The Kruger National park is fantastic. It is a huge reserve, larger than Vermont, 50mile wide, and 200 miles long. Within the park are many rest camps (similar to to those we have in Americas National Parks) as well as private luxurious Safari Camps and Reserves that many from the USA book for their African Safari.
Our interests are in the "do-it yourself" kind of Safari not the "Tour group" kind. If you want to know more about how to arrange your own Safari start with http://www.african-safari-journals.com/guide-your-own-safari.html. This on-line book was worth many times the $20 cost!
So, if you want to stay in Luxury Accommodations on your African Safari my review is not for you. Now on to the Olifants rest camp.
Like all the large rest camps in Kruger, this one contains a wide range of accommodations.
There are campsites, trailer sites, simple sleeping accommodations, up to semi-luxury cottages with kitchens. Also in the rest camps are small grocery stores, a restaurant, and various other amenities such as pools, laundry facilities, and the like.
We stayed in one of the perimeter cottages with a kitchen. By perimeter we mean that the location is on the outer edge of the camp next to the electrified fence that keeps out the more dangerous wildlife. No matter what camp you stay in, pay the extra 10% for the perimeter units. You are there for the wildlife, not hordes of people.
We booked a river view cottage that had a spectacular setting on the cliff 200' above the river. The cottage itself was better than most we stayed at in Kruger. The camp had a more intimate feel, and we felt it much smaller than it actually was. Sipping a glass of wine on the veranda at sunset just made the day.
We drove our own car and typically were out viewing animals an average of 10hours/day. The advantages of being in your own car and not on an open tour vehicle are many. As your own driver you can stop anywhere at any time to get the best viewing. You go at your own pace and stay as long as you like if some type of wild life is taking your fancy. You can bring food and drink with you and turn on the air conditioning when necessary. Think Yellowstone,cars, and bears and you get the idea. (in Kruger the car jams are much smaller and often you may be the first one there). By the way, do not forget the birds. There are so many and they can occupy your time between the sightings of the bigger wildlife.
From this camp you could drive to two different river bridges where you are allowed out of your vehicle. These rivers are very wide and always seem to have Hippos and Crocs in them. Lots of elephants wandering about as well.
You are only allowed outside the rest camp from 5am to 6pm. You can only get out of the car at designated places for obvious reasons. You can book a night drive tour at the camp and we do recommend doing at least one of these while you are in the Kruger. You can also book three day hiking Safaris where you are truly out in the wild with just 8 other folks, and two armed tour guides. Check out the South Africa National Park website for all the Kruger has to offer. You can book all your accommodations as well. If you want the better cottages on the perimeter book well in advance. The Kruger is popular.
ust to summarize. The Kruger rest camps like Olifants provide the best value if you are on any kind of budget. We are talking $100/night accommodations, cooking your own food, and driving your own car.
Make sure your rental car is an automatic and has air conditioning. No need for a 4 wheel drive as the roads are quite good in the park.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.