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6 nights 3 camps too much?

Miami
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6 nights 3 camps too much?

I'm planning a trip to the Kruger area for May and want to drive from Jo'berg. Is it too much (too hectic) to do:

2 nights Berg en Dal

2 nights Lower Sabie

2 nights Arathusa

??

I want to end this portion of the trip with 2 nights preferably at Arathusa (or some other Sabi Sands reserve if there is no room at Arathusa). I had originally thought 3 nights at Lower Sabie, but it seems like such a far way to go from Jo'berg to Lower Sabie in one day. I guess I could stay a night in Nelspruit, but then wouldn't it be nicer to stay that night at Berg en Dal? And, if I'm going to stay at Berg en Dal, isn't it less rushed to stay there 2 nights? Which means I end up with 6 nights altogether ... is this too much?

I plan to drive back to Jo'berg after Sabi Sands via the Panorama Route.

Any suggestions on how to plan this? I guess a simpler way of asking my question is: I want to go from Jo'berg to Kruger area and stay a few nights in a rest camp followed by a few nights in a private reserve and come back via the Panorama Route - what is the best itinerary to accomplish this?

La Lucia
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1. Re: 6 nights 3 camps too much?

If you are flying into OR Tambo why not get a connecting flight to Nelspruit and hire a car from there? The drive from OR Tambo to Nelspruit is very boring!!! It is then a short drive to Kruger. My suggestion would be to rather have two nights at Lower Sabie (it is a fantastic camp) and miss out Berg en Dal (it is not one of my favourites) and then have two nights at Olifants or Satara (both really good camps) and then your last two nights in the Sabi Sand. Panarama Route is well worth taking but would suggest you spend a night somewhere in the middle (maybe Hazyview) so that you are not rushing it. You could then have an easy trip down to Nelspruit airport, drop off the car and fly back to OR Tambo. One word of warning - do not break the speed limits in that area!!! The road goes through towns so the limit will drop from 120 to 80km or even 60km and the police will hide just after the signs and fine unsuspecting tourists!!!! Let me know if there is any more advice that you need as it is an area we go to every year on holiday. Kruger has an awesome and very user friendly website - www.sanparks.org.

Miami
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228 posts
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2. Re: 6 nights 3 camps too much?

Bbland20 - thank you for responding and for your suggestions! The only thing is that we really want to go to the Apartheid Museum and do a township tour of Soweto, so we are going to be staying 2 nights in Jo'berg anyhow, so we figured at that point it is just as easy to rent the car and start the drive there.

I would love to go to Olifants or Satara instead of Berg en Dal ... I just am afraid that the drive from Jo'berg to Lower Sabie is a bit much for one day, isn't it?

Are the drive times listed on the SANparks website accurate? They say it takes 4 hours and 30 minutes to drive from Berg en Dal to Lower Sabie and then 3 hours and 45 minutes to drive from Lower Sabie to Satara.

La Lucia
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3. Re: 6 nights 3 camps too much?

Jhb to Lower Sabie is easy to do in a day. The drive is along a freeway with nothing much to see on the way so you can just keep driving (mostly at 120km as it is a toll road) until you enter the park at Crocodile Bridge. You will then need to drive at 50km. Leave Jhb early - there is no need to hang around!! The times quoted on the website err on the side of caution - allowing for slow driving and stopping often etc etc. Gates open at about 6am and close at 6pm (am not sure about May times) so you have all day to cover the necessary miles. There are some awesome picnic spots to stop off at as well, to break the drive. Ones like Tshokwane have a little coffee shop so you dont even need to pack your own picnic. Let me know if you need any other info. You will love Kruger - it is the best place on earth.

Cape Town
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4. Re: 6 nights 3 camps too much?

I agree that you should try get up to Satara for 2 nights instead of staying in the South of the park the whole time - the vegetation is totally different and because of that you will see different animals.

Lower Sabie is nice, and as people have mentioned, an easy drive from Joburg, so why not do 2 days there and then 2 at Satara. Make sure to leave early on your last day to get to Sabi Sands in time.

La Lucia
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5. Re: 6 nights 3 camps too much?

Good advice - I agree!

On the Wing
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6. Re: 6 nights 3 camps too much?

We go every year - hire car from jhb airport drive to graskop with short break for petrol etc; total about 4.5hrs so would think you should do Sabie quite easily, enjoy, fantastic

cape town
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7. Re: 6 nights 3 camps too much?

Try and book the tents at Lower Sabie and ask for a river front one. The sounds of hippo grunting and seeing elephant right at the fence makes this the best place in the Kruger - I think anyway!

Satara is great. Again try for a perimeter chalet so you are on the fence. It makes a difference.

Try and do a bush walk at either place.

Good luck with your planning!

8. Re: 6 nights 3 camps too much?

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