28 April 2023

Kruger National Park Calendar - June!


  • days usually warm, sometimes hot
  • generally wind free
  • cold evenings
  • rarely rain falls



  • most pans and vleis dry up
  • bush thins out
  • grasslands begin receding
  • umbrella acacia pods twirl out

Animal Activity:

  • large elephant populations in northern Kruger
  • animals concentrate around reliable water sources
  • predators very active around reliable water sources

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26 April 2023

Namibia: Water levels in the Fish River Canyon lower than expected!

The Namibian Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism (MEFT) has recenetly conducted an assessment of the Fish River Canyon. According to the findings of the assessment, the water levels in the canyon are currently lower than expected due to the low rainfall season in the south of Namibia. In light of this, Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR), the state-owned enterprise mandated to run the tourism facilities within the protected areas of Namibia, has annouced that water marshalls will be deployed in the Fish River Canyon to assist hikers during the hiking season (01 May 2023 - 15 September 2023?). The water marshalls will make sure that hikers have access to safe drinking water and will monitor water usage in the canyon.
NWR is further advising hikers to carry water purifying tablets during their hike to ensure that they have access to clean water all the times.

The Fish River Canyon forms part of the |Ai-|Ais/Richtersveld Transfrontier Park, a peace park straddling the border between South Africa and Namibia. It is the largest canyon in Africa and the second largest canyon in the world after the Grand Cayon in the Fish River Canyon hiking trail is a 4-5 day guided or unguided hike with a total length of 86 km

Kruger National Park: Gate quotas to be implemented for day visitors during the long weekend (Freedom Day & Workers Day)!

South African National Parks (SANParks) has announced that daily quotas will once again apply at the entrance gates of Kruger National Park during the long weekend ahead (Freedom Day on 27 April 2023 and Workers Day on 01 May 2023) as an increased number of visitors is expected. Three time slots have been introduced, of which day visitos can choose from. Visitors are urged to make pre-bookings for their visits prior to their arrival. The times slots below will apply: 

  • Time slot 1: 06.00 to 08:00
  • Time slot 2: 08:00 to 10:00
  • Time slot 3: 10:00 onwards

There are still gravel roads that are closed in the South of Kruger National Park due to flooding. Repairs are underway on the main road between Skukuza and Lower Sabie which was extensively damaged and remain closed. READ MORE

South Africa: Airlink to connect Kruger National Park with Victoria Falls!

South African regional carrier Airlink is set to launch a direct service between Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (MQP) in Mbombela (Nelspruit) and Victoria Falls International Airport (VFA) in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. Effective 28 November 2023, the airline will operate three weekly flights between the two destinations on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (MQP) is the major gateway for tourists travelling by air to South Africa's famous Kruger National Park.

To facilitate the new service, Airlink will adjust its alreday existing service between Mbombela (Nelspruit) and Harry Mwanga Nkumbula International Airport (LVI) in Livingstone to four weekly flights on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.

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Iziko Museums of South Africa: Free entry to selected museums on Freedom Day!

Iziko Museums of South Africa has announced that it will be offering free entry to selected museums in Cape Town on Freedom Day (27 April 2023). This includes Bo-Kaap Museum (71 Wale Street), Slave Lodge (Corner Adderley and Wale Streets), Rust en Vreugd (78 Buitenkant Street), Bertram House (Hiddingh Campus, Orange Street), Koopman's de Wet House (35 Strand Street), the South African Museum (25 Queen Victoria Street) and the South African National Gallery (Government Avenue).

  • Bo-Kaap Museum
    Mondays to Saturdays from 09:00 – 17:00
  • Slave Lodge
    Monday to Saturday 09:00 – 17:00
  • Rust en Vreugd
    Thursday and Friday 09:00 - 16:00
  • Bertram House
    Thursday and Friday 09:00 - 16:00
  • Koopman's de Wet House
    Thursday and Friday 09:00 - 16:00
  • South African Museum
    Monday to Sunday 09:00 – 17:00
  • South African National Gallery
    Monday to Sunday 09:00 – 17:00

Iziko Museums of South Africa operates 11 national museums in Cape Town as well as collection-specific libraries, a world-class Social History Archive and the most advanced digital Planetarium and Digital Dome on the African Continent.

24 April 2023

Zambia: Proflight Zambia adds leased Boeing 737-500 to fleet! [update]

update (30 May 2023): Proflight Zambia has announced the arrival of its first 126-seat Boeing 737-500. The aircraft will be the third Jet added to the airline's fleet since emerging from the Covid-19 pandemic in 2022. Proflight Zambia's fleet with the addition of the Boeing 737 will now consist of eight aircraft: including three 50-seater Bombardier CRJ-100/200 jets, three 29-seater Jetstream 41 aircraft, and one 18-seater Jetstream 32 aircraft.

