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 Post subject: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to enter
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 7:21 am 
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Hi All
I would greatly appreciate some advice. I will be coming to KNP in Feb 2015,from Perth Western Australia with family of four two parents and two adult children 19 & 21. We will be arriving from KMIA collecting 4x4 hire car at the airport. We are staying 2 nights, Lower Sabie, 2 nights Satara, 2 nights Olifants and 1 night Skukuza before flying out to Durb's.
I would like to know which gate should we come into KNP bearing in mind the plane lands at 12.30pm pick up car and need to shop for supplies?
Secondly where should we shop for supplies on Route to KNP?
Also need to consider safety of parking at shopping centre, would hate to start our trip with car or items in car taken before we start our trip??
We are stay in cottages or Bungalows I think they supply linen, cutlery, plates etc, not sure about towels thou??
Many thanks :?


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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 8:23 am 
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Location: CAPE TOWN
Hi Nodrog
Welcome to the forum you will find loads of information here!!

you definitely get towels even a small bar of soap.

There are a number of entrances you can use - it is however a good idea to keep track of the roadworks that are going on on a number of them as this will affect your time.

We have just been and picked up our car at Nelspruit much the time you do and we entered at the Phabeni gate with plenty of time to get to Skukuza - you have further to go to LS but I am sure you will make it

Malelane is a good one as well but there are major road works going on at the moment that can hold you up for anything to an hour - it will be a good idea to check on the progress early in January - maybe it will be finished!!

For various reasons it seems to be that Numbi is a gate to be avoided - unrest and roadworks

I cannot really help you with shopping as we did not bother - we made do with things we could buy at the shops and the great new restaurants that have opened in a number of camps - I am sure others will help you with that. I have used the great Spar at Malelane if you go that way - very easy to get to and great variety

Always make sure your valuables are either with you or locked away in the boot

have a wonderful time


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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 9:02 am 
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Hi Nodrog and welcome to the forums!

Suebfly has made a very valid point - Malelane/Croc Bridge Gates are nearer to LS than any others but roadworks are a problem. Agree that Phabeni is probably the best to use at present but you must take into consideration that you will have about 80/90kms to travel in the park to get to LS. This is roughly a 3hr journey but with gates closing at 6.30 in February you should make it if you are through Phabeni before 3 in the afternoon. Shopping can be done at Hazyview on the way through - there are several Supermarkets we have normally used Checkers where almost everything that is needed can be bought.

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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 9:04 am 
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Welcome to the forums Nodrog. :gflower:
Sue has given you sound advice, so far.

Regarding shopping, if you go in through Phabeni Gate, you can shop in Hazyview, which has several good supermarkets, or if you go in through Malelane Gate, as Sue has said there is a good Spar at Malelane, and a Pick n Pay, both can be recommended!!

If the roadworks are finished, you may actually be better to enter through Croc Bridge rather than Malelane, as it is more convenient for Lower Sabie.

Whatever you decide, I hope you all have a wonderful time in my most favourite place!!! :dance:

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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 9:25 am 
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Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2014 6:50 am
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Hi All
Thank you for the warm welcome to your forum.
I will most definitely continue to review the site for updates on news regarding road works etc before coming out to SA. I do know the hazyview. white River area as I have been to KNP before, but is was over 20 years ago and no doubt changed in this time. My family and I often do long road trips across Australia, the last one was 10.000 km's from Perth to Tasmania in January, very hot. So we are used to roughing it on the road and travelling light. My kids are very good at shopping for basic food supplies and thankfully miss all the junk food on the shelves. We will be looking at fresh fruit, veg ,meat, bottled water, fire lighters etc.
We anticipate very slow drives through the park. 1. because we are very conscious of rules and very big on wildlife, conservation etc 2 Because the kids have never been here before and will want to stop every bend, very keen photographers etc.
As long as we have enough time to get from KMIA, shop for supplies and get to LS gate before 18.30 Hrs I am not too worried about which entrance we take except Numbi not heard anything good out this gate.
Thank you for the advice.... :)


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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 9:47 am 
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There are also stalls along the road selling fresh fruit and nuts - depending on the time of year and what is in season. A huge amount of our fruit is grown in the Nelspruit area so there should be a good variety at that time of the year. if you can get nuts they are very very yummy.

When we were there in June the avos were in season - very cheap and ripen up fast in the car. Unfortunatley the main fruit in season in the winter is citrus which we DON'T take into the park. The elephants will sniff out oranges even if they are in a closed boot!! however I am sure you will have a better variety in the summer - definitely worth pulling over if the stall is on your side of the road


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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 2:54 pm 
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suebfly wrote:
When we were there in June the avos were in season - very cheap and ripen up fast in the car. Unfortunatley the main fruit in season in the winter is citrus which we DON'T take into the park. The elephants will sniff out oranges even if they are in a closed boot!!


:shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:
And there I have been taking oranges into the park for the past 40 years.......

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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 3:07 pm 
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I have never heard about the oranges either :?


