Topic Wiki


Cape Town

Trip Reports
Cbs - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=30280.msg857566#msg857566
Markus - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=50630.msg1096441#msg1096441
shmebeble - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3986.msg742580#msg742580
Yaalili - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=50630.msg1096588#msg1096588
Ponash123- forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=55289.msg1257724#msg1257724
Yehoshua- starting here: forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=64252.msg1514765#msg1514765
Jomaster28 - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=84963.0

UPDATED: http://www.uos.co.za/kashrut/ct_kosher.asp


Restaurants


Avron's Place (Sea Point)
The longest running kosher meat restaurant in South Africa, Avron’s Place on Sea Point’s Regent Road is a very popular choice amongst Cape Town’s Orthodox Jewish community. The humbly adorned, family-friendly eatery, which is supervised by the Beth Din, serves a wide variety of dishes, including beef ribs, burgers, mixed grills, boerewors, Cape lamb curry, vegetarian platters, pastas and sushi. Though prices are generally rather reasonable (particularly by kosher food standards), Avron’s drops costs further on Tuesdays with a special on its beef burger and chips (R49 instead of the usual R59). The restaurant also does takeaways and catering for functions and will gladly pack Shabbat meals for visitors to Cape Town. For the Sephardim the meat is Bet Yosef. But check to make sure.
Opening Hours: Sunday – Thursday: 11am – 3pm; 5pm – 10pm; Friday: 11am – 2:30pm
19 – 33 Regent Road | Sea Point | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 439 7610
https://www.zomato.com/capetown/avrons-place-sea-point/menu.


The Press (Sea Point) Restaurant and Bar (many craft beers on tap)


Opening Hours: Sunday – Thursday: noon – late Friday: 11am – 3pm Sat night: 1 hour after Shabbat till late
176 Main Road | Sea Point | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 434 7724



Coffee Time (Gardens)
Set in an old house in a lush, garden environment, this kosher milchik coffee shop is a fine option for a relaxing breakfast, brunch or lunch on a sunny day. Guests can sit outside on the lawn while enjoying stunning views of Table Mountain and tucking into anything from a scrambled egg, salmon and humus wrap or fish bobotie with homemade chutney to tuna lasagne, a sandwich, salad, quiche or smoothie. The eatery runs an early-morning special between 8am and 11am (a combo of two eggs, grilled tomato and mushrooms goes for R25) and also serves a delicious, and incredibly popular, buffet lunch every Wednesday between 12:30pm and 2:30pm. For those will allergies, there are gluten-free and sugar-free options, and Coffee Time caters for functions – think weddings, bat/bar mitzvahs or birthdays – too. As the cherry on the kosher cake, all proceeds from the restaurant go to supporting the Astra Centre, which aims to provide employment for those with mental illnesses and special needs, so diners can rest assured their meal is helping out a good cause.
Opening Hours: Monday – Thursday: 8am – 3:30pm; Friday: 8am – 3pm
20 Breda Street | Gardens | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 461 8414


Café Riteve (Gardens)
This charming milchik café, which was founded in 2000, is conveniently located right in the heart of town on a piazza that’s part of the same centre as the historical Gardens Shul, the South African Jewish Museum, the Cape Town Holocaust Centre and the Jacob Gitlin Library. The menu is large and varied and includes items like a three-egg omelette, sushi salad, grilled hake, falafel with dukkah wedges and humus, tuna and mushroom cannelloni, smoked salmon and cream cheese sandwich and chocolate ganache-filled croissant. For the thirsty, the eatery also sells a range of shakes and juices as well as kosher wine and liquors. It caters for special occasions and offers takeaways, but unfortunately doesn’t deliver; though, considering that the interior is tastefully adorned and the ambience inviting, Jewish diners will likely want to spend some time at the café in any case.They had some CY, just ask. The earlier you go the more likely the have.
Opening Hours: Sunday – Thursday: 8:30am – 5pm; Friday: 8:30am – 3pm
88 Hatfield Street | Gardens | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 465 1594
https://www.zomato.com/capetown/cafe-riteve-gardens/menu.


