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 Post subject: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2010 4:34 pm 
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Hi all,

We (2 adults and 10 month old baby girl) have booked 2 nights in Mountain Zebra in April. We've never been to MZ so any reviews/tips/etc will be highly appreciated.

We would have spent the next 2 nights after MZ, at Addo, before moving onto Knysna, but Addo is fully booked. Now I have to make a choice.... spend 3 or 4 nights at MZ and then move onto Knysna OR spend 2 nights at MZ, 2 nights Karoo and them onto Knysna. Is 3/4 nights in MZ not a bit much??

Any suggestions!? I am a bit worried about our 10-month-old as she can be quite LOUD and as such we booked guest houses or units as far as possible from others so as to not disturb our neighbours and this is what worries me about Karoo. I've never been to Karoo NP, but from what I see on the photos, it seems as if the units are VERY close to one another - moreso than other SanParks??

Anyways, keeping in mind our 10-month-old (actually its not the 10-month-old that is the problem, it is the parents...... always worrying about the neighours!!!!!) what would you suggest:

2 Nights MZ
2 Nights Karoo
And then onto Knysna

or

3-4 Nights MZ
And then onto Knysna

We dont mind driving around and gameviewing that much - to me a perfect/relaxing holiday is one where I can sit on the verandah/deck/stoep and just look at spectacular scenery - whether that be the sea,waterhole,desert......

Thanks in advance!!


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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2010 5:16 pm 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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Hi siy, welcome to the forum.

I have been to both MZ and Karoo and enjoyed every moment.

The accomodation is reasonably well spaced, I do not think you should be concerned about the baby, afterall they are God's gift.

Please keep in mind that Karoo and MZ are quite far apart, possibly go to one on your way down and to the other on your way up, provided of course you live here where it is is noizy and polluted.

Enjoy your trip. :)

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Done 144 visits to National Parks.
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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2010 8:56 pm 
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Location: West Sussex, England
Siy
Why not stay an extra day at either Karoo or MZ then go to Storm River Mouth and have day trips to Knysna. At Storm River the accommodation is on the beach.
Animals and fantastic mountain veiws at Karoo or MZ
Fantastic sea views, sunsets, walks and a few animals including dolphin and the occasional whale at Storm River
Just a thought
Regards
JDW

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2015 - Jun/Jul - Scotland
2015 - Oct/Nov - South Africa (Addo, MZNP, Camdeboo, Storm River, Bontebok, Hermanus, Cape Town)


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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2010 10:18 pm 
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Legendary Virtual Ranger
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Siy, a very warm welcome to you. :D

Firstly, I can understand your concern about a noisy youngster.. been there and got the t-shirt.

All I can do at this point is give a bit of feedback on the camps. (Addo and Mount Zebra)
Both camps are extremely well equiped and prepared. They are possibly equally prepared for a vocal toddler.

In terms of where I might want to spend a precious amount of time.. Mount Zebra bowled me over. But then, I was not travelling with a toddler. Non the less, what an amazing place.

I have never been to Storms river, not yet. I cannot comment there.

All that I would say at this point is: define your needs, relax in knowing that both camps are equally good in dealing with little folk..
enjoy the ride :thumbs_up:

Another thing, keep trying for Addo. It is such a family friendly Park. If I "want" something, I go onto the forum at 6:30. I look to see if anything is available and I just keep trying.

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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2010 10:22 am 
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Hi Siy :)

Where are you travelling from? If from the north then, as mentioned above, rather stay at MZ on the way down and then at Karoo on the way up again or vice versa. Both are awesome parks.

Don't worry about your toddler, the parks are family destinations anyway!

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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2010 10:43 am 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Location: Johannesburg - too far from the closest Sanpark
It might also be worth looking at Camdeboo NP?

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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2010 3:03 pm 
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Hi all,

Thanks for the replies. Firstly, Storms......... for those who have not been there......... AMAZING, AMAZING, AMAZING PLACE!!!!!!!! Just because I love the Kruger Park so much, I put Storms in second place of favorite ALL TIME (not only SanParks) destinations. I've been to Storms plenty times and try to go every year!!!

Right, my route:

Leave from Pretoria
Sleep over "somewhere" along the way
MZNP
MZNP
Karoo or Addo (Addo has no availability and I dont know Karoo AT ALL)
Karoo or Addo (Addo has no availability and I dont know Karoo AT ALL)
Knysna Tree-top Lodge (anyone ever been there??)
Storms for a few nights
And then on our way back to Pta we'll be fitting in Cape Town, Tankwa and Namaqua.

My main question is: Seeing that I cannot get accom at Addo (will however keep on trying), will you suggest 2 FURTHER nights at MZNP or rather 2 nights at KAROO. Four nights at MZNP "feels" a bit much, but never been there so I wouldn't know.

Once again, thanks for the chats!!


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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2010 3:30 pm 
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Siy, I honestly did not expect much from Mountain Zebra and I am now planning to spend at least 5 nights there sometime next year.

It is not a very big park in terms of roads and driving possibilites, but it is wonderful from the perspective of magnificent scenery. I was also taken aback by their animal population. The mountain Zebra, stole the show.

They also have a growing Cheetah population and there is a chance of seeing one on your drives. In addition to the Cheetah, there are the Black Rhino, including one with a youngster.

My favourite sighting was a family of Meercat that were very content to let me admire them a while. I found the camp itself utterly charming and the staff could not do enough to meet everyone's needs.

In terms of shopping, there is an excellent SPAR in Cradock where it is possible to stock up on perishables.

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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2010 10:13 pm 
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I agree with MM...MZ is a beautiful place with lots of animals for your toddler to look at. I think you will be happy there for 4 nights especially if you stay in the guest house. I have some photos further down the page (can't remember how to do a link!)


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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 10:02 am 
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Location: Krugersdorp
Looking at your route I woudl also say 4 nights at MZ. MM as said it all, fantastic park! And you can spend a day at the museums in Cradock.

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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 7:08 pm 
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Image

Image

Go to Mountain Zebra and spend there two days and you will have enough time to do both of the routes and try to find the rhinoes. Landscape is great and accommodation is nice as well.


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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 8:07 pm 
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kathy sa wrote:
I agree with MM...MZ is a beautiful place with lots of animals for your toddler to look at. I think you will be happy there for 4 nights especially if you stay in the guest house. I have some photos further down the page (can't remember how to do a link!)

This photos , Kathy ?

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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 9:02 pm 
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Yeah! thanks MATTHYS....thats what I wanted to do but can't remember how to do it :clap:


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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 9:43 am 
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Thanks for all the replies!! We now have our route sorted with 2 nights at MZ and 2 nights at Bizweni Cottage on one of the 4x4 trails within the Karoo NP. Anybody been to Bizweni Cottage?

This weekend we are off to Marakele for the first time.

Siy


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 Post subject: Re: Mountain Zebra and Karoo National Parks
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 5:40 pm 
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Embizweni Cottage is a relatively new development in Karoo NP (opened in 2009). I have not been there yet - but I am certain you will not regret your decision to make Karoo NP part of your itinerary. So many persons - so many opinions, but in my opinion Karoo NP is one of the gems amongst our National Parks. We were there on our 40th visit during January. Most of our visits is just 1 night stay-overs, but we have have also spent up to 13 nights at a time in the park (and several 4 - 7 day holidays). I am sure you will enjoy your stay. I cannot drive north (towards Kruger), or south (coming back) and miss a night at Karoo NP. To us it is a compulsory overnight facility.

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