After your flight from Johannesburg international to Skukuza airport within the Kruger reserve gates, you will immediately know you have arrived when the Airplane door is opened. The warm African air will let your senses know that you are in a vast wilderness, one of the worlds best known National Parks. The vastness of this park can be seen from the air. Each day new travelers from all over the world arrive at this Skukuza airport to experience the unique fauna and flora of the South Africa bush on a Safari holiday.
Visitors are then transported by Safari vehicle to one of 24 lodges and camps. There are a number of accommodation options just outside of the park too. Maybe you want to check into a Safari Lodge which always promotes game viewing!
In 1898 a small area between Sabi and crocodile river was designated as a National Wild Animal reserve and so the Kruger National Park is South Africa's oldest national Sanctuary. The Orpen gate was given its name from a family who gave large areas of their farm to the Kruger National Park game reserve.
The Skukuza camp is the organisational centre to the Kruger reserve and can accommodate over a 1000 guests. The Sabi river flows to the north of the camp. In 1902 the Skukuza camp was the base for the co-founder of the Park, Kernal James Stevenson-Hamilton. I wonder if he would have loved a wildlife photography course or what he would say about Kruger photographic safaris.
camp is located on the Lions safari road. The is labelled on the top five best routes for observing animals and plants in the reserve. Thanks to the Parks caretakers many animal species have been saved from extinction and some culling is necessary to keep the Kruger Parks complex ecosystem in check. Panoramic views
from your safari vehicle while on game drives, allow for fantastic views of rivers lined with mahogany and wild fig trees. Well, maintained roads allow for easy driving in the Park. The main roads are tared and have simple road names that are easy to follow. the side, gravel or dirt roads are also easy to drive on.
White and Black Rhino are often close to the road, they are curious creatures and it is best to stay clear of these enormous animals. The diversity of the Kruger Parks animals makes it world famous. The area is about 20 000 square kilometres. 350 km's long north to south and on average 50km's wide. The park is home to over 120 animal species and over 500 bird varieties. There is also over 110 reptile species. The park also has a rich tree population with over 320 tree species. There is so much to entertain any professional photographer.
The flora of the park offers shade in the day and camouflage to those animals who need it. One such animal is the Hyhena. The Spotted Hyena has the strongest jaws in the entire animal kingdom. This scavenger conveniently disposes of decaying animal carcases.
Five meters up into the trees the leaves are reserved for the Giraffe. With their long necks, they can effortlessly graze from the treetops. The succulent leaves provide them with much-needed moisture and sustenance. Each animal has its own individual defence system. Even a Lion fears the potentially fatal kick from a Giraffes hind leg. The Giraffe can, on average, weigh 800kg's.
Today there is around 300 cheetah living in the park. These cheetahs are mostly shy but occasionally are observed and spoken of among visitors and game rangers alike.
The midday heat can easily reach 30 degrees Celsius. After a midday siesta many returns to the bush for an afternoon of Photo Safari opportunities. It is always time for a photo tour. The afternoon also seems to have the best light for your photographer of the year opportunity.
The rainy season lasts from November to March with an average of seven days of rain in each month.
The icebird or better known as the kingfisher can very often bee seen near rivers and waterholes. it catches fish easily in the rich waters of the Kruger National Park. Waterholes are favorite meeting places for many types of animals. Waterholes often are home to Hippos. Nearly always submerged under the river water, only the eyes of the head are visible of this 3-ton giant.
Take a break at one of the many viewpoints and dedicated stop areas. Often a waterhole is nearby. The lizards are out and lazing about soaking up warm from the African sun and warm rocks.
Elephants are the worlds largest living animal and a true highlight to see these animals in their natural environment. Fully grown Elephants require around 250kg's of food and around 120litres of water each day for survival.
After your daily activities and photo taking on our photo tour, a welcome retreat to your bungalow or safari lodge outside the park, can allow you and your equipment to recharge. Small museums within the camps offer great knowledge about the Park history. Enjoy a great meal before calling it a day.
The Kruger park is divided into three regions. The North is mostly Mopane trees and bush-land, the centre area is mostly wide open grass plain patches. The southern part is mostly bushland and acacia trees. Landscapes do appeal to many a wildlife photographer. Just picture an Elephant under an acacia tree. Back in the day when there were no fences, this land could be likened to the great migration that happens every year in East Africa.Photo
Safari Africa would love to show you the bush and perhaps find an event for you to photograph privately with no interruptions and you can stay as long as permitted.