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Mopani Rest Camp

On the banks of the Pioneer Dam in the Kruger National Park, lies its best kept secret.

Named after the mopane veld that surrounds the camp, Mopani Rest Camp nestles amongst the Mopani tree covered koppies. A signature feature is the huge gnarled old baobab tree in the heart of the camp. The vegetation inside the camp is left as found in the wild, adding to the unique atmosphere of the camp.

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  • Sunset Drive-Boma Braai Combo
  • Guided Bush Walks
  • Game Drives (in the company of trained field guides)
  • Bush Braais & Breakfasts. Includes game drive to venue. Confirm availability when booking.
  • In camp trail walk
  • Shipandani sleep-over Bird Hide (located 3km outside the camp)
  • Tropic of Capricorn (located 12km north of the camp)
  • Pioneer Dam Bird Hide (located 4km outside the camp)
  • Wildlife films (shown daily at reception during office hours)

See the Park’s Activities for a comprehensive list.


  • Information at Reception
  • Public Telephone (Phone cards on sale at Reception, Airtime available in the Shop)
  • Post Box
  • Restaurant
  • Conference Venue
  • Ladies Bar
  • Cafeteria
  • Swimming Pool
  • Shop
  • Mini ATM facility available in the restaurant
  • Laundromat
  • Filling Station
  • Basic First Aid Assistance
  • Day Visitors Picnic Area
  • DSTV (limited channels) only available in Guest House
  • TV in the Bar (DSTV with limited channels)
  • Car Wash
  • Cellphone Reception

See the Park’s Facilities for a comprehensive list.

Day Visitors

Mopani has a designated day visitor area where day visitors and visitors from other camps can braai (barbecue) and picnic. This area is past the filling station to the right as one enters the camp gate. There are also picnic facilities with tended skottels at Mooiplaas (7km by road south of the camp).

Travel Information

Routes and times are from central Gauteng.

By Air

The closest airport to Mopani is Gateway Airport situated in Phalaborwa. Gateway is situated approximately 3km from Phalaborwa Gate. There are daily scheduled flights between Gateway and OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg.

By Road: Phalaborwa Gate

Take the N1 toll-road to Polokwane (Pietersburg). 4km before Polokwane turn right onto the R71 and head for Tzaneen. After Tzaneen, head towards Phalaborwa and the gate. Allow between 6 to 7 hours for the trip to the gate. Mopani camp is approximately 74km away from the gate. Allow about 3 hours for the drive to the camp, however if you want to enjoy the game viewing possibilities give yourself more time!

Flora & Fauna

See the Fauna & Flora pages of the Park for more information.


The dense mopane veld around Mopani camp has an unfair reputation for being a poor game area.
In truth there is actually very little that cannot be seen in this habitat. In fact a person can simply sit at the lookout point in camp, or at the nearby balcony of the ladies bar, and be treated to a constant stream of animals such as hippo, waterbuck, impala, warthog, elephant, buffalo and, for the lucky ones, even lion.

The Tropic of Capricorn loop and the Nshawu pans are an excellent area to see game as there are some open plains that host species such as blue wildebeest, Burchell’s zebra, Buffalo and the rarer tsessebe. Black-backed jackal and caracal are some of the smaller more unusual species to look out for.


Mopani is situated at the transition zone between granite /gneiss soils to the west and basalt soils to the east. The former hosts a combination of mixed bush willow, silver cluster-leaf and tree and shrub mopane, while the latter combines apple-leaf with shrub mopane. Large knob-thorn, tamboti and leadwood are found along the drainage lines.

5 Things To Seek

  1. Hippopotamus
  2. Waterbuck
  3. Tsessebe
  4. African Fish Eagle
  5. Mopani Trees


  • Telephone: +27 (0)13 735 6535/6
  • Fax: +27 (0)13 735 6547
  • Mobile: 082 802 1113

See Camp Contacts for more information.