Skip to Content

Kruger in December

Discuss the different camps and roads of the Kruger National Park
User avatar
Virtual Ranger
Virtual Ranger
Posts: 1658
Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2005 4:24 pm
Location: UK

Re: Kruger in December

Unread post by Yoda » Wed Mar 26, 2014 10:14 am

We have spent 2 consecutive Xmas's in Kruger.

As has been said above, it is business as usual.
But it does tend to be very busy over that period.

User avatar
tent dweller
Junior Virtual Ranger
Junior Virtual Ranger
Posts: 448
Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2011 7:35 pm

Re: Kruger in December

Unread post by tent dweller » Thu Mar 27, 2014 5:54 am

yoda, have to agree with you there, the park is very busy BUT you have to be very selective about where you go and also what times you choose to do certain activities.
PRETORIUSKOP 20 - 21 December 2015
TAMBOTI 22 - 24 December 2015
OLIFANTS 25 - 27 December 2015 (with a view)
LETABA 28 - 31 December 2015
MOPANI 01 - 03 January 2016 (with a view)
PRETORIUSKOP 04 -06 January 2016

User avatar
Posts: 20
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2012 8:49 am
Location: Heart, Soul and Mind in the Bush. Body, sadly, in Fourways

Re: Kruger in December

Unread post by SAGecko » Tue Jun 24, 2014 7:08 pm

We've been on a Dad's 'n Boys trip to the Kruger for the last 7 years or so...

Some years have been seriously hot, and some just hot. And on one or two days it was freezing! Be prepared and always take a warm something.

User avatar
Posts: 20
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2012 8:49 am
Location: Heart, Soul and Mind in the Bush. Body, sadly, in Fourways

Re: Kruger in December

Unread post by SAGecko » Sun Nov 09, 2014 10:07 am

tent dweller wrote:SAGecko, over December 2013 it rained solidly for 3 days, not hard rain, just a light, soaking kind of rain. Before the rains started it was boiling hot and after the rain stopped it was boiling hot X2.

Ja, we did our Dads 'n Boys at Punda in 2013. Not the best weather to be honest. We were expecting a good hot week that far north. Instead we got rain and drizzle. We even had to put the heater on in the Vito while we were driving in the early morning.

This year we're doing Letaba from the 15th. Should be nice and sweaty :-)

User avatar
Tessa G
Senior Virtual Ranger
Senior Virtual Ranger
Posts: 3941
Joined: Fri Sep 05, 2014 3:15 pm
Location: Strand, Cape Town

Re: Kruger in December

Unread post by Tessa G » Sun Nov 09, 2014 3:37 pm

December in the park is seriously hot, but hey, its Kruger and its a holiday. Just nothing else like it and being someone who doesn't take well to the heat, I still love it and always find ways around it.

When going out for a drive, always have plenty of ice cold drinks, wear cool, loose, open necked clothing and keep wet cloths in the cooler box, so if the heat starts getting to you, just put the cloth round your neck.

We always go out early for drives and back during the heat of the day to relax. Then at about 4ish we pack our cooler box again, go out on another drive and find a waterhole or river and enjoy the last few hours of the day before heading back to camp to light our evening fire. OOoooooh I am just getting goose bumps thinking of it. 50 days to go!!!

There is nothing like the iconic sound of the Woodland Kingfishers and Cuckoos as well as the variety of birds to enjoy. KNP in summer just has something so special about it. Been in the driers months, but found it so lacking in bird song and it felt like something was missing!! Not that we didnt have a wonderful time then as well :D

Give me Kruger ANYTIME!
Current TR: The Awakening of a Parched Kruger - Tessa & Dave Dec 2016/17
TR: Swathes of Colour at West Coast National Park
TR: 23 Days with Tessa & Dave - From Head to Tail DEC 2015

Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2015 12:21 pm

Re: Kruger in December

Unread post by MarisN » Mon Sep 14, 2015 4:53 pm

Has anyone been to the following Bush Camps in December:

1) Shimuwini
2) Sirheni

We have booked these for our trip Dec 2015 and just need to know a few things:

1) Is the fans sufficient to fight the heat in the units and do you have electricity the entire day to keep them running?
2) State of the fridges - are they well maintained to keep your items cold? Not talking about freezer just normal fridge as I know they have a communal freezer.
3) Sirheni - what is the water situation in front of the camp since the dam wall broke? Still any water around or should we rather change our booking?

