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 Post subject: Re: Fastest Route Middleburg MP to Orpen Gate
Unread postPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 8:33 am 
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Absolutely an excellent route, Lonehill Birders. :thumbs_up: Just remember, Anna, that Lydenburg has now changed name to Mashishing, with some of the signs reading Lydenburg, and the others Mashishing. :?

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 Post subject: Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger
Unread postPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2012 8:03 am 
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An update, having just returned from 11 days in KNP, towing a caravan. We took the N4 from Pta to Nelspruit, then up to White River - Hazyview - entering at Phabeni Gate. I would recommend this route, since the Nelspruit - Hazyview road is in excellent condition. A few road repairs are under way between White River and Hazyview with 2 slight stop/go delays, but nothing to worry about. Apparently the real delays are throught Bushbuck Ridge after Hazyview, so entering at Phabeni and using the excuse to drive through the park up to Satara makes sense.

Stick to the R40 up to Hazyview and then to Phabeni or even Kruger gate. Don't even think about using the direct route from White River to Numbi or Phabeni which is in a terrible state - potholes, numerous delays and very poor signage to KNP.


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 Post subject: Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 15, 2012 6:00 am 
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carolynn wrote:
Hullo- what is the travelling time from Pretoria to Malelane and is it an easy road all in good condition, but busy I suppose? We need to find an alternative route from PE as going through the Free State is not on anymore, roads I believe are in a bad state? Can anyone comment please? Thank you.


The travelling time from Pretoria to Malelane is about 3.5-4 hours, depending how you drive; the last time I drove it (a few months back) it was in fine condition; the N4, like most of our N-roads, is usually in top form. Since they opened the double lane for most of the way, travelling it can be busy but at least you know you should have an incident-free trip.

I'm not sure which roads in the Free State you are referring to, Carolynn, but the N1 has always been in excellent condition from Colesberg through to Johannesburg. By P.E. I assume you mean Port Elizabeth? If that is the case, I would meet up with the N1, drive from there to Jo'burg, then via the N12 to Witbank/Middelburg, and down the N4 to Malelane. There are still restrictive roadworks around the East Rand for several kilometres on the N12, but if you drive them carefully and slowly, the road soon opens up to an easy drive to Witbank.

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 Post subject: Re: Groblersdal to Phalaborwa
Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2012 7:44 am 
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Hi Terblans (and welcome to the forums if you haven't been welcomed before)

I don't know if it's the shortest/best route but it's one we've recently travelled...

From Groblersdal take the N11 to Marble Hall
From Marble Hall continue on the N11 to Polokwane(Pietersburg) although I think it says N11 Mokopane(Potgietersrus) in Marble Hall - this road will take you to a small town called Roedtan
Once you reach Roedtan turn off the N11 towards Zebediela (R519)
Go through Zebediela and continue on the R519 towards Polokwane
This road will bring you onto the old Pretoria-Polokwane road just before the Shell Ultra City.
Turn right towards Polokwane.
From here you continue on to Tzaneen and Phalaborwa along the normal route.

The general condition of the road is not too bad. It's fairly narrow (not a highway) and you have to keep checking the road signs to make sure you're still on the right route. There aren't many potholes (although keep your eyes open) except a hidden "dip" in the road about 8-10km past Roedtan on the R519 - please don't go fast through that section because you can't see the dip but you will certainly feel it - and if you're doing more than 100kph it could be dangerous.

PS: Also do not drive this route at night - some sections don't have fences and cattle and donkeys might be out on the road.

Hope that helps, drive safe :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: Groblersdal to Phalaborwa
Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2012 8:03 am 
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Sorry Terblans I forgot to say that this route is about 400kms from Groblersdal to Phalaborwa gate. From the gate to Mopani is another 80kms or so....

Your total traveling time would be around 5 hours outside the park and another 3 hours inside... so it will all depend on what time you get away at Groblersdal... however my guess would be that you would have to book something outside the park to overnight - that way you won't have any stress to get to the gate in time the following morning. Phalaborwa gate is very close to the town itself and if you stay in town you can be at the gates very early.

