Skip to Content

Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Discuss and find information on the Kruger National Park
squirrel_asc
Posts: 212
Joined: Wed Jun 26, 2013 8:17 am
Location: Pretoria

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by squirrel_asc » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:40 am

THILO2512 wrote:Hello I am new in the forum.

We will spend the night in Polokwane.
Want to go to Punda Maria.
Which is the best way?
N1 to Makhado then the R524 or over the R81?
We are on a Sunday.
Looking forward to a few tips

We very much prefer the R81 though Giyani over the R524. Less traffic, shorter distances where you have to drive 60km/h through never-ending settlements (complete with livestock in the roads etc), and of course you don't have to fight your way through the Thohoyandou traffic. The last time we drove the R81 (which is admittedly a few years back) the road surface was also quite good.
"Your life becomes a masterpiece when you learn to master peace" 8)

User avatar
amino
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2010 11:55 am
Location: benoni

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by amino » Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:28 pm

Need to enter the KNP via the Numbi gate. Is the road ok from Nelspruit to Numbi at the moment? Thanx in advance

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: 16611
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2005 8:47 pm
Location: meandering between senility and menopause

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Fri Jul 07, 2017 3:44 am

Amino, I have not driven the direct route for a while. I often go via Hazyview so that I can do a bit of shopping. I have never had a problem with that route. I am sure someone can fill you in on the latest road conditions.

Wishing you a super trip. :thumbs_up:
The bird doesn't sing because it has answers, it sings because it has a song.

User avatar
Mischief
Virtual Ranger
Virtual Ranger
Posts: 4748
Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2016 1:58 pm
Location: White River,Mpumalanga,SA

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by Mischief » Fri Jul 07, 2017 4:48 am

Hi amino...there are certainly no current problem areas on the road between Nelspruit and Numbi.We choose not to travel from White River to Numbi because the road has very high speed hills which are not clearly marked at all and the hills themselves are extremely high and difficult to traverse with a normal small sedan vehicle.Even in a 4 X 4 this road will not be pleasant to travel.
Also bear in mind that the road is very busy with people,public transport vehicles,animals etc.around dawn and dusk and has no proper street lighting,definitely do not travel in the dark.

For us the preference has always been to travel straight through to Hazyview and enter either at Phabeni or Kruger gate.This route only adds about 45 minutes to your trip and really is worth it.

Safe travels and enjoy your trip!
"Nature is not a place to visit. It is home."- G.Snyder
Mischief :P

Mask
Posts: 6
Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2016 8:19 pm

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by Mask » Mon Jul 10, 2017 8:54 pm

Hi all,

Any first-hand advice on the current best route from Pietermaritzburg up to Marloth Park as first stop? Swaziland not an option so really between main N11 via Newcastle / Ermelo / Barbeton or quieter route of Vryheid / Piet Retief / Amsterdam / Barbeton. Any issues on either routes?

Then later we will be leaving an overnight stay at Letaba to get to next overnight in Graskop - best route out the park for that?

Thanks in advance...

kahtrav
Posts: 14
Joined: Fri Jun 02, 2017 10:52 pm

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by kahtrav » Sat Jul 22, 2017 3:05 am

Okay, I'm going to jump in here. Our first trip to Kruger (well, to Africa) is in May 2018. After several days in Cape Town, we'll fly to JoBurg, stay overnight, then off to Kruger (Marloth Park for the first 2 nights). It looks so straight forward on Google Maps, but after reading some of these posts, sounds much more complex, with so many options. Planning to take the N12 to the N4 to Nelspruit to Marloth. Would it be best to stop in Nelspruit for supplies or is Melalane a good option? We'll go on to Skukuza from there.

Our last rest camp is Satara, then wanting to see the "Panorama" Blyde Canyon, etc after leaving Satara, staying one night either at Hazyview or Graskop??? . Should we figure doing our Panorama explorations on the way from Satara, or the next morning on our way back to O. R. Tambo for the night?

