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Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

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tazza
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Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by tazza » Wed Mar 02, 2016 2:41 am

Hi guys, me and my partner are visiting Kruger national park from the 18th March 2016 for 3 days. We arrive in Johannesburg at 10am and are driving to Kruger that day.
We will probably be arriving late afternoon on the 18th. I would like to know where is the best place to stay (campsite) in the park so we have the best opportunity to see the big 5? This is our first time and we are on a limited budget.
I was thinking of doing a self drive one day, a guided day/night safari on day 2 and 3...
Any Advice would be much appreciated.
Cheers

wildebeeste
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Re: Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by wildebeeste » Wed Mar 02, 2016 3:40 am

Oh Dear,
You can be very lucky and get to see the BIG 5 within 3 days, but realistically you will have to take what you get !!! It is just the luck of the game !!!

The private lodges concentrate on views of the carnivores, so that is your best bet if these are your aim, and some of these lodges are relatively reasonable in cost.

If you stay in the restcamps, such as Skukuza, you will most likely see wonderful sights of Antelopes, Elephants, Monkeys, an array of birds. Even the restcamp guides will struggle with the a wish-list of all of the Big Five.

Then again, you could be very, very lucky. We could be wrong !???!!!

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Re: Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Wed Mar 02, 2016 4:01 am

A very warm welcome, tazza. :gflower:

You say you are looking at camping. I would seriously consider staying in one camp to save time.

My on suggestion would be Lower Sabie/ or Satara. Both are known for their predator concentration. The only problem might be getting a booking, as they are popular camps. Lower Sabie would be first choice, as it is closer to the gate and has a great road and eco diversity to enjoy.

Have a super time.
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Bushbuddies
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Re: Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by Bushbuddies » Wed Mar 02, 2016 2:15 pm

Hi Tazza! Great question. But I think I will answer it with a simple answer.

Book whatever you can still find available! The 18th of March is around the corner and it is a long weekend in SA with a public holiday that Monday. The park is usually almost fully booked way in advance for weekends like that.

If you do have options - it would be great to stay in one camp in the South. The camps Meandering Mouse also suggested are great. But you'll probably have to settle for what is still available...
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arthas
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Re: Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by arthas » Wed Mar 02, 2016 5:42 pm

Hello!

I had good success in spotting 4 of the Big5 when staying in Satara: you can both get a bungalow or camp there, but you need to check for availability as you are traveling within a short time from now.

Also, you'll need to be at Kruger gate and camp gate before they close (check closing times and driving distances!). Landing at 10:00 in Johannesburg might not give you enough time if you are driving up to Satara, especially if you experience some delay with flight, customs, getting the car, etc. A camp near a gate (such as Orpen) might be a safer bet.

Cheers,
Michele.

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Re: Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by cheetahlady » Wed Mar 02, 2016 7:52 pm

Hi Tazza,

Not sure where you are coming from. I assume you will bring a tent and camping equipment with you. If you still have to organise equipment after you arrive, you will be pressed for time. I would suggest lower Sabie or Skukuza. Both are good wildlife areas and reasonably accessible from Johannesburg, given your arrival time. An alternative would be to look at the first night at one of the camps at or near a gate - crocodile bridge, pretoriouskop, berg-en-dal and then you can move to Satara for the next two.

Seeing the big5 is not guaranteed in any area.

Enjoy.
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Mopani, Balule, Tamboti, Satara, Skukuza, Croc Bridge

davidhein
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Re: Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by davidhein » Mon Mar 07, 2016 10:50 pm

Space permitting - Lower Sabie and Satara would be two of the best areas for the big 5 (and a LOT of luck). Leopard may probably be the hardest out of the 5 to find - but a bit of luck may yield some good sightings.

If both are full Orpen (or the satellite Maroela for camping) in my opinion is also a great area - the rhino may be the most difficult to find here though. This is the only camp I have seen the entire big 5 (plus wild dog) in an afternoon drive (yes LOTS of luck)... It has also yielded my most leopard sightings out of all the camps. However the road (H7) is also easily accessible from Satara.

The big advantage with Satara (in my opinion one of the reason it is one of my top camps) is that you can travel across to different areas (Letaba/Olifants to the north, Tshokwane to the South, and Orpen west) and of course the S100 is right there...

Good luck and hope you find all 5!
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Re: Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Tue Mar 08, 2016 5:01 am

I have just returned from the Skukuza area and the grass is very dry and short. It is usually very long this time of the year. Because of the drought, there were plenty of predator sightings.
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Re: Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by yoda » Thu Mar 17, 2016 11:11 am

I have seen the Big 5 in 1 drive twice. B n D area and Lower Sabie area (LS drive also included Wild Dogs)

Also seen the Big 5 in 1 day (spread over 2 drvies) in the Satara area. (Also saw Cheetah)

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Re: Where to Stay in Kruger national park to see the big 5

Unread post by Ton&Herma » Sun Apr 03, 2016 12:00 pm

The best place is Satara we saw the Big 5 in 5 hours there good luck


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