A beginner's guide to the Kruger National Park
The Kruger National Park in South Africa is truly heaven on earth. From the minute you drive through its gates, you are enchanted. Open the windows, breathe in the fresh air and hear all the incredible sounds of the bush! Nowhere in the world leaves you feeling more relaxed and revitalized than travelling to a place that takes you in to the heart of nature.
Driving from Johannesburg, it takes around 5 hours to reach the Park, depending on which gate you choose to enter through. Driving to the northern Kruger gates will take longer. There are also options to fly into Skukuza or Kruger Mpumalanga Airport, which will get you there in a jiffy.
What to expect
Every day in the Park brings new experiences and excitement. Not one day is ever the same, and not one day is ever dull. At times you might not see as much game but just being out in nature and experiencing all her marvellous glory is a privilege.
There is nothing that nourishes the soul more than driving slowing along a winding gravel road and suddenly coming across wild animals in their natural habitat. A pack of wild dogs or herd of buffalo, a pride of lions, and a crash of rhinos, or a clan of hyena... you never know what you will see on a game drive in the Kruger. Big 5, little five, birds and reptiles – you name it – they are all waiting to be spotted!
Things to do
Besides your daily game drives, and depending on the time you have, here are a few attractions and things to do in the Kruger Park.
- Visit the popular picnic sites of Tshokwane and Afsaal.
- Have brunch at Lower Sabi or a lunch at Skukuza.
- Visit Sunset Dam.
- Stretch your legs at the Lake Panic Bird Hide.
- Go and see how beautiful Letaba and Olifants camps are.
- Go to Berg and Dal and Crocodile Bridge.
- Take that drive to a waterhole or a dam – it is all worth it. There might be something amazing waiting to be seen!
Some points to note
Be sure to plan your journeys through the Park. Ensure you know what times the camp gates open and close. Always follow the rules and regulations of the Park, and do not feed the animals!
The Kruger National Park truly is the most magnificent place and a must-see for South Africans and visitors to our stunning country. From its magnificent sunrises to picture-perfect sunsets, the Kruger Park never fails to take your breath away.
Written by: Liesel Moller