KRUGER NATIONAL PARK
Africa offers safari experiences in abundance. The Kruger National Park is one of the largest and best-known game reserves on the African continent. With a total area of almost 20 000 square kilometres, it equals the size of a small country.
The Park is one of South Africa's most reknowed conservation areas and has a proud history of nurturing biodiversity. Five distinct vegetation zones, from open grassland to riverine forest, provide habitats for different species of wildlife in different parts of the Park.
It is home to around 150 mammal species, including the Big Five, over 500 bird species, 114 different reptile species and more than 330 trees.
Archaelogical evidence shows that San hunter-gatherers utilised the region about 40 000 years ago. Cattle herds and farmers began moving into the area 1800 years ago and tone tools dating back 1.5 million years have been found in the Park.
A trip to the Kruger may result in your getting bitten by The Africa Bug - a strong and irresistible need to return as soon as possible!
Safety in numbers when crossing the Sabie River
Kruger is a birding paradise, with over 500 species recorded to date. These include the spectacular Saddle-billed Stork (above), Pel's Fishing Owl and Southern Ground Hornbill supported by a diverse and colourful range of species including rollers, bee-eaters and kingfishers. Bird numbers increase during the summer season with the arrival of many migrants, while the far north of the park hosts sub-tropical species not found elsewhere in South Africa.
The Kruger Park is one of South Africa's most reknowed conservation areas and has a proud history of nurturing biodiversity. Five distinct vegetation zones, from open grassland to riverine forest, provide habitats for different species of wildlife in different parts of the Park. The baobas in the northern part of the park are iconic of the African savannah. This life-giving tree is a symbol of positivity and can live for up to 5000 years.
There are more than 5000 living species of mammals worldwide. About 150 of them occur in the Kruger National Park. This is the place to see lions, elephants, kudu, giraffes and buffalo - and numerous others. Observing mammals in their habitat offers a fascinating glimpse into symbiotic existences and the and interconnectedness of nature. The park offers accommodation tailored to different and preferences, from intimate lodges to budget options.
The Waterberg area is situated in the Limpopo Province, about three hours' drive from Johannesburg. It is identified as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, teeming with wildlife and characterised by plummeting mountain gorges and rolling bushland. The Waterberg has evidence of the first human ancestors from three million years ago and San rock paitings dating back 2000 years. There are many safari lodges to choose between in this incredibly scenic and malaria-free part of South Africa.
Madikwe Game Reserve is located in the north eastern part of South Africa, on the border to Botswana. This malaria-free reserve used to be farmland but was converted to a national park in the early 1990s. Entire breeding herds of elephants, buffalo, rhinos and antelopes were the first mammals to be relocated. Lions, cheetah, hyenas, leopards and wild dogs followed. Covering an area of 750 km², Madikwe is the fifth largest game reserve in South Africa and home to more than 60 species of mammal.
BEACH & BUSH
iSimangaliso Wetland Park is a protected area along the coast of the KwaZulu-Natal Province, north of Durban. The word isimangaliso means 'a miracle' or 'something wondrous' in Zulu. It is a rare beach-and-bush destination. The vast Lake St Lucia is home to crocodiles, hippos, pelicans and flamingos. Marine life include humpback whales, dolphins and rare turtles. The Eastern Shores hosts elephants, rhino, buffalo, antelopes, leopard, hyena and lions and many sought-after avian species e.g. the pink-throathed twinspot.