Goldies Deli and Diner (Sea Point)
Started by Goldie Wener back in 1992, this popular kosher food spot has evolved over time from a small home business to include a meat and parev deli, a sit-down diner and a bakery. The simple but flavourful fare is still made from Goldie’s grandmother’s recipes, and options include burgers, steak rolls, schwarmas, bagels, salads, fish cakes, breakfast plates and more. Plus, there are specials every Wednesday and Friday (these change weekly but you can look forward to deals like a three-course meal for four for R120) and there’s also a very affordable seniors menu for elderly individuals living in and around the area (delivery is free in Sea Point). The bakery stocks delectable treats like carrot cake, cinnamon twists, chocolate brownies, doughnuts, cupcakes, apple crumble, croissants and teiglach. Kosher Cape Town dwellers can also place orders for Shabbat meals if they don’t have the time to prepare the dishes themselves.
Opening Hours: Sunday – Thursday: 8:30am – 8pm; Friday: 8:30am – 4:30pm
174 Main Road | Sea Point | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 439 3008
https://www.zomato.com/capetown/goldies-deli-sea-point/menu.



Baskin Robbins @ Mojo Market (Sea Point)
Note: This is the only kosher B & R
All ice creams, ice cream cones, milkshakes and waffles are Kosher, milchik.
The following topping ONLY are kosher: Crushed Almonds, Crushed Cashews, Fudge, Mini Astros, Mint Crunch
NB: Cakes are NOT KOSHER

Bakeries, Groceries & Ice Cream
Checkers Sea Point- 76 Regent Road - They have a large selection of kosher products including a kosher take out and bakery.
Spar Sea Point - 96 Regent Road - They have a large selection of kosher products including a kosher take out and bakery.

Shuls

Hotels with Points near a Shul (Walking Minutes)
Protea Sea Point

Airport Transfer Options
Cab -
Executive Bus -
Public Bus -
Train -

Major Activities
Boulders Beach
   - For budget travelers, take the train to Simonstown and from there a cab to Boulders beach - R20.
    - 35 mins from CPT
    - Can hop fence
    - "I found that there were two different entrances, boardwalk and beach. The boardwalk has a higher density of penguins but if you want a better experience, I recommend visiting the beach side- especially at low tide. Because of the tide I was able to walk past the few dozen folks on the beach, climb under and over some boulders, and encounter effectively a different private beach- with penguins!!"
Betty’s Bay
    - a less crowded, and not as known, boulders beach with penguins
Chapman's Peak Drive
   - Beautiful scenery, you have the mountain on one side and the ocean on the other side, great pics, great to make a BBQ come during daylight hours.
    - 45 rand per car
    - 45 mins from CPT
Cape of Good Hope/Cape Point
    - LONG but AMAZING drive
    - almost a full day activity
    - 135 rand pp
    - 1.5 hours from CPT
Lions Head (Hike - not difficult)
    - paragliding - around $85 (prices might be outdated)
        - BOOK AHEAD
Robben Island
Table Mountain (Cable car or hike)
    - Follow on Twitter for updates on if open or closed
    - Can repel down
        - 895 rand pp (prices might be outdated)
            - repel for like 15 mins
            - hike back up is 25 mins
    - Chairlift costs 255 rand pp
    - Closes 6pm
    - BOOK IN ADVANCE
Signal Hill (go there for a sunset with bit more a "local" flavor.
V & A Waterfront
The Garden Route - long scenic drive
Kirstenbosch Gardens
Shark Diving
  - Can do so in Gansbaii
  - $88 +$34 for video (prices might be outdated)
  - 2 hour drive from CPT
  - Links:1, 2, 3
Sandboarding
   - Bring goggles!
Skydiving
   - Price: $170 (prices might be outdated)
   - Cheaper
Quad Biking (ATVs)
Hout Bay market
Cango Wildlife Ranch
Cheetah outreach
    - where you can go and pet cheetahs and other animals super cool
Winelands : [Likely way more then listed but those are the few I remember]
(Might be worthwhile to make a trip to the winelands, even if one does not enjoy wine, for the scenery. Only about an hour or two from CPT)
      - Franschoek
      - Kosher wineries:
          - Kleine Dracken
          - backsberg

