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Krugar National Park

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Moscow, Russia
posts: 520
Krugar National Park


I'm visiting Johannesburg for 6 days.

Is there anyway I could go to krugar national park for a day or two?

Secondly, would it be even worth doing considering the lack of time I have?


Johannesburg, South...
Destination Expert
for Johannesburg
posts: 2,164
reviews: 23
1. Re: Krugar National Park

Definitely worthwhile.

Hire a car and self drive, you will have a great time!

Moscow, Russia
posts: 520
2. Re: Krugar National Park

I have a car. So could you do it in a day? Any vaccinations needed?

Gold Coast
Destination Expert
for Kruger National Park
posts: 3,631
reviews: 22
3. Re: Krugar National Park

Hi screentrip,

Any amount of time spent in Kruger is worthwhile so you should consider the trip. As you already have a car you can do a self drive safari. The trip from JB to KNP is about 6 hours with a few short breaks alone the way. So leaving JB very early in the morning will get you there by lunch time.

With your limited time available, you have 2 choices, the first would be to stay at one of the National Parks rest camps overnight self driving through the park and finding animals yourself which is a great thrill. With this

option, one suggestion to maximise your time would be to enter via the Malelane Gate and self game drive to the Skukuza Rest Camp. This camp is ideal for first time visitors and has plenty of accommodation and restaurant facilities, as well as being very central for game viewing. Again, spending the night within the park will maximise your wildlife experience as you don't leave the park, but you must be back at camp before lock down which is between 5.30 and 6.30 depending on the time of year.

The following morning when the camp gates open you can be out game driving. Should you be returning to JB on this day, you can drive to exit KNP at either Paul Kruger Gate, Numbi, Phabeni or back to the Malelane Gate for your drive back to JB. Remember the drive back is also 6 hours so you should consider leaving the park around lunch time.

Your second choice if your budget permits is to book into a private lodge in an adjacent reserve such as Sabi Sands, which is also part of the greater Kruger National Park. This will give you a totally different experience and a chance of seeing more animals within such a short time. Booking 1 night at a private lodge will give you an afternoon and morning game drive with an experienced ranger and tracker and will take you off road if necessary to see animals up close and personal. This will also increase your chances of seeing big cats up close.

Once again, you can consider both options depending on your budget in just 2 days, 1 night. Of course if you can stretch the number of days/nights out it would give you an even better experience and the chance to see more wildlife, considering that with only one night you really only get to have one afternoon and one morning actually game driving by time you allow for travelling.

I trust this helps

Edited: 9:46 pm, July 05, 2013
Charlotte, North...
posts: 1,713
reviews: 34
4. Re: Krugar National Park

You will be hard pressed to make it a single day trip. If you left in the morning, you would not be in the park until late morning at best. The animals become much less active, in my experience, as it gets hotter. You could still have some success in the late afternoon, but would need to be close to the gate to leave. The options described by thesandmans are a better choice.

Randburg, Gauteng...
posts: 893
reviews: 34
5. Re: Krugar National Park

Hello, it depends on when you are going to visit as well. It is very difficult to get accomodation in the park. You can drive it in a half day. Leave at 6am and you will be there by lunchtime. It is cold now because it is winter, so the animals are active. Closer to Aug and Sep, the water becomes scarce so there is more movement of animals. My suggestion is to stay outside the park. A few suggestions, Malalane, Hazyview, White River. These town are close to entry gates to the park. You could also book a full day open vehicle drive with a ranger to get the full safari experience, this can be done at Malalane and Hazyview. The options for budget hotels in Hazyview is also good, as there are a number of good, clean places to stay, places to eat, and just 10 minutes from the gate.

Lyn - Owner - Thorntree Tours and Safaris

Johannesburg, South...
posts: 668
6. Re: Krugar National Park

Hi screentrip2,

Its definitely worth it to get to the bush.

