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Marakele: ADVICE

Golden Gate, Mapungubwe, Marakele

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wildjohn
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Marakele Park size

Unread postby wildjohn » Wed Apr 20, 2005 5:59 pm

Hi,

Just need to know something. Does anyone known the area size of the Marakele national park ?

thanks,

w

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Erwin
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Unread postby Erwin » Thu Apr 28, 2005 1:16 pm

As on 02 September 2003, the size of the park stood at 110 000 hectares.
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DuQues
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Unread postby DuQues » Thu Apr 28, 2005 1:42 pm

Read me, and me.
Arriving currently: The photos from our trip! Overhere! :yaya:

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

wildjohn
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Marakele size

Unread postby wildjohn » Sun May 01, 2005 11:39 pm

Thanks Guys,

DuQues, got the 'me' part, initially, but not the first 'read me', which I did and that was what was needed - thanks.

w

MCSmarties
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Marakele vs. Pilanesberg?

Unread postby MCSmarties » Tue May 10, 2005 11:53 pm

Hello everybody, this is my first post to the SANPark forums.

In a nutshell, what are the arguments for/against Pilanesberg over Marakele?

I will be visiting South Africa for the first time in January next year and would like to spend 2 nights in a park.

My parents have been living in Pretoria for a year now. They are not that big on safaris but have been several times in Pilanesberg and loved it - hence strongly recommend it to me. However, I am a bit concerned about the proximity to Sun City, specially considering the time of year I will be there! I would obviously like to spot the Big 5 but not at the cost of seeing more Homo Sapiens than anything else...

I don't consider Kruger an option in my case ("wrong" season, malaria, not enough time and money to spend to be worth it). Marakele sounds great but I can't seem to find out very much information on that park (other than what's on SANparks.org and marakele.co.za).

So, some questions:
- Are my fears of an overcrowded Pilanesberg during the first week of January well founded or just paranoid?

- How tricky is the driving in Marakele during the rain season? As I have no previous experience with driving a 4x4, would this be unnecessarily risky (just generally speaking, getting off the main road but without seeking any specially difficult spots on purpose)

- How is the game viewing in Marakele vs. Pilanesberg in this season? I don't need to "chalk up" the Big 5 at all costs, but obviously would love to see animals!

- My budget is not that big (definitely not enough for private game lodges), is there any accomodation in Pilanesberg comparable to the Tlopi Safari Tent camp as far as price and amenities? Not basic camping - my girlfriend won't do that! :-(

- Are there any other parks you could suggest for my situation?

Thanks a million for any thoughts on that topic!

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wildtuinman
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Unread postby wildtuinman » Wed May 11, 2005 6:02 am

Hi there.

Unfortunately Pilanesberg is not an National Park and therefore we can't allow any answer to that question. Try another web page name www.caravanparks.co.za

Hope you will understand.
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WTM.
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Erwin
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Re: Marakele vs. Pilanesberg?

Unread postby Erwin » Wed May 11, 2005 8:30 am

Wildtuinman is right - we cannot discuss other parks here. We love SANParks soooo much... 8)

Nevertheless - I can comment on some of your questions that is Marakele specific:
MCSmarties wrote:- How tricky is the driving in Marakele during the rain season? As I have no previous experience with driving a 4x4, would this be unnecessarily risky (just generally speaking, getting off the main road but without seeking any specially difficult spots on purpose)

The roads in Marakele were upgraded recently to such an extend that it is becoming quite sedan-friendly. Even the previous "4x4" routes can now be done with a normal pick-up. Come the rainy season this may change. But still, as I mentioned elsewhere, it will not become a Camel adventure. The park officials have indicated that the road will be maintained to keep it in a stable state.
As in all SANParks' other parks, driving of the road is not permitted. Venturing off the road will definitely leave you with a stuck vehicle and a red face...
MCSmarties wrote:- How is the game viewing in Marakele vs. Pilanesberg in this season? I don't need to "chalk up" the Big 5 at all costs, but obviously would love to see animals!

January = Mid-summer season = tall grass and dense bush. Always difficult to spot game during this time. Best option is to go out early as possible as most game are found on the roads or close-by. Predators also do not like to walk through the dew - they prefer open spaces like roads. But game viewing is like buying a lucky packet - it's all about the anticipation and not knowing what you'll get... :)
MCSmarties wrote:...comparable to the Tlopi Safari Tent camp as far as price and amenities? Not basic camping - my girlfriend won't do that!

Thlopi is good value for money. See reports and comments from people that visited Marakele and stayed at Thlopi. I have visited Marakele recently - there is a report (+ pictures)on my website (see below)
Hope you will choose Marakele and have a good time. :P
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wildtuinman
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Unread postby wildtuinman » Wed May 11, 2005 8:40 am

Thanks Erwin for your priceless contribution.
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Unread postby Guinea Pig » Wed May 11, 2005 8:42 am

A lot has been said about Marakele by visitors like Erwin. To tell you the truth, I'm rather sorry we don't drive a 4x4 vehicle as it sounds like a great place to go.

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Thanks and apologies!

Unread postby MCSmarties » Wed May 11, 2005 2:58 pm

Thank you for your comments everybody.
I apologize for posting an inappropriate question in the forum,
I wasn't aware that Pilanesberg wasn't a National Park!
(Though I was wondering why it wasn't mentioned on the front page...)

Many thanks wildtuinman for that link, and Erwin for your comments on Marakele!

To tell the truth, Marakele does sound much better to me but I was hoping to find arguments to explain to my parents why that is so ;-)

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Unread postby Guinea Pig » Wed May 11, 2005 5:34 pm

It's not the end of the world - but we are unfortunately only able to give an answer for a SANParks-run Park. 8)

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Unread postby Bee » Mon May 23, 2005 11:45 am

Hi MCSmarties,

I went to Marakele for the first time at the end of April. Let me say that from a game perspective I was bitterly dissapointed - the odd Kudu and that was about it. The park was also very full that weekend so traffic was a bit of a problem as they do not have an extensive network of roads so everyone is limited to keep passing each other - BUT the scenery is absolutely spectacular.
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Andreas Cierpka
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Unread postby Andreas Cierpka » Mon May 23, 2005 11:48 am

If you want to see the Big Five you have a very little chance to spot them in Marakele. The area is huge and you will have about 40 km offraods to explore the park.
As we just returned from the park and been told by management:

15 buffualos
100 elefants
3 lions

are in the area where the Tlopi camp is.


We saw 8 Rhinos in the area of the caravan park. There are no elefants or lions.

As we have been in Pilansberg as well my recomandation will be:
-) brilliant landscape -> Marakele
-) game viewing -> Pilansberg

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once again Marakele

Unread postby annelies » Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:48 pm

We want to go to Marakele at the end of October for 3 nights. Reading this forum it is a littlebit confusing. Can we or can we not go by f.e. 2x2 Condor? Please let us know. We need to hire a car for our trip in SA and need to know what kind of car.
Thanks,
Annelies, The Netherlands

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Unread postby Wild@Heart » Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:54 pm

Hi Annelies ...

Some info as requested:

SanParks wrote:Marakele National Park is currently divided into two parts (namely the +/- 2500 ha ‘Kwaggasvlakte’ section and the Greater Marakele National Park), by a public gravel road (the Hoopdal Road). Most parts of the park are only accessible by 4x4.


You can also see some more info here: Marakele National Park

I hope this helps a bit ... Maybe someone who has actually visited the Park will give more advise...
Last edited by Wild@Heart on Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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