate to the stables. Follow the route back the same way finishing at the entrance to Cannibals.


Please note there are NO toilet facilities available.

Getting There

Location of start

The run starts next to Thukela River bridge.

Getting there by public transport


Getting there on foot


Getting there by road

From Johannesburg or Durban, exit the N3 at Ladysmith / Bergville (R616) offramp, turn south towards Bergville (R616), after 34 kms, turn right on R74 to Harrismith, after 28 kms turn left onto tar road (sign indicates Drakensberg World Heritage Site - Northern), travel for 17 kilometres, Lizzy’s store is on your right, just before the Thukela River Bridge.

Post Run Coffee

Every week we grab a post parkrun coffee in Lizzy's Store - please come and join us!