Many Thanks

M :) :)
Dec 2015/Jan 2016:

17 - 20 Dec 2015 - Lower Sabie
20-21 Dec 2015 - Tamboti
21 - 24 Dec 2015 - Olifants
24 - 26 Dec 2015 - Letaba
26-28 Dec 2015 - Shimuwini
28 - 31 Dec 2015 - Mopani
31 Dec - 2 Jan - Letaba
2 - 3 Jan - Olifants

User avatar
Posts: 13634
Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:31 pm
Location: Sheffield Beach KZN North Coast, South Africa

Re: Kruger in December

Unread post by Elsa » Mon Sep 14, 2015 5:15 pm

M, the fans should be able to keep much of the heat at bay unless you are more heat sensitive and its over a very hot spell as can be in December.
I'm just trying to remember the hours that they switch off the power?
but do have a read through the topic Shimuwini Camp possibly it will be mentioned in there somewhere.

The fridges there do work very well, or did so when we last visited and kept the food icy cold, in fact it almost froze some of our provisions! :wink:

I believe there is not much water in front of Sirheni but from the comments Sirheni I wouldn't let it put you off! :thumbs_up:
and of course it can depend on how much rainfall there is before your visit.
Kruger - 22nd May to 8th June 2017 8)

Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2015 3:06 am

Christmas in the Kruger

Unread post by Busymum40 » Tue Oct 20, 2015 3:26 am

Hi folks!

Our family (myself, husband, 2 kids + my husband's Mom and Dad) have a trip to the Kruger coming up in December/ January - we have managed to book 4 weeks in the Park, starting at Biyamiti and finishing up at Punda Maria (all things being equal with the rains, of course!). We are desperately excited about spending Christmas and New Year in the Park, as it's the first time we've done so (not our first trip, though - we've racked up almost 100 nights there over the last few years! Some people go to Disneyland...we go to the Kruger! :P )

What I'm wondering is whether there are any ideas from folks who have spent Christmas there before about what to bring, particularly for kids? I've sorted presents and have managed to Ninja some Santa stuff, but we are coming from Perth, Western Australia, so luggage limits are a bit of a thing. We do fly Singapore Airlines, who are quite generous with their baggage allowances, but we are moving between a few camps over the 4 weeks (Biyamiti to Lower Sabie to Satara to Letaba to Shingwedzi to Sirheni to Punda), so don't want to be carting a lot of stuff around.

Do the rest camps do anything special over Christmas/ New Year? We've booked a bush braai out of Satara, but any ideas gratefully received!

Many thanks

User avatar
Meandering Mouse
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Award: Forumite of the year - Eagle Award (2016)
Award: Angel of the Year (2015)
Posts: 15547
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2005 8:47 pm
Location: meandering between senility and menopause

Re: Christmas in the Kruger

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Tue Oct 20, 2015 5:31 am

A very warm welcome to you Busymom40 :gflower: . What a wonderful trip you have planned.

I have been in Kruger a number of times over New Year. I have been there in early December, but never over Christmas. I have however seen the 'remainders of the day'. :wink: There does seem to be a special Christmas lunch in most of the larger camps.

Many of the larger camps try to have activities for the children throughout the holiday period. Keep watching the forum and you might pick up on what is happening over that period. Lower Sabie and Skukuza seemed to have daily children related activities. Mopani camp had special talks and bush exhibitions done by the Honorary Rangers.

I have seen special night drives advertised for New Year's Eve. I have tended to be in smaller camps where New Year was rather silent. The staff often have a party that evening, so you might hear singing from the staff village.

As far as keeping the children happy :hmz: I am not sure how old your children are. When my children were young, 'walkmans' were the thing. We made use of the Kruger shops and bought CD's or tapes of bush stories and music. It kept them quiet on long drives. These can be very boring for young children. We also bought books that they could stick pictures in. They were allowed to buy post cards of animals that they saw on the drives. If your children are old enough, a book on mammals makes it more fun to find out more about the sightings.

