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Advice on where to stay / how long - 1st trip to the North"

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Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2009 7:46 pm
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Sun Sep 07, 2014 12:52 pm Unread post
We would really appreciate some advice...I have been visiting the Southern Park on an annual basis ever since I was a toddler and since then continued the tradition with our own family and we do absolutely love it... but we have never explored the North (only ever gone as far as Orpen Gate) and after reading all the fantastic TRs we have decided that next year (2015) we need to intoduce ourselves to the Northern part of the Park!

We will start off as always with a week at our timeshare at Ngwenya Lodge which is very close to Crocodile Bridge (16 Oct to 23 Oct 2015) and then we want to head North...I have looked at the map and read a little and am considering this itinerary:

23 Talamati Tented Camp
24 Talamati Tented Camp
25 Olifants
26 Letaba
27 Mopani
28 Bataleur
29 Shingwedzi
30 Punda Maria
31 Pafuri

We planned two nights at Talamita as the drive from Croc Bridge on the first day will be a long one. Is the rest too ambitious, only spending one night at all the latter camps? Should we rather spend two nights at Olifants or Letaba rather than one at each? and ditto for other camps? Is there somewhere else that we should consider that is not on the list?

I know that some camps are more basic than others and I am certain that the kids would enjoy a dip in a swimming pool to cool off - which camps have swimming pools? Are you allowed to use the pool at a nearby camp if there is no pool at our smaller camp? We usually head out at the crack of dawn, and return for a swim in the heat of the day before heading out again for a final drive before the gates close?

Will we need to have all our food packed for the week or are the shops at the camps stocked with meat/charcoal/wine/water etc?

Any other advice for us Northern Newbies?!! (we Southern Sissies need an Induction plan please!) :)

Really appreciate your thoughts...Thanks!!
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Re: Advice on where to stay / how long - 1st trip to the Nor

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Sun Sep 07, 2014 1:02 pm Unread post
Yes definitely do 2 camps where you can so merge Letaba and Olifants. In fact I'd spend 3 nights in Letaba and cut out Mopani as well. Then go to Shingwedzi and spend 3 nights there. You can easily get to the Bateleur and Punda Maria areas from there. I take it by Pafuri you mean the Pafuri camp concession?


Re: Advice on where to stay / how long - 1st trip to the Nor

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Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2009 7:46 pm
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Sun Sep 07, 2014 1:32 pm Unread post
Thanks saraf...I did mean the Pafuri concession...Also, do you have an opinion on Tamboti Tented Camp vs Talamati...I think I am veering towards Tamboti?


Re: Advice on where to stay / how long - 1st trip to the Nor

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Sun Sep 07, 2014 1:42 pm Unread post
Oh boy, now you are asking :lol:

If I had to choose it would be Talamati, only because it's slightly more central with more options on the roads - and the H7 near Orpen has never really been kind to us. Tamboti has excellent views of the river from the tents, Talamati has a very good hide.


Re: Advice on where to stay / how long - 1st trip to the Nor

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Sun Sep 07, 2014 2:13 pm Unread post
I would try to get a tour of the ruins near the Pafuri picnic site . and maybe combine a few of those nights Less rush . I think Talamati is a better option that Tamboti especially if you have children The ablution blocks are far away and not safe to wander around at night . All sounds super though and I am sure you will enjoy the less crowded North ( people wise)


Re: Advice on where to stay / how long - 1st trip to the Nor

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Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2011 5:57 am
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Sun Sep 07, 2014 2:49 pm Unread post
Oh wow - I think you are going to regret asking. There are so many lovely places up North. I definitely would give Mopani a miss - it is very busy with conferences and not a great camp. I am sure you can visit it to see the dam and enjoy food at the excellent restaurant but don't waste a night there. Sirheni is a wonderful bush camp if you have an extra night. Letaba and Olifants are totally different - my favourite two camps in the whole park definitely try to have at least one night each
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