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 Post subject: Re: Fastest Route Middleburg MP to Orpen Gate
Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:10 am 
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Lonehill_Birders wrote:
N4 from Middelburg to Belfast, take R540 via Dullstroom, to Lydenburg.
From Lydenburg R533, via Ohrigstad, and Abel Erasmus Pass travel towards Hoedspruit, but before you get there:
Turn right on the R531, which reads Orpen, Klaserie which will eventually bring you to Orpen Gate.
It takes us 5 hours via this route to get there from Pretoria (without breakfast stops).
My son has just come back from KNP, and he says that road is in the best condition. Other options are slow with 80km/h speed limits through villages and lots of frustrating slow moving vehicles, and domestic animals on the road.
You won't get better if you're after a scenic route. :D


Did this route two weeks ago; it is fine! Just one word of caution: there are some SERIOUS speed bumps on the way into and leaving Dullstroom! Overall; the speed limits on this route are there for a reason! There are a few potholes and some bits of uneven road surface; but these are quite easy to see. After the recent very heavy rains, there is one (small) section before you make the descent towards the Abel Erasmus pass where the left lane has been damaged by water; but once again, this is clearly marked by warning signs.

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 Post subject: Re: Driving from JHB International to Kruger - Directions
Unread postPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:18 pm 
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Hi ElsabedB. I live in Kyalami and can get to Crocodile Bridge gate in about 5 -5.5 hours. The N4 is a super road, now all the roadworks are finished. Schoemanskloof is a good option - fewer slow trucks and more passing places.

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 Post subject: Best route to Punda Maria
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 8:16 am 
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Hi - we are heading for Punda mid April and I was looking for advice as to the best route from Johannesburg.
N1 all the way to the turnoff or via Tzaneen and Giyani?
Thanks


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 Post subject: Re: Best route to Punda Maria
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 9:46 am 
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The best route at this stage would be to take the N1 to Louis Trichardt and then travel past Thoyandou (spelling) to Punda gate. The road that goes past Giyani is under construction with quite a few stop/go waiting periods.

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 Post subject: Re: Best route to Punda Maria
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 10:39 am 
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N1 to Louis Trichardt, then past Thohoyandou is the most direct, and is a pretty good road too. Just adhere strictly to the speed limit, especially from about 30 kms before Louis Trichardt. The stink mouse dogs are out in force along there, distinctive in their brown and blue livery :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Roads to Orpen
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 8:43 am 
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We were there the other week. :dance:

My knowledge of the area will be more limited than local Saffies, but this I what I can tell you.

You can drop down to the R40 from Graskop, which I don't remember being a bad road, it's steep of course and bendy, but otherwise no problem.

Once on the R40 you go north towards Phalaborwa, until you see the Orpen turning.
The road quality is good, but be careful all through Bushbuckridge (which seems to go on for ever!) because there may be pedestrians and livestock crossing the road!!

Once clear of Bushbuck ridge it's very easy.

As I said you take the Orpen turning, and then it's 40kms along a quiet and reasonable road to the gate.

I had read lots of bad reports a year or so back of potholes, so we were a bit wary, but we have now done the journey twice recently and found absolutely no problems.the occasional pothole, like most Saffie roads these days.!!

As I said local Saffie mites may have a better route and advice!!!!

Hope you have a wonderful time!! :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: From JHB to Orpen Gate, via Whiteriver and Hazyview.
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 3:06 pm 
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Hippotragus wrote:
Just to throw a spanner in the works - I always travel the Belfast - Dullstroom - Lydenburg - Ohrigstad - Klaserie road. OK there will be some potholes (where are there no potholes?) and there can be slow traffic over the pass. Otherwise it is a pleasant scenic route and we have never had too many stops.


Just to confuse the issue even more: I also did the Belfast route last September. I did not see any potholes between Belfast and Lydenburg, basically because I could not see the road...densest fog/mist I have ever encountered! But the road was Ok, and quite pleasant. I left JHB (Bedfordview) at about 08:30 in the a.m and arrived at Orpen gate at about 15:30 (and we averaged about 30 km/h between Belfast and Lydenburg, I still cannot be sure when I actually went past Dullstroom). If I could be sure that I had enough time, I would travel through the park, but it is 204 km from Malelane to Tamboti, and about 170-odd from Phabeni to Tamboti, and I guess about 150 from Paul Kruger Gate to Tamboti. Those distances mean some serious time in the park. I would hazard a guess that I would normally allow for 5h30 minutes from JHB to Malelane.

