Kruger National Park | South Africa Travel Tips & Reviews | Africa Point
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Kruger National Park
Lions, Kruger National Park, South Africa
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Kruger National Park

Snapshot

Come and experience the wild side of Africa as you follow in the footsteps of Stone Age hunters and Bushmen. Marvel at the scale of South Africa’s largest Game Reserve and be captivated by the animals and people who call the Park their home. Hear the roar of the lion and the plaintive howl of the hyena echo across the landscape. Welcome to the Kruger National Park experience.

 

Best Time to Visit:

The Kruger is a year-round destination; best game viewing in winter when the grass is shorter and game congregate at water holes.
 

Average Visitor Rating:

5 out of 5 'Pawprints' Based on 0 Review(s)
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The Kruger Park journey of discovery...

Covering an enormous expanse of over 2 million hectares, (19,633 km sq) the Kruger National Park is the flagship of South African game reserves, and has the greatest diversity of flora, fauna and animals anywhere in the country.  Here you can see all of the Big Five in their natural habitat, witness the drama of a hunt and feel the throbbing heartbeat of Africa reverberate around you as a herd of buffalo make their way across the plains.  See endangered and disappearing species such as the rhino and the African painted dog (also called wild dog or hunting dog) in the wild and get really close to some of the world’s most feared animals.

 

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The Big Five, Night Drives, Wilderness Trails and other Highlights  

The Big Five

The Kruger Park has very large concentrations of all the animals that make up the Big Five, namely 1,500 lion, 1,000 leopard, 12,000 elephant, 2,500 buffalo and about 5,000 rhino, so it is quite possible to come across at least 4 of the 5 on a typical guided game drive; the leopard is the most elusive, and sightings of this magnificent creature are less common and should be looked upon as a rare treat.  (To almost ensure a leopard sighting visit the adjoining Sabi Sands reserve, where there is a high density of leopard and sightings are very common).  Along with the Big Five, there are a host of other animals to be seen and photographed in Kruger, as well as an astonishing number of bird species. 

 

Night Drives

Predators are more active at night when it is cooler, and an exciting addition to your visit would be a guided night drive where you have a much better chance of coming upon a pride of lion on the move or a leopard on the prowl.  Self-drives are not allowed at night in the Kruger – residents have to be in the rest camps by nightfall – but all the large camps offer guided night drives in an open safari vehicle.  These usually last for about 3 hours and are a highlight of any visit.  See the sun set over the vast plains while you enjoy a sun downer at the rest stop.

 

Wilderness Trails and Guided Walks

What better way to immerse yourself in the wilds than by exploring them on foot?  For the energetic and adventurous there are a couple of choices for guided walks, which usually last a few hours, or 3/4-day wilderness trails.  You will be accompanied by experienced (and armed!) game guides who will teach you all about this marvellous wilderness.  Imagine the excitement of tracking rhino, elephant and even lion on foot!  On the trails you will walk about 20kms each day and overnight in rustic 2-bedded huts under the wide African skies; eat a typical bush braai (barbeque) around the campfire, while you listen to the stories of the African Bushveld and the sounds of the wilds - a most exhilarating experience and a true taste of Africa.

 

 

Safaris in the Kruger National Park

There are a great number of options when it comes to choosing how to see the Kruger Park.  For many South Africans The Kruger, as it is locally known, is a popular annual holiday expedition and they either visit a few rest camps on each visit or try a different part of the park each time, mostly doing the self-drive option, which is a great choice for a leisurely family holiday.  First time visitors will benefit enormously from an organised safari, where the experienced rangers and trackers will be able to show you a great deal more than you will ever find on your own.  There are options to suit all budgets and you can choose to stay in the fairly rustic rest camps or up-market luxury lodges.  Safaris range from a couple of days to a week or longer, and usually include the highlights mentioned above, as well as other extras such as the chance of going on an elephant-back safari or even enjoying a hot-air balloon excursion.

 

 

Accommodation in the Kruger National Park

Accommodation in the Kruger National Park ranges from extremely rustic overnight hides and the two bedded huts used for the walking trails, to stunning 5-star luxury lodges with private pools, Spas and decadent “bush” cuisine, inspired by the environment. In between the two extremes there are self-catering chalets, private bush camps, tented camps and many more options to suit any budget.  What nearly all the accommodation options have in common is that they are situated in extremely scenic parts of the Park, often overlooking a river or waterhole where animals frequently congregate.   A great way to enjoy The Kruger is to spend couple of nights in different camps and in different parts of the Park, to appreciate the diversity of this very large game park.

 

 

How to Get There

It is an easy and pleasant 4-5 hour drive from Johannesburg to the Kruger National Park, or you could choose to fly from Johannesburg to one of the commercial airports on the outskirts of the park and rent a self-drive car there.  It is also possible to arrange a charter flight to the Skukuza Airport inside the Park.  The fly-in option takes about an hour.  There are also direct flights to Nelspruit from Cape Town and Durban.

 

 

The Best Time to Visit

The fabulous Kruger National Park is a year-round destination, but it does get very hot and humid in summer and there is a greater chance of rain.  In winter (June to August) it is cooler and the grass is shorter and the animals are forced to visit rivers and water holes, making game viewing easier.  The Kruger National Park is situated in a Malaria risk zone, but is deemed “low risk” in winter.  For the most up-to-date info on the need for Malaria prevention, call the 24hr hot-line: +27 (0)82 234 1800, or consult your own doctor or physician.


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