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rzemek

Safari with kids in March 2018

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This will be our first safari for all of us, and the choices are overwhelming!

 

We will be arriving into Cape Town March 2018, and we will be traveling as a family of 4 (2 adults, and twin 10-year olds) for two weeks (we fly home to Canada out of JNB).

 

The approximate first week of our trip will be spent at Cape Town and the Garden Route (self-drive), but I would love help with planning the final 7-8 days of our holiday.

 

We were looking at spending about 6 total days in lodges perhaps at two different sites doing safari.

 

Our priority is experience (rather than the most luxurious room); I am fine with thatched roofs and/or a setting without electricity if it provides better game watching options for all 4 of us.

 

I know that children under 16 cannot go on game walks, but we are interested in doing as much outdoors as possible.

 

I have heard that the Ants Hill is a very child-friendly lodge. However, we are not big horseback riders, so I'm not sure it it is worth the cost if this is not a priority.

I know that there are no predators or elephants at Ants Hill, so even if we did decide to splurge on this, we would still likely need to choose another site. Any thoughts on this?

 

I have also read about Mashatu lodge in Tuli. How challenging is it to travel to the Mashatu/Tuli region (especially with kids)?

More importantly, how unique is the Mashatu/Tuli region in March? Will our game viewing opportunities be limited due to the end of the rainy season?

 

Would Mashatu/Tuli still be better or worse than the Kruger region given that we will be traveling in March?

 

If we do Mashatu, would we still need to go to the Kruger area to ensure a full experience (e.g., Sabi Sands or Timbavati)?

 

Finally, how does Mashatu/Tuli compare to Madikwe? Are they different enough to do both?

 

In short, I don't think we will do 3 regions (e.g., Tuli, Kruger or Madikwe) in order to limit the travel time and expense. But we likely will do two (if people think it is is worth it); which two would you recommend?

 

Thanks again for your help! Too many amazing choices!

 

 

Roger

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Hi again. I have been learning more (as I read older posts) and I see that the private reserves in Kruger in March have "fair" ratings. I see that Kwande (in the Eastern Cape) has very good for that time of year. Would a Mashatu/Kwande combo be better (especially since we will be driving the Garden Route)? Or would we really miss out if we skip the Kruger region?

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I'm sorry you haven't gotten any responce with this and I'm not going to be much help since I've only been in some private reserves in SA. They will tend to cost more but do offer off roading and less people at sightings. But I would agree if you are talking about 5-6 safari nights only do one or two locations and save travel cost and time.

 

Before my first trip I had read so many ratings about going in the winter for game viewing but I personally like the greener months for the more attractive landscapes.

 

Hopefully some others will have suggestions.

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@@rzemek I have not ben to Mashatu but I think the travel is a little more complicated than the greater Kruger or Madikwe. I think that March will be fine as a safari experience in and around Kruger (check some of the trip reports to get an idea).

 

I wonder whether a good option would be to combine 3 or 4 days in a private lodge/camp in the Timbavati, Klasserie or Sabi Sands (I'm not sure of your budget but my Timbavati experience was at least as good as the Sabi Sands) with 2 or 3 days self drive within the Kruger park itself? They are different experiences and our kids enjoyed some of the additional freedom that the Kruger rest camps offered. This option also keeps transport simple with lots of easy options to return to JNB.

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