4 Day Safari to Kruger Park via Panorama Route

  • Hippo Hollow - Kruger National Park

Panorama Route and Safari in South Africa

Join this thrilling safari in South Africa and experience the world-famous Kruger National Park with its diverse animals, great rivers, changing vegetation, and memorable sightings. You will journey through the famous park led by a professional guide. Spend your days searching for the big five: lions, buffalos, elephants, leopards, and rhinoceros. If you want to experience a memorable African Safari, then this holiday package is for you.

Highlights

  • Shop at informal markets for African curios
  • 6 game drives in big five areas of Kruger Park
  • One evening game drive to see nocturnal species
  • Transfers from and to the airport or hotel in Johannesburg or Nelspruit by arrangement
  • Sightseeing spots in Blyde River Canyon, God's Window, and more
  • Learn to spot animals with a professional guide
  • Enjoy the hearty African meals
  • 3 nights accommodation
  • 3 activity days
  • English
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Family cottages

Family cottages contain two or three bedrooms with double or twin beds to suit family groups and private shower or toilet facilities. There is a kitchenette, a patio with furniture, and a refrigerator. They are often graded three stars.

Furnished safari tents

Safari tents are permanent canvas tents built on a wooden platform. They have two beds with linen, towels, a cupboard, table, chairs, electric fan, and a refrigerator. Communal ablution facilities are available nearby. These are less expensive than standard chalets and suitable for economy safaris.

Hippo Hollow

Nestled amongst lush indigenous gardens on the outskirts of Hazyview lies Hippo Hollow, a short 10-minute drive from the Kruger National Park, making it the perfect choice for accommodation for your safari in Africa. Guests are accommodated in unique thatched garden and river chalets and courtyard hotel rooms, either overlooking the beautiful gardens or the impressive Sabie River.

A variety of tasty dishes accompanied by an amazing selection of South African wines can be enjoyed while watching kingfishers and other beautiful water birds or hippos grazing on the lawn against the backdrop of a beautiful African sunset. Get up close to an elephant and witness its intelligence and compassionate nature. Immerse yourself in a feast of culture with a night of Shangaan dancing and an unforgettable African banquet.

Relax in the beautiful gardens or simply watch the hippos, crocodiles, and other wildlife gather at the river. Whatever you decide to do, you will leave Hippo Hollow feeling relaxed and refreshed having experienced the timelessness of Africa. Hippo Hollow is perfect for families and couples on safari and offers an unforgettable African experience.

Kruger park

There are 12 main rest camps situated in different areas of Kruger Park which enable visitors freedom of movement to explore the reserve. The original term "rest camp" is misleading to most overseas tourists and implies a rather basic or temporary facility. In fact, these rest camps are permanent structures similar to small resorts providing comfortable African-style chalets, licensed restaurants, shops, and other features.

Overnight camps are chosen according to availability and conditions. There are different types of accommodation including standard chalets, luxury riverside chalets, family cottages, furnished safari tents, or economy huts. National Parks usually refer to these African chalets as bungalows. Each of the main rest camps is fenced off to prevent dangerous animals from entering. Guests must remain within the camp from dusk till dawn.

There are a restaurant, shop, and swimming pool. Mobile phones should pick up a signal but otherwise, there are no telephones in the chalets. Chalets are serviced daily, air-conditioned, equipped with bedding, towels, a private shower, toilet, and basin. Guests are supplied with a front door key and insect screens are fitted to the windows. Most chalets have a small patio with a table, chairs, and a refrigerator. Standard SA 220v electric sockets are fitted to rooms and adaptors for charging videos or mobile phones are available from the shop.

Riverside chalets

Riverside chalets which are round thatched chalets situated along the river frontage have a more modern design with sliding glass doors so that guests can enjoy the view as well as animals coming to drink. They have two separate beds pushed together, quality decor, much larger modern bathroom, TV with limited channels plus upgraded lighting, and air-conditioner. There are a patio, outdoor furniture, and a refrigerator. They are not officially graded but they are equivalent to four-stars. These particular chalets are situated at Skukuza, but other camps such as lower Sabie and Satara will soon be providing superior chalets.

Standard chalets

Standard chalets are usually round (rondavel) with a thatched roof, single room, two or three separate beds,and en-suite shower or toilet. These rooms are reserved for couples (double), two friends (twin), or families (triple). They are mostly graded three stars.

