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Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

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Re: Johannesburg to Punda Maria

Unread postby Imberbe » Sun Jun 16, 2013 11:40 pm

I have done al three.

I suggest Giyani. Good road, not lots of traffic.

Nothing wrong with the other two roads though. But both are going to take you more time.

Travelling through Thohoyandou (the Louis Trichardt route) is time consuming with lots of slow traffic.

Going via Pafuri is a great drive, but as you mentioned it takes a lot of time. And that puts you under time pressure, not allowing you to enjoy the drive down from Pafuri as you should. Rather take a day and drive up from Punda to Pafuri.
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Re: Best route from Johannesburg to Orpen

Unread postby Hazyview Charlie » Tue Jun 18, 2013 9:22 am


We always take the N12 to Boksburg from OR Tambo airport, then onto the N4. After Witbank we turn off the N4 at the Belfast junction and on to the R540 to pass through Dullstroom (nice place to stop for lunch), Lydenburg, Ohrigstad and round the top of Blyde River Canyon before dropping down into the lowveld after Abel Erasmus pass, driving past Swadini and heading for Orpen Gate.

I think it takes around 6 ½ hours.

It may not be the quickest route, but after the Erasmus pass, it feels like entering another world with the game reserves and fruit farms it feels like Kruger is near.

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Re: Travelling Time Jhb-Phalaborwa

Unread postby Hippotragus » Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:17 pm

I agree with the others - Polokwane - Tzaneen. You save a lot of time going on highway to Polokwane and the rest of the route it scenic and not too much traffic.

Have a wonderful trip!
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Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread postby Div » Thu Jul 04, 2013 10:09 am

Hi everyone,

We will be traveling to Kruger from Bloemfontein and Kimberley on Saterday and plan to enter at Orpen gate on Sunday.Should we use the Belfast,Dullstroom,Lydenburg, Ohrigstad, Blyderiver, Klaserie road or should we rather go further on the N4 and turn of to Sabie and use the Hazyview, Bushbuckridge, Klaserie road?

Thank you for your assistance!

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Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread postby Mfezi » Fri Jul 05, 2013 4:34 am

Div, if I was you, I would have travelled Belfast, Dullstroom, Lydenburg, Ohrigstad, Blyderiver, Klaserie road. In the past, I have travelled the Bushbuckridge road, but everytime it was very busy and there were lots of animals to look out for... :shock:

But this is my experience, maybe someone else has had another (better) experience.

Drive safely and have a wonderful trip! :thumbs_up:

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Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread postby Albert » Fri Jul 05, 2013 11:28 am

Philippa wrote:Thanx for your reply!! Does anybody know what the toll fees are from Pretoria - Nelspruit?

Also: check the sanral website: (for future reference)
Can tell you the tolls are:
Diamond Hill: R 27.00
Middelburg: R 45.00
Machadodorp: R 67.00 (you miss this if you go Belfast/Dullstroom/Lydenburg/Sabie/Hazyview)
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Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread postby yoda » Mon Jul 22, 2013 5:09 pm

KirstyL wrote:Hi guys,

We will be picking up a hire car from Jhb airport and then staying overnight at Emperor's Palace complex before making our way to Malelane gate the following morning, somewhere between 6-7am. What's the best route and how easy is it to navigate and get ourselves out of busy, busy Jhb?! I presume the journey from the airport to the hotel shouldn't be too bad, but concerned we may get lost trying to get out of Jhb!!


The N4 through to Nelspruit and then on to Melalane.
A striaght forward route on a well maintained road.

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Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread postby Albert » Mon Aug 05, 2013 11:24 am

Graham_5000 wrote:Going to drive the N4, Lydenburg, Phalaborwa route in a couple of days. From the N4 is the R36 or R540 in better condition do you reckon? Thanks in advance

Avoid the N4-Lydenburg road (R36?) at all costs. Take the N4-Belfast-Dullstroom-Lydenburg option (was OK, not great, when I drove it in May) (is that the R 540?).
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Re: Punda Maria gate

Unread postby lion queen » Thu Aug 08, 2013 8:43 am

Johannesburg to Phalaborwa is 535km depending on what route you take.

