The campsites in Kruger were well set up and had a nice fence to keep the animals out (or the humans in depending on your perspective!).
All of them were clean with flush toilets & hot showers. Most sites had kitchens with an urn dispensing boiling water and every pitch had a braai stand so you could barbecue your dinner. Here’s my quick resume of the ones we stayed in:
Berg-en-dal: we arrived late & it was busy so we struggled to find a pitch. We left early, so I barely saw this campsite… all I can tell you is that the restaurant was nice and they served us a much needed glass of wine with our dinner!!
Skukuza: also a big, busy campsite. Our pitch was fine, but didn’t have much shade. There was a good shop and a lovely shaded river-viewing platform where I saw my first crocodile!
Letaba: we cheated here and treated ourselves to a bit of luxury! I think you can just about still call this a ‘tent’, just a tent with electricity and a verandah!!
Shingdwedzi: we paid for a perimeter pitch and were in two minds whether this was worthwhile. In someways shade was as important as being close to the fence and there wasn’t any system to allocate people to pitches. This restaurant had the nicest staff – and we were even persuaded to go back for breakfast on our last morning!
Tsendzi: this was our favourite and we were sad we were only booked in for one night. It is a ‘rustic camp’ so no shop, electric or hot water urn in the kitchen. But there is solar power and gas to give light and hot water in the abulutions block. It is a new camp and comes complete with skyview showers with no roof!
Each party gets an allotted site and there were plenty of trees for shade. Although there are fewer facility there was still a friendly member of staff called Rogers who came round to check everything was ok.
Maroela: another more basic campsite, but with electricity. It is fairly close to Orpen where there is a shop, swimming pool etc.
Here’s what my holiday buddy wrote to the Kruger magazine about the staff:
Leaving no stone unturned
Having flown in to Maroela Campsite KNP from Cape Town with minimal gear, the Manager, Zondi Seepane noticed and furnished our site with a table! Early in the morning I commented to the friendly cleaner in the ablutions on their cleanness, later to find she is Nikiwe, Zondi’s wife. Then after an exhilarating morning walk we tried to start the hired car up around mid day, to discover a dead battery. While waiting for a replacement car Zondi and family took us on an African time drive to Orpen in his bakkie. What an impressive campsite team!
Lots of the sites had electricity hook up points – which we never did work out how to use! During our stay, South Africa was on quite a high load-shedding regime (ie planned power cuts to manage demand), so it wasn’t too much of a loss, but another time we’d work out what adaptor we needed to buy.
If we were planning another trip we would probably go to fewer sites and stay longer at each, as moving on so regularly was a bit tiring. The last three sites were probably our favourites, but the decision of where to go also needs to consider travel to the park (we would definitely not recommend route N4 Malelane Gate – that was a scary road) and the different habitats and therefore animals you want to see (compensation for the scary road and the busy campsites was a nice sighting of a rhino!).
Anyway, I’m getting ahead of myself, who’s to say my holiday buddy would have me again?!