Upgraded chalets

Upgraded chalets are superior to standard chalets and provide more comfort. They are suitable for double or triple occupancy, en-suite, equipped with aircon, possibly TV, better soft furnishings, and a refrigerator.

Sabie River Bush Lodge

Sabie River Bush Lodge is located on the banks of the perennial Sabie River looking across the Kruger National Park. Guests at the lodge can spot big five species from the raised wooden pool deck while enjoying a sundowner. The lodge is a mere 19 kilometers from the entrance to southern Kruger National Park.

There is a selection of accommodations including lodge rooms, river-facing chalets, and luxury river-facing tents.

The rooms have private showers, toilets, and are air-conditioned.

The Gecko Lapa restaurant serves meals and drinks and provides a wonderful view of the river and typical bushveld scenery as you enjoy breakfast and watch animals grazing in Kruger. Groups can arrange an evening meal in the boma with a campfire and listen to the sounds of the nocturnal species such as hyenas and jackals.

Day 1

Depart from Johannesburg or Pretoria in the comfort of your air-conditioned microbus and travel east towards the Drakensburg Mountains. Enjoy a lunch break before driving along the Panorama Route via the magnificent Three Rondavels in Blyde River Canyon, God's Window, Lisbon, or Berlin waterfall. Ethnic markets which are located at various places provide good value for passengers wishing to buy curios. Stay overnight at a river lodge or hotel near Hazyview.

Day 2

Enjoy a sumptuous breakfast and then proceed to one of the southern entrance gates of Kruger Park to begin your safari. Spend an exciting day game viewing looking for elephants, giraffes, zebras, hippopotamus, and many other species. The guide will teach you to spot the animals and ensure that you have easy access to photos or videos on all game drives.

In the evening, arrive at your rest camp and book in an en-suite chalet with air-conditioner and insect screens. Freshen up for a "sundowner" drink before dinner in the private restaurant. Stay overnight in the chalet.

Day 3

Wake up at dawn and listen to the birds before driving out of camp hoping to find some of the big five. Stop for a hearty breakfast then continue to a waterhole to watch hippos, crocodiles, and birds before returning to camp for a siesta and perhaps a swim. After dinner, board the open safari vehicle equipped with spotlights for a night drive for two to three hours to search for predators and other nocturnal species. Stay overnight at the rest camp listening to the sounds of the hyenas and lions.

Day 4

Pack up and leave on another memorable early morning game drive looking for elusive species such as leopards lurking in the African bush. Take breakfast and go shopping before departing from Kruger Park to begin the homeward journey. Travel past the Lowveld citrus farms to Nelspruit, the capital of Mpumalanga province, then continue via the fertile Schoeman's Kloof up to the Highveld for lunch. Arrive at O. R. Tambo International Airport (JNB) before 16.00 for your onward flights or proceed to your hotel.

Blyde River

Blyde River Canyon which is a significant feature of the Panorama Route extends for about 20 kilometers from Bourke's Luck Potholes to Swadini. Flanked by the Blyde nature reserve, the road follows the course of the Blyde river. The Three Rondavels (round houses) is the name of three typical sandstone rock formations situated at the northern end of the canyon. Visitors may take a short walk to photograph and view the Three Rondavels, Blyde Dam, and vistas of the Lowveld.

God's Window

God's Window is a look-out at the edge of the escarpment. It is located on a cliff which is "framed" by the mountain cliffs. On a clear day, it provides a wonderful view looking east across the plantations towards Kruger Park. There are several observation areas with railings and steps leading to the rain forest. Visitors to this venue will remember the aroma of mountain herbs.

Sabie River Bush Lodge is located on the banks of the perennial Sabie River looking across the Kruger National Park. Guests at Sabie River Bush Lodge can spot big five species while relaxing on the raised wooden pool deck enjoying a sundowner. The lodge is a mere 19 kilometers from the entrance to southern Kruger National Park. There is a selection of accommodations including lodge rooms, river-facing chalets, and luxury river-facing tents.

The rooms have private shower, toilet, and aircon. The Gecko Lapa restaurant serves meals and drinks and provides a wonderful view of the river and typical bushveld scenery as you enjoy breakfast and watch animals grazing in Kruger. Groups can arrange an evening meal in the boma with a campfire and listen to the sounds of the nocturnal species such as hyena and jackal.

