The world looks like a better place when things are spotted wild and free! South Africa is famed for being home to nature’s fiercest predators, vast grassland, and exceptional views. Lodges, vast stretches of forests, safaris, and wild animals roaming out in the open, that’s Africa for you. Kruger National Park towards the North Eastern boundary of South Africa is a place to experience the majestic nature like nowhere else.
From being the home to the popular Big 5: African lions, African leopards, rhinos, African elephants, and Cape buffalos, to offering some of the most enchanting views comprising of waterfalls, gorges, and rainforest, Kruger National Park is everybody’s cup of tea. Whether you want a safari honeymoon in South Africa, spend a memorable family holiday in the super luxurious lodges or explore the land of wild solo, Kruger is the place for you.
Here’s all that you need to know before opting to become a humble guest in the Kruger.
Best time to visit Kruger National Park
Sub-tropical climate in the national park region means hot and humid summer and mild winters. April – September are dry months in Kruger, which makes it the best time to visit the park. October – March experiences sub-tropical rainfalls so conditions are humid and aren’t ideal for a visit.
How to reach Kruger National Park
By air: O. R. Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg is the nearest airport to Kruger which is well-connected with major cities across the world. Cover the remaining 411 km by road. Private vehicles, mostly 4X4, are preferred to travel to the national park area.
By road: Driving down to Kruger National Park is convenient and presents you the best experience of the place. You can get into the park through one of the 9 gates (Numbi, Malelane, Phabeni, Crocodile Bridge, Paul Kruger, Orpen, Phalaborwa, Punda Maria and Parfuri). Numbi, at 411 km, is the nearest gate to Johannesburg while Parfuri at 600 km is the farthest. Durban – 752 km, Bloemfontein – 834 km, Port Elizabeth – 1436 km, and Cape Town – 1842 km.
Most popular activities in Kruger National Park South Africa
Kruger National Park is all about spending memorable moments in the vast expanse of the massive park, untarnished and untouched by the civilization. If you are really into nature and wildlife, there’s a lot for you to explore and experience. Hiking, sightseeing tours, camping, safari rides, river and bush walk, and spotting the Big 5 are in the offering. Here are some of the most popular activities in Kruger National Park.
1. Wolhuter Trail
An early morning walk into the bush; staring at wild animals meandering around watering hole area; and walking into the sunset, the Wolhuter Trail in Marula is one of the most exciting things to do in Kruger National Park. White rhinos are spotted in this area frequently, along with it the surreal scenery around would leave you spellbound.
2. Nyalaland Wilderness Trail
Nyalaland Wilderness Trail could be your perfect date with nature where a dream camping experience would set the tone for your Kruger trip. With room-sized tents, lamps, a fire pit, outdoor showers and modern necessities, a camping in Nyalaland Wilderness Trail area is nothing less than a dream. Big animals and giant baobabs around only add to the beauty of this one of the most exciting wilderness trail in Kruger National Park.
3. Napi Wilderness Trail
Mbyamithi and Napi Rivers adorn this particular trail that boasts of scenic granitic landscapes. It’s here that you find the best of Kruger. And nature can be experienced at its best through magnificent trails running through the wilderness. While you get to taste a slice of wildness, remoteness, tranquility, and eternal peace, there won’t be anyone around to disturb. The African Big 5 can also be spotted here if you are lucky enough.
4. Thornybush Game Reserve
Stunning morning views, photogenic weather, lounge area in safari lodges, and outdoor showers are some of the most talked about things in the game reserve area. Thornybush Private Nature Reserve provides ultra luxurious stays into the deep woods of the national park area.
5. Nature’s best at Nkayeni & Marula
Kruger Tablets is the sweet spot towards the southern end of Nkayeni region and it’s the most popular place in the entire park region to spot the big cat. Lions are known to roam around the national park region but this place is a laid back retreat for the lions who can be spotted meandering near Kruger’s Tablet.
Hippo Pool and Albasini Ruins in Marula are a few popular attractions towards the southern border of Kruger National Park. Rhinos and exceptional nature views around make Marula a favorite among travelers.
Must-visit places in & around Kruger National Park
1. Red Rocks, Nxanatseni – The green & the gorgeous
Beautifully set up by the Shingwedzi River in Nxanatseni Region, Red Rocks are worth a visit. Spare a few moments in exploring the game drive and you can chance upon some locals of the forest in elephants, giraffes, and lions. The rocks are a result of wear by adjacent rivers that took place over the time. The views of red rocks and dense greenery around Shingwedzi Rest Camp located under 15 miles from the national park makes it an ideal place for nature lovers.
2. Crooks Corner Viewpoint – The scenic confluence of Limpopo & Luvuvhu
Another attraction in the Kruger National Park region, the Crooks Corner National Park is known for the confluence of the Limpopo and Luvuvhu Rivers. The northeastern part of Kruger National Park is known for exceptional viewpoints. It is this place where South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Mozambique meet. Certainly the place you’d be fascinated to spot on your trip to Africa.
3. Blyde River Canyon – A view through the God’s Window
One of the legendary geographical structures of South Africa, The Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve, situated in Mpumalanga is less than an hour drive from Kruger. The unforgettable place opens up the world of spectacular views like never before. God’s Window is the most popular attraction of them all. For adventure seekers, there’s hiking, swimming, and the never-ending scenic drives.
4. Bourke’s Luck Potholes – Nature’s finest craftwork
Lesser architecture in the world can surpass the beauty of Bourke’s Luck Potholes that have been formed over a period of time. The potholes located in Mpumalanga has occurred where Treur River meets the Blyde River at the very start of Blyde River Canyon. The fine and intricately crafted rock formations and pools are the reason why it’s so popular in Kruger National Park region.
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5. Mac Mac Falls – The best you can spot around Kruger
Mac Mac Falls is located 70 km to the southeast of Kruger. This scenic location is a 1-hour drive that you just can’t afford to miss.
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Best safari lodges in Kruger National Park
1. Dulini Lodge – Rustic safari lodges, the Big 5 and a lot more await you here
2. Royal Malewane – Helicopter flight, hot air ballooning, canyon cruise, and game drives in the offering
3. Tintswalo Safari Lodge – Grant Suite, Manor House, & Explorer Suites! Which one is your favorite?
4. Kambaku River Sands – Walking safaris, photographic safaris, and sunset spa to choose from
5. Lion Sands Narina Lodge – How about the stargazing experience from a tree house?
Life in the wild is thrilling, and exotic and serene at the same time. A trip to the Kruger National Park would let you on the little secrets of the jungle! Are you game? Book your Africa tour package now!
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