When to Visit The Kruger National Park


The best time to visit the Kruger Park


There is no bad time to go on safari in the Kruger National Park. In fact it is fascinating to see the African bush in its various seasonal guises. Nature is a capricious mistress and the honest truth is that you never know what you are going to see. The experience does, however, change from month to month. In the summer months for instance, it gets very hot - ideal if you're looking to escape the Northern hemisphere winter and unwind by the pool. The verdant vistas are all the more spectacular because of the rains, but this means that the foliage is denser, water is more abundant and game is therefore trickier to see. While the daytime temperature in the winter months is ideal, it does get a little parky at night and in the early morning. Game viewing is easier and at night you can indulge in a wonderful bottle of wine around a roaring log fire. Hmm, sounds to me like you need to experience both! 

November to December


The summer months are hot and humid with either continual rains or very typically afternoon thundershowers which generally clear before the game drives depart. Lots of young animals are born during this time, notably the impala lambs, which are beautiful but vulnerable to predators, which makes for very exciting game viewing potential. Many migratory species of birds start to arrive into the area for the Summer season.

January to March

These months are usually the height of the rainy season in Kruger National Park, however, the weather is still quite hot and humid. Early morning drives with early returns to escape the heat are typical and dramatic thunderstorms can be expected creating superb backdrops for that quintessential safari landscape photo. The landscape is beautiful with many plants flowering and Marula trees begin fruiting. Animals are generally spread out over wider areas because water is plentiful.

April

The vegetation starts changing from thick lush green bush to a slightly sparser browning bush during this Autumn period. The temperatures start cooling down at night but daytime is still warm. Potential scattered thundershowers can be experienced in the afternoons. Most animals are in peak condition. It is also the beginning of the impala, wildebeest and warthog rutting season.

May to June

Autumn gives way to winter and the rainfall drops off dramatically. Cold temperatures are experienced at night and at dawn during the winter months. Large herds of elephant are very mobile. The vegetation becomes totally brown and trees lose their leaves, which means should there be a leopard in a tree, its foliage is no longer a mask and thus visibility during drives is enhanced due to sparser vegetation, both on the ground and above in the trees.

July to September

This period is very dry in the bush with very cold night temperatures and it's therefore chilly during the early morning and late afternoon game drives. Warm clothing is recommended such as gloves, scarves, beanies and insulated jackets. Layers are recommended rather than thick jackets as day time temperatures are generally warm. Game begins concentrating around waterholes. Game viewing is generally fantastic and the visibility is good as the bush thins out.

September to October

Spring is the height of the dry season boasting hot dry winds and colourless, sparse vegetation. Because the rivers and dams are low, high concentrations of game can be viewed at these areas and game viewing in general is very good. The first rains may start towards the end of October when the signs of spring and a new wet season are evident.

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