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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 3:52 pm 
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Or me!!!!! :redface: :redface: :redface:

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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 4:09 pm 
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Oranges are only a problem in the Addo elephant .. they used to raid the orange farms alongside the park and often surplus oranges were dumped into the park for the ellies but the KNP ellies are not the same ./ well that's what I was told .we always take oranges into the park .. so I don't think you would have a problem there

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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 4:18 pm 
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Hugh is correct. Visitors were not permitted to take any citrus into Addo for many years. This is because they used to lure the elephants to the viewing area with oranges when the park first opened. The ellies then grew to love oranges, and as they say, an elephant never forgets.

But now, even that rule has been removed at Addo. The generations of ellies now in Addo obviously do not associate citrus as previous generations did.

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It's not too late at all. You just don't yet know what you are capable of. Mahatma Gandhi


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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 4:18 pm 
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Hi Nodrog

A few essentials, in my book

1. Thermos, travel mugs - nothing nicer than a cup of tea/coffee at a waterhole in the morning.
2. Binoculars
3. If you are self catering, your booking form will list utensils, so check that. Any communal kitchens = no utensils.
4. We usually bring an abbreviated picnic set as we like to use the skottles at the picnic sites (Mlondozi is a great spot near lower Sabie) and often find the utensils at the camps lack things like a sharp knife.
5. A cooler (eskie) will be useful. February can be hot and you will want to keep meat etc cold while switching camps. We bring a soft cooler with us inside our suitcase, or purchase cheap cooler in SA.
6. We usually take reusable shopping bags as these are great for organising food etc and easy to move from place to place.

Have a wonderful time.

Janine

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KNP June 2015
Mopani, Tamboti, Satara, Skukuza, Croc Bridge


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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 4:45 pm 
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sorry maybe I am overdramatic about the oranges. I once saw an elephant completely trash a Mercedes to get to the oranges in the boot (I admit not in Kruger) . A few years ago one followed us along the road for ages and ages (in Kruger) until we realised we had the windows open and we were eating oranges. So those two occasions and I just rather take all the other delicious fruit SA has to offer and leave the oranges at home :D :redface:


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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 4:57 pm 
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Hi Nodrog,

Good advice from Suebfly and others but I still want to share my experience. In late May I arrived at 12.30 at KMIA and then drove a hired car to Phabeni gate and from there to Lower Sabie where the camp closed at 17.30.

The distance from the airport to Lower Sabie is 175 km (I took notes), out of which 95 km in KNP. Because the long queue at Avis I did not leave KMIA until 13.15. The road to Kruger is fine but not very well signposted everywhere. It is quite hilly most of the part and one need a good engine to manage >100km/hr. At least you are used to left-hand traffic. After gate check-in and after shopping a new map I left the gate about 14.45. Having less than 3 hours I had to drive pretty fast and only stop for big 5 (I saw rhino, elephant, buffalo plus a hyena). Did not speed but can tell there was a speed control on the road to Skukuza. In the other direction! With 15-20 minutes margin I came to Sunset Dam. What a relief after a “traumatic” experience of missing my LH connection in Frankfurt 2 days earlier, but that is another story.

Planning to go to Komatiepoort (close to CB) for shopping the following day and being exhausted (travelling alone to SA for the first time) I bought at the camp shop breakfast food, and cheese, bread and wine for dinner. Got into bed at 8pm. The next morning, my 10-day solo trip started lovely with the Fish Eagle screaming in beautiful light at Sunset Dam. That is wonderful Africa. Convenience prevailed and so I never did go to Komatiepoort but bought food and drinks at the camp shops and ate at some restaurants.

You are principally 4 adults and want to stock up quite a lot outside KNP. However, I do not think there is time for shopping in Hazyview even if the camp closes 1 hour later. It could become very tight. Especially if you are arriving directly from Australia, I would suggest you drive comfortably to Lower Sabie, shop breakfast food at the camp and have dinner or buy take away (if available late in the afternoon) at M&B. The following day you can have a nice drive to CB and out of the park. From what I understand the shops in Komatiepoort are good.

The alternative is to drive from KMIA to CB gate and shop in Malelane or Komatiepoort, provided the road conditions allow for that. In either case the CB bridge must not be flooded.

There are many posts about shopping in Komatiepoort.

Cheetahlady’s advice are very good. I went on a bush braai at LS and it can really be recommended.

I am sure you will have a great time.


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 Post subject: Re: International visitor, what to bring and which gate to e
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 5:02 pm 
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suebfly wrote:
sorry maybe I am overdramatic about the oranges. I once saw an elephant completely trash a Mercedes to get to the oranges in the boot (I admit not in Kruger) . A few years ago one followed us along the road for ages and ages (in Kruger) until we realised we had the windows open and we were eating oranges. So those two occasions and I just rather take all the other delicious fruit SA has to offer and leave the oranges at home :D :redface:

I have heard similar stories too - that they would also go for orange scented items, like lip-ice. Whether that is a tale or not, I do not know. I know they were very strict at Addo for a very long time because the ellies could easily sniff out the oranges and would try and get them from the cars.

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It's not too late at all. You just don't yet know what you are capable of. Mahatma Gandhi


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