Kruger National Park: Pafuri, Punda Maria, Baobabs, Elephants & Crooks Corner
In mid May 2006 I drove every road in the Punda Maria and Pafuri region and in the process enjoyed spectacular scenery, enchanted riverine forests, beautiful sandstone cliffs on which the ancient Baobabs grew. The animals and birds I saw were numerous with Nyala and Elephant leading the charge (literally ... see below).
Other animals included kudu, baboons, vervet monkeys, warthogs, hippos, crocodiles, African buffalo, waterbuck, impala, zebra, giraffe, mongoose.
In addition I was able to enjoy an amazing array of colourful butterflies, armoured ground crickets in cannibalistic mode, frisky ground squirrels, strange fruiting trees, a dead African python, cape vultures and lappet faced vultures sharing the same tree, the beautiful saddlebill storks and one of the best bird sightings I've ever had ... that of a juvenile martial eagle.
Watching sunsets over the Shingwedzi river and the sun rise through thorn thickets were, as always, a reminder of Africa and what it really was like forever.
But driving in the Kruger Park is much more than an outing looking for animals ... it is an all embracing never to be forgotten experience. All I can try to do is give you a feel for it and hopefully leave you with a yearning to visit this greatest of all game reserves.
Gate to Punda Maria Rest Camp a short 10 km drive to the camp with an interesting side road up to a view point of Thulamila and the plains below.
Drive Maps from Punda Maria Rest Camp to Pafuri To see Baobabs, Fever Trees Elephants and so much more do this drive
Pafuri Gate Drive (first section) There are Rhino to be seen in this area along with the magnificent Nyala. Majestic Baobabs and Fever Trees also.
Pafuri Region & Luvuvhu River Crossing The Luvuvhu is one of the few perennial rivers in the Kruger ... lots of crocodile and beautiful riverine forests.
Pafuri Gate Drive Last Section Less inspiring than the rest of the route. Rhino to be seen on this section.
Unforgettable Nyala Drive Near Pafuri Don't miss the short Nyala drive.
The Elephant Run ... On the way back from Pafuri I found myself in a difficult position and was charged 3 times by 2 different elephants
Elephant Terrorises Elvis at Babala Picnic Spot Kruger National Park The Babala picnic spot is a very pleasant picnic area o the road down to Shingwedzi. The picnic spot caretaker had a close encounter with an elephant which was later shot
Thulamela Archeological Site Pafuri Region Kruger National Park The Thulamela historical site was only discovered in 1981.
Peace Parks & Crooks Corner & Birding at Pafuri Picnic Spot Luvuvhu River Probably one of the very best drives in the whole the Kruger. Manificent in every respect. Wild and wonderful sights.
Drive Klopperfontein (Kloppers Fountain) Loop S61 off S60 Kruger Game Reserve A short drive that takes you close to the spring fed Klopperfontein. Saw Elephants, Zebra and Steenbok .
GPS Mapping Punda Maria Mahonie Loop Drive Kruger National Park South Africa A discussion around how a GPS can improve your Kruger Park experience.
Punda Maria Mahonie Loop Drive Beautiful scenic drive ... flowing streams, forests, unusual plants and hillside wonders as well as Buffalo, Kudu and Lion reports
Punda Maria to Shingwedzi Drive | Dzundwini Loop & Lookout Marvellous view over Mopane plains and saw variety of elephants and good birds including vultures.
Sunbirds Feeding at the Blossoms of the Beautiful Common Coral Tree The Coral Tree is one of the most spectacular flowering trees you will ever see.
Elephant Terrorises Elvis at Babala Picnic Spot Kruger National Park The Elephant that caused the problems here was shot because it had become a danger to visitors.
The Elephant Run ... Charged by 2 Angry Kruger Elephants on Pafuri Punda Maria Road I became trapped between 2 elephants both of which charged me.
The Flycatcher Trail at Punda Maria Camp Kruger National Park This is a short trail that climbs gently up against a koppie behind the rest camp to reach the boundary of the camp.
Punda Maria Rest Camp The Punda Maria Rest Camp, situated in the Kruger National Park, is the furthest north.
Punda Maria Bird/Game Hide Punda Maria Rest Camp Bird/Game Hide Kruger National Park.
The Outpost A beautiful private lodge/camp with 12 units in the Pafuri area of the Park.