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Punda Maria Rest Camp

Discuss the different camps and roads of the Kruger National Park
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Krokodile
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Unread postby Krokodile » Thu Dec 15, 2005 7:46 pm

We stayed in Safari Tent 5 - quite a walk up a boardwalk to get to the tent, and number 6 was even further up the hill. The view was, unfortunately of tents 1-3 although now the rains have come, I am sure they feel a little more secluded.

I reluctantly got into the pool at Punda, expecting it to be freezing cold, like some unheated suburban Highveld pool. It wasn't, and it was an absolute joy to sit in there with the Purple Crested Turaco's flitting overhead. The camp was fairly busy, but there was nobody else around the pool area, which made it even better.

Nothing to be seen at the bird hide, due to lack of water. How effective can it be when people can camp right next to it though?

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Jose
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Unread postby Jose » Tue Jan 17, 2006 2:53 pm

On this page you'll find one of tent #7. Scroll down to about 3/4 of the page.

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Unread postby francoisd » Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:18 am

New Accommodation Options At Punda Maria

From Kruger Times Volume 3 Issue 3 27April-11May 2006

Punda Maria, in the far north of the Kruger National Park (KNP), has been undergoing a series of upgrades over the last few years.
The latest additions to the camp are two new fully-equipped self-catering family houses, which opened in the rest camp at the beginning of April.

The houses offer a home away from home for a family of six.
All rooms are tastefully decorated in rich earthy tones to echo the bush atmosphere. A fully-equipped kitchen and braai facilities give a choice of dining options, while the living room adds to the sense of a home, rather than simply accommodation.

One of the main priorities while building these houses was to make them accessible to handicapped people. Punda also offers accommodation in the form of seven luxurious safari tents, equipped with every creature comfort.
All the tents have a beautiful room that sleeps two, a bathroom with an open air shower and a combined kitchen and braai area.

Private viewing decks extend off each unit and the tent sites allow guests complete solitude and serenity, when not bird watching or driving through the Kruger.
A rock pool in the camp offers the option of a cooling dip before relaxing around the campfire.
Despite the upgrades, Punda still retains its feeling of isolation and being truly in the heart of the bush.

Comment:
The tent we stayed in during February must have been one without the open air shower or I had to have imagined the roof and walls :?
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Jose
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Re: Tent? Dumb question at Katja...

Unread postby Jose » Sat Jul 08, 2006 10:46 pm

christelsabine wrote:This "home" is a TENT?

Katja is away in Iceland at the mo', but yes... TENT! 8) They're brilliant. Here's a pic of the outside:
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arks
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Witsand waterhole [Arks Quizz #5]

Unread postby arks » Sun Jul 09, 2006 4:02 am

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My pix were taken in the very early morning (0626) and Witsand doesn't get early morning sunshine. I think it's very true that places look quite different depending on time of day, time of year. But DQ did recognise it immediately.
Last edited by arks on Wed Aug 09, 2006 7:09 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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wildtuinman
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Unread postby wildtuinman » Wed Jul 19, 2006 8:12 am

Visitors to Punda birdhide's waterhole.

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Unread postby DuQues » Wed Jul 26, 2006 8:36 am

From what I heard you're best off with tent #1 or 2, but have a look here, Arks reported on them from a recent trip.
Camping there is good, just make sure you have a long extensioncord as there are few outlets. I'll have a look if I can put the pano I made at the campinggrounds together and will post it if that works.
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Wild@Heart
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Unread postby Wild@Heart » Wed Jul 26, 2006 8:40 am

The tents are quite nice ... not having camped there before ...

Taken in March ... Stayed in Number 3 but imho Nr 2 looked better...

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Re: Punda Maria tents and camping

Unread postby Katja » Wed Jul 26, 2006 9:12 am

I didn't stay there but walked around and looked at some of the tents. No. 4 has no view of the valley but is close to the fence and has a bush view. The boardwalk was pretty short.
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DebM
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Unread postby DebM » Sat Aug 12, 2006 3:48 pm

Taken for the Punda Maria accommodation page
Accommodation
Campsites
Tent or caravan sites, with or without power point, communal ablutions and cooking facilities, maximum of 6 persons per site.