The Panorama Route

This popular tourist destination is situated within the Drakensberg mountains to the west of Kruger Park.

  • Nik

    Nik is the chief guide and has been conducting tours to Kruger Park and other top safari destinations since 1976. His natural good looks, charm and cheerful manner make him a favorite with the tourists. He is a specialist guide and has studied the habits of the wild animals in great detail so that he can make his tours exciting. Nik is a very keen cyclist and passionate about health and fitness.

  • Anthony Hawell

    Anthony Hawell (Hoppy) has been described as a real gentleman who takes great care of his passengers. He is an ex-fireman and fortunately, a very useful mechanic. He has had many years experience as a field guide and obviously enjoys imparting his knowledge of the animals and environment to overseas tourists. One of his hobbies is photography, so he can give you some good tips on wildlife shots to take home.

  • Clive Alborough

    Clive Alborough is a qualified chartered accountant who decided to stop the city life for the freedom of the country and Kruger Park. He certainly strives to find the biggest five sightings for his guests and has a very friendly relationship with many other tour guides so that he hears about all the latest "kills" and any leopards in trees. He enjoys the interaction with overseas visitors and will delight in recounting the highlights of the day's game drives over dinner at night.

Kruger National Park

Kruger National Park which attracts over one million visitors a year is one of the oldest and largest national parks in Africa. The original Sabie Game Reserve was proclaimed by President Paul Kruger in 1898 and later extended to its present size of approximately 19,000 square kilometers or 8,000 square miles. It extends from the Limpopo river in the north to the Crocodile river in the south, a distance of nearly 380 kilometers.

To the east, it borders with Mozambique and on the west, it joins many of our private game reserves. The countryside throughout the park varies and has typical bushveld in the southern regions which give way to grasslands towards the central and northern areas. There are six major rivers flowing throughout the year, in addition to dams and water holes.

The climate is subtropical. The wet season extends from October until May with much of the rainfall occurring as thunderstorms of short duration. Game viewing is possible any time of the year. Each season has its unique attraction although perhaps springtime, with the arrival of the baby impalas and the blossoms on the trees and wildflowers, is the most memorable.

There are nine entrance gates which lead to a network of roads covering different areas of the park. The fourteen main rest camps (similar to resorts) provide comfortable en-suite accommodation, restaurants, shops, petrol stations, and telephones. Organized wildlife activities are available and can be booked at the camps. Kruger, one of the great natural sanctuaries of the world, is home to an impressive number of species including 147 mammals, 507 birds, 114 reptiles, 34 amphibians, 49 fish, and 336 trees.

It is recommended that overseas visitors join a guided tour for three or four days to have the best opportunities for game viewing and to benefit from the knowledge of the professional guides. Since most of the animals are used to the presence of motor vehicles, the place is usually ideal for photos and videos.

South African National Parks has decided to introduce popular family restaurants at Main Camps in Kruger Park. Mugg and Bean opened at Lower Sabie, Satara, Olifants and Letaba Camps in 2014 while Skukuza has The Cattle Baron. Restaurants have been refurbished and modernized so passengers can look forward to better meals and improved service in Kruger.

Often, the guides visit Lower Sabie for breakfast. The restaurant is in a wonderful spot overlooking the Sabie River. During the dry season, you can expect to see plenty of hippopotamus and crocodiles as you sip coffee. Dinner each night will be at a camp restaurant or your guide may plan a barbecue. Lunches in Kruger are available at the Deli Café for a fee. Camp shops sell groceries, soft drinks, alcoholic drinks, books, maps, and curios. It is possible for vegetarians to find suitable meals in Kruger, but Wildlife Safaris must be advised when booking.

  • 1 evening game drive in a large safari vehicle with spotlights to see nocturnal species
  • 3 nights accommodation
  • 6 game drives in an open safari vehicle in the big five areas of Kruger Park
  • Airport transfers from O. R. Tambo International Airport (JNB) or Nelspruit Airport (NLP)
  • All entrance and daily conservation fees in Kruger Park
  • Daily breakfasts and dinners
  • Return transport from Johannesburg to Kruger Park by microbus
  • Services of an expert Kruger Park guide for four days
  • Shopping at informal markets for African curios
  • Sightseeing along the Panorama Route
  • Airfare
  • Drinks
  • Lunches
  • Personal items
  • Tips

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at O. R. Tambo International Airport (JNB) or Nelspruit Airport (NLP). Transfer from and to the airport is included. Wildlife Safaris will pick you up from the airport. The pick-up from O. R. Tambo International Airport (JNB) is between 07:00 and 08:00. Pick-up from Nelspruit Airport (NLP) is from 12:00 or by arrangement.