Johannesburg

Trip Reports
Cbs - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=30280.msg857566#msg857566
Markus - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=50630.msg1096441#msg1096441
Yaalili - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=50630.msg1096553#msg1096553
Yehuda57 - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3986.msg1049828#msg1049828
Ponash123 -forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=55289.msg1252248#msg1252248
Yehoshua- starting here: forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=64252.msg1514741#msg1514741

Restaurants
http://www.uos.co.za/kashrut/restaurants.asp

http://yeahthatskosher.com/2013/04/kosher-restaurants-travel-advice-for-johannesburg-south-africa-joberg/

Map of Kosher Johannesburg

Corner Cafe (Glenhazel)
Corner Café is the best place to go (or maybe the only) for kosher gluten free muffins. I’m told they’re very good. They also have great breakfasts and pastas, but I usually stick with a toasted cheese and chips.
Corner of Queens square and cross road in Glenhazel, Phone: +27 11 440-3160.
https://www.zomato.com/johannesburg/corner-cafe-glenhazel


Dee-Jays (Sandton)
Dee-Jays provides casual dairy food that is perfect for a breakfast out with the family. Their fishballs are really good and if you need a cake in the Sandton area, they’re the place to go.
Morningview Shopping Centre, 100 South Road, 2196, South Africa. Phone: +27 11 883-2265.
https://www.zomato.com/johannesburg/deejays-deli-morningside.


Market Cafe (Norood Mall)
cholov Yisroel cafe

KosherWorld, Mi Vami Kosher and Chop N Wok (Glenhazel)
1 Long Avenue, Johannesburg, 2192, South Africa. Phone: +27 11 440 1402.
http://www.kosherworld.co.za/Mivami.aspx & http://www.kosherworld.co.za/ChopandWok.aspx.


Gelatisimo (Glenhazel)
Across the road from Kosher World, authentic Italian gelato. Chalav Yisroel. Absolutely fantastic.

Michelos (Glenhazel)
Michelos is the second best pizza restaurant. They are very centrally located (in the Jewish area of Glenhazel) and their food is nice. Never go there the night after Pesach because you’ll wait hours but most other times are good, plus they serve chalav yisrael.
17 Northfield Ave, Johannesburg, 2192, South Africa. Phone: +27 11 885-1500.
https://www.zomato.com/johannesburg/michelos-pizzeria-glenhazel/menu.


Nandos Kosher (Savoy)
Nandos is a large chain of Portuguese chicken restaurants, but there is only one kosher Nandos in South Africa, so be aware that you can’t step into any of them! They serve top notch chicken but be sure to also try their beef burger (and order extra sauce).
553 Louis Botha Ave, Savoy, Johannesburg, 2090, South Africa. Phone: +27 11 885-1496.
https://www.yumbi.com/menu/stores-1285/view/Nandos-Kosher.


Next Door "Non-CY" (Norwood)
Next Door is rated as a top restaurant in Johannesburg, kosher and not, so you know it must be pretty good. It is usually full so booking is highly recommended. While their sushi may not be top class, their pizzas certainly are and, if you’re around in Summer, definitely try their fish braai (barbeque in South African).
80 Grant Ave, Johannesburg, 2192, South Africa. Phone: +27 11 728-2577.
https://www.zomato.com/johannesburg/next-door-norwood.