Zambian airline Proflight Zambia has increased the number of return flights from Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (LUN) in Lusaka to OR Tambo International Airport (JNB) in Johannesburg, resulting in the route between the two cities having more Zambian operated flights than South African ones. The airline is now operating three daily flights seven days a week on board its three 50-seater Bombardier Aerospace aircraft and is introducing a 126-seat Boeing 737-500 aircraft - leased from African Charter Airline of Johannesburg - to its fleet from June 2023 to meet demand. The aircraft will be on an initial six-month ACMI (aircraft, crew, maintenance and insurance) contract, with an option to extend, the lessor and Proflight Zambia confirmed.
The Airbus A737-500 will signficantly increase Proflight Zambia's capacity for the 2023 season - using nine aircraft: the 126-seater Boeing 737-500, three 50-seater Bombardier jet (one CRJ100LR and two CRJ200LRs), four 29-seater Jetstream 41, and one 18-seater Jetstream 32, to service 10 destinations supported by 210 employees.

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Cape Town: The Table Mountain Aerial Cableway has announced the dates of the 2023 annual maintenance shutdown!

Cape Town's Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company (TMACC) has announced the dates of the annual 2023 maintenance shutdown. From 24 July 2023 until 06 August 2023, the Cableway will be closed for maintenance. Weather permitting, it will be re-open on the 07 August 2023. The Table Mountain Aerial Cableway will be opening according to August operational times, which are:

  • First car up: 08:30
  • Last car up: 16:00
  • Last car down: 17:00
  • Cafe: 08:30 - 16:30
  • WiFi Lounge: 08:30 - 17:00

The operational times are changing to summer hours on 01 September 2023 (until 15 December 2023).

The Table Mountain Aerial Cableway is a cable car transportation system offering visitors a five-minute ride to the top of Table Mountain in Cape Town, South Africa. Since 04 October 1929, it has have been providing visitors with a world-class cableway experience when accessing the famous mountain overlooking the Mother City.

21 April 2023

Cape Town: Tygerberg Nature Reserve temporarily closed to the public! [update]

update (02 May 2023): The Tygerberg Nature Reserve in Cape Town is open again to visitors with its water supply now fully restored. The operating hours are from 07:30 - 18:00, Monday to Friday, and 07:30 to 19:00 on weekends and public holidays.

The City of Cape Town has announced that the Tygerberg Nature Reserve is temporarily closed to the public until further notice due to a water supply disruption. The Nature Reserve, located in the northern suburbs of Cape Town, has been experiencing intermittent water supply since 14 April 2023 due to a faulty pump supplying potable water to our reserve facilities. A professional team from the City of Cape Town's Water and Sanitation Directorate is attending to the matter.

Photo by Amy Harrison on Unsplash

The Tygerberg Nature Reserve covers an area of 388 hectares and boasts 562 different plant species. Of these, 23 are threatened, 8 are endemic to Cape Town, and 3 are endemic to Tygerberg itself. It is also home to some 24 different mammal species, 137 bird species, 22 different reptiles, 7 types of frogs, and numerous different butterfly species.

20 April 2023

Rwanda: Rwandair has launched flights between Kigali <> Paris!

The flag carrier airline of Rwanda, Rwandair, has introduced direct flights to Paris in France on 17 April 2023. The new flights to the French capital operate three times a week on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Flights depart Kigali International Airport (KGL) in Kigali at 00:30, arriving at Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) in Paris at 09:00 the same morning. The returning flights leave Paris at 21:30 arriving in Kigali at 06:00 the following morning. Paris is the 25th destination on Rwandair's route map.

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Kruger National Park: Update on the upgrading & refurbishment infrastructure programme!

South African National Parks (SANParks) has released an update on the upgrading and refurbishment infrastructure programme that is currently taking place in Kruger National Park. The project was announced in May 2022, began in July last year and is set to run for three years. Funds for the upgrading and refurbishment infrastructure programme include payments from insurers, contributions from the National Department of Tourism but are predominantly from an Infrastructure Development Programme allocation to SANParks from the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and Environment.

Almost a year later, progress which is measurable has been achieved in several projects as listed below.

  • Rebuilding of the burnt Letaba Shop is 60% complete and the shop is scheduled to be operational by July 2023.
  • Lower Sabie Petrol Station is 90% complete and is scheduled to be operational by May 2023
  • Phalaborwa Wildlife Activity Hub (Phase 1) is 65% complete and is expected to be complete by the end of July 2023
  • Upgrading of staff accommodation at Skukuza, Lower Sabie, Satara and Olifants Rest Camps as well as Phabeni K9 has commenced whilst the construction and upgrading of 20 staff housing at Skukuza is nearly completed
  • Construction of the Shingwedzi Main Building Roof is at 40% complete, several challenges and delays were experienced, the project is to complete by end July 2023.
  • Shangoni Gate Development (Phase I) which includes the Shangoni Reception facility is at 65% construction including civil works, the Picnic and Camping Site have been delayed due to an amendment in the Environmental Authorization.
  • Repair and upgrading of the viewing deck at Skukuza Rest camp which was impacted by termites is completed and in use already.
  • Repair and upgrading of restaurant viewing deck at Olifants camp impacted by termites is also completed and already in use.
  • Several tourism units have gone through refurbishment and are completed at Crocodile Bridge Rest Camp, Biyamiti and Bateleur Bush Camps.
  • Repairing of the leaking and damaged thatch roofs at Shingwedzi and Mopani Rest camps is in progress.
  • The construction and upgrading of Punda Maria luxury tents and Sweni trails camp will commence in June 2023. Delays on these projects were caused by the designs and late appointment of the contractors.
  • Management is looking at appointing contractors for resurfacing and re-graveling of the roads.

According to Kruger National Park Managing Executive, