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Children in Kgalagadi

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Children in Kgalagadi

Unread post by pajero » Fri Jan 25, 2008 2:48 pm

We have been coming to the park for 20 years and have mostly enjoyed camping.We have once again booked in the Botswana side of the park and thought of treating our selfs to the Parks wilderness camps.(We know the 3 old camps very well) and I decided to book at Urikarus and Kieliekrankie as we have heard they are the nicest. We have 2 kids and I was thus totally shocked to find out that we had to book 2 tents and it would costs us in excess of R1400 per night....????!!! How is it possible that the SANP could be so selfish and narrow minded in thinking that only childless people want to enjoy the Wilderness camps, ...Yes I know that Kalahari tented camp has Family tents, so what would it take to include one Family tent at each of the other wilderness camps.?

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Unread post by Bekke » Fri Jan 25, 2008 4:20 pm

Pajero, I felt similar for a while. However, when you consider the danger of an unfenced camp, it makes sense to focus on non-families. I have 2 small children and must just accept that the "old" camps are more family-orientated. You still see the same views than the people in the wilderness camps, so what's the deal...

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Unread post by Caracal » Fri Jan 25, 2008 8:56 pm

Hi Pajero
I sort of feel the same way as you do but having been to the unfenced camps I can tell you now that my kids would not have enjoyed it. There is not much place for them to move and they would have got extremely frustrated. KTC on the other hand is a different matter because the camp is larger and there is a swimming pool. I suppose it also depends on the age of the children. I think I would also have got very frustrated in trying to keep them quiet all the time. My kids always appreciated nature but did tend to get a bit bored when nothing was happening. I think the unfenced camps are more suited for teenage children and yes you would have to take two tents. I have 3 kids so I would have to take 3 tents...

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Unread post by arks » Fri Jan 25, 2008 10:27 pm

Michele makes an excellent point, pajero. These small KTP wilderness camps are totally unsuitable for (most) children. There is nothing for them to do, you are confined to your individual unit, and you can't wander off to "explore" as you can in the larger, fenced camps, nor can you "play" in the area around your unit. Predators frequently cross right through some of these camps, both day and night, so you have to be alert whenever you leave your unit, even just to get something from your car. They offer a wonderful experience, but are definitely not for young(er) children.
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Unread post by discobob » Sat Jan 26, 2008 6:44 am


I've had to book out Grootkolk at Year End for two families and yes it does cost a bit, but the advantage is that I now have the whole camp to myself. Personally I'm not concerned about the unfenced bit, and you don't seem to be either if you take your kids to the Botswana camps.

I can see the Parks viewpoint on this one, and it comes from two angles. First is the safety aspect. A few years back a kid was bitten by a Cape Cobra at Grootkolk whilst sleeping on the floor, and nearly died. Obviously they don't want a repeat of that situation or anything similar. Secondly if you go to the smaller camps I believe one of the reasons you are going is for the solitude, and you may not get that with extra kids running around the place. Imagine if you are going to Grootkolk expecting 8 people including yourself. Suddenly you and your partner are accosted by an extra 6 and the camp is bursting at the seams with 14. That would really p--s me off.

Natal parks for their luxury camps have a no kids under 14 policy, and if they are the right age then they also have to pay full rates, so I'm quite grateful that at least SANParks affords me the opportunity to take my kids along, albeit it a premium.

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Unread post by bert » Sat Jan 26, 2008 2:01 pm

Think Michele said it all
The Tented Camp does have family units
And the pool
I have a 12 yr old and has been on two KNP trips.
Always wants a ice cream etc and loves to roam the grounds during day and night in search of animals.
Impossible to do in the wilderness camps.

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Kgalagadi - suitable for young kids?

Unread post by simonh » Wed Jun 11, 2008 6:44 pm

Hi there - we plan to travel to namibia in october with a 4y old and rent a motorhome. Would kgalagadi be OK for a motorhome (not 4x4) - I see a lot of discussion on bad roads! And are there many accessible roads other than the main one from mata mata to twee rivieren. Any experience with young kids there? We haev both done etosho in our child free years and looking for somewhere a litte different. Thanks

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Re: Kgalagadi - suitable for young kids?

