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Kruger National Park is South Africa’s flagship national park and one of the largest in Africa. Kruger is home to some of the best game-viewing on the continent (147 mammal and 507 bird species!) and is part of almost every South Africa itinerary.

Unfortunately its popularity means that inside the national park itself is crowded. Combine this with tarmacked roads and the Kruger experience can often feel too tame for our tastes. As an alternative to staying inside Kruger we often recommend that clients stay in the private concessions that share an unfenced border with the western side of the park, such as the Sabi Sands. These private concessions have fabulous game-viewing because of their unfenced border with Kruger but are more exclusive, less crowded and are able to drive off-road as well as conduct night drives, activities not allowed inside Kruger.

These concessions offer a wide range of properties from the five-star Singita Ebony, Singita Boulders, Lion Sands Ivory Lodge and Royal Malewane to properties like Tanda Tula, Chitwa Chitwa and Simbambili that are great properties and excellent value for money.

A few notable exceptions to our “don’t stay inside Kruger” rule are private concessions in the center of the park such as Singita Lebombo and Singita Sweni and properties such as The Outpost in Kruger’s remote and beautiful northern sector.

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Elizabeth Gordon