Giraffe in Kruger national park


May 3rd, 2016, 10:19 AM
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Giraffe in Kruger national park

My wife and myself will be visiting South Africa for 1st time in mid September 2016.
We would be staying in @Kruger. We need to choose camp for staying in KNP.
We are interested in Giraffe viewing.

Where would we spot Giraffes in Kruger? Near which camp?
kamleshrut is offline  
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May 3rd, 2016, 10:41 AM
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Giraffes are all around, you shouldn't have any troubles finding some no matter where you stay. Have a great trip!
kellyee21 is offline  
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May 3rd, 2016, 06:49 PM
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Thanks a lot KELLYEE21 for solving my one concern.
We would be staying 2 days in Central Kruger and 2 days in South, depending on the availability of the camps.
In Sanparks website, in the description of what to expect near rest camps, Giraffe and Zebra spotting is probably mentioned no where, hence I was a bit concerned.
Thanks again.
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May 3rd, 2016, 10:03 PM
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They don't mention them because zebra and giraffe are very common. Two of my favorites. You'll appreciate the park and the diversity of wildlife. Don't forget to watch the hippos - they can be funny. Keep your distance from the elephants. A mock charge might not be mock!

Good to hear you'll be staying in the park. It's so fun! My favorite rest camps are Lower Sabie and Satara, but all are so much better than expected. Just be sure to get accommodations with ensuite bathroom and utensils included. Otherwise it's communal ablutions - shared centrally located bathroom, and without utensils you have to buy and bring everything like plates, pots, forks, BBQ equipment. If you don't want to cook all your meals be sure to stay in rest camps with a restaurant.

We leave for our game drives as the camp gates open and come back as they are closing. We take breakfast and lunch to eat picnic style. We buy a little cooler when we stop to buy food and drinks before we enter Kruger. The best game viewing is dawn and dusk so plan to be out early and late. Hint: Cats like the tar roads as the sun rises and starts to warm them up. Drive slowly and enjoy it all!

At Lower Sabie, the perimeter tents are amazing.

We love combining self drive in Kruger with an affordable private reserve. Not all of them are expensive.
christabir is offline  
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May 4th, 2016, 05:21 AM
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Thanks a lot christabir for a detailed reply and tips.
I had earlier reviewed your contribution on Fodors and also viewed few videos especially of Lions and Hyenas.

I love Fodors for great ideas and sensible tourism by the members.
I would further bother you and other Fodorites with a request of suggesting few low cost private lodges in Kruger.
Thanks again.
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May 4th, 2016, 11:25 AM
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In all honesty, there's nothing low cost but with the very favorable exchange rate some are "affordable". It's definitely a good value so if you can swing it you should. Availability this year, because of the exchange rate and flights being cheap with low fuel prices, is very tight. Many lodges don't have online booking so you might have to contact an agent - I'd use Wild-Wings as they are local and everyone has a good experience with them and will stay in your budget if reasonable.

More affordable lodges include Gomo Gomo, Shindzela Tented, nDzuti, Africa on Foot, nThambo, Nkhoro, possibly Cheetah Plains is in your budget. Try Arathusa and Elephant Plains but availability is unlikely. Umkumbe is very small but for just a couple of nights might be ok. My choice would be nDzuti because it only has 10 beds so it's a nice small camp (Unfortunately it's closing in October! I'm so bummed!!) But Cheetah Plains is in a good location. Senalala, if it works for you might be a nice option. Gomo Gomo and Arathusa have waterholes in camp. Shindzela is very rustic. Go online and check those camps for availability. If no online booking, email Wild-Wings a with dates and budget and they'll be a big help if you can't find anything. You can email lodges directly, too, if you prefer booking on your own. It just takes longer and more effort.

There's a buffalo herd crossing video that goes on forever - so many!! I have a hippo video (too long to post) that is funny because we are both laughing through the whole thing. The hyena sniffing my foot was at Shindzela. Sorry if you saw the one with the bad language at Mashatu. I don't remember the lions - hopefully it's the one at Tembe with the lioness introducing her tiny cubs to the pride. It was terrifying at the time, but was beautiful.

You're going to love it. I'm going back soon!!
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May 5th, 2016, 01:15 PM
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Hi Kamleshrut

I am actually from South Africa and game viewing here is wonderful, however if you are looking for exciting Giraffe sightings Kenya is the place to go. There are actually 9 species of Giraffe in the world, of which 3 species of Giraffe are found in Kenya. Reticulated giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis reticulata; also known as the Somali giraffe & arguable the most beautiful of the species), Rothschild's giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis rothschildi), and the most common to this area are the Masai giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis tippelskirchi or better known as the Kilimanjaro giraffe).

Reticulated giraffe are often seen in the Lake Nakuru National Park region and you will also find them in abundance in Lewa Conservancy, where small herds of them can often be found foraging together.… here you will also see Gerenuk antelope as an added bonus… but now I’m getting side tracked.

If you are already visiting South Africa, perhaps save Kenya for your next destination away from home. In South Africa the Kruger Region offers great sightings, you have your pick here of fenced or unfenced ecosystems. The Sabi Sands is well knows, but the Manyeleti is also a great choice Honeyguide is a more cost effective option, where as Tintswalo is worth the splurge. The Timbavati is also a great region, here I would definitely stay at Kambaku The list goes on, it really depends on your budget – just giving you a few options.

September is an excellent month for animal viewing in South Africa but August and September is when the great migrations are on the Masai Mara in Kenya. You may want to consider Kenya for this trip given your keen interest in Giraffe.

I hope this info helps,

Marguerite Smit – safari consultant at Travel Beyond.
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