Camping in KNP





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  1. #1
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    Default Camping in KNP

    Hi

    We are looking to go camping in KNP in the September school holiday. Due to work and kids in school,I am oblidged to go during school holidays.

    In terms of camping in KNP I know absolutely nothing so would appreciate input and even directions where to find more info that I will then search as well.

    We area family of 4 with 2 boys (9 and 13) so camping is quite easy.

    I have seen some tented camps as well.

    We would definitely require power and I would think more rather than less necessities. We are not self reliant campers that can for example camp for 3 days in the middle of nowhere.

    In terms of area I would like to be where the most general of species would be. As I understand (and from the 2 times I have been there) the Southern and Central parts are better than the North. I might hoewever be totally wrong.

    Then if you can also give a general idea of cost per campsite per night or per person per night. I also don't know how these work.

    Thanks!
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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Hi Andrew, go familiarise yourself with the website: www.sanparks.org
    Choose Kruger National Park and look what is on offer.
    Most of the camps have Power Points and communal kitchens.
    Ablutions with hot showers etc. Laundromats.
    Now for the bad news. I dont think you will be fortunate enough to find sites available during school holidays this September.
    Enjoy the website and hope you come right.

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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Hi Andrew.

    As Gavin said look at the SANParks site. The main camps all have swimming pools. During school holidays the park is busy especially in the south. I prefer the north (from Letaba up) as there is less traffic. At most of the picnic sites you can hire a skottel and have a nice brunch. My personal favourite is Punda Maria. There is a hide overlooking a waterhole in the camp so you can see a fair amount of game if you don't feel like driving. Pafuri picnic site and Crooks Corner are a pleasant day drive.

    Take a long (30 metre) extension cord and don't forget the Fredlin blue plug. You can book and pay online.
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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Also join the sanparks forum - lots of info (too much perhaps).

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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    If you want to see lions, go to Satara.

    If you want to see Jeep Jockeys (the guys that have a bad reputation of showing their international guests the best possible sightings as their tips are based on such) , and lots of traffic and day visitors, then stay in the south.

    If you want to see tons of Mopani Bush (and not much else) stay towards the north.

    But wherever you stay, the biggest tip is this: the KNP is a boring terrible place in the middle of the day. But there is just something so magical at sunrise and sunset, that it makes it all worth it. So get out as the gates open, take a siesta in the middle of the day, and then an afternoon drive again.

    Also stop sometimes in the middle of nowhere under a tree to rest. For like an hour. Even if it's not at a waterhole, you're almost guaranteed to see something...

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    Default Camping in KNP

    Hi Andrew

    You rightly observe the south being better than the north.
    I was last in the north 7 months ago, and it was flippen dry. A ranger mentioned to me that game is never found more than 6 km from water in the north.

    If you are looking for general game I would suggest Satara, Skukuza, Lower Sabie
    Also consider a Pretoriuskop and Berg n Dal
    If you are an infrequent guest I would go to Skukuza or Satara. Large camps, but lots going on like documentaries on an outdoor screen in the evenings. Go on a night drive, or just walk the fence of the camp with torches
    Satara has lots of critters in the camp. The honey badgers being my favorite. Leave the left over chicken bones from the braai out of reach. They will be there, working out how to get them in no time!

    September is the one of the hottest driest months, so camping can be dusty.
    If that bothers you, try the furnished tents of Tamboti

    There is so much to see, and so little time! Every camp is unique and needs to be visited at least once!

    Enjoy!
    Last edited by Skukuza95; 2020/02/20 at 06:27 AM.
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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Quote Originally Posted by petewill View Post
    Hi Andrew.

    As Gavin said look at the SANParks site. The main camps all have swimming pools. During school holidays the park is busy especially in the south. I prefer the north (from Letaba up) as there is less traffic. At most of the picnic sites you can hire a skottel and have a nice brunch. My personal favourite is Punda Maria. There is a hide overlooking a waterhole in the camp so you can see a fair amount of game if you don't feel like driving. Pafuri picnic site and Crooks Corner are a pleasant day drive.

