Where to Stay - South Africa

(SANParks) has announced the dates of the South African National Parks Week 2015.

National Parks Week 2015 in South Africa


The 10th annual SA National Parks Week will take place from 14 to 18 September 2015. The inaugural South African National Parks Week took place in 2006 and was aimed at linking the South African national parks system to the global national movement and to also showcase the best of South Africa’s national parks.


Accommodation within the Kruger National Park itself can naturally be quite expensive and needs to be booked well in advance. An alternative is to find accommodation outside of the park but within easy reach of one or two of the Kruger Park Entrance Gates. Here are a few ideas of venues that fit this bill.

Kruger National Park has eight entrance gates.
There are five gates in the Southern Section of Kruger Park:

  1. Malelane Gate
  2. Crocodile Bridge Gate
  3. Numbi Gate
  4. Paul Kruger Gate
  5. Phabeni Gate

There are two gates in the Central section of Kruger Park:

  1. Orpen Gate
  2. Phalaborwa Gate

There is one gate in the Northern Section of Kruger Park

  1.  Punda Maria Gate

These gates open at the following times:

  • October to March: 05h30
  • April to September: 06h00

 Accommodation ideas close to Numbi Gate and Phabeni Gate entrances to Kruger Park

Nandina Guest House

Nandina Guest House (Hazyview)

Nandina Guest House has three lovely rooms all with en-suite bathrooms (shower only). The Honeymoon room “Wisdom room” has aircon. The rooms include extra length beds: TV, (DSTV Easy view, SABC Channels), bar fridge, couch / chairs, built in cupboard, coffee/tee station, ceiling fan and standing fan. Rooms are cleaned daily linen and towels supplied.

Nandina Self-Catering Cottages in Hazyview

Nandina Self-Catering Cottages (Hazyview)

Nandina Self-Catering Cottages (300m from the Guest House) offer four private Self-Catering Cottages, set in beautifully landscaped gardens with prolific birdlife. These owner-managed establishments’ offers tailor-made packages each uniquely developed to suite your individual requirements, making each moment memorable.
Nandina Guest House and Self-Catering Cottages are 17.9km from Numbi Gate and 17.6km from Phabeni Gate.  READ MORE

Looking to combine a beach holiday in South Africa with a trip to see the Big 5? Well this isn’t as complicated as it might sound and doesn’t have to involve internal flights from one end of the country to the other. The Sunshine Coast along the shores of the Eastern Cape in South Africa is an excellent way to combine both and means you don’t have to worry about any malaria tablets.

The Sunshine Coast stretches all the way from Tsitsikamma up to East London a distance of some 460km by road with some of the best game reserves in South Africa to visit plus endless wide sandy beaches to explore. It’s an ideal trip to tag on to a trip to Cape Town or the Cape Winelands offering a host of things to do for all the family. Another option is to fly to Port Elizabeth or East London which both have good connections with OR Tambo International and Cape Town International Airports.

Map of the Sunshine Coast in South Africa

Sunshine Coast, Eastern Cape


By Lesley Stones

There’s an exciting moment whenever you set off on a game drive and the ranger asks what you’d like to see. It always makes me laugh, as if this khaki-clad Dr Doolittle can conjure up spectacular animal sightings on command. But if you do yearn for a specific view of wildlife – a leopard in a tree or a wild dog hunt, perhaps – you can increase your chances enormously by choosing a destination slap bang in the middle of your favourite animal’s kingdom.

Lions in Madikwe Game Reserve

The magnificent lions


uMkhuze Game Reserve in Zululand, KwaZulu-Natal

Fever Tree

Properly spelt uMkhuze, this is one of the ‘must see’ conservation areas in South Africa, and happens to be one of the oldest in the world. Established in 1912, the park covers 38,000 ha of varied habitat, ranging from the forested banks of the Mkuzi River, to the dry sand forest, wooded open grassland, as well as reed-beds and pans.

The park consists mostly of flat and undulating grasslands, with the Nsumo Pan being a large and prominent fresh-water feature. Forests and woodlands are dominated by the distinctive flat-topped Acacia tree that typifies the Southern African bush, and with the bright green and yellow barked Fever Trees making a striking feature. The giant and majestic Sycamore Fig thrives in this area and can reach heights of up to 20m or more, forming an impressive canopy offering refuge from the African heat. READ MORE