Unread post by pathfinder » Thu Jun 19, 2008 12:37 pm

Hi Simon

My dad took a motorhome to the KTP in the late 80's and the roads were no better then. Admittedly they never got the dust out and suffered some broken crockery on the road to the park

I have twice taken young children to the park. My daughter was only 1 the first time and last year in May we were there with her (then 5) and my son (then 1). We plan to return this year with them in December. The park is great for kids and there were quite a few other youngsters at Twee Rivieren for them to play with. Mine travel very well which helps but in Decembers heat I imagine we will spend the hot hours in the camp.
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Unread post by Senyetse » Thu Jun 19, 2008 1:03 pm

Hello simon

It depends on what your kid likes to do. I'd say as long as there's space to play, a shop for sweets an dice cream, other kids and a swimming pool and you don't drive for too long, that would keep most small kids happy.

KTP is far from the nearest town and medical services (in Upington I think) so just keep that in mind.
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Unread post by Batsman » Thu Jun 19, 2008 1:21 pm

Senyetse wrote:KTP is far from the nearest town and medical services (in Upington I think) so just keep that in mind.

Yes, you're quite right, the nearest medical service is in Upington.


CHILDREN in Kgalagadi

Unread post by Jumbo » Thu Jul 24, 2008 9:28 am

Ok, I’m normally not at lost for words , but yesterday I received an email that has me uh and ah….
The mail is from a guy in New Delhi, India….He did a search on the web for Urikaruus and found my Flickr stream. He has already booked their trip to Kgalagadi in October…. This will be their first ever visit to this park and they are notably excited.
During their trip, they are planning to stay at Urikaruus for 2 nights….The things is tho…it will be him, his wife and 1.5 year old baby.
Firstly, I do not know if it is allowed that there are 2 adults and a baby in those units…if not, then the person who made their reservation, slipped up….do anybody possibly know what the rules are?
He asked me if this camp will be safe for such a young child….and I can honestly not say it is dangerous….I think Urikaruus is quite safe for a child because the units are raised.

Secondly, I would personally not be very happy if I stayed at Urikaruus and my neighbours has a small baby, crying every now an then….the camp is so quiet and a crying baby will for sure be a disturbance. But this guy is so excited and I really do not know what to say to him…
I told the SO about this, asking his advice, and his immediate response were that taking such a young child to this camp is not a good idea….then I forced him to also read the mail and see how excited the guy is…..after that he just said “Eish”….lot of help this is. I’m putting this in chit-chat so that it can be deleted if I eventually just refer him to the forum …..hoping others will not be too hard on him for considering to take a baby to this camp?

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Unread post by DotDan » Thu Jul 24, 2008 9:39 am

With babies comes alot, alot of sacrifice, even when one has the desire and passion to do something, the babies interest and safety should always come first.

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Unread post by Elsa » Thu Jul 24, 2008 10:20 am

This is a tricky situation, I agree Jumbo, and maybe it should be put to one of the KTP gurus or staff there to answer.

Possibly this guy just hasn't realised exactly how the layout and how much people treasure the quietness and tranquility at Urikaruus altho that is doubtful after looking at your pics, but then I gather he didn't get to read your actual TR.

Also how safe are the railings on the balconies there, could a child of that age not fall through?

I would say better he find out now than later.

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Unread post by Scipio » Thu Jul 24, 2008 12:18 pm

dotdan I totally agree with you, Elsa & Jumbo, I dont know Urakuus but nobody should give this man advise not to go based on the other people who does not want a baby in camp. he should be given a complete "picture" of the camp & KTP, & then decide himself. 1,5 years is not that small.
Why not point him to the forum to see for himself. BTW, I am booked there in October so I will see it as well.

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Unread post by bert » Thu Jul 24, 2008 12:47 pm

Asked Kgalagadi TFP for a reaction

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