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 60% of the total price.
  • The deposit is fully refundable if the booking is cancelled up to 60 days before the arrival date.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 45 days before arrival.

Testimonials

  • Review by Alexis Gallegos from Washington, USA
    10 out of 10

    "Within our brief 3 days, Henry had us all over the park, finding all but the Rhino from the Big 5. We were astounded at the level of information and intense interest in making our trip amazing that Henry had for our group. The arrangements were flawless, everything was done beyond expectation, and we are already looking forward to booking again with this group when we return, hopefully next time for the camping too! Take care, Henry, and thank you for all the support and easy directions from the administration. You guys did GREAT!!"

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by Paula Lammers
    10 out of 10

    "I cannot say enough good things about our experience with Wildlife Safaris."

    "Absolutely Fantastic experience. Everything was so well organised, couldn't be better. Accommodation and food were fantastic. The safari was out of this world, our guide Nik was so experienced and knowledgeable and truly cared about the park, the animals and our experience of both!"

    "Thanks"

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by Jo Pettifor
    10 out of 10

    "We had a fabulous time with Wildlife Safaris. Communication with the company was excellent throughout. Hoppy was our guide and he was amazing; we was extremely knowledgeable and could spot wildlife which we would never have seen. "

    "Highly recommend "

    "Thank you Hoppy!"

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by Ruairi Yates
    10 out of 10

    "Absolutely Fantastic experience. Everything was so well organised, couldn't be better. Accommodation and food were fantastic. The safari was out of this world, our guide Hoppy was so experienced and knowledgeable and truly cared about the park, the animals and our experience of both! Wildlife Safaris made our trip!"

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by Karin Edlind from Fagersta, Sweden
    10 out of 10

    "I used the word amaizing a lot while on the safari but it was the word that closest describes our experience. I loved every single moment of it from being picked up by our brilliant guide Hoppy to entering Kruger park to seeing our very first wild animal that happened to be a warthog."

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by Jeremy Perry
    10 out of 10

    "My three friends and I enjoyed an amazing adventure with Hoppy. We enjoyed the 4 day Kruger safari including the Panoramic Route. We were fortunate to see thousands of animals including most of the Big Five and plenty of others. Hoppy was an amazing guide with plenty of knowledge to share about the wildlife, foliage, and life in South Africa. There were only four of us in our group, making the experience very personal. Hoppy had a fantastic sense of humor and was able to accommodate all of our arrangements. We simply didn't need to worry about about a thing. Dining arrangements were made at restaurants with delicious options and when we were on the road, Hoppy knew exactly where to bring us. The camp at Skukuza was a little rustic but in the perfect location to access some of the areas populated by the most wildlife. Our last night was spent at a riverside lodge in a beautiful luxury tent complete with air conditioning and electricity. Our experience with Wildlife Safaris and with Hoppy was unforgettable. We were beyond pleased with our experience from planning, booking, to the safari itself. I would highly recommend this trip of a lifetime to anyone. Thank you for everything!"

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by BrianandMichelle Kamprath
    10 out of 10

    "We had the pleasure of enjoying 3 days in Krugar and 2 days at Chisomo in August with Wildlife Safaris and our guide Sue Wilson. This was our second trip with Sue in the past five years, which should tell you how highly we think of Sue. During our trip we had amazing wildlife sightings(39 unique animals and 53 birds), beautiful scenery, and a bunch of laughs. While wildlife viewing is certainly a game of luck, there is certainly a visible difference between many guides and Sue. She consistently read the directions the animals would be heading and placed us in prime viewing position. I can't speak highly enough of Sue and the amazing time we had. I would recommend Wildlife Safaris and Sue to anyone looking for a great safari adventure. I know I for one will definitely be back."

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by Lauren Richardson from New York, USA
    10 out of 10

    "My family visited form the USA and we LOVED our 4 day panorama route safari through Kruger National Park. We saw all of the Big 5, plus wild dogs, cheetahs, and an endless supply of other natural beauties. Our guide, Hoppy, was the best of the best. He was extremely knowledgable about the park and South Africa in general. All of the staff were efficient, thoughtful. hospitable, and kind. For my parents, this was their first time in Africa and already they are planning to return! Our experience could not have been more perfect! Thanks for everything!"

