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Picnic Sites, Info & Advice.

Discuss the different camps and roads of the Kruger National Park
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Freda
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Unread postby Freda » Fri Jun 10, 2005 9:35 pm

Nkulu and Mlondozi are my favourite picnic spots in the south.
I also like the atmosphere at Afsaal.
Skukuza picnic spot does nothing for me and the deck at Lower Sabie is lovely but too crowded, feel a bit like I'm in McDonalds.
I prefer to sit in the car at a waterhole and eat than be surrounded by lots of people.
Lucky we all don't like the same :D

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New day visitor's sites

Unread postby KNP Spokesman » Wed Jun 22, 2005 8:00 am

Dear Forum members

What we found during that survey (mentioned above) that people definitely thought that our facilities for day visitors were lacking.
Another result of that survey was that overnight guests (particularly those staying in units bordering the picnic area) complained about the noise particularly over busy periods.

Just looking at Skukuza (for example) the grassed area next to the take-away shop was simply too small to accommodate the increased numbers of day visitors.
There is also a security consideration here - any security consultant will tell you, as the crowds become bigger, security becomes more and more of a challenge.

I can just say at this stage that one of the ideas put forward at the time was to erect booms and a definite "barrier" between the grassy areas and the accommodation units and to fiercely control anyone crossing that line!
In my opinion, I am glad we haven't had to implement this as I feel it would have seriously affected the atmosphere of the place.

We thus had to make a decision to split the day visitors from those guests who are paying a little more (and perhaps deserve a bit of peace and quiet) and the decision was taken to establish day visitor's areas at as many of our camps as possible.

Skukuza was the first one to be built along those lines and is probably the most popular.
It seemed to have worked and the area in front of the restaurants aren't nearly as busy as they were 4/5 years ago.

I think at this time I must just make it clear that the whole idea isn't to chase people away from the camps - facilities like the petrol stations, shops, take aways, restaurants etc can and should still be utilised by day visitors - but to encourage people who have come for a picnic to rather use a facility better able to cope with their needs.

Lower Sabie is perhaps built in a bit of an awkward position but if you look at the camp layout - and keep in mind the restrictions placed on development by South Africa's Environmental Legislation (which is a good thing too!) - there is not really another suitable place to build it other than where it is now.

Naturally it is a learning process and we will take the lessons learnt at Skukuza and Lower Sabie and apply them at Orpen, Satara, Letaba etc.

These are all attempts at trying to accommodate both day visitors and overnight visitors the best way we possibly can, while trying to keep the KNP's atmosphere and naturally conserving the area as a national park.

I hope this helps to explain our thinking a little clearer.

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman

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Trying to satisfy most of the people, most of the time

Unread postby KNP Spokesman » Wed Jun 22, 2005 8:53 am

We want to make sure wherever you a booked in as an overnight visitor that you can enjoy peace and tranquility.
And we also want to ensure that wherever you choose to enjoy your picnic, you can do this with enough space, facilities etc that you might need.

Let us create a scenario here,
Person X is an overnight visitor at Camp A.
He decides to have a picnic at Camp B where Person Y is enjoying a late morning snooze in his accommodation.
Person X unpacks his picnic just a few metres away from Person Y's accommodation unit.
Through no fault of anyone (besides perhaps the person who originally designed the camp layout), Person Y comes over to Person X and a shouting match is the result.
We are trying to prevent this from happening and - added the fact that the area was hopelessly inadequate to cope with the demand of a busy weekend in the first place - the concept of a separate day visitor's camp is born.
Thus, we are trying to "satisfy most of the people, most of the time".

For everyone, the following about the EIA process of any development in the KNP (according to SA Environmental Law).
During the EIA process, notices for public comment were placed in the local newspapers and were placed at entrance gates and the camps itself.
The plans are still at the respective camps for public viewing - if you not sure or cannot find them, just ask for the Duty Manager and I am sure he or she will show you where they are displayed.

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman

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Unread postby wildtuinman » Fri Jun 09, 2006 7:08 am

I know of the following picnic spots with gas:

Afsaal
Nkulu
Skukuza day visitors
Mhlondozi
Tshokwane
Timbavati
Mooiplaas(which you will probably try)
Makhadzi(most probably will have some too)
Babalala
Pafuri
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Unread postby Johann » Fri Jun 09, 2006 8:31 am

Can add to WTM's list:

Masorini
N'wanetsi
Nhlanguleni
Muzandzeni
and Makhadzi definitely has got.