I would recommend a private lodge in the Sabi Sands, Timbabavti or similar reserves, budget allowing, especially with your limited time. It gives you a much more intensive safari experience in a shorter period of time. If possible 2 nights. This will give you 4 game drives, 2 morning and 2 afternoon/night drives. You are guaranteed to have a great experience and see a decent amount of game. These lodges are also inclusive of all meals etc. I'm not so certain that Kruger itself, given the self-drive nature of the park will be viable for only 2 nights. I love the Kruger as much as the next person, but have my doubts about only 1 or 2 nights, and would much prefer the private reserve option.

Something else to consider is a lodge in Madikwe Private Game Reserve, which is a bit closer than the Kruger area, although admittedly, I prefer the Kruger area for the overall safari experience.

When is your trip?


Brett | Owner | Safaris For Me | South Africa

Edited: 6:11 am, July 07, 2013
north yorkshire
posts: 2,815
reviews: 20
7. Re: Krugar National Park

For what it's worth, I would suggest you consider the following:

If you have the money but are pushed for time, fly into the greater Kruger area to a lodge with a short transfer time and leave the car at the airport in Jo'burg. More time in the bush and less on the road has got to be a winner if the budget allows.

Also worth considering brett's idea of Madikwe. It will save you a couple of hours driving each way and is a malaria free Big 5 destination with some good accommodation.

Johannesburg, South...
posts: 668
8. Re: Krugar National Park

Hi again,

safarifriend - good idea about flying to the Kruger area and leaving the car at the airport! Budget allowing, this will defs save much time on the road. 1 - 1 1/2 hrs as apposed to 5 or 6 hrs on the road. I think I already mentioned this, but although Madikwe is a really good big 5 reserve with some fantastic lodges, my preference is still for the Greater Kruger area, if this is a possibility. But again driving to Madikwe remains a very good option.


Brett | Owner | Safaris For Me | South Africa

Johannesburg, South...
posts: 85
reviews: 98
9. Re: Krugar National Park

You could definitely do Kruger in the time span you have, and must absolutely be considered! it will be one of your highlights of your trip.

If you dont want to do Kruger and need to be closer to JHB, try Pilansberg. You will find the big 5, and many different types of accomodation too. http://www.pilanesberg-game-reserve.co.za/ Sun City is not my favourite place, however, there is much to do and enjoy if you choose it as a place to stay. I have stayed at Bakubang in the past and loved it. There are self-catering places too, and self-drive options. But, on self-drive there are closure times, and no night drives available to you. Note that this is similar in the Kruger, so staying at a lodge that offers this may be important to you.

My recommendation for Kruger, if you can get a booking, is one of the walking tours. We did Nyalaland (see my reveiw on it) which is too north for you, but there are others that are further south. This is an experience of the Kruger like you have never had before - there is a gamedrive into camp and out of camp which for us yeilded some additional sights. Or, ask your lodge if they will do a walking trip as being that close to nature is just very special.

Perhaps start your holiday and go right into Kruger using a tour or trasnport service if you are going to a lodge, then when you get back pick up a car - that is if you are not going to do a self-drive, so you save on car hire for a few days - then end off your holiday with all the fabulous various attractions to be seen in and around JHB.

Moscow, Russia
posts: 520
10. Re: Krugar National Park

Thanks for all the information. This will be my internary when I'm in johannesburg. I obviously will have a car.

How would I fit krugar national Park into this. Is it possible to even do or am I really taking on too much. I'm aware also that I probably won't ever be in SA again!!

The dates I will be here are 25/11/2013 - 30/11/2013

I have a flight to get on 1/12/2013

Soccer city and Soweto

Gold reef city and Apartheid museum

Melville, Sandton, Rosebank and Monte casino

Johannesurg CBD (Carlton centre (top of Africa), newtown area (Market theatre. MuseumAfrica) and hopefully custom tour of Hillbrow and yeoville/berea

Ellis park