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 Post subject: Re: Polokwane to Phalaborwa
Unread postPosted: Tue May 27, 2014 2:05 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2009 4:15 pm
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Location: Kyalami, South Africa.
Hi Hansie11. We did the R71 last week and it is in fine condition and previous road works all finished.

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 Post subject: Re: Polokwane to Phalaborwa
Unread postPosted: Tue May 27, 2014 10:07 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 26, 2013 11:48 am
Posts: 12
Thank you very much for the info. Good to know that some roads apart from the toll roads, are still being maintained.

Hansie

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 Post subject: ROUTE ADVICE - PLEASE
Unread postPosted: Wed May 28, 2014 8:25 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 23, 2010 8:51 pm
Posts: 6
Location: West Rand, Johannesburg.
Hi All, This might be the same old question but it has a twist to it. :naughty:

I am traveling JHB to Satara in mid June with a convoy of 5 vehicles all pulling trailers, the largest being a 3 ton truck. We are setting up a large camp in Satara for 5 weeks for a family re-union. :lol:

Based on all the suggestions which would be the best route for a slow convoy. Uphill the truck will sit on 60 so speed is not an issue. I travel on a Saturday, the week before the school holidays and I am concerned about the Saturday traffic / drivers on the White River - Hazyview route. :wall:

If I am slow in any case, would the Lydenburg - Ohrigstad route be a better option? :hmz:

Any and all advice is appreciated. :gflower:


Last edited by brenjack on Sun Jun 01, 2014 2:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: ROUTE ADVICE - PLEASE
Unread postPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2014 3:39 pm 
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Legendary Virtual Ranger
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Brenjack, I have been thinking of the route I would take.

Unfortunately most routes to Orpen Gate go through passes with narrow roads. I think my next choice would be Kruger Gate.

The highway really poses no problems. I would then suggest the Schoeman's Kloof pass towards Nelspruit. It is in excellent condition and should not pose problems.

The road between Whiteriver and Hazyview is a bit of a challenge, but again, it is a good road.

Once in Hazyview, the mountainous stuff is over. There are a few narrow roads, but the upkeep has been good.

You would have to leave in time to give a good 5 hours between Kruger Gate and Satara.. but what a joy to drive that road.

I am getting quite excited just thinking about it. :dance: :dance: :dance:

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 Post subject: Re: ROUTE ADVICE - PLEASE
Unread postPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2014 4:20 pm 
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Location: Somerset West, Cape Town
Brenjack, we come up from the Cape, so bypass the Jhb area on the N12/N4 out to Kruger side of the world. We always make our first night close to the southern border, so I am not sure if you will have enough time to do as Tieroog suggests, but that would be my suggestion too.

We always find it is just as slow going to try and get to entr the park on the western border as it is to take the N4 to Malelane or Croc Bridge and drive up to a camp higher in the park. Same for leaving the park. Allow about 6 hours to drive from Croc Bridge to Satara. And you will have less traffic stress once you are in the park.

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 Post subject: Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2014 12:37 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Sat May 19, 2007 12:07 pm
Posts: 259
Location: South Africa
Hi All,

Just an update on road conditions from our last trip - Got back 4 June.

R40 (I think - it has 2 R numbers) from Mica to Phalaborwa if full of potholes and one spends a large amount of time riding on the shoulder rather than the road. The main other problem is that the local taxis then try to find away around you and the potholes and spend a lot of time riding next to one or into the oncoming traffic, so just bare this in mind as one cannot then swerve to miss the potholes...

Then for Durbanites not going through Swaziland, the R36 (I think again) is quite bad from Ermelo to Carolina.

And another side note - we took the panorama route to avoid the rest of the R40 - None of the sights are free anymore, and there are no signs stating the entrance fees, so it is quite possible that the person on duty makes up his/her own mind on what to charge :evil: Then once one gets in the places are usually full of hawkers/beggars... :evil: We only went into the three rondavels site which totally put us off the rest.

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 Post subject: Re: ROUTE ADVICE - PLEASE
Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 09, 2014 3:31 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2009 10:00 am
Posts: 110
Location: Randburg
Hi Brenjack, just maybe check with regards to roadworks between Nelspruit and Malelane. Waiting times can range from 10min to 2 hours.

When I traveled, we took the N4 to Nelspruit and then up to White River, Hazyview and in the park at Kruger gate. But then again, I was travelling towards CB.

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 Post subject: Johannesburg to Phalaborwa
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2014 3:46 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:39 am
Posts: 4
Hello,

Next week I'm driving to Kruger from Johannesburg to Phalaborwa.

I'm going to use the N1 road as per the Google Map. I hope this road is best option to reach Phalaborwa.

How often could I find gas station on this road? Are they available N1 road side or I have to drive off N1 to find a gas station? I'm thinking of filling up at Mokopane or Polokwane.

Since it is a long drive, what would be the best place for a stop over?

This is first time driving in SA. Is there anything that I should be aware of when driving in SA, specially Johannesburg to Phalaborwa. Driving in some countries very chaotic.


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 Post subject: Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2014 4:25 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 24, 2007 4:45 pm
Posts: 33
Location: Netherlands
Returned home today after a great family trip. About road conditions: when we took the R40 up north, the road signs still advice to not drive to Numbi gate but instead try Phabeni. Which we did, those roads were just fine.

Worse were the roadworks on the N4 between Malelane and Nelspruit. We had to wait nearly an hour before we could go on. Made us nearly miss our flight... Average waiting time was said to be 90 mins.


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 Post subject: Re: Johannesburg to Phalaborwa
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2014 6:18 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:39 am
Posts: 4
Meandering Mouse wrote:
Kumara, a very warm welcome :gflower:

There are many good gas stations on the N1, so you really do not have to pull into any city.