Pie Works (Sandringham)
Their pies (clearly) are the best kosher pies in the country and are perfect if you want to buy some to take home and reheat. Their burgers are delicious and the have a milk side with pizza that is really good. They’re situated on what is known as the Kosher Strip, so any Jew will be able to direct you.
74 George Ave, Johannesburg, 2192, South Africa. +27 11 485 2447.
http://www.thepieworks.co.za/.


RTG "Ready to Go" (Norwood)
A fast food place next door to ... Next Door. While they do offer steak and a Chinese menu, the focus is their extensive burger and hot dog menu.

The Deli Store (Sandton)
Reviewed in CBS's TR, as having excellent food for very low prices.
Shop 52, (opposite Woolworths) Morning Glen Shopping Mall Cnr Bowling & Kelvin Road Gallo Manor, Phone: 011-656-3142 / 4915.
Email: info@thedelistore.co.za, http://thedelistore.co.za/menus/main-menu/.


So Sushi (Glenhazel)

Jozi Blue (Glenhazel)
They have some items Cholov Yisroel, which they will serve on disposables on request

Bakeries, Groceries & Ice Cream
Kosher World - http://www.kosherworld.co.za/

Shuls

Hotels with Points near a Shul (Walking Minutes)

Airport Transfer Options
Cab - Uber
Executive Bus - Shuttle from HLA airport to anywhere in Sandton for R80 per person.
Public Bus -
Train - Gautrain from JNB airport is R135-155 depending on destination. Must purchase gold card before for R13.

Major Activities
Apartheid Museum
Flea Market
Gold Reef City - amusement park, along with other African themed attractions (tribal dancing, old "gold mine tour")
Lion Park - see lions from your car up close, pet lion cubs.
Monte Casino - Casino and shopping mall, with cool "outdoor" Tuscan style
Soweto Tour
Pilanesberg Safari- If you can't make it to Kruger for malaria, time or other concerns,  this is a much smaller park with less wildlife, and not as good of an experience, but definitely well worth it. About 2 hours out of Joburg, it can be done in your own vehicle, but will be a lot better with a guided game drive.
Sun City Right outside of Pilansberg
Elephant & Monkey Sanctuary- About an hour out of Joburg. Get close to elephants, touch, feed and ride them. The monkey sanctuary has a massive enclosure with hundreds of various monkeys and lemurs. No feeding or touching, unless one jumps on you. If you do go to Pilansberg, this can be done on the way.

Kruger National Park

Trip Reports
Cbs - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=30280.msg857566#msg857566
shmebeble - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3986.msg742580#msg742580
txtmax4 - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3986.msg671447#msg671447
Jomaster28 - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=84963.0

Tour Options

Major Activities

Near Kruger:

The Panoramic Route includes a half dozen waterfalls; Lisbon, Horseshoe, Bridal Vail, Mac Mac, Sabie and others; The Potholes, G-d's Window, Wonder View, The Pinnacle, The Three Rondawels and views of the stunning Blyde River Canyon (third largest canyon in the world).

AJK SA trip route planning - forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=33867.msg669659#msg669659.
« Last edited by cdlaz on November 25, 2019, 06:23:12 AM »

Author Topic: South Africa Master Thread  (Read 156393 times)

Offline Markus

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #150 on: February 01, 2015, 10:41:12 PM »
What are your plans for while you're there?

It’s a work in progress. Having some issues because we want to go to the falls and Cape Town but can’t find flights. Flights between cities in Africa are only available once a day, in the middle of the day. That means a trip from the falls to Cape Town usually takes two days, with a full day stopover in Johannesburg.

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #151 on: February 01, 2015, 11:23:32 PM »
True, which is why I'm thinking to only do one of the two this trip and save the other for a different time. I was just shmoozing with a local who says that Cape Town is a must-do, but he agreed with me, that if I only have a day to spend there, I'm better off with Victoria Falls, as that can better be done in a single day, whereas in Cape Town it would only be the tip of the iceberg. That's what I'm leaning towards right now.