I think all the PS's do have have gas for hire. It is just that the price differs from site to site.
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Unread postby Foxy » Mon Jun 12, 2006 9:43 pm

Out of the map book

"Picnic spots " The following facilities are available at all picnic spots : Communal braai/barbeques, boiling water and toilets.
There are food kiosks and curio shops at Afsaal, Nkuku and Tshokwane and a food kiosk at Makhadzi. Cooldrinks are available at Babalala, Masorini, Mondozi Dam, Muzandzeni, Nhlangulemi, N'wanetsi and Timbavati.

Hope that helps a bit

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Unread postby DuQues » Fri Apr 20, 2007 9:36 am

Babalala and Makhadzi can be added to your list as well W@H, just incase you lose your way...
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Unread postby DuQues » Wed Nov 07, 2007 10:29 am

You can of course bring your own, but when I looked last month it looked like plenty skottels were available.

Wood is usually available at all the shops, but up north it may be a little dicey. I would make sure I had enough for the evening, regardless of what the shops have to offer. Pricing I have no idea of, I just grab it and pay the total requested at the till.
(Being european the prices are so low for me I don't even look at what stuff costs.. :wink: )
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Unread postby gerharddb » Sun Apr 27, 2008 4:27 pm

Yes Skukuzas day visitors area is really nice!! between the bushes and the birdlife are great!

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Picnic Spots, Orpen & Satara

Unread postby figjam » Tue Sep 09, 2008 12:46 pm

We stayed at Skukuza at the end of May and managed to have breakfast at two picnic spots namely Tshokwane and Nkuhlu,
We really had a great time at both picnic spots.
Now my wife to be and myself will be spending part of honeymoon at Tamboti for five nights.
My question is are there any picnic spots in the Orpen and Satara area that could compare with the last two that we 'picniced' at?
Any that we should consider?

Any advice will be quite helpful as it would allow me to plan my routes effectively.
Although route plans always fall by the weigh side!

Thanks in advance
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Re: Picnic Spots, Orpen & Satara

Unread postby DotDan » Tue Sep 09, 2008 12:56 pm

There are three in that area Figjam.
The one is the Timbavati picnic spot up the S39 as you are heading towards Satara from Orpen.
I have been there and it is really a great spot and sometimes if you are lucky it will be very quiet.

The second I have not been to but it is on the S36 downwards as you are heading towards Satara from Orpen called the Muzandzeni.

The last is the Nwanetsi picnic spot.
I love this one as the view is really beautiful and the drive towards the picnic spot is very rewarding as well.

Hope this helps :)

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Re: Picnic Spots, Orpen & Satara

Unread postby bert » Tue Sep 09, 2008 12:56 pm

Near Satara you have two decent picnic spots
Timbavati and Nwanetsi, with toilets.
At Timbavati you can buy cold drinks.

But they both dont have the take-a-way (food) facilities like the two you have visited.

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Re: Picnic Spots, Orpen & Satara

Unread postby figjam » Tue Sep 09, 2008 1:09 pm

I had a look at the map earlier on and saw all three in the area.
I'm not to concerned about the takeaways as we prefer to do the whole bacon and eggs breakfast anyway.
Do any of the three spots have skottel hire as an option?
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Re: Picnic Spots, Orpen & Satara

Unread postby p@m » Tue Sep 09, 2008 1:47 pm

Another one you can go to is Nhlanguleni.
Depends on how far you want to drive in a day :D
Also a very basic, peaceful picnic place with no take-aways.

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Re: Picnic Spots, Orpen & Satara

Unread postby bert » Tue Sep 09, 2008 1:55 pm

There are also many picnic spots and other visitor get out points distributed throughout the park.
At the picnic spots visitors can (for a nominal fee) hire gas skottels (outdoor elevated frying pans) to cook meals on.
These pans are cleaned by the attending staff, thus meaning people don’t have to worry about carrying cumbersome and greasy pans in their vehicles.

Timbavati and Nwanetsi have skottles.


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