    Take a long (30 metre) extension cord and don't forget the Fredlin blue plug. You can book and pay online.
    Spot on Peter...Take the Blue Plug and go North ..Boys at that age dont need to see Lions every 5 mins like 4 yr olds do .....I would suggest Shingwedzi for your family but being retired .. like Peter we prefer Punda Maria and Tsendze (No electricity at Tsendze but you can get by as there are camp communal Fridges NOT FREEZERS and Mopani and Phalaborwa are close to restock. You may have to take what they can give you ...as you are booking pretty late ..We sometimes struggle out of season when booking on the 1 of the month 11 months in advance ..the earliest you can book. Whatever you do regardless of it being a good but VERY BUSY game area ..dont CAMP at Lower Sabie ..its our choice as the worst campsite in Southern Africa with ZERO bush atmosphere ...feels like camping in a Parking lot at a major shopping Centre
    Last edited by Peter Betts; 2020/02/20 at 06:24 AM.

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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Quote Originally Posted by Skukuza95 View Post
    Hi Gavin


    Satara has lots of critters in the camp. The honey badgers being my favorite. Leave the left over chicken bones from the braai out of reach. They will be there, working out how to get them in no time!
    Never Ever Bait animals with food in camp ...You sign their eventual Death Warrants ...Ja guess thats why we generally avoid the Hollywood camps to camp because of this persistant occurance ..and go to camps like Balule Maroela and Tsendze where campers there tend to be more in tune with nature
    Last edited by Peter Betts; 2020/02/20 at 06:31 AM.

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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Betts View Post
    Spot on Peter...Take the Blue Plug and go North ..Boys at that age dont need to see Lions every 5 mins like 4 yr olds do .....I would suggest Shingwedzi for your family but being retired .. like Peter we prefer Punda Maria and Tsendze (No electricity at Tsendze but you can get by as there are camp communal Fridges NOT FREEZERS and Mopani and Phalaborwa are close to restock. You may have to take what they can give you ...as you are booking pretty late ..We sometimes struggle out of season when booking on the 1 of the month 11 months in advance ..the earliest you can book. Whatever you do regardless of it being a good but VERY BUSY game area ..dont CAMP at Lower Sabie ..its our choice as the worst campsite in Southern Africa with ZERO bush atmosphere ...feels like camping in a Parking lot at a major shopping Centre
    And I think this is the point Andrew - some people Like a certain camp, and other dont. I really enjoy Lower Sabie - not for the campsite itself, but the surrounding game areas where i have may favorite spots. I can sit at Molondozi picnic site for hours watching the comings and goings. I saw the 4 of the big 5 there in 2 hours in October this year.

    Each for their own hence my comment that you must try camps out at least once.
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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Quote Originally Posted by shady View Post
    If you want to see lions, go to Satara.



    If you want to see tons of Mopani Bush (and not much else) stay towards the north.

    ...
    There is plenty to see in the 'Boring North 'Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	558877Notice the lack of tar roads and traffic. The pic of the lions in the dappled shade is that of the Largest pride of lions in Kruger ..over 30 lions known as the Boyela Pride. The North also has the biggest concentration of Tuskers in Kruger. The most Mega herds of Buffalo (Over 1000 Buff in a herd), The Only area in Kruger to relably see rarities like Roan , Eland, Tssessebe The best birding Region in Kruger and Punda Maria has 6 or 7 Floral Biomes in the area so its definitely not just Mopani ..Mopani and more Mopani etc. I go to the north to see lions and I get them on lonely dirt roads on my own in 90% of the time. The North is prime Big 5 Country ..the real Kruger.
    Last edited by Peter Betts; 2020/02/20 at 07:03 AM.

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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Hi Andrew

    KNP camping is relatively easy camping.

    Take the 30 M extension chord with the blue adaptor plug and you will have power.

    Ablutions generally are spotless - unless you happen to go in after someone has made them untidy before the next shift of cleaning comes through 9seldom happens though).