You have any thoughts to doing Kruger?
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Offline AJK

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #152 on: February 03, 2015, 09:44:00 AM »
Agree that with a day, you are forced to skip Cape Town.

Unless you have the very, very minimum two days and one night, you're gonna be forced to skip Kruger, too.
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Offline Yehuda57

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #153 on: February 03, 2015, 12:54:21 PM »
I was in Johannesburg for a few days without time for jaunts to Cape Town, Kruger or to do other serious touring. Here is a quick TR:

On our first day we drove out to the Lion Park, which is probably the biggest "must do" for tourists in Johannesburg. It has different self drive camps where you watch prides of lions from your car, and then you can go into an enclosure to pet and take pictures with lion cubs. The latter is super fun, and if you know anyone who went to SA and has pictures with lions - this is most likely where they did it.



It’s very difficult for me to find a picture without anyone in it!

About 10 minutes from the Lion Park is a place called Heia Safari Lodge. It's a lodge and conference center that has giraffes, zebra, springbok and other game walking around the premises, as well as a small dam. You can enter the grounds for free and walk around and get real close to these animals, which is cool.

On day two, we left Johannesburg at 4:00am and drove out to Pilansberg. It is like a little brother to Kruger. We got there at 6:00am. We got to see elephant and rhino real close, as well as loads of zebra, kudu, warthog, wildebeest, impala and other calves. Must be to do with the time of year we were there. We left just after midday, and managed to get through a nice chunk of the park. If you don't have enough time for Kruger, it is a great option to see some wildlife.








The exchange rate provides fantastic value for money in South Africa, especially in the restaurant dept! These are the places I visited on this trip:

Metsuyan – Finally! A classy and elegant restaurant in South Africa. The food is terrific too. The ribs were unbelievably tender and flavorful, and the steak was grilled to a perfect medium rare. Sushi appetizers were great, and sushi has never been good in South Africa.

RTG (Ready to Go) – As the name suggests, a fast food/take out joint. Is has a bunch of interesting burgers and hot dogs. I didn't try their Chinese menu, and their scotch fillet was ok, though not great.

Corner Café and Mooz brothers – decent breakfast and lunch places. Nothing especially good to write about, though they do have free wifi! I would say Corner Cafe has the better food of the two.

Michellos – You can get by with their pizza and fries, but if you are going to South Africa, load up on the meat!
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Offline Yehuda57

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #154 on: February 03, 2015, 12:57:39 PM »
Flight from AUH arriving into JNB at 5:10pm. Will it be enough time after clearing customs and switching terminals to make a 7:25pm flight to CPT? (2h15m).

Know a couple of people who just did this with even less time than you, and made it breathing easily, without rushing at all.
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Offline Yaalili

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #155 on: February 03, 2015, 02:00:50 PM »
Know a couple of people who just did this with even less time than you, and made it breathing easily, without rushing at all.

Thanks and thanks for the great mini TR. If I have only 2 days in Joburg would you recommend go for a night to Kruger, or do a day trip to Piburg and a day in Joburg?

Offline Yehuda57

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #156 on: February 03, 2015, 02:27:57 PM »
Thanks and thanks for the great mini TR. If I have only 2 days in Joburg would you recommend go for a night to Kruger, or do a day trip to Piburg and a day in Joburg?

Are they two full days? For instance, a friend just left very early Sunday morning from Johannesburg, and did the "Panoramic Route;" Blyde River Canyon, the Three Rondawels, G-d's Window/Wonderview, the Potholes, Lisbon and Berlin falls and then stayed overnight in Hazyview. Monday: entered Kruger at opening time, spent a full day there and drove back to JHB. That's a packed itinerary, and many will balk at driving from Kruger to JHB through the night. (if you left Kruger from their southern gates at closing, you'd get back to JHB at around 11:30-12:30) but for a once in a lifetime trip, it may be worth it. If you wanna skip the scenery stuff and do Kruger only, it's even more doable.