Johannesburg to Punda Maria is 570km.
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Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread postby Elephantears » Sun Sep 01, 2013 9:50 am

I have two questions regarding driving back from the park.
1. Where is the easiest or best place to refuel the car near JNB airport berfore retuning it with out getting lost and loosing all the fuel??
2. On our last day (sunday)we leave Crocodile Bridge to JNB for our flight which leaves at 20.00. I would like to drive through the park,instead of N4, and come out of Malelane gate, when should I plan to leave CB please?
Thank you very much.

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Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread postby saraf » Sun Sep 01, 2013 9:57 am

There's a petrol station in the airport, SkyStop I think its called and is signposted.
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Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread postby Leaping Lizards » Thu Sep 05, 2013 11:38 am

Hi all

We just traveled the; Belfast-Dullstroom -Lydenburg to Orpen gate route both ways. No road works, but road has lots and very bad potholes for 20kms before Lydenburg, in Lydenburg and about for 30kms outside of Lydenburg. They are all over the road, so slow down and be careful out there.

The rest of the route is pretty easy going and as scenic as ever.
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Re: Best route Joburg to Letaba camp

Unread postby littlejohn » Mon Sep 16, 2013 7:47 am

Just to let you all know....returned via Hoedspruit, Orighstad, Lydenburg and dullies and apart from a few earth filled pot holes just before and after Lydenburg, the road was great. Most of the pot holed areas were signposted. I will do that road again no problem.

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Unread postby Werner_Patat » Mon Oct 07, 2013 6:09 pm

2. More importantly, best suggested route from GGHNP to Malelane Gate (via Chrissiesmeer). My proposed route is Harrismith - Warden - Vrede - Standerton - Ermelo - Chrissiesmeer - Badplaas - Barberton - Malelane

Avoid the R38 between Badplaas to Barberton, very very bad road, more gravel and potholes than tar. Cattle etc on the road aswell. Many townships, didnt feel safe at all. Would rather go this route: Harrismith - Warden - Vrede - Standerton - Ermelo - Chrissiesmeer - Breyton - Carolina - Machadodorp - Waterval-Boven - Nelspruit - Malelane.

I used that road in December with my 4x4, never again......

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Unread postby Son godin » Mon Oct 07, 2013 8:33 pm

Stephan groen,

Highlands Retreat is a good choice to start you honeymoon. Wish you all the luck with the wedding plans and a wonderful wedding.

My route to GGNP normally runs through Harrismith, then south to Phuthaditjhaba entering the park on the east. My first connection to the N3 is at Warden and therefore I prefer to continue driving south. The shortest route will be through Bethlehem and Clarens taking the R26, but I am not sure the condition of those roads will be the same as the N3.

Last time I've visited Golden Gate was in April and during that time there was roadworks along the Sterkfontein- Olivierhoekpas section. Best to check TomTom - AA for road advice.

Traveling to Chrissiesmeer you can follow your suggested route, but be careful of potholes about 10 km before Standerton. This section was completed a few years back, while the Free state side was very bad, but they finally completed the Free state section and now Mpumalanga road becomes bad again.

After Standerton most obvious route is Morgenzon, but I have not travelled that road and some-one else might help. A bit of a detour will be Secunda - Bethal- Ermelo on a good road.

I've avoided Badplaas since 2012 due to road works after Carolina. You can travel to Machadodorp R36 or Belfast R33 from Carolina. By avoiding Barberton you now need to travel on the N4 passed Nelspruit where there are road works before and after Nelspruit (there is another thread on this route. Why don't you enter at Phabeni gate? Won't recommend the road to Numbi gate, but rather the R40 to Hazyview.

Hope this helps a lot and enjoy your trip. :thumbs_up:
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