If they are old enough, a torch, binoculars and a camera might give hours of fun.

The swimming pools are life savers and wonderful to burn off some energy. I found an evening swim made for a better night's sleep.

Good luck and happy planning. :thumbs_up:
The bird doesn't sing because it has answers, it sings because it has a song.

User avatar
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Award: Forumite of the year - Eagle Award (2016)
FAC Member (2015)
Posts: 8428
Joined: Mon Nov 30, 2009 9:21 am
Location: SA

Re: Christmas in the Kruger

Unread post by Grantmissy » Tue Oct 20, 2015 7:56 am

Welcome to the forum Busymom40 :D Wishing you and your family a most wonderful Christmas in the Kruger National Park. May you have many good sightings :cam: . Meanderring Mouse gave some good advice for your Kruger Christmas :thumbs_up:
“Whether it's the best of times or the worst of times, it's the only time we've got.”

User avatar
Posts: 15
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:09 am
Location: Alberton

Re: Christmas in the Kruger

Unread post by BushBaby_Shing » Tue Oct 20, 2015 8:03 am

Wow, 4 weeks in the Kruger Park is amazing.

I have spent Christmas and New Years in the Kruger Park mainly at Shingwedzi camp with my wife and 2 young boys. for Christmas Day I normally spent the day cooking a nice supper but for New Years Eve we normally have dinner at the restaurant which was normally a traditional African braai outside with the sounds of the wild. A truly awesome experience.

Depending on the age of your kids, a camera would be helpful to keep them busy, we also used to take portable DVD players so that the kids can buy wildlife DVD's and watch them when they get bored. The swimming pool is also always a winner amongst the kids and adults alike.

We will be in Skukuza in the beginning of January and I must say it is the best place in the world.

Have a great trip and I hope you get to see plenty of animals.
Skukuza with my children for a boys weekend - 6th January to the 10th January 2016 :dance: :dance: :thumbs_up:

User avatar
Posts: 44193
Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2004 5:54 pm
Location: The Beautiful Cape

Re: Christmas in the Kruger

Unread post by DinkyBird » Tue Oct 20, 2015 6:47 pm

- Dalene

User avatar
Posts: 13634
Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:31 pm
Location: Sheffield Beach KZN North Coast, South Africa

Re: Christmas in the Kruger

Unread post by Elsa » Tue Oct 20, 2015 9:14 pm

Warm welcome to the forum Megan! :clap:

Another good topic to have a read through Things to do and see in camps in Kruger
Kruger - 22nd May to 8th June 2017 8)

User avatar
Posts: 46
Joined: Wed Nov 26, 2008 12:25 am
Location: USA

Re: Christmas in the Kruger

Unread post by Travelstory » Wed Oct 28, 2015 6:45 pm

Your trip sounds fantastic.

I would add inflatable pool toys as they would take up little room in your luggage and keep the kiddies happy on the hot days. I would also agree with a portable DVD player bringing along your favorite Christmas movies to add to the spirit. Another kiddie item might be a magnifying glass and bug book to keep them busy identifying bugs.

I have been in the park many Christmas holidays and the staff does try to make it special; especially for the kids.

Enjoy - I know it will be a Christmas your family will remember for years to come.

AKA Dana

Junior Virtual Ranger
Junior Virtual Ranger
Posts: 539
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2008 4:15 pm

Re: Kruger in December

Unread post by kite » Tue Nov 10, 2015 11:14 pm

The fridges at Shimuweni are large and have a cold panel at the back which forms ice and keeps things well chilled overnight while the power is off.( especially if you lean your ham, cheese or whatever you want to keep very cold against it )
Occasionally the power is off for short spells during the day as well but fridge stays reasonably chilled.
The communal deep freezers, at entrance, work on a numbered basket system for different cottages.

Return to “KNP Camps & Roads”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

Webcam Highlights

Submitted by Dibles at 11:34:51
Submitted by Anonymous at 20:09:48
Submitted by ingrid1968 at 12:19:10
Submitted by knarf at 14:11:06