But, unless you really want to do Kruger specifically, with just 2 days you'd probably be better off doing a Pilansberg trip. You could stay overnight in Pilansberg and do a guided sunrise/sunset game drive in an open top jeep, ala Kruger. You could also stop on the way at Haartebeesport Dam or Magaliesberg, or visit Sun City.

Be aware that Kruger is a malaria area, that could affect some people decisions on staying overnight.

The thing about the safaris is that there is so much luck involved. You don't want to drive 6 hours each way to Kruger, be there for only a few hours and see nothing. If you drive 2 hours to Pilansberg each way and see some mosquitos, it won't hurt as much.

Besides for the restaurants and Jewish infrastructure, there is nothing particularly interesting in Johannesburg IMHO. Touring Soweto might be, I've never done it and there are riots going on now, so it was out of the question for me on this trip.
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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #157 on: February 03, 2015, 02:49:37 PM »
Are they two full days? For instance, a friend just left very early Sunday morning from Johannesburg, and did the "Panoramic Route;" Blyde River Canyon, the Three Rondawels, G-d's Window/Wonderview, the Potholes, Lisbon and Berlin falls and then stayed overnight in Hazyview. Monday: entered Kruger at opening time, spent a full day there and drove back to JHB. That's a packed itinerary, and many will balk at driving from Kruger to JHB through the night. (if you left Kruger from their southern gates at closing, you'd get back to JHB at around 11:30-12:30) but for a once in a lifetime trip, it may be worth it. If you wanna skip the scenery stuff and do Kruger only, it's even more doable.

But, unless you really want to do Kruger specifically, with just 2 days you'd probably be better off doing a Pilansberg trip. You could stay overnight in Pilansberg and do a guided sunrise/sunset game drive in an open top jeep, ala Kruger. You could also stop on the way at Haartebeesport Dam or Magaliesberg, or visit Sun City.

Be aware that Kruger is a malaria area, that could affect some people decisions on staying overnight.

The thing about the safaris is that there is so much luck involved. You don't want to drive 6 hours each way to Kruger, be there for only a few hours and see nothing. If you drive 2 hours to Pilansberg each way and see some mosquitos, it won't hurt as much.

Besides for the restaurants and Jewish infrastructure, there is nothing particularly interesting in Johannesburg IMHO. Touring Soweto might be, I've never done it and there are riots going on now, so it was out of the question for me on this trip.

I would be in Joburg from Friday noon, gonna stay there for Shabbos and my return flight is 8:30pm Monday night. So I have from MS till about 6 on Monday. If I were to never return to SA anytime soon, is it better "to do" Kruger with all that shlep to just be there for a night and two short game drives? Or will I see close to as much action in Piburg as well?

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #158 on: February 03, 2015, 03:13:29 PM »
Not worth 8-10 hours of driving for half of one day and the other half of another. Sure, you can see things in Kruger that you wouldn't in Piburg, but you can just as likely not see anything.

Stick with Piburg.
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Offline Yehuda57

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #159 on: February 03, 2015, 03:16:12 PM »
I would be in Joburg from Friday noon, gonna stay there for Shabbos and my return flight is 8:30pm Monday night. So I have from MS till about 6 on Monday. If I were to never return to SA anytime soon, is it better "to do" Kruger with all that shlep to just be there for a night and two short game drives? Or will I see close to as much action in Piburg as well?
Is it doable? Yes. Should it be done? Probably not. It depends on what type of traveler you are. You'll spend 10-12 hours of those 2 days driving at crazy hours on stretches of sketchy roads. (though mostly highway)

But if you like to live on the wild side, and Kruger means that much to you, I guess you could go for it. it will make for a memorable trip, if not the most practical.

ETA: As AJK said far more succinctly ;-)
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Offline Yaalili

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #160 on: February 03, 2015, 10:16:21 PM »
Not worth 8-10 hours of driving for half of one day and the other half of another. Sure, you can see things in Kruger that you wouldn't in Piburg, but you can just as likely not see anything.

