africa on a budget...both time and money

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May 31st, 2005, 07:30 PM
  #1
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africa on a budget...both time and money

We have found cheap tickets to South Africa. However, now we don't know what to do. We can fly into Joburg or Capetown. From what I've read, we're leaning toward the latter. I keep reading about how dangerous Johannesburg is. Is there somewhere near Johannesburg where we can stay?
We also want to go to Kruger National Park. We will only have about 10 days there and are working with an extreme budget (we're teachers). Where do we stay? How do we get to Kruger and back? How much will it cost once we're there? Any help/advice would be very much appreciated!

Thanks!

evahui is offline  
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Jun 1st, 2005, 08:46 AM
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If you want to go to Kruger, Jo'burg is closer, but Cape Town (IMHO) has more to see and do. Either way you will probably need to do an internal flight. If you go to Jo'burg, the Sandton area is supposed to be pretty safe. Our agent has us staying at the Balalaika. As for trying to do things on a budget, I know the private reserves around Kruger tend to be more expensive, but some of them more so than others. OUr agent originally had us in the Timbavati Reserve (maybe Gomo Gomo Lodge?) but I had read that Sabi Sands had better animal viewing so asked about comparable places there and she put us in Elephant Plains Game Lodge. I've heard some good things about it. You might want to try working with someone who can search out deals for you. go2africa.com has been very good at finding us exactly what we want and booking it for us. We worked with Rikke Williams, but I'm sure any of them are good. We're educators also, so we've been trying not to break the limited budget (althogh I'm not sure we succeeded when you start adding in all of the things like cage diving with sharks and helicopter rides over Victoria Falls - oh well). Hope this helps.
jcasale is offline  
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Jun 3rd, 2005, 02:11 PM
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hi, jcasale is right, jo'berg is alot closer if you want to go 2 kruger. Pretoria isn't that far from jo'berg and is alot safer, so it may be better to stay around there instead if you're worried about safety (which we were!). If, however, you do decide to go to cape town instead (or aswel, with an internal flight), there is definatly a lot more to do around that area. You'll probably know about all the main things, such as table mountain, robbin island, cape point etc, but i have to recommend you go to mama africas on long st. Its a very very reasonably priced african restaurant which has excellent food, such as ostrich, crocodile, kudu and impala! everyone who visits cape town should visit to get a taste of proper african food.
The most obvious places to stay are hostels if your on a budget. They are very cheap in SA and most do double/triple rooms if your not up for sharing a dorm full of smelly travellers! A lot even have pools, which are very welcome in the african summer! hope at least some of that info is useful to you! have a good time
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Jun 4th, 2005, 09:52 AM
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I wouldn't neceassarily recommend staying in Pretoria ahead of Jo'burg. Last year I stayed at the Sheraton in Pretoria for one night as well as the Hyatt in Rosebank. Whilst true that you can (with some caution) walk around parts of central Pretoria during the day-there really isn't much to see. I would recommend staying in Sandton where you can walk around during the day or night go to some good stores and eat in good restaurants.
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Jun 4th, 2005, 09:56 AM
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Also regarding Kruger. I worked with go2africa who have been very good in helping me plan my upcoming trip in 3 weeks!
One of the places I am staying in is Gomo Gomo in the Timbavati area. It is only R800/night per person (about $125). I will post a trip report when I return but from everything I've read on this board and elsewhere it sounds great. The flights to Kruger can be pricy. I got a good deal flying to Nelspruit from Cape Town nonstop on SAA. You can also try nationwide.co.za who also do this route and may be slightly cheaper. It was outrageously expensive to fly to Hoedspruit which is about an hour closer to the Timbavati so after our safari we are renting a car and driving back to Jo'burg (about a 5 hour drive)
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