Also, this is a bit off topic (I'd be happy to be directed to the correct forum, just couldn't find it) - wondering about weather in early May. It's listed as "winter" but I'm just wanting an idea of how cold evenings will be (we'll be coming from Australia in March, where it will be hot). Also, are pools closed for the season by early May? Shoulder seasons are hard to figure out.

Thanks
kahtrav

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: 16611
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2005 8:47 pm
Location: meandering between senility and menopause

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Sat Jul 22, 2017 5:03 am

Hi kahrave, it sounds as though you are planning a fabulous trip. 8)

One of the problems with planning a trip to Kruger is the issue of time constraints and reaching camp in good time. Because you are staying at Marloth Park for the first couple of nights, it is really not an issue. The drive should be very straight forward. Your route sounds :thumbs_up:

There are sometimes road works on the road. I only panic if I have a tight time schedule.

My own preference for shopping would be Malelane. I hate driving in cities though, so that influences my suggestions. Someone else might suggest something else. I have found Malelane to be quite adequate for my needs in the bush.

May is a super month weather wise. It is my favorite month for the weather. The days can be really warm. You will need a good warm jacket for the evening though. In the daytime, you might find it warm enough for shorts and t-shirt. I always make sure that I have warm socks, warm hat and gloves if I am going on a night drive. I also make sure that my jerseys are good enough for winter. I am more sensitive to cold than some people, but it is better to be prepared than miserable.

I do know folk who swim in any weather. The pools are always open. There is no restriction with swimming.

A warning

If you go on an open vehicle drive, dress as though you are going onto the open sea. It can be freezing. I have seen far too many unseasoned Kruger tourists turning blue on sundowner drives. One the sun sets, it cools down very rapidly.
The bird doesn't sing because it has answers, it sings because it has a song.

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: 16611
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2005 8:47 pm
Location: meandering between senility and menopause

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Sat Jul 22, 2017 5:06 am

As for the Panarama route, it is really very beautiful and needs a bit of time. Graskop sounds fine. At least then you are in the middle of the route. I think that Hazyview is too far from the route and you are going to be pressured for time.
The bird doesn't sing because it has answers, it sings because it has a song.

User avatar
Elsa
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 14842
Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:31 pm
Location: Sheffield Beach KZN North Coast, South Africa

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by Elsa » Sat Jul 22, 2017 8:50 am

Warm welcome to the forum Kahtrav! :clap:

MM has given you some excellent advice which I'm sure will have helped you very much.

If you are not self catering in Marloth Park then another option for groceries can also be in Komatipoort and enter through the Crocodile Bridge gate and onto Skukuza for your first nights in the park.
The shops in Skukuza and Satara are well stocked for any odds and ends you might have forgotten and the Cattle Baron in Skukuza, a very nice restaurant.

Some extra info for Weather in May

We go to Kruger every May and I can confirm its one of the nicest times. 8)

peter moses
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:23 am

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by peter moses » Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:16 am

Mischief wrote:Hi amino...there are certainly no current problem areas on the road between Nelspruit and Numbi.We choose not to travel from White River to Numbi because the road has very high speed hills which are not clearly marked at all and the hills themselves are extremely high and difficult to traverse with a normal small sedan vehicle.Even in a 4 X 4 this road will not be pleasant to travel.
Also bear in mind that the road is very busy with people,public transport vehicles,animals etc.around dawn and dusk and has no proper street lighting,definitely do not travel in the dark.

For us the preference has always been to travel straight through to Hazyview and enter either at Phabeni or Kruger gate.This route only adds about 45 minutes to your trip and really is worth it.

Safe travels and enjoy your trip!


That is good info, as I will be driving to KNP on the 31st of August. My wife and I will be reaching Johannesburg around 8 am after a long haul of 24 hours. It might be 10 am by the time we finish with the formalities, grab a bite and get our car out. We have rented a midsize sedan. We will stop at Nelspruit for picking up some grocery.

