Published: May 10th 2012May 10th 2012
Hearing stories from both sides of the fence about Kruger we were very keen to see what this internationally renowned park was all about and we can easily say that it was a great deal more amazing than we were thinking. Arriving in the gate at 6am we planned to do a decent loop on the way to our camp Letaba for the first night, it is in the first 30 minutes that we had seen enough animals for last our five days including the leopard picture above. That leopard by far was the highlight of our time in this park and getting so close to this magnificent animal by ourselves (other than the time when we were on foot and it was two meters from us) was pure ass and to be by ourselves made it even more enjoyable.
But for such a wide variety of wildlife Kruger is the place to go and for sure anyone will be seeing a decent amount of wildlife. During our time visiting the park had a lot of water around which makes it even harder to find the wildlife and we can only imagine what it is like in the dry season.
Our first camp Letaba was perhaps our most enjoyable as it is quite a lot more north than the more popular camping areas and still had a wide variety of animals running around. One problem that we found was that a Hyena circles the camp site at night feeding from the food that idiot tourists feed it. Well it is a couple and they have worn down a track around the perimeter of the fence they walk so often. With the animals so close to the fence and with kids running around we hate to think what would happen if one night they got in. But it was the closet we go to Hyena for sure as when we were cooking dinner one of them gave us a hell of a fright when it cruised passed with its head towards the ground.
Other than those two Hyenas there are plenty around the camp and it was nice to see a new born trying to sneak out of the burro to feed but noticing us and bolting back into the safety of the hole. It is also here that we got to see many elephants with herds of thirty
odd surround the car at times which is not a nice experience and if they have kids it makes is even more worrying. Once we got a few ears flapped at us and trunk up in the air warning us. Well we couldn’t do so much, just turn off the car and hope that they won’t get crazier than this as we were surrounded by them. But it is often hard to avoid these situations as when you’re driving along an elephant walks out on the road and you are forced to stop. Next several walk from the bush behind the car and next things your trapped sitting with the car turned off waiting for them to move along. The animals have right to the way!
The place to see the lions is at Satara camp which was out second stop for two night and we also go luck with several Rhino grazing around the area. It is here that we also noticed some very sick lions that have (from what we have found out) TBC. A photo on the here will be of a very ill lioness whose skin and fur was sticking to her skeleton. It is
not a pleasant sight but it is becoming a more regular thing amongst not only the lion population but many species.
Around the Satara camp you’ll hear and see the wildlife clearly. One night we saw and heard a lion chasing a buffalo but (un)fortunately the buffalo escaped. But the noise they occurred was incredible loud. This is wildlife and it is interesting to see how the animals survive, and of course the strongest will survive.
Our last camp which was the most un-enjoyable for us was Lower Sabie for the reason that it is packed with people and going for a drive is just like a main road in a city. It made viewing wildlife very difficult as it turns out to be a queuing system and you need to wait in line for your turn. It is also in this area that you will see stupid tourists trying to get as close to an elephant as possible to get a good photo. We have been stuck in the traffic when an elephant had enough with the close contact and everyone was forced to reverse the cars as some tourists wanted get a last close picture. Actually
it is quite scary when your car is smaller than a baby elephant and the cars are like toys for this big animal. Well we are not too sure if they don’t realize how dangerous they can be as people are reversing closer and closer with the elephant making a big scene. It can only lead to disaster one day as it has in the past. Maybe they think it should be safe since they are allowed to drive in the park in the first place but it is not like a zoo Kruger.
Overall though we did have a great time and only wish we had a couple of more days to visit the more northern sections. The park is huge and the landscape is forever changing from camp to camp so time is needed to really appreciate this internationally renowned place. What we really enjoyed is that we could do it in our own little car and could go anywhere we desired finding ourselves without any other tourists for a few hours at a time and spotting a lion or an elephant which is really rewarding and fun.
There are more photos below