Kruger National Park

The world renowned Kruger National Park is South Africa’s largest national park and it certainly is an asset to be proud of. The park covers an impressive 20 000 square kilometres and is one of the world’s largest game reserves.
It boasts 23 rest camps, several luxury lodges, has a network of game viewing roads, 4 X 4 trails, walking trails, picnic sites and a number of
large dams.

Game is diverse, comprising 146 mammal species, some 520 birds, 114 reptiles, 34 amphibians, 50 species of fish and almost 350 different trees.

Birdlife is extremely varied and plentiful - the northern part of the park is the southernmost range for many Afro-tropical species and the southern Kruger is the northernmost range for many South African species.

Giant Kingfisher Saddle-billed Stork Crested Barbet
Giant Kingfisher, Saddle-billed Stork, Crested Barbet

This makes Kruger a bird-watcher’s paradise, but for those who prefer to see the big cats- lion, leopard and cheetah are often seen, while the rest of the big five, as well as rhino, are usually seen at least once on a trip to Kruger. Wild Dogs, although nomadic, range throughout the park, as do a host of smaller cats, jackals, hyaenas and a variety of mongooses, bats and rodents.

Spotted Hyaena
Spotted Hyaena

Sleeping lion Breeding herd at Letaba riverbed Elephant bull at waterhole
Sleeping lion, breeding elephant herd at Letaba riverbed, elephant bull at waterhole

The diversity of species in Kruger is undoubtedly linked to the vast range of vegetation types. The overall vegetation can be described as arid woodland savanna, which ranges from expansive stretches of grassland with few trees, through to dense thorn thickets and gallery forests.
At least 8 major vegetation zones have been described,
further divided into 36 different landscape types.

Leopard Kim at Luvuvhu River Waterbuck cows
Leopard, Kim at Luvuvhu River, Waterbuck cows

The climate in the Kruger National Park is generally pleasant, being very hot at times during the summer months, and even during winter. Summer temperatures, particularly in the north, can be up to 45 degrees, but irregular showers and thunderstorms do bring some relief. Most of the rain, usually in the form of thundershowers, falls during the summer between the months of October and March.
Winters are dry and warm, but evenings can be very cold.

Kruger National Park is an exciting place to explore. The many camps are easily accessible and all have their own charm. Bushveld camps offer a quiet alternative to the more popular rest camps.

Shimuwini Bushveld Camp Pafuri Picnic Site
Shimuwini Bushveld Camp, Pafuri Picnic Site

Most of the larger camps have restaurants and well stocked shops, so there is the option to eat at the restaurants or enjoy the fun and adventure of bush breakfasts at one of the many picnic sites or back at the camp after an early morning drive.

Yellow-billed hornbill Bush breakfast Bushbuck ewe
Yellow-billed Hornbill on skottel at Mooiplaas Picnic Site, bush breakfast, Bushbuck ewe at Timbavati Picnic Site

The weather is generally warm and pleasant, so often lends itself to a barbeque/braai under the stars - an opportunity to gather around the fire and discuss the day’s sightings, while listening to the calls of hyaenas and owls and frequently the roaring of lions.

Genet Nature & Birding Tours specialises in this kind of experience and we will gladly arrange an itinerary to suit your needs, be it bird watching, lion watching or simply enjoying the tranquillity of the African bush, the majestic baobabs, noisy hippos, bushbabies, hornbills
and enormous leafy green trees.

Baobab tree
Baobab - bark stripped by elephants

Please contact us for more info on Kruger.

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Kim also works as a freelance wild life illustrator