    My view after many years of camping there:

    Bergendal:

    Great Camp Site, quite large with big trees and lots of shade available. Swimming Pool and a lot of people in camp - good atmosphere. Game superb in the area, busy with OSVs

    Skukuza:

    Massive camp, hectically busy with OSVs. Great game in the area - spoilt by too many vehicles in high season. 2 pools and great day visitors pool that is seldom busy.

    Lower Sabie:

    Best area in the park for me - Sabie River with excellent game sightings. Can get busy with OSVs. Great deck and Mugg and Bean a good restaurant. Pool in shaded area.

    Croc Bridge:

    A gem of a camp that is in pristine condition. Only 15 - 20 camping sites so difficult to get in. Game excellent with lions regularly just outside the camp. No pool.

    Satara:

    Big Camp, good camping against fence. Excellent road network and one can get onto dirt roads that have lower traffic levels even during school holidays. Grasslands and open savanna - so big herds of game, followed by decent cat population. Swimming pool with shaded area, decent shop and restaurant. Definitely one of the better camps to try.

    Letaba:

    Beautiful river and camp. Lots of Mopani - becomes quite monotonous unless you along a river. Good elephant, decent lion. bonus is when you do get a sighting, often you are on your own.Pool.

    Mopani:

    Have not spent much time up here so cannot comment.

    Shingwedzi:

    The gem of the North! Great river roads with excellent game viewing. Massive herds of Buffalo. 1000+ Some nice tuskers. Big prides of lion and Leopard viewing along S56 exceptional. As it has less traffic, you need to work harder to find good sightings, but when you do find something, generally you are on your own or have very few cars. Camping along fence great - nice pool.

    Punda Maria:

    Furtherest North. Game viewing sporadic - good waterhole in front of camp that has game coming down throughout the day. Big herds of Buffalo and good tuskers. If you can get a site next to waterhole, great place to just sit and watch. Pafuri river area exceptionally beautiful with great birding.Swimming pool.


    To sum it:

    South more cat sightings - but will be a bun fight in School Holidays and camps will be packed!

    North - Shingwedzi highly recommended. Less Cat sightings, but better quality sightings and less crowded in camp and roads.

    Have fun and book now.

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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Andrew123 good morning. I had a look at the availability for the kruger for september holiday. This is what I will recommend for the week.

    19, 20, 21, 23 Sept Letaba
    23, 24, 25, 26 Shingwedzi

    Letaba has alot to do in the camp for the kids. Swimming pool, elephant museum, nice walk along the letaba river with a great view, lots of animals and bird inside the camp and the cute thick tailed bushbabies that come out at night. You can easily do a trip down to satara for the day and visit olifants with its beautiful view of the olifants river. With some luck on your side you can also have some big cat sightings at letaba.

    Shingwedzi is one of my favorite camp is the kruger. You are in the north with minimal traffic but with the sightings like the south. There is allot of very nice and scenic roads with big heards of elephants and buffalo. There is regular sightings of leopard and lion. There is also a pack of wild dogs around shingwedzi. Book the CK6PV site that is about R30 more expensive but you know that you have a perimeter site. Just try to be at the camps as soon as possible to have the chance to get the best site. Fist come first serve. A campsite for our family is about R511 per night.

    That is just my 2 cents. We are going at the end of may and can't wait for it anymore. Enjoy the planning for me that is always the best part.
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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    We love Lower Sabie. But crowded in the caravan park, but we love the variety of animals, and its a sort of " one stop " camp, you really don't need to pack up and go somewhere else.

    Our observation anyways.
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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    For camping would suggest Maroela and for a tented camp Tambotie. Both central and about 40km from Satara where the Game density is good and not quite as hectic as the South. Both camps have electricity. Both camps have a very relaxed feel..

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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Betts View Post
    Never Ever Bait animals with food in camp ...You sign their eventual Death Warrants ...Ja guess thats why we generally avoid the Hollywood camps to camp because of this persistant occurance ..and go to camps like Balule Maroela and Tsendze where campers there tend to be more in tune with nature

    Please read again!



