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Where to stay in Kruger National Park

Auckland
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Where to stay in Kruger National Park

I'm planning a trip to South Africa and thinking of spending 5 days at Kruger National Park.

I'm travelling with two daughters 14 and 11 and unsure where to stay as I, do not require anything luxurious but equally cool and fun mid-level budget.

This will be our first safari, so I want to maximize my chances of seeing the big 5 and would like to see zebras, giraffes, etc.

1) Should we stay at a Private Reserve? If so, which one?

2) Should we stay at a Kruger National Park camp? If so, which one?

3) Is it advisable to stay at 2 different areas over the 5 days? I'd like to be able to see as much as possible within the 5 days.

Thanks!

16 replies to this topic
Sydney, Australia
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1. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

Hi Paulos1, can I suggest that you read the post at the top "How to do Kruger" if you haven't already, as it is incredibly detailed and helpful, so will answer most, if not all of your questions.

California
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2. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

I can't really answer whether you should stay in private reserve or in Kruger. We each have different preferences. The thread at the top of the forum will provide lots of information to help you decided. It's titled:

How to do Kruger: A comparison of Private Reserves and KNP

My personal preference is to stay in the part itself. The schedule is flexible, you'll see tons of animals, and you can game drive all day if you want (and we usually do). There are places to stop for meals or you can cook your own meal.

I would recommend staying at two different camps if you choose to stay in Kruger. My favorites are Lower Sabie and Tamboti. I'd definitely recommend Lower Sabie. My favorite are the perimeter tents. There have a nice restaurant overlooking the water, a big store, and other amenities.

Tamboti is a smaller, tented camp with no restaurant, store, or other amenities. I like it for the bush feel and for the great game viewing around it with few people. You need to prepare your own meals, though, or buy something elsewhere (like at Satara). I also like that we always see honey badgers coming through the camp at night generally raiding the trash cans. I think your girls will love them. If you prefer a camp with store, restaurant, etc., I'd pair Lower Sabie with Satara. It's not too far from Tamboti.

You're going to love Kruger!

Long Island, New...
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3. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

Availability will be quite limited this September. It’s a popular time.

I love both experiences - maybe do 3 nights at a private reserve and 2 nights (or more if possible) in Kruger Park. If you choose one or the other, split the time in 2 areas/lodges.

Sydney, Australia
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4. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

cbir... where does it say september???

paulos... what is your idea of mid-level? i mean price wise...

mid-level for a private lodge is a whole different $$$ compared to mid level self drive...

If we know your price range then we'd have a better idea of what you'll need to look at...

Long Island, New...
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5. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

Hmm.. steveb, I’ve got no idea. Did I see it on another thread? I don’t know. Thanks for pointing that out. 😀

But I stand by the recommendation. Do both.

Mid range price is entirely different for different people. There are lodges available in all budgets.

Auckland
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6. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

$500 - $750 per night steveb2170

Edited: 10:51 pm, July 25, 2018
Sydney, Australia
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7. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

Paulos - ill be honest...

125-190NZD per person (as im assuming the 750 limit is for all 4 of you and in NZD) wont go very far in terms of private lodges in private reserves...

double it and I'd have some great options from my experience last year...

you MAY find the lower end lodges (which still give great service) have a chance of coming in around 200 per person per night but its certainly not 5 star rooms, more like what aussies call "glamping" (glamorous camping)...

that price range you'd find some really good options for self driving.... but Im not an expert in that area so will leave others to give advice on that....

read the pinned topics up the top of the africa forum (not all replies, the the original posts are good) to get some great ideas.

Auckland
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8. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

Even $1000 a night for 3 of us only - 1 adult and 2 teenagers but if If i need to pay more all good

Sydney, Australia
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9. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

sorry... i thought 4 people...my apologies...

There will be people that tell you, 100% to do self driving....

There are others (like me) who enjoy the private lodge experience...

But you can also combine both...

Some example of the more affordable private lodges in the Sabi Sands are:

Umkumbe - approx 300USD per person per night (50% for children under 12, so your 11 year old daughter may qualify)...

https://www.umkumbe.co.za/

This sort of private lodge would have all 3 meals included (no drinks) plus snacks and do morning and afternoon drives with bushwalks during the day (unless you want to chill out and relax)... essentially you show up and everything is taken care of.

Idube - Approx 450-500USD per night (again, cheaper for children 8-12)

http://idube.com/

I stayed here in August last year and loved it. Couldnt fault it. 5 star in my eyes.

Now I dont promote these places due to any affiliation, Im just giving you 2 examples out of the many options there are and i was able to look that up in 2 minutes ... and thats just 1 private reserve (sabi sands), there are even more of them further north... you may even consider saving a bit of money with a self drive for 3-4 days and then splashing out on 3 nights at the end in a private lodge and average it out around your desired budget...

Either way, you wont be disappointed...

Edited: 12:09 am, July 26, 2018
Sydney, Australia
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10. Re: Where to stay in Kruger National Park

I forgot to mention, the cheaper lodges like Umkumbe will have less of a traverse area (where they can explore) than others.... however the experience is very much controlled by nature and paying extra $$$ doesnt mean better sightings..

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