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Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Deal, United Kingdom
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Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Hi Guys & Gals,

I am thinking of visiting Namibia in late-October this year (maybe self drive with roof tents) and would be interested in peoples views on Etosha compared to the Kruger in South Africa.

We have visited SA several times, staying in the rest camps and did the occasional wilderness trail which were great.

My 16 year old daughter loved the atmosphere in the rest camps and we were wondering how they compared to the 3 in Etosha.

We were also wondering about the game viewing comparisons too.

Any comments would be greatly appreciated

Lee

Kent

UK

Stanley, Falkland...
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1. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Hi Lee,

I wouldn't claim to know Kruger well, but I would say the two parks are very different.

In late october, the game in Etosha will be desperate for water, and you only have to sit at one of the many waterholes to see the comings and goings and interactions. Bush is sparse and you can see for miles in some places, eg giraffe in the distance on the Pan, or little black dots which turn out to be ostriches.

The camps are very good for game watching with floodlit waterholes.

They camps have been upgraded since I was last there, but I suspect the underlying pros and cons haven't changed much- just the prices, and quality of accommodation.

The park is big enough to find quiet places. I've been surrounded by a herd of elephants at a waterhole only 5 minutes from Namutoni. We were the only car - most people drove straight past assuming the action was further away.

Fordingbridge...
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2. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Both will provide excellent game viewing as it is still the dry season in both locations. The weather will be more settled in Etosha as the winter cold fronts can still influence the weather in the Kruger. We've been there in October & seen the temperature go from +35C to +10c overnight. Mind you, the thunderstorms were fantastic.

You will see a greater variation of game in the Kruger depending on how much driving you want to do. The camps are of an excellent standard with provision stops readily available.

Your decision may depend on what you want to do after your game viewing. In SA you have the opportunity to see Cape Town & the winelands during the beautiful SA spring. Obviously that requires internal flights. Whereas in Namibia, just south of Etosha, you have the spectacular Damaraland, Erongo, coastline & Sossuvlei, all within driveable distance.

PS My wife says 'GO Kruger'. I'm not sure I agree.

Pretoria, South...
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3. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Hi Lee,

I'd agree with the comments of both posters above.

The two parks are radically different, and both spectacular from different perespectives.

My gut-feel would be to suggest Etosha over Kruger in this case. I love both parks, if I could spend the rest of my days in either I would do so! LOL!

If you have the opportunity of seeing Etosha in October, go for it! Etosha experiences the biggest change in habitat I've experienced over a yearly cycle. It should be exceptionally dry, and the animals are forced to stay near the waterholes. I've sat and watched over 200 or 300 animals of more than 12 species at a single waterhole all waiting their turn (never mind hundreds of birds). It was like an open zoo, with the people in cages.

Although there are only about 10% of the number of lions in Etosha as in Kruger (in about the same area), the lion sightings in Etosha are common place. They sit at the waterholes and check out the menu. Leopard are very rare though, and you may be lucky to find cheetah. Ellies are virtually guaranteed (and some of the biggest guys I've ever seen hang out in Etosha). Black rhino are great to see up there.

One of the best things about Etosha is the floodlit waterholes. You can sit all night watching the parade of creatures. The accommodation at all camps has been upgraded and is superior to Kruger's camps in almost every respect. A bit pricey, but worth it.

The restcamps in Etosha are less vibey than those of Kruger - and more "quiet" (almost as if you're closer to nature).

Kruger, on the other hand, is totally different. Firstly, it'll be Spring, and the world will start coming to life. You'll probably get your bird migrants starting to come in. And maybe some early animal babies. The grass will probably still be brown, but fairly sparse, so game viewing is optimal.

It should still be very dry, so your animals will concentrating in areas near permanent water. If you're very lucky, you may see and experience some early-season thunderstorms. When they rains do come, that whole world turns into a magical land.

Although Kruger changes a great deal over the seasons, the habitat change isn't as extreme as Etosha.

Your possible trip to Etosha may be a once-in-a-lifetime experience (whereas Kruger is more accessible).

So my gut-feel is go with Etosha if you can!

Deal, United Kingdom
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4. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Thanks everyone.

I think I'm falling in the Etosha camp at the moment but it's close. Maybe we should do both with Botswana thrown in for good measure!

