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 Post subject: Re: Kgalagadi booking advice sought
Unread postPosted: Sat Oct 19, 2013 2:33 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 10:49 pm
Posts: 12
Location: Port Elizabeth
The tel no. I have for Botswana DWNP in Gaberone is 00267 3180 774. I have tried numerous times to call this no. to confirm my email/faxed reservation request, but it either stays unanswered or engaged. I see above there is another no. mentioned ie 00267 397 1405, which is the Maun office if I have it correct. Can the Guru or anyone in the know please advise whether the first no. (Gaberone) is operational at all.


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 Post subject: Advice on KTP
Unread postPosted: Fri Nov 29, 2013 2:41 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2006 2:15 pm
Posts: 164
Location: Denmark
Hello everybody,
I has been a while since I have been active at the Forum - actually not since our last visit to SA in 2010.
In Feb/March 2014 we had a round trip to Egypt booked, but due to the political environment that trip has been cancelled.
Left with 2 weeks vacation, and no travel plans, my husband and I started to think about our favourite distination: SA national parks.

At this point we have no flights, and no accomodation bookings, so it is all open.
We have previously been in Kruger (3 times), and visited Golden Gate and the parks along Garden Route and Cape Town.
Right now we consider if we should go to the well known Kruger again, or if we are "ready" to try the more wild experience in KTP.
Therefore some questions related to KTP.

1) Preliminary Iteniary: 1 x Upington, 1 or 2 x TR, 3 x Nossob or Gharagab (depending on availability), 3 x Mata Mata or KTC, and 2 x Augrabies. (Plus 2 days for flights back and forth from Denmark to SA)

2) One issue is that it is difficult to get booking at Nossob and Gharagab (and Grootkolk seems impossible), so we might end up with bookings like 2xTR, 1x Nossob, 1xGharagab, 1xNossob, 3 x Mata Mata/KTC. I really don't like the moving in and out of a camp, and would prefer 2-3 nights at each camp. So it might be better to wait with a trip to KTP to another year where we can plan well in advance and get the bookings we prefer.

3) I struggle to understand how to get sufficient food supplies. I can read that the shops in Nossob and Mata Mata will have limited products. We will of course shop in Upington, but I find it difficult to understand how to have food for 8 days when temparatures are high, and we have to travel from camp to camp. Can anyone share how you normally stock for such a 8 days trip in KTP - e.g. what type of products?

4) We are not experienced 4x4 drivers (it will be the first time). Are road conditions so that unexperienced 4x4 drivers can manage? Or will it be too risky?

5) And yes, we know it will be very warm - and that is also part of our thinking if we should try to arrage the KTP visit for August 2015 timeframe instead.

Thanks in advance for sharing your view on these topics !

- Lisbeth

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 Post subject: Re: Advice on KTP
Unread postPosted: Fri Nov 29, 2013 3:04 pm 
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Hi Viking and welcome back!! :gflower:

I'll try and answer some of your questions......



1) Preliminary Iteniary: 1 x Upington, 1 or 2 x TR, 3 x Nossob or Gharagab (depending on availability), 3 x Mata Mata or KTC, and 2 x Augrabies. (Plus 2 days for flights back and forth from Denmark to SA) Three night in Gharagab is looooong. There is not much drives you can do so you'll end up driving out on the exit route, driving north on the main road and going back to camp on the entrance route for three days

2) One issue is that it is difficult to get booking at Nossob and Gharagab (and Grootkolk seems impossible), so we might end up with bookings like 2xTR, 1x Nossob, 1xGharagab, 1xNossob, 3 x Mata Mata/KTC. I really don't like the moving in and out of a camp, and would prefer 2-3 nights at each camp. So it might be better to wait with a trip to KTP to another year where we can plan well in advance and get the bookings we prefer. I would much rather pack up and unpack between Nossob and Garagab that spend three days only in Gharagab (beautiful as it maybe!)

3) I struggle to understand how to get sufficient food supplies. I can read that the shops in Nossob and Mata Mata will have limited products. We will of course shop in Upington, but I find it difficult to understand how to have food for 8 days when temparatures are high, and we have to travel from camp to camp. Can anyone share how you normally stock for such a 8 days trip in KTP - e.g. what type of products? We vacuum all our meat and freeze those. Then wrap in newspaper before packing into cooler box. We put the cooler box in front of the backseats and cover it with a blanket to keep the sun off. Or you could ask when renting the vehicle whether the rent out camp fridge freezers. This is very nice to have in February!!

4) We are not experienced 4x4 drivers (it will be the first time). Are road conditions so that unexperienced 4x4 drivers can manage? Or will it be too risky? Roads are really not a problem for first time 4x4 drivers. Just deflate your tyres before you enter the game park area.

