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My most memorable moment and first times to Kruger

Discuss and find information on the Kruger National Park
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Unread postby Meg » Tue Mar 15, 2005 8:02 am

I grew up in the Lowveld, so it was an obvious
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Unread postby Guinea Pig » Tue Mar 15, 2005 8:11 am

By an 80year old gentleman I worked with - he was supposed to be on pension, but had so much love for life left in him he kept going until he was 84! We wanted to tour through Mpumalanga and he insisted we include KNP going as far as to borrow us his binos, giving us all their old maps (as he and his wife could no longer travel the distance due to problems with her back), books and spotlight. I've never looked back - been going ever since and always share our latest sightings with him.
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Unread postby francoisd » Tue Mar 15, 2005 8:18 am

Taken by my parents as a 22 month old. Story has it that I would jump up and down in the car seat when I spotted an animal, sometimes before they saw it.

From then visited the park atleast twice a year for the next 20 years. After I moved to the Western Cape it was a couple of years before I visited again and had been going annually again for the past 7 years. Will miss out this year though
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Unread postby ceruleanwildfire » Tue Mar 15, 2005 8:43 am

Earliest memory I have was as a six year old going into the Kruger with my folks. Since then I've been hooked. Funny I remember seeing so much more as a kid. Maybe being a driver affects your ability to spot the smaller things, like Jackal, etc.

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Unread postby Laine » Tue Mar 15, 2005 9:15 am

been going since i was in my mum's tummy..... my parents were avid wildlifers and i got to see quite a bit of Africa growing up...but my family's favourite was and will always be Kruger...

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Unread postby simonb6 » Tue Mar 15, 2005 9:28 am

My main interest is aviation and aircraft photography. I have afriend with whom I usually travel and we always do some "proper" sightseeing as well. I have always wanted to try wildlife photography and I introduced Kevin to the idea in Sarawak when we visited the Turtle Island National Park and an Orang-Utan rehab in Sandakan.

When we first visited SA in 1996 we decided to spend 3 nights in the KNP as it appeared from out guide-book (Lonely Planet, of course) that this would be the best park to visit. After that, there was no looking back

When we returned to SA in 2000, we stayed in the park for 6 nights - this time I'll be there (on my own as Kev is otherwise engaged) for 10 nights....
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Unread postby Wild@Heart » Tue Mar 15, 2005 9:29 am

Went on a rugby tour when I was in primary school. I think we played a school close by in Skukuza. We stayed in Skukuza and played the game there as well. Thereafter came the fun bit. We drove around looking ... since then I just loved the park.

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Unread postby Elena » Tue Mar 15, 2005 10:31 am

My parents introduced me in the 80's when living in Jo'burg. I go back as often as possible.

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Unread postby DuQues » Tue Mar 15, 2005 12:01 pm

That's a fairly long story, so sit down and relax (Don't forget to check the cam!)

Years ago my parents decided that they would like to visit South Africa. So they went to travel agencies and decided on the Shongololo Express train trip.
More info
The start of that worked out well, they enjoyed themselves a lot. That is, until my mother stepped backward to let a fellow passenger pass. She stepped in a pothole, so threw out her right hand to break her fall.
Break she did, but only not her fall. Her wrist was shattered, so off to the hospital they went. After manipulating the bits and pieces (that's all that was left) she got a cast around her lower arm, and could continue the trip. Not a nice thing to happen to you on a holiday, but part of life.
So the trip continued... for a little while.
Than my father had a heart attack! That's different cookie, so he was flown into Joburg. Spend three days on the monitors, and the the doctors told him he could continue his holiday if he took it easy, but would he please go to his doctor when back in The Netherlands? My father, being a doctor himself, decided that he did not like that option, and had them flown into Cape town.
Second heart attack!
In the hospital they made an angiogram (film of his heart) and decided to operate the same day. Well, a double bypass, what better country to get one then in the inventing one?

As you can imagine my mother was "a bit down and out". If my father had flown home it is very likely that he would not have arrived alive.

Enter my brother (Madach).
He was flown in to help and support both my parents. He was not warned about the Africa virus, and got it badly during the three weeks he was there.
This off course meant that the next holiday planned was to SA, with his wife. Now both had the virus, and quite badly. They did the Wildlife campus training and of course met other people with the same virus and mindset. Some of them were South African of course, and friends being friends, they got invited to Elephant Plains (Sabi Sands) Website Got to learn Carrie and Anton very well during their visits there.

Yes, I'm getting there....
Around september 2003 Madach called me with with the statement that he was invited to a wedding. Great! And? (He does photograph weddings on occasion.) So I told him that was nice, go and have fun.
Then he told me that his wife couldn't come with him, because of a training.
Right! And? So I told him to go alone, and have fun.
Then he suddenly came out with "It's in Africa, wanna come along?"
Anton and Carrie were getting married, in EP!
Do you think I could have said no?

