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SANParks General Information

South Africa currently has no less than 20 national parks spread across eight of the nine provinces in the country. The province of KwaZulu-Natal has its own system of KZN parks. The South Africa National Parks are enormously varied, the best known are probably the wildlife parks such as the Kruger National Park where the Big Five (elephant, lion, rhino, buffalo and leopard) and many other beautiful animals are to admire in their natural habitat. Garden Route as well as Table Mountain has beautiful unspoilt coastal marine life, the sea of ​​flowers to the west of the country, forests, mountains, savannahs and desert areas belong to the national parks of South Africa. A SANPark is more than just a nature or wildlife reserve, the purpose of SANParks is to preserve the natural and cultural diversity of the country.

The SANParks give the native flora, fauna, landscapes and cultural heritage of South Africa again, for example, think of rock drawings of the Bushmen, the forgotten city in the Mapungubwe N. P. and the many different African tribes.

In total there are approximately 300 species of mammals, 500 species of birds and 100 species of snakes in South Africa. With over 20 000 species of plants, the flora is also very rich. The enchanting Fynbos vegetation in the Western Cape is of unparalleled beauty. In the spring it turns the dry north-east into a sea of ​​flowers when the wildflowers come, after the winter rains, in bloom. The versatile Garden Route includes the Wilderness N.P, Tsitsikamma N. P. and a Knysna section and is visited by many tourists.

The following areas (with the province in which they are located) are among South Africa's national parks:
- Kruger N. P. (Limpopo)
- Table Mountain N. P. (Western Cape from Cape Town to Cape Point)
- Marakele N.P. (Limpopo & Mpumalanga)
- Golden Gate N. P. (Free State, near the border of Lesotho)
- Camdeboo N.P. (Western Cape, near Graaff Reinet)
- Mountain Zebra N. P. (Eastern Cape, near Cradock)
- Addo Elephant N. P. (Eastern Cape, near Port Elizabeth)
- Tsitsikamma N.P. (Western Cape, on the way, Garden Route N. P.)
- Wilderness N.P. (Western Cape, part of the Garden Route N. P.)
- Bontebok N.P. (Western Cape)
- Agulhas N.P. (Western Cape, southern tip of Africa)
- West Coast N. P. (Western Cape)
- Karoo N.P. (Western Cape)
- Namaqua N.P. (Northern Cape)
- Ais Ais / Richtersveld N. P. (Northern Cape, bordering Namibia)
- Augrabies N.P. (Northern Cape near Upington)
- Kgalagadi N.P. (Northern Cape, near the borders of Namibia and Botswana)
- Mapungubwe N.P. (Limpopo, near the border of Zimbabwe)
- Tankwa Karoo N. P. (On the Western and Northern Cape edges)
- Mokala N.P. (North West, near Kimberley)

In most SANParks there are accommodation available, generally basic to semi-luxury accommodation. In a number of larger parks there are also luxurious accommodations available. In total there are 5 000 beds available spread over 50 different rest camps. There are also about 30 campgrounds. You will understand that it is important to book in advance if you want to stay in one of the parks. Since we are officially a SANParks agent, we can easily book it for you. Alternatively, you can stay in nice accommodation just outside the gates of the park. Look at safari trips for packages or at accommodations. Alternatively, we have many building blocks where you visit a national park or stay in one. The building blocks can also be found on our website.

Most parks can only be reached via paved roads; there is also often a (small) airport present in the vicinity. In the parks there is a network of asphalt or gravel roads that are passable by most vehicles. In some parks there are also trails that are only passable by a 4x4. The parks where larger and dangerous wild animals live, it is not permitted to drive in the dark with your own transport. You can take game drives (in the dark) with a guide. There are strict speed limits to ensure your own safety and that of the animals, so you should allow enough time to arrive at your destination. Parks with a large surface area such as Kruger and Kgalagadi cannot be crossed in one day.