Stick with Piburg.

Is it doable? Yes. Should it be done? Probably not. It depends on what type of traveler you are. You'll spend 10-12 hours of those 2 days driving at crazy hours on stretches of sketchy roads. (though mostly highway)

But if you like to live on the wild side, and Kruger means that much to you, I guess you could go for it. it will make for a memorable trip, if not the most practical.

ETA: As AJK said far more succinctly ;-)

Thanks. Kinda stuck with Kruger because its the real one and there will be a lot more wildlife there. Big difference for me and my friend, would also be the lack of having to rent a car to shlepp on the drive for such a short stay, for Kruger we looked into Nhongo Safaris and seemed quite impressed, didn't look into PIburg so much yet.

Offline gsquared

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #161 on: February 05, 2015, 11:41:52 AM »
Thanks. Kinda stuck with Kruger because its the real one and there will be a lot more wildlife there. Big difference for me and my friend, would also be the lack of having to rent a car to shlepp on the drive for such a short stay, for Kruger we looked into Nhongo Safaris and seemed quite impressed, didn't look into PIburg so much yet.

I agree with your sentiment that Kruger Park is the real deal and worth the effort.  Another couple of options is to stay overnite in a private game park that abuts Kruger. You will pretty much be guaranteed seeing the big 5. Its expensive though. If you can fly there thats even better.  The other option is to self drive to Kruger early Sunday morning(leave 3am) and overnite in one of the restcamps e.g. Lower Sabie.  Sign up for a walking safari in the afternoon and a night safari for the evening(You cant self drive at night).  You can also sign up for an early morning safari for Mon.  At noon drive back to JNB.  Even though you can self drive in Kruger, you can find yourself driving for hours and seeing nothing not even a bird. The guys who do the safaris can spot a leopard behind a tree at 300 yards.     

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #162 on: February 05, 2015, 12:08:45 PM »
I agree with your sentiment that Kruger Park is the real deal and worth the effort.  Another couple of options is to stay overnite in a private game park that abuts Kruger. You will pretty much be guaranteed seeing the big 5. Its expensive though. If you can fly there thats even better.  The other option is to self drive to Kruger early Sunday morning(leave 3am) and overnite in one of the restcamps e.g. Lower Sabie.  Sign up for a walking safari in the afternoon and a night safari for the evening(You cant self drive at night).  You can also sign up for an early morning safari for Mon.  At noon drive back to JNB.  Even though you can self drive in Kruger, you can find yourself driving for hours and seeing nothing not even a bird. The guys who do the safaris can spot a leopard behind a tree at 300 yards.   

+1

The tracker we were with could spot things for which normal people needed binoculars. It was truly remarkable.
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Offline Yaalili

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #163 on: February 05, 2015, 02:55:48 PM »
I agree with your sentiment that Kruger Park is the real deal and worth the effort.  Another couple of options is to stay overnite in a private game park that abuts Kruger. You will pretty much be guaranteed seeing the big 5. Its expensive though. If you can fly there thats even better.  The other option is to self drive to Kruger early Sunday morning(leave 3am) and overnite in one of the restcamps e.g. Lower Sabie.  Sign up for a walking safari in the afternoon and a night safari for the evening(You cant self drive at night).  You can also sign up for an early morning safari for Mon.  At noon drive back to JNB.  Even though you can self drive in Kruger, you can find yourself driving for hours and seeing nothing not even a bird. The guys who do the safaris can spot a leopard behind a tree at 300 yards.     

Thanks for the advice, after speaking to many people visitors and natives, we are leaning more toward Piburg now, still not sure.

Offline dlandau714

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Re: South Africa Master Thread
« Reply #164 on: February 05, 2015, 10:38:27 PM »
There's a new kosher safari lodge called Thandeka that's about 2 hours north of Johannesburg http://www.thandekalodge.com/ - saves at least a full day of travel in lieu of Kruger. If anyone goes there, please let me know how it is