We were planning to take the R40 to White River and get on to R538 to reach Numbi Gate as first few days stay will be at Pretoriuskop rest camp. Now, after reading your post, I guess it will be better to modify the route a bit.

If we continue on R40 beyond White River and take the right on to R538 near Hazyview and drive down south to take the left to Numbi gate, will we avoid most of the speed bumps and traffic?

Your thoughts will be much appreciated.

User avatar
Mischief
Virtual Ranger
Virtual Ranger
Posts: 4748
Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2016 1:58 pm
Location: White River,Mpumalanga,SA

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by Mischief » Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:34 am

Hello and a very warm welcome to the Forum Peter.If you take that route you will still hit some of those speed bumps.Also bear in mind the human and animal traffic on a road which has no street lights.
My definite preference and advise is still to go in at Phabeni gate which from the T junction you are talking about will only take about another 25 minutes.Once in at Phabeni, turn left down the S3... Stay on that road past Meestel Dam and then head to Pretoriouskop.The last time we did the S3,we had 2 cheetah cross the road infront of our car :D :D :D :D .
"Nature is not a place to visit. It is home."- G.Snyder
Mischief :P

peter moses
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:23 am

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by peter moses » Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:59 am

Mischief wrote:Hello and a very warm welcome to the Forum Peter.If you take that route you will still hit some of those speed bumps.Also bear in mind the human and animal traffic on a road which has no street lights.
My definite preference and advise is still to go in at Phabeni gate which from the T junction you are talking about will only take about another 25 minutes.Once in at Phabeni, turn left down the S3... Stay on that road past Meestel Dam and then head to Pretoriouskop.The last time we did the S3,we had 2 cheetah cross the road infront of our car :D :D :D :D .


Thank you very much for the update. It would mean a little more than an hour to reach the camp... maybe more if those two Cheetahs decide to put up a show on S3. :D

I think we will have to decide at the T junction on which side to turn, depending upon the time we have at hand. Apart from the speed bumps, how is the general condition of the road from Hazyview to Numbi gate. Heard a lot of horror stories about the potholes. Since we are entering the park, we should be there before evening and won't be driving in the dark. We are pretty used to potholes, unscientific speed bumps, and crazy traffic as I drive in Bangalore, India. :D

User avatar
Mischief
Virtual Ranger
Virtual Ranger
Posts: 4748
Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2016 1:58 pm
Location: White River,Mpumalanga,SA

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by Mischief » Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:06 pm

There was a lot of good road maintenance done about a year ago,so there are very few potholes,there are the odd one or two that they missed but you sound as though you are more than familiar with bad roads per se. :lol: :lol: :lol:
image.jpeg

image.jpeg


Hopefully you get to see these 2 beauties!
"Nature is not a place to visit. It is home."- G.Snyder
Mischief :P

peter moses
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:23 am

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by peter moses » Mon Jul 24, 2017 2:56 pm

Those are indeed beautiful. Thanks for posting. Hope we get as lucky as you were. :D We will be spending 15 days inside and seeing one will be a dream come true.

And yes, I am used to potholes and unruly traffic. But being in a foreign country it is always better to play safe. :D

kahtrav
Posts: 14
Joined: Fri Jun 02, 2017 10:52 pm

Re: Driving (best route) to/from Kruger

Unread post by kahtrav » Tue Jul 25, 2017 1:41 am

Thanks for comments about weather in May - it really helps. When I need winter coats for evening, I don't expect to need shorts or swimsuits for daytime - very helpful information. What about the mozzies that time of year. I've seen that it's past Malaria season, but are we still going to have a lot of biting bugs that we'll need to protect against? We'll get repellent, etc. when we shop in Melalane.


Return to “Kruger National Park”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: vinaigrette and 1 guest

Webcam Highlights

Addo
Submitted by Newo at 16:17:35
orpen
Submitted by Anonymous at 09:54:50
satara
Submitted by Nkulu at 11:34:41
nossob
Submitted by BLOMMEPRAG at 20:39:56