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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Quote Originally Posted by Boslaaitie View Post
    Andrew123 good morning. I had a look at the availability for the kruger for september holiday. This is what I will recommend for the week.

    19, 20, 21, 23 Sept Letaba
    23, 24, 25, 26 Shingwedzi

    Letaba has alot to do in the camp for the kids. Swimming pool, elephant museum, nice walk along the letaba river with a great view, lots of animals and bird inside the camp and the cute thick tailed bushbabies that come out at night. You can easily do a trip down to satara for the day and visit olifants with its beautiful view of the olifants river. With some luck on your side you can also have some big cat sightings at letaba.

    Shingwedzi is one of my favorite camp is the kruger. You are in the north with minimal traffic but with the sightings like the south. There is allot of very nice and scenic roads with big heards of elephants and buffalo. There is regular sightings of leopard and lion. There is also a pack of wild dogs around shingwedzi. Book the CK6PV site that is about R30 more expensive but you know that you have a perimeter site. Just try to be at the camps as soon as possible to have the chance to get the best site. Fist come first serve. A campsite for our family is about R511 per night.

    That is just my 2 cents. We are going at the end of may and can't wait for it anymore. Enjoy the planning for me that is always the best part.

    If those dates /camps are available - TAKE THEM NOW!



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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Quote Originally Posted by Philip72 View Post
    For camping would suggest Maroela and for a tented camp Tambotie. Both central and about 40km from Satara where the Game density is good and not quite as hectic as the South. Both camps have electricity. Both camps have a very relaxed feel..
    But precious little for 2 boys aged 9 and 13 to do all day long.

    Quote Originally Posted by Boslaaitie View Post

    19, 20, 21, 23 Sept Letaba
    23, 24, 25, 26 Shingwedzi...
    I like this suggestion, Letaba is a very child friendly camp.

    The other option, to what is suggested above, is Letaba and Lower Sabie OR Berg and Dal. Then you see the south and you can dip your toe in the north in order to get an idea what you prefer. Granted, for September school holidays you might not have such a big choice at this stage.

    For a first time trip with kids, I will stick to the bigger camps where there is more for them to do. And I will try to include a bit of the south and a bit of the north.

    As said by another poster, each to his own; some like the quiet camps and other the vibe of the bigger, busier camps. There is absolutely no one size-fit-all, you have to camp at xyz type of thing

    In fact I like it when people prefer the south and the bigger camps
    Last edited by lekhubu943; 2020/02/20 at 09:10 AM.
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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    View this trip as a reconnaissance trip and perhaps do a few days in a smaller camp and a few days in a bigger camp. This way you have the chance to see what you enjoy.

    As an example many people enjoy Berg en Dal however we did not enjoy the big camp feel as well as the one road in and out feeling. On the other hand many people do not enjoy Pretoriuskop however we ended up staying there two years ago when that was all we could find available and we really enjoyed the camp. Relatively small but still all of the convenience of a camp shop etc

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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    Quote Originally Posted by lekhubu943 View Post
    But precious little for 2 boys aged 9 and 13 to do all day long.



    I like this suggestion, Letaba is a very child friendly camp.

    The other option, to what is suggested above, is Letaba and Lower Sabie OR Berg and Dal. Then you see the south and you can dip your toe in the north in order to get an idea what you prefer. Granted, for September school holidays you might not have such a big choice at this stage.

    For a first time trip with kids, I will stick to the bigger camps where there is more for them to do. And I will try to include a bit of the south and a bit of the north.

    As said by another poster, each to his own; some like the quiet camps and other the vibe of the bigger, busier camps. There is absolutely no one size-fit-all, you have to camp at xyz type of thing

    In fact I like it when people prefer the south and the bigger camps
    All depends what you after. If you want peace and quiet, go to smaller or bush camps.. If you want a simular experience to Margate over December go to the main camps over school holidays...

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    Default Re: Camping in KNP

    As part of your planning, and in addition to what has already been said, look for Go! (Weg!) magazines compilation on Kruger. Always very informative.

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