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Help!! where to start with vacation planning?

Cincinnati, Ohio
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Help!! where to start with vacation planning?


I would like to plan a trip to South Africa for a family of 6 (4 adults + 2 children under 2). We would like to experience a safari+ historic touring + a bit of pampering. I have 10days set aside for the travel. I've looked at Sabi Sands and Kruger lodges but have no clue on how best to narrow down? Should I use a travel company? Any recommendations or tips would be greatly appreciated.....



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1. Re: Help!! where to start with vacation planning?

www.africatravelresource.com has many of the safari camps listed, with lots of photos and useful info, so you can use this to narrow down the places you like. They are a UK travel company, but you don't have to book with them.

Frankfurt, Germany
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2. Re: Help!! where to start with vacation planning?

I would recommend you to use a travel company as a lot of lodges don't accept children and on the other hand some lodges do accept children with prior notice.

There are more and more camps accepting families, but a travel company can advise you best according to your needs.

The Sabi Sands area is definitely one of the best areas for game viewing.

Amsterdam, The...
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3. Re: Help!! where to start with vacation planning?

Hi There,

10 days is not a lot of time for South Africa. I could easily spend this in the southern part of Kruger Alone.

The private parks aroung Kruger are more expensive than Kruger itself and might indeed do not accept children. Kruger (Sanparks.org) is much cheaper, less luxurious and has no problems with children. The good thing of Kruger is that you can drive on your own.

If 10 days is all you have I would spend it only on Kruger or split up 6-7 days Kruger and 3-4 days capetown (with an internal Johannesburg - Cape town flight).

Have fun

Tempe, Arizona
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for South Africa, Sabi Sand Game Reserve
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4. Re: Help!! where to start with vacation planning?

Knowing how the parents/children connect would help. Are these grandparents, parents, 2 small children? If so, there are a (very) few Family units that could work in some reserves. Please tell us more about the group.

Remember that the children will not be permitted on game drives, so a camp or lodge with staff who can stay with the children while the adults are out - is a must. Game drives start at daybreak each morning, last perhaps 3 hours. Afternoon game drives at most private reserves continue until well after darkness falls. Hard to imagine that the 2 children that young would tolerate the absence of their parents every single time they would be expected to. They would be left behind with strangers.

I can't suggest a safari property that would allow children that young out on game drives even if you paid for a private vehicle. There's just no way to expect them to stay quiet and be relaxed time after time on each game drive. And they would have to be quiet. Startled animals, that's a problem - as would be disapproving guests in a vehicle parked next to yours at a really good sighting if one of the children speaks out.

Kruger Park, of course, allows you to chart your own course. Plenty of good accommodations - and the main camps in Kruger have restaurants, food shops, places for the youngsters to run around. Are you interested in a trip where you do prepare some of the food and do your own game drives in a rented car or SUV? Imagine Salt Fork State Park (but a lot, lot bigger!) with elephants, zebras, lions, etc.. If you have any interest in this, let us know as we can show you where to find out information about Kruger. You can start here, actually: http://www.sanparks.org/parks/kruger/

Wish I could be more encouraging.

Dave Patterson - Owner - The Africa Safari

Cincinnati, Ohio
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5. Re: Help!! where to start with vacation planning?

Thanks for the info/tips everybody. We would not want to leave the kids as required for the game drives. :( It was suggested to start with south Africa as a 1st timer traveling over to Africa. If Africa is our preference to explore would there be any other kid friendly top choice countries or other things to do in south Africa????

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6. Re: Help!! where to start with vacation planning?

Being a family of 6, your agent could advise which safari lodge to go to where they would allocate your whole family to one game viewing vehicle. This means you won't have to share with other guests, and your agent can then also arrange special permission for all of your children to go on game drive. I have a two and a half year old, and I always book a private game viewing vehicle so that she can go on drives with me. I do however then limit the length of my drives to 2 hours, as longer than that would be unfair on a very young child. Not sure how children younger than 2 would do on a game drive. As the private lodges use open game viewing vehicles, keep in mind that if your children don't "keep quiet and sit still" in a sighting of animals like lions and leopards, your ranger would be forced to leave the sighting. If I were you, I would give it a try, and if your children don't enjoy going on the drives at this young age, you could always take turns with just 1 adult staying behind during a game drive, or you could utilise the lodge's baby sitting facilities.

Tanya * owner * Africa Direct

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7. Re: Help!! where to start with vacation planning?

We have been traveled to Africa with our children several times and I could recommend several family type accomodations but unfortunately, not for children as young as yours. We always left our "too young" children at home with relatives and never regretted that. They can't go on the game drives anyway.

8. Re: Help!! where to start with vacation planning?

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