Kruger National Park (KNP) is one of the top destinations in South Africa and is the largest national reserve in the country. It spans over 220 miles across two provinces and is roughly the same size as Israel. The park has tons of African wildlife to see. There are 11 different entrances for guests to come and see over 140 mammals, 100 reptiles, 500 bird species, and countless native trees.
You can do the Kruger in 2 days or extend your stay to a 3 days safari to include some more activities. If you want some time to relax, a week in the Kruger is plenty to get through all the fun, especially while staying at a luxury private game reserve.
Since the park is so large, there are tons of magical and memorable Kruger National Park Hotels and accommodations to choose from. From a one-with-nature tented camp experience to KNP bookings at some of the best Kruger Park safari lodges. Looking for places to stay near Kruger National Park doesn’t have to be overwhelming. This post dives into the best spots to stay at while you’re here.
Where is Kruger National Park Located?
The Kruger Park stretches over two of South Africa’s provinces, the hot and humid Mpumalanga and the dry savannahs of Limpopo. The Kruger National Park is closest to the Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport. However, connections from this airport are limited, so many people come via Johannesburg International Airport or enjoy the 5-hour drive from the city.
Back in the 1920s, only trains and horse-drawn carriages were allowed in the park. Luckily, today the roads are tarred for all vehicles to use. This is just a small part of Kruger Park’s history.
Kruger Park Hotels
The Kruger National Park prices for accommodation range depending on where you stay and what package you take. The popular hotels mentioned are from just under $80 (R950) per night sharing, while lodging KNP accommodation is more inclusive, starting at around $550 (R8,000) per night sharing.
1. Riverview Inn
Riverview Inn accommodation in the Kruger National Park lies on the banks of the Crocodile River. It’s just 10 minutes away from Malelane Kruger Park Gate entrance and is one of the best hotels you can choose. Hotel accommodation for the park is perfect if you bring your own food. This way you’ll save on accommodation costs and get to participate in more activities.
You can enjoy amenities like free wifi, free private parking, an outdoor pool, and air-conditioned rooms. While food is not included at this accommodation, there is a paid breakfast option.
The best part about staying at this hotel is that you get to enjoy your morning coffee, looking over your private balcony into the African bush landscape. Here you’ll get to watch the wild animals go about their daily business.
2. Lions Place
Lions Place has a great location in the Grietjie Nature Reserve, 40 minutes from the Phalaborwa Gate entrance. This Kruger National Park accommodation is small but will make up for it in character and staff friendliness.
The Inn also offers game drives around the park for guests. Here, you’ll get to see hundreds of African animals, drive past the Olifant River, and be thoroughly educated throughout the experience.
Lions Place has a viewing tower and upper deck, where you can see animals gather at the nearby watering hole. There is also an outdoor swimming pool for guests to use, and the rooms are finished with tasteful decor, hot beverages, and air conditioning. The only thing you’ll regret about staying here is that you didn’t stay longer.
3. Bushveld Terrace
The Bushveld Terrace is a short 2-minute drive from the Kruger Park’ Phalaborwa Gate and is one of the best luxury hotels in the area. This hotel consists of elegant rooms styled in natural colors. The rooms include a flat-screen TV with satellite, a small fridge, hot beverages, a desk, and an en-suite bathroom.
This refined lodging accommodation is inclusive of complimentary buffet breakfasts for all guests. The site also has a restaurant, outdoor pool, and sun terrace.
This hotel prides itself on top quality. It offers spacious rooms, excellent food, and unmatched service. There are also golfing and hiking activities to enjoy in the area (when you’re not out searching for the big 5).
Lodges Inside the Kruger National Park
Accommodation inside Kruger National Park, Mpumalanga, is totally worth the cost. Being immersed in the African culture and bush is an experience with no price. Kruger Lodges are the best way to experience the Kruger. Think three buffet meals a day, spa treatments, and private safari rides.
4. Imbali Safari Lodge
Imbali Safari Lodge is an upmarket resort set within the KNP and is undoubtedly one of the best Kruger Lodges to go for. Since this bush lodge is in the park, guests get to pay a once-off access fee of $7.50 (R105) per person instead of paying daily.
This lodge is made up of 12 spectacular and spacious suites with a neutral color scheme and traditional African decor. You can expect French doors opening to views on the bush, private hot tubs, king-sized beds, and the sounds of birds chirping in the morning.
