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Mpila closing time and other questions

Bucharest, Romania
Level Contributor
100 posts
10 reviews
Mpila closing time and other questions

Hi all, we'll be arriving in Hluhluwe from Durban,and I know the gate closes at 19:00, but the camp closes at what time? And if we arrive via Nyalazi gate, how long will it take to reach Mpila camp?

Also, is there an ATM or a store where we can buy food in the camp? Thanks in advance!

Pickering, United...
Level Contributor
3,298 posts
1. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

The camp gate also closes at 19.00 hours. Late arrivals are not permitted at the main gate to the and they will factor in your drive to Mpila so aim to arrive before 18.00 hours. There is no ATM and only an absolutely basic shop at Mpila so you will need to get cash and groceries before arriving.

Long Island, New...
Level Contributor
6,944 posts
21 reviews
2. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

Don't try to cut it too close. They are widening the N2 north of Durban so expect construction delays. If you might be late, have a backup plan somewhere outside the park. You can enter first thing the next morning and not miss much (except a night in the bush!).

The shop at Mpila is surprisingly basic, as safarifiend says. Don't expect much available late in the day. Bring everything you think you'll need including charcoal or wood for a braai.

Bucharest, Romania
Level Contributor
100 posts
10 reviews
3. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

Well our plane arrives at 12 PM so let's say it takes 2 hours in total with the hassle of getting bags / money / picking up the car, if we start at 2 PM we should be fine? We were originally planning on stopping at a Pick'n'Pay at Mtubatuba (we're arriving from Durban) but if we don't have time we will most likely exit the second day and shop then, would that sound feasible? (we need to have supplies for almost a week so we definitely need to buy something from somewhere) What do you think?

Edited: 4:46 am, December 13, 2016
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
2,738 posts
29 reviews
4. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

If tented accommodation make sure you take shock cords for Mpila fridge to stop door opening as monkeys will invade the food area if the cage door is broken. Enclose all in containers or goodbye food, cereal etc. Also padlock tent zipper, they are so astute to open. If your in Chalets not as much a problem. The tents are great and do not leave BBQ unattended. Hyenas love meat med rare especially.

Long Island, New...
Level Contributor
6,944 posts
21 reviews
5. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

Check the PicknPay website for locations on your route. Closer to Durban you'll likely have more choices but I'm sure Mtubuatuba will be fine, though might be smaller than others (I don't know, just speculating). You have 5 hours, maybe a little more as Durban airport is small and pretty efficient. Use ATMs for cash, not exchanges for best rates. You'll need a little cash for tolls. Do your best to avoid leaving! That would be a bummer. Make a good list and don't forget the G&Ts and limes. :)

We hide all of our non perishable food or take it with us on drives (a big tote for convenience). In another park I had a kangaroo rat eat the corners of all of my dry goods - it was gross, so now we use a tote always! Figure out some way of securing the fridge - the monkeys and baboons can be a big problem. Use a pot and metal spoon (or two pots) to scare off creatures while you braai. It's funny (and maybe a little scary) the first time, but then it's just annoying. But it's such fun!

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
1,519 posts
31 reviews
6. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

Our problem at Mpila was the monkeys coming in from the attached bathroom. They made their way in via the bathroom , as the walls did not go right up to the roof of the main structure. They opened pill packets and other items. When we went out we had padlocked the main tent from outside so we knew that they got in elsewhere. We then used shock cord to keep the door shut between the en suite bathroom & main tent. It worked.

Northampton, United...
Level Contributor
2,300 posts
52 reviews
7. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

Hello and take your time and should be fine. Allow 2.5 hours from the airport to Nyalazi Gate. The Pick'n'Pay in Matuba is quite good, but google the address and print off directions so you get there easily. There is also a filling station in Matuba and if you have time fill up with fuel. Try and be in the park before 5.30pm and check what time the latest is you can check in with KZN Wildlife.

Mark - Owner - SafariKZN

Salt Rock, South...
Level Contributor
260 posts
23 reviews
8. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

I would stop at Tiffany's Mall Spar @ Salt Rock exit 214 off N2. Immediately off the ramp and much better stocked with fresher produce.

Cheers

Jack - Owner

The Saffron House Guesthouse

Salt Rock

Bucharest, Romania
Level Contributor
100 posts
10 reviews
9. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

Thanks, do you have any idea if they are open on the 24th? That's when we will be there...and if so, what are the chances of us being able to buy anything, wouldn't everything be already sold out before Christmas?

Salt Rock, South...
Level Contributor
260 posts
23 reviews
10. Re: Mpila closing time and other questions

The Spar will be open from 07h00 to 19h00 and stocked for the Christmas rush of holiday makers to our area.

Cheers

Jack