When you visit a SANPark then you have to pay a 'conservation fee' each day. This money will be used to maintain these particular parks. Those of you who is going to visit several parks during a vacation can be more economical by purchasing a wild card. From 2014 there is also a community levy of 1% of your reservation at SANParks.

For more information on Conservation fees and Community Levy, please click here. You should choose for international all parks cluster.

Kruger National Park (KNP) has implemented additional gate access control systems at its entrance gates in the South of the Park. As from 1 September 2017, all visitors over 18 years old will be required to produce their identity document. (ID), passport or alternative valid identification e.g. driver's licence card for scanning upon entering/exiting the Park.

The upgraded system will assist with monitoring the movement of people who enter or exit the Park and will ensure that information related to any persons entering the park in order to conduct illegal activities in centrally recorded and monitored.

"The system will apply to everybody including SANParks staff members, suppliers and other residents of the Park and is expected to improve on our proactive surveillance, early warning and detection. In our quest to continue to enhance security for both wildlife and visitors, we will continue to make use of appropriate security technology"; said the KNP's Managing Executive, Glenn Phillips.

Visitors will still be required to go through their normal check-in or check-out at the gate receptions before proceeding to the security scanning process. Training for the security personnel on the upgraded system is underway in order to minimize the possible delays as soon as the new operation kicks-in.

"We recognise that we have to keep a very fine balance between imposing potentially anti-tourist friendly security apparatus whilst also ensuring the protection of both Tourists and Wildlife. We request the public to be patient during these very necessary security processes."

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Your holiday begins at South Africa Specialist!

Wild Card Program

In South Africa to purchase a wildcard is sometimes attractive. Click the following link for more information about the Wild Card. You can buy this card online or buy at a number of parks at the entrance gate.

For international visitors, there is one card application (International All Parks Cluster). Make sure that you have your wild card and passport at hand at the entrance of the park.

If you want to buy a wildcard do it before you travel. The Wildcard is valid for SANParks, some KZN Wildlife parks and also the Big Game Parks in Swaziland. For an overview of the parks that do or do not belong to the Wildcard program, click here: affiliated parks.

Note that the wildcard is only valid when you visit a park with your car and when you stay in the park (so own transport to accommodation in the park). For example, when taking a game drive with a safari vehicle you should indeed pay a normal conservation fee outside the park (with many of our excursions it is included, see each specific activity). When you stay in the park and there is a game drive with a safari vehicle, you do not have to pay a conservation fee when you have a wildcard.

Wild Card membership gives you unlimited access to most of Southern Africa's premier conservation areas, depending on the type of cluster you choose. Membership is valid from the date of purchase for 365 days and is available for an individual, couple or family (family: any two adults and up to five children under the age of 18 years). International Wild Card Membership is also for our international guests. Click here for all information and to order the Wild Card Online.

Should you have any queries, please kindly contact them at +27 (0)12 428 9111 / 0861 GO WILD (46 9453), or +27 (0)861 46 9453, or e-mail them on

Wild Card Program Membership is linked to a primary member, and where applicable to his / her spouse and or dependent. Membership may not be transferred and partner or dependents details may only be altered at the time or annual membership renewal. Access to the Parks will only be granted if a valid identification (ID / Passport) is presented with your new Wild Card or valid proof of membership. Valid proof would include a receipt, voucher, or Application Completion Confirmation Letter Request, issued no more than 45 days prior to arrival.

Click here for more information

Your holiday begins at South Africa Specialist.

Clusters (until 31 October 2018)

Individual (1 pax) - R2430
Couple (2 pax) - R3800
Family (Up to 7 pax - max 2 adults) - R4545

International All Parks Cluster
Access to more than 80 Parks and Reserves around Southern Africa.

Includes access to all Parks and Reserves, which are included in the SANParks, Msinsi, EKZNWildlife, Cape Nature and Swazi Clusters

All images/information on this page: © 2004-2016