As regards your original question, the road from Nelspruit to White River and then on to Hazyview is only about 65 km, but you should allow about an hour to an hour and 15 minutes for this (last time I was there there was construction on the R40 between White River and Hazyview, and these caused a few delays (but that was back May of 2012). Between Hazyview and Orpen the road is good if busy. If memory serves it is about 130 km, but you should allow about 1 hour 45 minutes for the trip. That means about 3 hours from Nelspruit to Orpen?

Anyway, If you travel via Ohrigstad you can stop at the garage on the way in and buy a catapult from Steven; he is a true enterpreneur. He guarantees his "ketties" are wholly South African and not imported from China. He has different models, anything from ones that will "take out baboons" to ones for "scaring the mosquitoes". He even has a returns policy (his cell number is on each of the "weapons").
But I digress.... :big_eyes:

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 Post subject: Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:48 pm 
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At End of February:
1. On the N4 between Bambi Motel and Montrose (The Northern option) of the two N4 routes there were three stop-go's totalling a delay of approximately 45 minutes .
2. The N4 Southern option through the ZASM Tunnel had no construction, but considerably more heavy and slow-moving trucks. However, fter 9pm and on Sundays there are almost no trucks on this route.
3. The N4 between Montrose and Nelspruit there is ongoing construction with approximately 15 km of "no-pass" zones, which are very slow if you get caught behind a heavy freight vehicle.
4. The N4 toll-road between Nelspruit and Malelane gate is free-flow, with no delays.
5. The R40 road from White-River to Hazyview has one stop-go near Hulula Lakeside Lodge with a time-delay of approximately 25 minutes.

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 Post subject: Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger
Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:33 pm 
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Fynbos,
We do the trip from Stellenbosch to the Kruger Park at least once a year.
From Bloemfontein to Badplaas the N1/N12 option to Machadodorp will be the quickest (but not the shortest)

The other option is via Winburg-Bethlehem-Warden-Vrede-Standerton-Ermelo-Carolina-Badplaas. This is much shorter. We did this route in reverse in September 2012. For the most part the roads are OK EXCEPT for the Warden-Vrede section (which included 20 km of roadworks which meant essentially gravel road), and the Ermelo-Carolina section,which was quite uneven and potholed. Carolina to Badplaas was OK, there are a few stop/go sections as they are rebuilding parts of the road. Note that there are also some of these on the other side of Badplaas (if you plan to travel via Barberton the next day), but these are not too bad.

Hope this helps

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 Post subject: Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 10:46 am 
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Fynbos wrote:
Hi Albert, yes we did plan to go through Baberton on the N4 to Komatipoort, Crocodilebridge and then Lower Sabie. We also thought of Bnf, Kroonstad, Alberton, Secunda, Hendrina, Carolina, Badplaas.

I have another question. We leave KNP at Numbi Gate for Golden Gate. We wonder if we must again go throught Badplaas, Carolina, Breyten, Ermelo, Standerton, Vrede, Warden and enter the camp from Kestell. From Golden Gate we are going to Bfn. Then we are going throught Clarens on the N5.

Sorry i'm a real pain, but we are so unsure which way is the best way!


We did the Komatipoort-Baberton last September, but left the N4 about halfway between Komati and Nelspruit (cannot remember the route number? R 36?). Apparently the Baberton-Nelspruit-N4-Komati is better (quicker).
I am not sure about the N17 option (Secunda-Hendrina) but some other forumites might be able to help. I know Son Godin lives in that area.

Regarding the way back from Numbi to Golden Gate. The route that you describe is the one we followed last September (except we went via Harrismith and Phutaditjhaba, but that is because I needed to drop something in Harrismith).
I can only reiterate what we experienced last year. The Badplaas-Carolina section is OK, except for one section of roadworks. The Carolina-Ermelo section is poor. The section between Ermelo and Standerton is good to OK, and the road from Standerton to Vrede is good. The only real problem was just the other side of Vrede, where it was effectively 15 - 20 km of detours. After that the road is good. We did that route from Lower Sabie to Golden Gate, and, with 2 stopovers, we managed to be at Glen Reenen at 17:00 (left LS at 06:00)

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