One more thing, and I know it has been touched on elsewhere, but I can't decide on roof or floor tents. Thre roof tents look great but I keep thinking that it must be a pain to pack them up everytime you want to drive round the park, especially on the early morning starts and if you are staying more than one night at each Restcamp (which I think is always the best way to get to know the surroundings).

Maybe I should open another topic?

Stanley, Falkland...
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5. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Hi Lee,

I can't tell from your post if you have been to Kruger before?

If yes, then I would recommend seeing somewhere else.

If no, then I would suggest its worth focussing on it (if you go there), rather than waste a lot of time shuttling between 3 vast countries.

My first visit to Namibia was combined with a trip to the Okavango Delta. The places were stunning and I've been back several times, but I felt trying to see both meant rushing around and not having time to relax and enjoy the places we had gone all that way to see.

However, if I had the time and money, I'd like to explore the Caprivi Strip (via Etosha) and then nip across to a camp in Botswana. I think that would be practical and not involve flights or huge drives.

jhb
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6. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Hi

I have been also planning a week in Etosha in December 2009 , and have found your comments very intersting ! what i would like to know more about :

1. Is ther a website for Etosha NP accom bookings ? (1 like Sanparks.co.za)

2. Which is the most affordable type of accom avail. in Etosha NP ? (estimate of rates - NOT CAMPING)

3. Is the accom self catering ?

4. Which is the best part of the park to stay in Dec.?

5. Do i req. a 4x4 vechile or is a 4x2 fine ?

6. Is it fine to take along my 2 year old child- (maleria??) ?

I would really apprciate help on the above questions?

Wasi

RSA

Deal, United Kingdom
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7. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Website is http://www.nwr.com.na/index.php

Not quite as easy as the Sanparks site, but they do get back to you eventually.

I would have thought you need proper advice from medical profession re. your 2 year old

Stanley, Falkland...
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8. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

1. Is ther a website for Etosha NP accom bookings ? (1 like Sanparks.co.za)

Namibia Wildlife Resorts - http://www.nwr.com.na/

2. Which is the most affordable type of accom avail. in Etosha NP ? (estimate of rates - NOT CAMPING)

see above;

3. Is the accom self catering ?

There is self-catering, and also restaurants at the rest camps.

4. Which is the best part of the park to stay in Dec.?

I prefer Okuakuejo, but I doubt if any part is not good.

5. Do i req. a 4x4 vechile or is a 4x2 fine ?

4x4 NOT required. Park roads are fine.

6. Is it fine to take along my 2 year old child- (maleria??) ?

Check with your doctor. Malaria kills thousands every week.

I would really apprciate help on the above questions?

Wasi

Isle of Man, United...
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9. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Jumping to the new poster, (I am not going to get into the Etosha v Kruger debate for the simple reason that I have never been to Kruger and have no desire to do so.)

Seek Medical advice on your 2 yr old. Etosha is malarial.

1&2. You got the website. It gives rates for the various bungalows. I think they are also quoted on www.nambian.org

3. You can self cater if you wish or eat at the Restaurant.

4. All excellent. I prefer Halali Camp to the others for being central and the quieter ambience over the other more 'popular' two. but there is a reason that the others are popular.

5. 2WD will get you around easily enough. Others advocate 'seeing more' from the 3 inches extra you get in a truck.

6. See above.

Hermanus, South...
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10. Re: Comparison between Etosha and The Kruger

Both parks are totally different, but if you are considering Etosha for October it is a great place to be.

It will still be very dry, so the game must come to the waterholes.

I would recommend Okaukuejo restcamp as the best for game viewing at that time of year, and they have a floodlit waterhole, which is great for night time viewing.

Namibia Wildlife Resorts have really jacked up the camps at Okaukuejo and Namutoni, so thay are very good. Halali is still lagging a bit behind, it has the floodlit waterhole, but that is really all it hass going for it.

You will see more game in Kruger, but with Etosha you have the wide open spaces where you can see nice herds of animals, and I said before the floodlit waterhole is a real bonus.

The campisites at Namutoni are nicer in my opinion, as they are grassy and the other camps aren't, but if you have roof top tents then it really doesn't make a difference, and it isn't such a busy camp as the other two. Namutoni also has a floodlit waterhole.

The campsites are a bit more expensive in Etosha than Kruger, but it is not too over the top.

Hope that helps

Gemma.

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