While lodges are more pricey than the best hotels, inns, or guesthouses on offer, they provide an all-inclusive, unforgettable experience. Imbali offers guests two game drives per day. The first is before the sun rises, so you’ll get to enjoy coffee and homemade rusks. Once back at the lodge, you can look forward to a delicious day of meals including breakfast, lunch, and dinner. In the evening, set out on your second drive of the day to see the big 5 in action.
5. Hoyo Hoyo Safari Lodge
Hoyo Hoyo Safari Lodge is another all-inclusive game lodge inside Kruger Park. This bush lodge is ideal for couples on a romantic getaway. The lodge is known for its distinct thatched-roofed rondavel. This offers glances of wildlife through the tree-lined savannah landscape and Mluwati River.
In this scenic setting, you can spend your mornings on a game walk upon the ancient elephant route while getting intimate with nature. And you can end off the day sipping on a cocktail while enjoying a candle-lit, romantic dinner.
The accommodation includes an African decorated suite with a freestanding bath and king-sized bed. The lodge also gives guests access to a gym and spa, excellent dining in bush scenery, and a place for bird-watching.
6. Jock Safari Lodge
This 5-star bush lodge is the pinnacle of luxury and certainly one of the best lodges in Kruger National Park. Guests can either stay at the main Jock lodge in one of 12 thatched-roofed suites with undisturbed views of the Savannah. Or they can choose to stay at Fitzpatrick at Jock, an intimate private villa accompanied by a private guide, vehicle, and chef.
Jock Safari Lodge offers daily game drives, wilderness walks, bird-watching, kid’s safaris, and retreats. You can spend the day hitting tees at the Leopards Creeks Golf Club or learn about the indigenous fauna and flora of South Africa.
Best Camps to Stay in Kruger National Park
Tented accommodation near Kruger National Park is a great way to be a part of nature in an up-close and personal way. Camps in the KNP aren’t as rough as you might think, but rather luxury, tented accommodation with modern guest rooms and en-suite bathrooms.
7. Pafuri Camp
The secluded Pafuri Camp is located on the Luvuhu River in the northern part of Kruger Park. The camp has cottages and tented rooms that run along the banks and give breath-taking views of elephants and buffalo that come down to drink.
What makes this camp great is that, other than for your game drives, you’ll hardly need to leave. There are inclusive meals, game drives, and professionally trained staff waiting to accommodate you wherever they can.
The camp is also situated near the world’s largest fever tree forest and the famous Crook’s Corner, where the Luvuvhu and Limpopo rivers meet. It’s not hard to believe that this is one of the best camps in Kruger National Park.
8. Hamiltons Tented Camp
Hamiltons Tented Camp is a luxury 5-star tented lodge joined with weaving wooden boardwalks. It is situated on the banks of the Ngwenyeni Dam and offers a not-to-be-missed experience of wild Africa.
The camp is made up of 6 glamorous tented suites. Each room is dressed with a romantic slipper bath, an open-air shower, AC, mosquito nets, and butler service. The rooms overlook the dam and the animals that come down to graze.
The lodge has activities to help entertain and relax the guests. You can enjoy watching the game by the dam while floating in the outdoor swimming pool or release tension with an in-room massage.
9. Ndhula Luxury Tented Lodge
Ndhula Luxury Tented Lodge sits just outside the Kruger National Park. A 40-minute drive will take you to the Numbi Gate entrance. The camp’s tents are placed on a wooden deck, giving endless views over the valleys and bushveld. Each room is styled in a safari theme and has a twin-size bed, en-suite bathroom, and includes hot beverages, a fridge, electric blankets, and a foghorn.
The lodge has an infinity pool, open-air lounge, and stylish furnishing. Breakfast and lunch are prepared and served out on the deck, with a view of busy wildlife. Dinner is served in the African boma, around a bonfire with the ambiance of African culture.
Conclusion of the Best Places to Stay in Kruger National Park
While it’s one of the most popular destinations in Africa, finding accommodation inside Kruger Park doesn’t need to be a stressful task. Now that you know what to expect from different types of accommodation, you’ll be all set to pick from these excellent Kruger National Park stays.
Set out on a romantic getaway with your partner or bring the kids for a family fun-filled vacation. Mpumalanga Kruger National Park accommodation has it all with properties that have received great reviews. From spotting the big 5, early morning rusk, and coffee, to dinner in a boma, you’ll have it all. This is one of the top countries for a dreamy bush vacation.
Loving the idea of secluded lodges with buffets and private service? Have a look at our all-inclusive safari packages for the Kruger National Park.