Andre,Mariska and Zion La Cock – The perfect trip to the Kruger National park

18 May 2018 we met Andre,Mariska and Zion at our Johannesburg Depot to hand over the keys to their 6 Berth Motorhome before they embarked on their 10 day journey to the Kruger National Park

Have a look at some of the moments captured by Andre and his family during their visit to The Kruger.

The perfect trip to the Kruger National park

This must have been our favourite holiday trips we have done so far, initially we considered all the different options – we looked at a number of holiday destinations both local and international, when you start planning ‘the perfect holiday’ it is so easy to get overwhelmed by the many choices, packages, destinations, accommodation etc.  but for us travelling has changed somewhat and going on holiday this time was slightly more uhm, complicated –  it wasn’t just my wife and I who could take long relaxing walks on the beach or enjoy a cocktail watching the sunset over our African savanna, not this time, our new addition to the family (10 months old) meant that things had to be less complicated and more convenient for us to enjoy our first holiday as a family of three.

We live in Hartbeespoort just outside Johannesburg (South Africa) where the month of May is the start of winter, we weren’t ready for the cold weather so we decided to head up north for some more warmth. The bush has always been a big part of my live and some of my best childhood memories were from holidays in the Kruger National Park.

Although my wife and I have been so many times, for us, it still is the best place on earth. Mutually we decided that Kruger would be the destination for our annual trip and winter is always the best time of the year to be in the bush as great sightings of big herds at waterholes and rivers are almost guaranteed. Winter days in the Kruger is also pleasant with similar weather conditions to summer in Joburg (22 – 28C).

We normally stay in rondawels (bungalows) when we visit the Kruger and to really enjoy the diversity of landscapes and species the Kruger has to offer you need to explore every corner and to achieve this you’ll have to overnight in several different camps, being stationed only at one camp for the sake of ‘convenience’ with our little boy wasn’t really an option; packing and unpacking at every camp isn’t ideal, especially if you want to go out crack of dawn to spot some nocturnal species. (Animals are most active early morning and late afternoons, also the best time for photography).

What we needed was a bungalow on wheels, this would be the perfect solution to travel and explore accessibly with our little dude. After a quick consultation with Mr. Google we came across SA Roadtrippers. I filled in a quote-form on the website and minutes later a quote from Chey arrived.  We were pleasantly surprised by the quote and found it reasonable. At first, we thought it might be an expensive way to travel for locals but in fact, normal bungalow accommodation in KNP could be costlier.

After confirming the quote with SA Roadtrippers, the entire process was so easy! On collection of the 6 Berth Iveco Motorhome, the staff were extremely thorough, professional and friendly. A 20min in depth video was shown to me which explained all the ins and outs of the motorhome and equipment. The vehicle was neat and clean, fully equipped with everything you possibly need – cutlery, crockery, camping chairs, table, microwave and more. Amy then did a full vehicle test with me – tyres, gas, electricity, oil, etc.

And so, our journey began – 10 days in Kruger National Park.

Because we were so mobile, we decided to tour Kruger from North to South –  Pafuri to Crocodile Bridge. We slept over in Punda Maria, Shingwedzi, Tsendze, Balule, Skukuza, Lower Sabie and Pretoriuskop rest camp.

The journey to Kruger was surprisingly comfortable, the Iveco 2.2 diesel motor had sufficient power on the highway and the fuel consumption was really good, we easily fitted our baby car seat in the rear and access from the cab to home was effortless. The Iveco offers great features like cruise control, Bluetooth, USB and aircon. Driving the motorhome requires no extra skill (code 8) and manoeuvring the big motorhome is easier than expected.

‘Glamping’ in some of the remote bush camps like Balule and Tsendze was an amazing experience, although these camps has no electricity, the solar panel, battery system and gas in the Motorhome enabled us to function normally.

Each morning we stopped at a picnic site to make breakfast, the smell of beacon and egg filled our motorhome and within minutes our table and chairs were out and we could enjoy an early bite under a Marula or Fig tree effortlessly (you can rent a gas braai pan or ‘skottelbraai’ at most picnic spots for only R25 which the camp staff cleans afterwards). The curio shops in KNP are well stocked and groceries can be bought at any main camp, so we never had any stress if our supplies were running low.

During the day we went for game drives, the Iveco sits high which is a massive benefit for spotting animals, during the hot hours of the day the animals are less active and so were we – pulling over for an afternoon siesta at a waterhole made the motorhome so much fun. My boy could play on the big double bed with his toys en route.

We spend our evenings quietly around a camp fire after a braai, listening to the African sounds, hyena, lion, night jars and the occasional leopard cough, Rodger pointed out a few different owl species as he is famously known for at Tsendze bush camp.

The entire experience in the motorhome is highly recommended, but, there is one negative thing I need to mention, driving home and returning the motorhome – not so fun!

  1. On Thursday morning we opted to have a breakfast at the scenic Mlondozi picnic site (our favourite) but unfortunately our entire trip was spoiled by the horrific scene of a freshly poached Rhino cow 100m from Mlondozi dam, please visit www.savetherhino.org for more information on the Rhino crisis – our Rhinos need your help!

‘Be the change that you wish to see in the world.’

Regards,

Andre, Mariska and Zion

Thank you for making SA Roadtrippers part of your perfect trip , Andre and Mariska. We look forward to welcome you back on your next adventure!