self drive, Kruger National Park

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  • The view from our car in Kruger
    The view from our car in Kruger
    by mikelisaanna
  • self drive
    by nora_south_africa
  • Shell Ultra City at Middelburg on N4 highway
    Shell Ultra City at Middelburg on N4...
    by wvbergen
  • Self drive to Kruger national Park

    by wvbergen Written Nov 23, 2011
    Shell Ultra City at Middelburg on N4 highway

    Shell Ultra City N4 highway at Middelburg is on the main route from to Johannesburg and Pretoria to the Kruger National park. Thieves are using car lock jamming devices to block the signal to auto lock your cars . Myself and three other friends of mine have been robbed recently of our personal effects left in our cars on 4 different occasions leaving our cars for a couple of minutes to use the toilet facilities at these 2 Shell Ultra City Petrol stations at Middelburg N4 highway.Incidents have been reported to the police.

    Read more: http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/p/m/218555/#2#ixzz1eZ9XOPK0

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  • 4x4 or not.

    by jfjgrunt Written Jan 16, 2010

    We had a 4x4, Land Rover, that we hired for our trip to Kruger, Satara Camp. In hindsite we should have stayed with the Toyota Quantum we had hired for the rest of South Africa. If you have children or adults they can move around more easily in something like a Quantum, so everyone gets to see everything. Its actually higher than a 4x4 and the roads were no problem even the gravel roads.

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  • mikelisaanna's Profile Photo

    Driving through Kruger

    by mikelisaanna Written Sep 27, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The view from our car in Kruger

    Driving around Kruger in your own car is easy to do, as the park has a good network of paved and unpaved roads throughout it. We drove a number of the dirt roads with a 2-wheel drive vehicle and had no problems. However, I would advise it on a very rainy day (it was dry while we were there). While driving through Kruger, there a few things to keep in mind:

    1. Stay in the car while out on the roads. You don't wan't to become a lion's lunch.

    2. Don't drive too fast. Going slowly gives you a better chance to spot the animals. Also, animals walk out onto the road, and you want to be going slowly enough to be able to stop in time to avoid hitting them. An elephant can put a pretty large dent in your vehicle.

    3. Always have plenty of gas. While there are service stations at the main camps scattered throughout Kruger, they are usually at least 30 km apart. If you run out of gas in the middle of nowhere, you could be stuck for a while.

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  • bongski's Profile Photo

    car v.s. a high vantage point like a jeep

    by bongski Updated Nov 22, 2008

    A higher vantage point while driving maybe an advantage in Kruger but it is not a must. I was at an eye to eye level encounter with a pride of lions when they decided to use the tarmac instead of the bush. That was because i was using a car instead of a jeep.

    No need for a guide, just follow the other game drive vehicles on the road inside kruger. There are lots of them roaming around during the day and they have contacts with each other on where the wildlife is. If you are bored whith what they are watching, then go on your own and follow the tarmac or the dirt road which are open to the public.

    A side trip to the blyde river canyon area from graskop is a recommended trip before or after kruger.

    bong

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  • bongski's Profile Photo

    car versu a high vantage point like a jeep

    by bongski Written Nov 22, 2008

    A higher vantage point while driving maybe an advantage in Kruger but it is not a must. I was at an eye to eye level encounter with a pride of lions when they decided to use the tarmac instead of the bush. That was because i was using a car instead of a jeep.

    No need for a guide, just follow the other game drive vehicles on the road inside kruger. There are lots of them.

    A side trip to the blyde river canyon area from graskop is a recommended trip before or after kruger.

    bong

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  • bongski's Profile Photo

    car versu a high vantage point like a jeep

    by bongski Written Nov 22, 2008

    A higher vantage point while driving maybe an advantage in Kruger but it is not a must. I was at an eye to eye level encounter with a pride of lions when they decided to use the tarmac instead of the bush. That was because i was using a car instead of a jeep.

    No need for a guide, just follow the other game drive vehicles on the road inside kruger. There are lots of them.

    A side trip to the blyde river canyon area from graskop is a recommended trip before or after kruger.

    bong

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  • DAO's Profile Photo

    DIY - DRIVE IT YOURSELF!

    by DAO Updated Nov 18, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    THE

    Let's face it, getting to South Africa is not cheap and Kruger National Park is MASSIVE. It has well laid out and signposted roads, free road maps and plenty of places to stop (meals, toilets, etc.). There are plenty of places to buy guidebooks on the animals and their habits. A good guidebook even tells you where in the park to find the animals you want to see during different times of the year. Do you need to spend big money on an animal expert who drives you around the roads? NO! Invest your savings in a better camera and get driving! And stay in the car (if you wish to stay intact)!

    Please use the link below for the best Car Rental Business in Southern Africa

    The picture was staged to show you the dangers and what not to do. We risked our safety to help fellow VT’ers!

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  • Gili_S's Profile Photo

    Own car

    by Gili_S Written Sep 6, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The first and obvious choice is your own vehicle and self-drive in the park. It is giving you all the flexibility and freedom to go to where ever you with whenever you want, during the day.
    You do not need a 4WD in the park as roads are good enough for normal sedan car, however, the advantage of a 4WD car type is the heights and the better view of the animals.

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  • DamatDave's Profile Photo

    The Taller the Better!

    by DamatDave Updated Nov 26, 2006
    The previously mentioned lions.

