The Kruger National Park is South Africa's main tourism magnet and delivers outstanding sightings of Africa's most famous inhabitants. The Kruger is divided into both public and private areas, the latter offers luxury lodges and exclusive game viewing while the former is open to the public and explorable only via self-driving. The two sections are hardly cut off from one another, forming instead a huge biosphere through which animals pass freely.
Exploring the Kruger's public section on a self-drive has both pros and cons. While you'll enjoy greater flexibility and the chance to take younger children along for the ride - something a number of private lodges don't allow - there are downsides. The main ones being you'll have to share any sightings with other vehicles, you can't travel off-road, and sightings are harder to come-by without the help of a fully trained guide.
But this isn't to dampen the experience; the Kruger offers an impressive safari with phenomenal wildlife sightings. As South Africa's Big 5 capital, elephant and buffalo are joined by prides of lion, elusive leopard and endangered rhino, along with a remarkable string of other species, numbering into the thousands. The public area is often split into three sections: southern, central and northern. For the highest density of game the southern section is choice, although it's also the busiest. Game concentrations in the central section are also good while the wildlife of the northern sector is sparse, yet you'll find a sense of tranquillity and wilderness absent from other areas of the park. A stunning mixture of wildlife and dramatic scenery, a Kruger National Park safari refuses to disappoint.
Our favourite itineraries, showcasing the best of Kruger National Park
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From Singita Lebombo Lodge embark on thrilling safaris into the wilderness, with Big 5 game viewing on offer and stunning views of the N'wanetsi River. Enjoy luxury accommodation and excellent facilities.
Offering an exclusive 6,000 hectares to explore, Jock's Safari Lodge is celebrated for its Big 5 game viewing and luxurious accommodation with classic African character. Enjoy walking safaris and authentic rock art.
Set on the banks of the Sweni River, Singita Sweni Lodge is a small and exclusive lodge found within a wildlife rich 33,000 acre private concession in the Kruger National Park.
Found in the exclusive Lion Sands Game Reserve, Tinga Lodge offers intimate, luxury accommodation and spectacular Big 5 game viewing with superb guiding.
Set in a 12,000 hectare private concession, Rhino Post Safari Lodge offers superb sightings of the Big 5 from this elegant property.
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