5) And yes, we know it will be very warm - and that is also part of our thinking if we should try to arrage the KTP visit for August 2015 timeframe instead. Any time is a good time in KTP. Do keep in mind that during August we have strong winds.

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 Post subject: Re: Advice on KTP
Unread postPosted: Fri Nov 29, 2013 7:52 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 16, 2013 12:02 am
Posts: 47
Viking

8 days is not really a problem. I met people 2 weeks ago who spent 2-3 months in KTP and don't have a fridge/freezer in the car.

Given you are coming from abroad you are probably renting a car in Jo'burg or in Upington. As Lion Queen suggests, rent one with a fridge/freezer and make sure it is a 4x4 if you plan to go to Gharagab and/or Bitterpan.

I just did 11 days and managed to carry all food In a 52 litre fridge with a small freezer. The shops have quite a lot of basic supplies and you can comfortably live off what they sell.

Don't be dismayed if you don't immediately get the bookings you need. Just boom what you get and religiously look everyday on-line for what opens up and you will be surprised at the availability opening up in the last 30-45 days.

Remember even all the wilderness camps have a fridge with a freezer so just make sure you take everything from the car Coller (assuming you don't have a car fridge) into the room each night and put it in the fridge and/or freezer and you will be fine.

I have done many a trip in Africa and have to say nothing beats KTP. Do it and you will be back!

Cheers


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 Post subject: Re: Advice on KTP
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2013 6:41 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2010 7:55 am
Posts: 148
Location: Redmond,WA USA
On my first trip to KTP last Feb for 2 weeks I worried about the food and really didn't need to.I rented a 4x4 in Upington with a fridge/freezer and got a cooler box thrown in for free
Put my order at the pick and pay for my meat etc and picked up the order vacuum packed and frozen.Most of the food stayed frozen or at least very cold the whole trip despite moving through many camps and having the electricity go off at night
I will admit my diet was low on fresh fruit and veggies and when I ran out of bread stared hopefully at the store in Nossob waiting for the supply truck to drive in :pray:

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2/22/14 Twee Riveren
2/23 Nossob
2/24-25 KTC
2/25-27 Kieliekrankie
2/27-28 Grootkolk
3/1 Nossob
3/2 Twee Riveren
3/4 Mopani
3/5-7 Letaba
3/7-9 Lower Sabie
3/9-12 Biyamiti
3/13 Berg en Dal


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 Post subject: Re: Advice on KTP
Unread postPosted: Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:59 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2006 2:15 pm
Posts: 164
Location: Denmark
Follow-up question ......
I checked car rentals with the car rental company I normally use (one of the big international companies). They can only provide a 4x2 Kia, which will not be sufficient.

I realize I need a car rental company which specialize in 4x4 and where I can get the fridge as well.

I checked the forum, and can see that advice on can rental companies are not to be shared at the forum.

Will somebody who are familiar with 4x4 rentals in Upington be kind and send me a pm with suggestions?
Thanks in advance.

- Lisbeth

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 Post subject: Re: Advice on KTP
Unread postPosted: Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:55 pm 
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Welcome back Viking.

If you are not going to Bitterpan, the only camp you will need 4x4 for is Gargahab.

If you don't go there you can easily get away with a 4x2 high clearance vehicle.

Be prepared to be blown away and be ready to return......

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 Post subject: Re: Advice on KTP
Unread postPosted: Mon Dec 02, 2013 10:36 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2010 7:55 am
Posts: 148
Location: Redmond,WA USA
Lisbeth, I will message you with the company I am using.
It is a real 4x4 that has a fridge and my contact will include the cooler with the car
He came highly recommended by lion queen(apparently everybody knows everybody in Upington!)
What really surprised me is that the price was only a tiny bit more than renting a full sized SUV from your basic international car company

_________________
2/22/14 Twee Riveren
2/23 Nossob
2/24-25 KTC
2/25-27 Kieliekrankie
2/27-28 Grootkolk
3/1 Nossob
3/2 Twee Riveren
3/4 Mopani
3/5-7 Letaba
3/7-9 Lower Sabie
3/9-12 Biyamiti
3/13 Berg en Dal


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 Post subject: Kruger Regular Contemplating KTP For The First Time
Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 27, 2013 3:52 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 11:43 am
Posts: 34
Hi Guys,

Myself and my sister are regular visitors from the UK to SA and in particular Kruger, having made several visits between us over the past few years.
We are planning another trip to SA for sometime during the middle/late part of 2014 and are contemplating a visit to KTP and possibly combining that with Kruger.
We don't really know much about the KTP except that it will be extremely different to KNP so any advise about where to stay, best way of getting there (we would be flying in to Jburg)and anything else you can think of that may help a KTP novice begin planning a trip would be much appreciated.
We are looking at maybe spending 4/5 nights there and then if it's feasible 9/10 nights in Kruger before returning to J'burg to fly home.
Many thanks in advance! :thumbs_up:


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 Post subject: Re: Kruger Regular Contemplating KTP For The First Time
Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 27, 2013 4:06 pm 
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Legendary Virtual Ranger
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Good choice KirstyL.