    Self drive is the way to go. Don't listen to anyone who says it's too dangerous or any other rubbish excuse of the sort. You can see the things you want, when you want, at your own pace. If you can afford it, rent as tall of a vehicle as you can. Even though you might be in the middle of the dry season, if you're in a compact car, your eye level may well be lower than the tip of the grass. I was in a little Fiat. The little bugger got me everywhere I wanted to go, including some "4x4 only" roads in other parks, but seeing animals was a problem at times. When shooting some lions in their "courtship" I had to stand on the window sill to get proper clearance. Not the safest thing to do, but I really wanted that picture, and there were others around to watch my back.

    I've noticed some posters saying you shouldn't open the windows. Professional guides I know, both of the photo and hunting safari sort, say the dangerous thing is to break the silhouette of the vehicle with a human shape; open windows are usually fine. The silhouette of a human is what triggers a response from the animals most of the time, since they fear the occupants more than the vehicle itself.

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  • diver-x's Profile Photo

    Johannesberg to Kruger

    by diver-x Updated Jun 23, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Tazz! (photo by Cliff)

    We rented a small Toyota Tazz from Budget at Johannesburg airport and drove to Kruger via the town of Sabie and a tour of The Escarpment. The highway system in South Africa is very similar to the Interstate highway system in the US. The roads are in excellent condition and getting around is very easy. Rest stops along the way are clean and well run. It took us 4 hours to get to Sabie, where we spent the night. The next day we took our time touring the Escarpment (Blyde River Canyon) before heading down to Hazyview toward Kruger.

    Our original plan was to stay at one of the all-inclusive resorts inside of Sabie Sand Game Reserve, which is adjacent to Kruger on the western side. But what we didn't know was that in order to get through the gate to Sabie Sand, you have to have already made reservations at one of the resorts.

    With no reservations, we were out of luck. So we decided to spend our first night inside of Kruger. We made it to the Paul Kruger Gate a little after 5:00 PM. Since it was so late in the day and the park gates, as well as the camp gates close at 6:00, the reception office called ahead to Skukuza Camp for us to make a reservation since Skukuza was the closest camp. It all worked out fine and we had a good stay at Skukuza before moving on.

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  • kzngirl's Profile Photo

    Travel in the park

    by kzngirl Written Nov 18, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Kruger Park has been designed as a self-drive game park, therefore, to get the most out of your game park experience, I would advise driving/hiring a car when visiting.

    As we live in South Africa, we haven't yet had a need to hire a car while on our visits to the park. However, that is not the case for everyone, and I have found a very informative link on the official website for Kruger National Park, describing the kind of cars available to hire and how to go about it.

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  • Jenniflower's Profile Photo

    The best 4x4xfar!

    by Jenniflower Updated Jan 17, 2005

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    4x4 in the KNP

    If you plan on driving along sandy roads or trails that might be bumpy... make sure you are driving in a car that has good steering and is preferably a 4x4. They are built for this type of adventurous trip

    (although they are proilifically used in ordinary suburbs too for some reason!)

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  • Jenniflower's Profile Photo

    Keeping to the speed limit

    by Jenniflower Updated Jan 17, 2005

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    One rather rough road!

    The average speed limit is about 30kms an hour... going up to 40km an hour when you are just outside a camp.

    Although this may seem really slow to you, these speed limits are there for a reason. Many animals just dart out in front of your car from thick bush on the side of the road as you are travelling, and keeping to the speed limit will ensure they arent harmed, as you will be able to brake in time!

    If you see someone being irresponsible in this manner, please take down their number plate number and report them to the next ranger you see driving past, or at the next camp you visit.

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  • Self drive in Kruger

    by Dakasor Written Jan 1, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The best way to see Kruger (and the rest of south africa) is, by far, to rent your own car and drive yourself. South Africa is a modern country with excellent car hire services. I rented a car from Tempest car hire for 1 month, a Toyota sedan for about 9500 rand or so. In Jeffrey's bay on the coast, the reverse went out ... I called and they brought me a new car from Port Elizabeth in a couple hours. Great service.

    In Kruger, driving yourself allows you to explore at your own pace, which is what it is all about. Much better than being stuck with a bunch of gawking tourists. The downside is that it may not be easy to see smaller game ... including leapards, cheetah and lions ... but don't get hung up on marking off "the big 5". Enjoy the beauty of the park and drive slowly.

    The main roads in Kruger are paved, but the majority are not. The secondary roads are dirt and gravel, generally well-maintained. Unless there is some serious flooding, you do not need a 4x4.

    If you are American (not sure about other nationalities), I suggest you get an international drivers licence before coming. I believe that's required by law in SA but I'm not 100 percent sure. I only had my American licence, and I was not stopped once. You could probly pull it off without an int'l licence, but best to be safe and get it if you can. Also: don't ever go more than 10 km above the speedlimit in SA .. there are plenty of speed traps around the country (for good reason, lots of people die on roads there).

    I drove to Kruger from Joburg. It took about 4.5 hours.

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  • Waxbag's Profile Photo

    Do a Self Drive in Kruger

    by Waxbag Written Nov 22, 2004
    Our compact in Kruger

    I really recommend hiring a car and seeing Kruger independently. I have seen many questions posted on the forums about what tour take and to book it where etc. Just do it yourself. If you have a drivers license from home you can drive in SA. There are plenty of places to hire a car in Jo-berg and Nelspruit. You don't need a 4x4, because the main roads are tarred and the sides roads are in good condition (although a 4x4 is nice because it sits high).

    Good maps are available at the gate entrances and the roads are well marked. Petrol stations are located in every restcamp and there are mechanics available if you have any difficulties.

    I like having the independence to anywhere I want when I want. Tour operators tend to quickly drive you around spending little time in one spot so they can find the "Big Five", which is annoying if you are also interested in all of the other animals.

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