I use the Tzaneen turn off and just follow the signs. Enjoy your journey. It really is very scenic.



Thanks and appreciate your comments


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 Post subject: Re: Johannesburg to Phalaborwa
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2014 6:35 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:39 am
Posts: 4
arks wrote:
Hello Kumara.W and Welcome!

You don't say where you are from, but "gas station" betrays perhaps North America? In South Africa they are "petrol" stations :wink: and amongst other things, you are expected to give the attendant who fills your tank -- no self-serve -- a small tip. At least now you can usually use a credit card to pay (but the tip should be cash), altho not always, so best to be prepared with a supply of cash on hand, just in case.

It is a fairly long drive from Joburg to Phalaborwa and if you are unfamiliar with the roads and just coming off a long overseas flight, I would suggest that you find a hotel or B&B close to the airport and rest up first before heading out. Several forumites do so regularly and can recommend good options.

It also can be confusing getting out of the airport and onto the N1, especially if this is, as you suggest, your first experience of driving on the left?

Have a great trip!



Sorry for the language mishap gas vs petrol. Well, I'm no American but from a British colonized country, Sri Lanka. I don't know how I mixed up, perhaps too much travelling, in SL we always use "Petrol Shed" or "Petrol Station". Anyway...

BTW, thanks for your comments, really appreciate. Tip thingy is very useful.

Well, I've been to SA many times and never driven myself or gone to Kruger. This time out of business work I'm coming with my family to see real wild side of SA.

In fact I'm coming to Joburg a day prior to the day driving to Kruger. I will reach Joburg(hotel) around 6pm and stay at a hotel. And then next day morning around 7am I'm planning to leave for Kruger on N1. I will spend couple of nights at Kurhula before entering into Kruger.

Are there road signs on N1 when there is a petrol station near by?


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 Post subject: Re: Johannesburg to Phalaborwa
Unread postPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2014 6:56 am 
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Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:39 am
Posts: 4
Meandering Mouse wrote:
Kumara, it is very well sign posted. The sign posts often start appearing long before the petrol station. There is an "Ultracity" and ''One Stop" for sure. Both are more than adequate.

The petrol stations are well suited for the long distance traveler with good clean ablutions, restaurants, and small shops for buying basics you might need for the road. The restaurants usually belong to a franchise, so there is consistent quality. I like to get coffee on the way to keep my eyes open and on the road.

I often stop at one just before the Tzaneen turn off. It is newer than the rest. I just like to be filled up before I hit the smaller roads. It is a few kilometers from Pholekwane. You should be able to bypass Pholekwane completely.



Many thanks.

By the way, how long does it take from Nelspruit to Panarama Falls. I guess this area is very beautiful. I'm considering of on my way back just go around Panarama Fallls area and come back to Nelspruit and then head back on N4 to Johannesburg.

Which road would be the best as I see R40, R37, R537?


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 Post subject: Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger
Unread postPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2014 1:34 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2011 10:07 am
Posts: 39
JoBerg to Punda???
I read somewhere about problems on road last October (2013) on nearing Punda Gate. It sounded horrific.
We are lucky to come to South Africa (Kruger) each year and have never had any problems.
The advice given was to phone the gate so I've got that number with our booking papers.
My questions are;
Have there been any problems there since?
South Africans have in the past told us best route is N1 to Polokwane, R81 to Giyani join R524 to Punda- this is way we went last year. But before that when starting in Punda we'd gone N1 to Louis Trichardt (Makhado) then R524. Is route via Giyani still considered faster?
Thanks

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August 2014: Punda 23-25, Sirheni 26-29, Satara 30-2 September, Lower Sabie 3-5


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 Post subject: JoBerg airport to Punda? Help please
Unread postPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2014 2:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2011 10:07 am
Posts: 39
JoBerg to Punda???
I read somewhere about problems on road last October (2013) on nearing Punda Gate. It sounded horrific.
We are lucky to come to South Africa (Kruger) each year and have never had any problems.
The advice given was to phone the gate so I've got that number with our booking papers.
My questions are;
1) Have there been any problems there since? (I see there have been similar road blocks near Nelspruit)
2) Is Punda Gate the best place to phone. We plan to phone once landed and on our way driving
3) South Africans have, in the past, told us best route is; N1 to Polokwane, R81 to Giyani join R524 to Punda- this is the way we went last year. But before that when starting our Kruger trip at Punda camp, we'd gone N1 to Louis Trichardt (Makhado) then R524. Is route via Giyani still considered faster?
We know we can arrive in plenty of time at Punda Gate even having included a rapid shop (Pick n Pay) stop. But we wouldn't know what to do if we came across a blockade.
Thanks

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August 2014: Punda 23-25, Sirheni 26-29, Satara 30-2 September, Lower Sabie 3-5


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 Post subject: Re: JoBerg airport to Punda? Help please
Unread postPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2014 3:17 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
Junior Virtual Ranger

Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2009 4:15 pm
Posts: 838
Location: Kyalami, South Africa.
I don't think there have been any problems since then, but they can flare up at any time, without warning. Best to phone Punda Maria Camp or Gate before you leave the airport and check.

I have been using the R81 from Polokwane - Giyani and then R524 to Punda Maria Gate. The R81 has fairly recently been upgraded and is a pleasure. There are a few potholes at one point, but a month ago we saw they were being fixed.

I have not done the Makhado route, so cannot comment on that.

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Mopani 18-20 Oct 2014
Shingwedzi 20-22 Oct 2014
Punda Maria 22-25 Oct 2014

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