Katse Dam
About
The Katse dam, in the Lesotho Highlands, is one of the most spectacular water features in the country. Located on the Malibamatso River, this dam was completed in 1997 and is central to the Lesotho Highlands Water Project. The dam is second in size in Africa to Ghana’s Lake Volta and Akosombo Dam. The impressive dam wall is 185m high, 700m long and contains 92 000 cubic metres of concrete.
Duration: 1-2 hours
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles119 reviews
Excellent
60
Very good
51
Average
6
Poor
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1

Syncro22
Bethlehem, South Africa8 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2013 • Business
We are a Tour Operator making frequent visits to Katse Dam from Clarens in the Eastern Free State. We always enjoy our visitors reaction on this tour as we climb the three mountain passes in order to reach the Dam, the scenery is totally breath-taking, often we find ourselves above the clouds as we negotiate the Passes. The Bokong Region stretches from the Nature Reserve of the same name beyond the Katse Dam itself. The only place to stay is Katse Lodge, it is ideal for the traveller with comfortable accommodation and the most helpful staff members. They also serve the best trout dishes we have ever come across. There is a tour which takes the visitor inside the Dam Wall itself, a very knowledgeable guide takes the group through and discusses how everything works, at the end of the tour you may be able to go outside on top of the Dam Wall for the most awesome view ever! There are hiking trails in the area and a beautiful Botanical Garden in a natural setting overlooking the Dam. The Gardens are home to the many indigenous plants which had to be removed when the Dam was under construction...they only thrive at the high altitude of the Dam and would quite possibly have been lost had steps not been taken to ensure they had a new home There are boat rides on the Dam (based on sufficient passenger numbers to make it worth while to the operators) so one can expect that the boat doesn't go out everyday. Our guests enjoy a relaxing drink on the deck at the Lodge, the views are stunning and the feeling of peace and quiet begins to sink into to our otherwise busy minds. The road up to Katse from the South African border nearest to Clarens begins with the busy little town of Buthe Buthe where the local people trade their wares, you will find chickens and small livestock, fruit, veg and clothing all for sale at the side of the road...traffic slows to crawling pace as the local inhabitants, taxi drivers and business people jostle for space. Once clear of the town the next village is where we turn for the mountain passes and from here on it is just gorgeous scenery all the way...as you approach the Dam you keep having glimpses of water and mountains as the road twists and turns along the route...eventually you arrive and the magnitude of the whole construction makes you feel so small...you will be able to research Katse Dam on the internet and learn all the specs and see beautiful photos of the area....a trip totally worth while. Remember travelling in Lesotho is not measured in km but in hours...hazards on the roads are so very different from driving in South Africa and the tourist must always read up on local road conditions before heading for the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho. This is a stunning destination and the more one learns, the more appealing a visit becomes.
Written April 2, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Carine R
Johannesburg, South Africa22 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2016 • Friends
Sundowners on the Katse Lodge stoep had a great view. Bal headed ibises flying past was a bonus. There were two groups of people so the lodge was fully booked. Luckily we had camping gear with us, so we camped at the camping site above the dam wall - safe, and with hot water. Katse Lodge staff friendly and took a la carte orders even though they prepared a dinner buffet for the 2 groups.
Written March 23, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ollie-and-Jess
Bristol, UK29 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2013 • Couples
am, 1Went on the Dam tour on Christmas morning. Very interesting learning about the structure and seeing inside. The information center was also informative. The guide spoke good English and was very happy to answer all our questions.
Tours seem to start at 9am, 11am and 2pm from the information center (blue roof building about km before Katse village). Costs R10 pp.
Written January 5, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

tebogo m
7 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2018 • Couples
The people are friendly and the view of Katse Dam from the lodge is spectacular. What I was disgusted about is that on two occasions. 1st incidence happened in the afternoon when asked for a whiskey glass at the bar and the barman reached for a glass only to bring out a glass so dirty even a blind person would've seen it.
2nd incidence I had to use the wine glass which was on the table and it was dirty. I asked our waitress to get me a clean glass and I waited for about 10 minutes if not more, I got up from our table and went to unoccupied table to find a clean glass so that I can have drink. After eating our meal we wanted dessert and our waitress was just standing there idling not checking on us to see we needed something. Eventually I said to my husband we must go to our room and only now the waitress could give us attention because she wanted us to sign.

When we getting ready for bed there was crumbs on the bed from the rusks we had in the morning, mind you there was a lady who made our bed.

Katse lodge is going down mainly because of maintenance, it is not being maintenaned. I doubt the capabilities of the manager.
Written January 16, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

PurpleHaye5
Frodsham, UK50 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2015 • Solo
I took a day trip from Clarens to the Dam - fantastic journey and superb scenery, especially when you are in the heart of the mountains.

Border crossing at Caledonspoort was easy and painless, a short queue so through in about 15 mins - just the 30R road tax to pay on entry to Lesotho. Good roads all the way, only one or two potholes when crossing the Mafika Lisiu pass. Don't expect much in the way of tourist facilities between the border and the dam, I only saw one petrol station so set off with a full tank - but the unspoilt beauty is part of the attraction!

I travelled on a Saturday and met very few other cars - although lots of locals, especially the youngsters who are expecting to be provided with sweets from the tourists.

It's quite a long drive for a day trip but well worth it when you get into the mountains
Written March 30, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

trickbag2016
Johannesburg, South Africa7 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2013 • Couples
I would urge you to visit Lesotho and take a drive to Katse Dam in Maseru. The dam itself is not spectacular but the drive to the dam and the scenery on the way will take your breath away. Its amazing and worth seeing.
Written September 6, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Paresh Mahara
Durban, South Africa18 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2019 • Friends
Great joint venture and dam supplying water to SA and Lesotho. Tours inside dam was informative but would help if they sold bottled water and little tokens.

Great tourism potential but a long drive to get there and not great accomodation nearby
Written December 9, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

sandy r
Johannesburg, South Africa219 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2017 • Friends
These tours take place twice a day at 9.00 am and 2pm.
We went for the 2 pm tour and met up with our guide at the Lesotho Highlands Development Authority (LHDA) building. He talked us through the development and planning of the dam, in the lecture theatre from the charts on the walls. He was a very knowledge guide and coped well with all our detailed and tricky questions! He then took us (in our own vehicles) to the base of the dam wall and pointed out certain parts of the structure. We then all donned hard hats and went inside the dam structure itself and walked along inside the curve of the dam wall.
This is an amazing tour, I recommend you go while such a tour is still possible. The structure inside is wonderful to behold amazingly complex and with 13-levels. The guide took us beyond the dam, into the mountain itself. The temperature inside the structure was cool but not cold, apparently it is constant throughout the year. No photography is allowed inside the dam wall.
When we exited, the guide took us on top of the dam wall and pointed out more details of the structure.
An exceptionally interesting tour and a must do, if visiting the Katse Dam in Lesotho.
Written April 16, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

GKR
Maseru, Lesotho249 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2013 • Friends
The dam is beautiful and the scenery around is pure rural nature.
But it is a long drive from Maseru.
Consider staying in the Orion Lodge to have more time to spend in the area.
Written July 8, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Tshidiso L
Sandton, South Africa17 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2013 • Friends
The most daring route in the mountain kingdom and needs a gusty spirit to experience the most magical site in Lesotho.
Written April 4, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Katse Dam - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

Katse Dam Information

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