The best advice I can think of is to check out the relevant threads and then bring a list of specific questions.

Late next year I will be going there for the 9th time in 14 years. Be careful it is very addictive.

Maybe split your time between KTP & Kruger more evenly, or since you have been to Kruger before do longer in KTP. If you like it there you will LOVE it.

If you are a bit more adventurous, give the unfenced wilderness camps in KTP a go. They are nothing like what you are used to in Kruger.

The big differences are that KTP is more wild, no tar roads, less well stocked shops, a restaurant only at 2R, and there are no water based animals. But there is no bush to interfere with sightings.

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 Post subject: Re: Kruger Regular Contemplating KTP For The First Time
Unread postPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 1:58 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:50 am
Posts: 41
Location: UK
Hi KirstyL

I'm also a regular visitor from the UK and I would recommend Hugh's suggestion, its a long drive but you see more of south Africa that you wouldn't normally.
I word of advise - if you intend to go directly to KTP, as we are in February, it will take us 43hrs from leaving home (Essex) to arriving at KTP main gate :shock:
Connecting flights from Joburg are a problem - we land at 09.40 fly out 15.30, arrive upington 17.00 then pick up 4x4, shopping, bed for night (will not make KTP by gate closing time), up and away to park, at gate 12 - 1pm all going well, then 3-5hrs, depending on sightings, to first wilderness camp (KTC).

All that time traveling and I would still prefer to be in KTP than Kruger (or at work as I am at the moment)

Whatever you do, have a great time. and if you make it to KTP then you WILL BE BACK

Russ

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 Post subject: Re: Kruger Regular Contemplating KTP For The First Time
Unread postPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 9:01 pm 
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Location: Trichardt, MP
KirstyL,

KNP is only 3,5 hours from my home, but we prefer KTP and travel an extra 1000 km to get there at least every 2nd year.

Staying in the wilderness camps is a unforgettable experience, but you need to book as soon as bookings open 11 - 12 months before the time. The best camps are all taken and only in Nov you may still get place.

Kalahari Tented camp is a good alternative and there you will still be able to get place to book. The 4x4 wilderness camps, Gharagab and Bitterpan, is quite far off and might be very quiet during your stay. We stayed at Gharagab for 2 nights in Dec and missed out on lions and antelope, Luckily a brown hyaena came to drink at night. Grootkolk had all the leopard sightings at that time and a popular camp to book, but difficult to get place.

My advice will be to book at Nossob camp, KTC, Kieliekrankie if there is space, and Twee Rivieren. If you got some extra bucks you can try the Lodges on Botswana side. You can also go on photography safaris if you into that photography.

The trip from Twee-rivieren to Kruger will take about two days driving and at least 7-8 hours per day. Flying to Upington is very expensive, therefore an alternative can be Windhoek if you are not going to Kruger. Its only 200 km further than Upington and you only need one flight, but that is your choice.

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 Post subject: Re: Kruger Regular Contemplating KTP For The First Time
Unread postPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 9:45 pm 
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Russ wrote:
Connecting flights from Joburg are a problem - we land at 09.40 fly out 15.30, arrive upington 17.00 then pick up 4x4, shopping, bed for night (will not make KTP by gate closing time), up and away to park, at gate 12 - 1pm all going well, then 3-5hrs, depending on sightings, to first wilderness camp (KTC). Rus
there is a flight in the morning... arriving at Upington around noon (London/J'burg/Upington or Zürich-J'burg-Upington, same from Francfurt or Munich) = time to do shopping and even going to Twee Rivieren..... :dance:

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 Post subject: where to stay on way back?
Unread postPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 9:47 pm 
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Posts: 23
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Hi Forumites, we will be doing a bit of a round trip in April (Kgalagadi, then out via Mata Mata, then to Aus and then via Richtersveld back to Cape Town).

So heres the question for our esteemed forumites.... Our last night is in Sendelingsdrif in the Richtersveld. Where would people suggest we stay for one night on the way back to Cape Town? ... I am not keen to do the leg from Sendlingsdrif to Cape Town in one trip (travelling also with a 1 year old baby).

thanks for any tips or good ideas..

(Ps: oh one more thing we are staying in huts and chalets along the way so not setup for camping).


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 Post subject: Re: Kruger Regular Contemplating KTP For The First Time
Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 5:17 am 
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To get an idea of KTP and what you will experience, here is a Link to all the TR's that also includes a lot of info.

A trip report with lots of info and really worth reading to do your planning is kesheshe's Exploring KTP In October.

Hope this helps :thumbs_up:

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