Yes, three days in and out of SA is hardly worth the traveltime/expense, so we added a week in Kruger.

And now I'm infected as well.....
Not posting much here anymore, but the photo's you can follow here There is plenty there.

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

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Unread postby Katja » Tue Mar 15, 2005 12:28 pm

In 1999 I got invited by one of the Park Managers. I spent 4 days in the Park, and he took me all the way from Skukuza to Crooks Corner and back. It was a lot of driving but I was very impressed and got totally hooked.
KNP: April 2016
KTP: October 2016

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Unread postby Krokodile » Tue Mar 15, 2005 12:32 pm

My best friend of nearly 20 years is South African (although she now lives in Mozambique) and was living in the UK for 12 years. Every year, she would say to me: "Come over to SA with me for a holiday" and I would always refuse, partly because the flight was so expensive (she always went back home for Christmas, and flights were far more expensive back then anyway), and partly because South Africa (which, obviously, had very bad press back in the 80's/early 90's) didn't appeal to me as a holiday destination. In the end, she gave up asking and simply said "Nah, you'd probably hate it anyway!". In January 1999, my friend decided to go back to SA to visit her family before going travelling (her intention was to eventually settle in Australia or New Zealand). One week later, I met my now husband (another South African). We got on really well and as I was missing my best friend desperately, and he was missing home badly also, we decided to take a trip that April.

He told me that on our trip, we HAD to visit the Kruger Park. This, I was intrigued by, as he spoke about it with such passion. I'd never been interested by wildlife programmes on tv, to be honest, and couldn't understand was the big fuss was all about. I mean, I'd visited Safari parks and Zoo's and didn't like them much: what was going to be different about this?

I clearly remember arriving at the park for the first time. Everything on the trip thus far had left me and I was already mad for SA! It was 35C when we arrived and we had to check into the park inside a metal caravan at Pafuri Gate which was quite uncomfortable, to say the least! The scenery was spectacular and I got soooooo excited when I saw my first game - GUINEA FOWL!!!!
Next vervets, elephant and giraffe together and Pafuri picnic site. Night drive at Punda - just the 2 of us, then sitting outside the bungalow with the paraffin lamp lit watching a distant storm over Zimbabwe lighting the sky up all purple and pink with an icy G&T. My husband took a photo of me there which I love because I remember how totally relaxed and happy I was then - more than I'd been in years. I felt like I'd just come home.

That was it, really. Totally hooked now. We don't tend to visit other countries now, other than for short breaks as we need all our holiday allowance to make trips to SA long enough to be worth the flight. Already planning the next trip after May!

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How did u get introduced to Kruger Park?

Unread postby chrisb » Tue Mar 15, 2005 1:06 pm

I was born in Phalaborwa in the late 50's. My parents used to visit the park, so i think i was introduced to the park when i was still a small baby. I still stay in Phalaborwa and we spend every holiday since our marrage in 1980 in the park plus weekends and day visits. I will go for my third wild card the end of June this year.

We finish work at 14:00 on a Friday and then we can have an afternoon drive in the park.

You guys know what, only 4 sleeps before we leave for our 12 day holiday in Lower Sabie. I have just bought our food and other stuff for our holiday.

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How did u get introduced to Kruger Park?

Unread postby chrisb » Tue Mar 15, 2005 1:25 pm

I am staying now for nearly 48 years in Phalaborwa and we don't take any thing for malaria. If you feel sick the first thing the doctors do here is check for malaria. Our family was lucky so far no one had malaria before and we spend many days and nights in the park, but there is always a first time.

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Introducing my lady

Unread postby bert » Tue Mar 15, 2005 1:51 pm

Dear Forummers,
I read the beautifull piece of proza by Krok.
I had to persuade my lady to come with me to Kruger.
It took 2 years and then a confronted her with the booking
She had the same idea. Animals can be watched in zoos and other gameparks.
But, after entering Phalab in 1999 she was hooked. The
great spaces and all different eco systems. She never
expected that.
And the first Ellie. I still remember well. She was filming and when taking her eye of the lens..." They are huge".
All animals in Kruger look larger then in any Zoo.
We have had other parks in soutern africa. But, nothing comes near Kruger. The tension when rounding a corner. What will we see.

And off course the atmosphere. In camps, along the road,shops. It is al animal and exitement. And the relative good, sometimes very good accommodation. And that for a
fair price.


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Unread postby EricExSA » Tue Mar 15, 2005 1:59 pm

Very basic story. My parents loved the park. Im not to sure how they got hooked on it. From as far back as I can remember we went at leat once a year. My older brother and sisiter also have the park virus so it was always a family thing. Now that we all have our own families the tradition continues.
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