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“Game driving at its best”

Game drives at Phalaborwa Gate in Kruger National Park
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed 27 December 2017

My dream of seeing the big five in their natural habitat finally came to pass. The special thing about Kruger is that you don’t need to book with a tour company. You need to book in advance one of the parks cabins as well as a car if you are a foreign visitor. I saw that many tourists were driving in their own vehicles in the park - We decided to go with a guide just to be safe. The park is well organized and maintained compared to many others I have visited in Africa in the past. The animals are plenty and well protected unlike other countries still struggling with poaching.
This is one place where you are guaranteed seeing most of the animals. We started seeing some of the animals even before we entered the park. The various species of antelope grazing nervously along the park roads was eye catching. We first spotted a pride of lions in the afternoon just after we had seen the rhinos. The elephants had left for the different grazing area and it was only later in the evening that we caught site of them. My wife still recalls the beautiful evenings and camping near the lodge.
If you are a first time visitor to the park, I advise that you take along with you one of the experienced guides. Spotting Leopards and other nocturnal animals require the assistance of an experienced guide. A guide with knowledge of the different routes will help you avoid some of the crowded spots and roads.

5  Thank Bett Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"game drives"
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"eco trail"
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"nocturnal animals"
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"young leopard"
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"self drive"
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"own vehicle"
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"their natural habitat"
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"wild africa"
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"own pace"
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"one night"
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"amazing animals"
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"an adventure"
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"big cats"
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"watering hole"
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Reviewed 21 December 2017

Day 1 - Drove from Phalaborwa gate to Letaba, and then Mopani and back to Phalaborwa. We did most of the loops. Saw among others elephant, impala, waterbuck, kudu, giraffe, buffalo, zebra, wildebeest and dwarf mongoose. Stopped over at Letaba for refreshments - Mugg and Bean are no longer there and have been replaced by Tindlovu. Had a great view of the river where giraffe and buck were grazing.

Day 2 - Drove from Phalaborwa to Letaba, taking the S131 where we witnessed lion feeding off a carcass with hyena, jackals, vultures, buffalo, impala and zebra looking on (Nwanetsi watering hole). Then we took the road to Engelhard dam (turn off just after the Nwanedzi bridge from Letaba). 6 hippo with babies in the water, a large number of elephants with young and many giraffe along this route. Also our first Southern Ground Hornbill. We then went back to Letaba and took the Satara road turning off to Timbavati on the S39. This road is terrible and should not be attempted in a sedan! Large rocks and bits of road appears to have been washed away. The watering holes are mostly dry but did see a large herd of wildebeest here with zebra. There is a beautiful baobab at the intersection but the scenery along the road is lacking - little vegetation and mostly dead trees. Carried on to Orpen where we saw a large herd of impala, certainly more than 200, roughly a third of them very young. November and December are excellent times to see the animals with their young although it can be uncomfortably hot.

1  Thank david c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 December 2017

focus more on the walks instead of drives. take a cammera and binoculars. gaming is based on patience and luck. dont expect to get the nat geo video on the first day

Thank alejandro b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 November 2017

we opted for the fully morning 6hr game drive, and glad we selected that option. This is truly a once in a life time opportunity to experience Kruger National Park. And boy did we experience some true National Geographic moments, keep the camera rolling, don't put them down! a herd of buffalo over 200 strong crossing the road heading to the watering hole, what an amazing sight and the sound of the jungle to go along! the Phalaborwa Gate is by far better then the other areas.

1  Thank Good_time_Ahead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 24 November 2017

Drove from Numbi Gate when all the way up via Sabie, Satara, Baluleni & Olifants to the Phalaborwa Gate. This route is absolutely amazing, with lots of game, we saw a group of Cheetahs in the Satara area, and the biggest elephants one has seen. Along the route we also saw a herd of Buffalos, and just as we where leaving Baluleni area we saw a pride of Lions. The route is loaded with game all the way up, so long as you don't use the main roads when you driving your own car, get inside those routes and you'll see a lot. On the way to Phalaborwa, gate just as we where exiting we saw a young Leopard on top of a tree. I recommend this drive to anyone who wants to see game.

1  Thank 191rhulanim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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