Bungalows
Eighteen 2 bed rooms. Equipped with ablutions (all with showers), air-conditioning, communal kitchens and communal braai area.
Four 3 bed rooms. Equipped with ablutions (with showers) and air-conditioning. All have sinks and hotplates with kitchenette and communal braai area.
Family Bungalow
Two 4-bed units, with air-conditioning in main bedroom, bathroom (with shower), kitchenette, 2 single beds in dining room/lounge and own braai area.
Safari Tents
7 x 2-bed permanent furnished canvas tents on stilts, fully equipped, with shower, fridge and cooking and braai facilities.

As to the shop
Mangwa Restaurant
The Mangwa (Zebra in Shangaan) Restaurant and Shop ............shop will cater for the basic needs from Curios to meat, cleaning material, unscheduled medicine, liquor and more, 7 days a week.

Perhaps the descripton could included "very limited supplies of fresh produce and of some other food stuffs"
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DuQues
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Unread postby DuQues » Mon Aug 21, 2006 9:07 am

When at Pafuri Picknicspot talk to Frank Mbasa if you are a birder. I was there in early june, and his years (!) list had run up to 340 already... (And if you're not a birder talk to him anyway. He's a very nice guy. :D )

You can easily recognize him by the Yellow Ribbon on his binocs.
Arriving currently: The photos from our trip! Overhere! :yaya:

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Wildman
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Night drive the Punda!

Unread postby Wildman » Wed Aug 23, 2006 11:08 pm

I agree Peter. Its a spectacularly wild part of KNP.

I just want to drop a small bit of advice...go on a night drive from Punda Maria rest camp, you will NOT regret it.
Why?
It has a really unique feel to it at night, especially those trees on the Mahonie Loop add plenty of possibilities and action.
(We saw lion, twice, on the same night drive; dozens of nocturnal birds (excellent); ranger had to bully an elephant off the road in pitch darkness (adrenalin pumping stuff) and saw some Sharpe's Grysbok, genets, bush babies and the list goes on.

I have been on night drives elsewhere, with success and I really enjoyed them, but this was different. I don't think that it was just luck - the habitat is simply really conducive to night drives as many nocturnal creatures frequent the tree rich habitat at night.

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Unread postby christo » Thu Aug 24, 2006 9:00 am

What can I say about Punda?

Punda is the only camp where my sleep has frequently been interrupted by bushbabies.

The area still feels wild.

You can still enjoy privacy out there.

The pool is a lovely addittion.

They build a birdhide a few metres to the left of my usual camping spot. No complains.

Also the only camp where I've had a snake in my tent 3 times. All harmless species though.

The whole camp has a "personal" feeling about it.
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Kamp Runner - Punda Maria

Unread postby KampRunner » Sun Oct 08, 2006 6:15 pm

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KAMP RUNNER ----- PUNDA MARIA

The distances are approximate – 1.5km loop
Flycatcher Trail
There is a nature trail above the camp and running along the perimeter fence called the Flycatcher Trail.


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This is the start of the run and you need to mind your footing as it’s quite rocky.
Start at the tented area of the camp and run along the trail through thick bushveld and numerous mopani trees. There is a steady little incline until it levels off but be careful as it’s very rocky and twisty.
The trail comes out above the gate and near the petrol pumps.
Be careful running down towards the gate as the tarred road is quite slippery from the sand strewn across it.
Run past the pumps and turn right just before the gates (don’t go out!) onto a dirt road that runs along the perimeter fence and into the campsite and to the hide.

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Run up into the hide …you never know what might be at the waterhole!
Follow the roads through the camp site and then turn right and run up the stairs next to the swimming pool…..be warned it might sound easy but those stairs will take your breath away!
At the top turn left and run past reception and back to the start at the tented area.
Repeat the loop as many times as body is willing.

I did my runs early morning and enjoyed listening and seeing the veld getting ready for another day in Africa….the sunrise was spectacular.

Be warned the vervet monkeys are out that time too looking for ‘trouble’

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I dreamt of the red dunes again last night.....

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Unread postby Freda » Wed Nov 01, 2006 6:20 pm

We stay there every November, it can be very hot camping but well worth it, the camp site is usually very quiet in November.
The last couple of years we have treated ourselves to the safari tents which have overhead fans :)
Great birding area.
I shall be there again in a weeks time :wink:


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