This self-drive itinerary offers the complete Kruger Park experience - it start with a few nights at one of the most attractive and romantic budget lodges in the area, then includes a self-drive adventure in Kruger before finishing with a few nights at one of our favourite places to stay whilst you explore the Lowveld area that adjoins the Park.
nThambo Tree Camp is ideal for an intimate, authentic Kruger safari. Located in the heart of the Klaserie Game Reserve and sharing unfenced borders with the Kruger Park, it is rich in wildlife viewing. Your room is set on a raised wooden platform on eye-level with the trees and there is a small balcony from where you can game watch even from the comfort of your room. Sleeping only 10 people in total, guests are guaranteed a personalised, memorable safari experience. All game drives are conducted in open 4x4 Toyota Land Cruisers which are perfect for photographic and video opportunities. The afternoon game drives generally leave at 16:00 and include late afternoon game spotting, a sundowner stop and a game drive that continues into the night. Morning drives head out at 06:00 or just before, an ideal time to spot game.
After you return from your morning safari activity on your last day at nThambo, you will have time to enjoy breakfast at the camp. You will then exit the reserve, and allow about 2 hours from here to drive northwards to the Phalaborwa Entrance Gate of the Kruger National Park. Enjoy your first self-drive game drive en-route to your camp, watching out for wildlife along the way.
Whlst the rest camps are not as luxurious as the safari lodges, they do offer clean, comfortable accommodation in the heart of the Park, and by staying at a couple of different camps you will have the chance to explore more of the Park than if you just stayed at one camp.
Letaba Rest Camp is situated on a sweeping bend of the Letaba River, midway between the southern and northern boundaries of the Kruger National Park. The name means 'river of sand', and the sandy riverbed is an excellent location for game viewing, particularly elephant, which thrive in the area.
After 2 nights at Letaba you should allow a few hours to drive down through the Park to reach your next rest camp. Satara is situated in the central Kruger area, in an area recognised as being one of the best in the Park for game viewing.
After 2 nights here, and having thoroughly explored this area of the Park, you then depart for the drive to your final rest camp. Skukuza is the Kruger National Park's largest rest camp and administrative headquarters, and is situated on the southern banks of the Sabie River.
When you leave Skukuza on your last day of safari, you can spend the entire day in the Park, before leaving the Park via the Paul Kruger Gate late afternoon. Allow an hour to then drive back to Hazyview for your last few days on holiday.
The small village of Hazyview is an ideal place to base yourself to explore the Lowveld area around the Kruger National Park. This is a beautiful area, with attractions including the Blyde River Canyon, the well known 'Panorama Route', elephant and chimp sanctuaries, and a couple of excellent animal rehabilitation projects.
Arrive into Hoedspruit Airport. Collect your luggage, then make your way to the Europcar Car Rental office. Complete the necessary paperwork - you will need to present your driving licence, passport and credit card. The keys to your hire car will then be handed over to you.
10 Day Car Rental: Group R Standard SUV - Toyota Rav or similar (Classic Plus Cover GPS PACKAGE)
Exit the airport and head to the Timbavati Gate and then into the Klaserie Game Reserve and onto nThambo Tree Camp. Depending on what you see along the way once in the reserve, the drive should take about an hour. At nThambo, every day begins and ends with a game drive through this vibrant part of the Southern Klaserie Game Reserve, while the camp offers open views onto an active waterhole and all the animals that use it. Leopard and lion, Africa's biggest cats, prowl the bushveld and their calls can be heard in the night when you are falling asleep. Other wildlife you may encounter on game drives include elephant, rhino, buffalo, impala, kudu, zebra, giraffe, steenbok, duiker, mongoose, baboon, vervet monkey, hippo, warthog, and many others.
After you return from your morning safari activity, you will have time to enjoy breakfast at the camp. You will then exit the reserve, and allow about 2 hours from here to drive via the main road to the Phalaborwa Entrance Gate of the Kruger National Park. Pay the Daily Concession Fee to enter the Park and allow a further 2 hours to then drive through the Park to reach your first rest camp, watching out for wildlife along the way.
Allow about 3 hours to drive to your next rest camp. Satara is a busy camp, and not without reason. It is situated in an excellent game viewing area, with the bush relatively open and the animals plentiful and diverse. The camp itself has a rustic charm, with the bulk of the accommodation set out in a series of circles. Satara is well wooded and the birdlife is prolific. At night the clink of fruit bats is fused with the chirping of cicadas and crickets. The calls of owls and nightjars add to the symphony that is punctuated intermittently by the whoop of hyena, the screech of jackal and the roars of lion.
Enjoy a leisurely drive today down through the Park to reach your final rest camp. A self-drive safari in Kruger is a truly wonderful experience - the thrill of driving along a road by yourself and coming across a pride of lions basking under a nearby tree, or waiting at a peaceful waterhole and having a sighting all to yourself is hard to beat. The Park boasts an exceptionally rich mix of wildlife, including some 490 species of bird and 147 mammal species, including the Big 5.
You can spend the entire day in the Park, before leaving the Park via the Paul Kruger Gate late afternoon. Allow an hour to then drive back to Hazyview for your last few days on holiday. Rissington Inn is the perfect base to explore the scenic wonders of the area. The rooms all have their own individual style and character, and you can be assured of a warm welcome from the moment you arrive.
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When you pay for something protected by the ATOL scheme you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it.