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by Lucy Porter Jordan from New York, USA
    10 out of 10

    "Had an amazing trip to Kruger which WS arranged at last minute. It was great, fun, interesting, and the arrangements were excellent."

    "I would highly recommend it."

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by David Hall
    10 out of 10

    "Wildlife Safaris were brilliant at coming to our aid when the airline messed up our flight booking. They pulled out all the stops, arranging special transport from the airport so there was minimal disruption to our trip."

    "Our guide Mike seemed to have an uncanny knack of spotting wildlife hidden in the bush that no-one else could see! As a result, we saw all the Big Five plus much more beside and we had a thoroughly enjoyable time."

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by John Paterson from Birmingham, United Kingdom
    10 out of 10

    "Fantastic few days at Kruger park, top notch driving and guiding, big thanks to Clive!"

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by Dejan Deletic
    10 out of 10

    "My wife and I went to a Classic 4 Days Kruger Safari earlier this month (Feb 2015). We did not know what to expect, but whatever it was, both Wildlife Safaris and Kruger National Park exceeded our expectations by a long way."

    "Organisation wise, WS was immaculate, from arranging everything via email, to pick-up at the airport, to drive to and from the Park, to safaris... Our guide, Anthony was extremely knowleable, but not showing off - gave us more than enough information and was also able to answer all our questions. What impressed us most was that he deeply cared about animals of the Park, e.g. he would stop and block the road if he saw a chameleon or a tortoise crossing it - so they do not get run over by other vehicles. At all times we felt safe while he was behind the wheel, whether on the national highways, in the city or while in the Park. On one occasion, an elephant decided to charge at us, even though we were a fair bit away from him - and before I even realised what was happening, Anthony was in reverse and getting away. The elephant made his point and turned away within seconds - it was exciting, but we were never even close to danger - well done and thank you Anthony."

    "As for the park itself, we stayed in Skukuza, Pretorius Kop and visited Lower Sabie camps. Accommodation is basic, but clean and more than adequate - this is national park after all, not a luxury resort. New restaurants in Skukuza and Lower Sabie are both excellent, and do give a little touch of that (missing) luxury."

    "And finally the animals... For those who haven't been to Kruger before, you get to see an animal or another every few minutes - impalas, elephants, giraffes, baboons, lions, rhinoceros, eagles, vultures, warthogs, kudus, hippos, zebras, hyenas,... So much so that you soon start to pay attention only to the ones within a few meters fo the road. And if you are lucky, you may see a leopard or a cheetah, or both."

    "In other words, the whole experience was so amazing that I wish we can come again soon. Thank you Wildlife Safaris! Thank you Anthony!"

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

  • Review by Borislava Ratcheva
    10 out of 10

    "My husband and I decided to book the Wildlife Safaris based on the online reviews."

    "After contacting their office we proceeded with the payment and couldn’t wait to go there."

    "In Johannesburg we were staying with our relatives. On the day of the tour our guide came to pick us up from our relative’s house. I thought that this was very nice touch. "

    "We took the 4 day tour via the Panorama route. It was beautiful. We saw some small local historic villages and water falls. Unfortunately we were unable to see the God’s window because it was covered in clouds."

    "On the next morning we headed to Kruger Park which was 15 min away from where we stayed. Just after we entered we saw a big Black Rhino. It was so close to us. Amazing! And this was just the beginning. After that we saw the Big 5 and many more other animals and birds. Our guide Mike was very knowledgeable. He knew the park by heart and had a deep understanding of each end every animal and bird species. Also, because he is a photographer himself he would move the vehicle in the best position for us to take the best possible pictures. After everyone is satisfied with their pictures then he will continue driving. We took hundreds of great shots because of Mike’s knowledge and professionalism. "

    "In the park we stayed at Skukuza Rest Camp. The restaurant there was great!"

    "For us this Safari tour was an incredible experience and we would love to do it again with Wildlife Safaris and their guide Mike."

    Wildlife Safaris Facebook page, edited

Gauteng, South Africa

Wildlife Safaris is an independent tour operator specializing in small group safaris to Kruger National Park.

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4 days / 3 nights

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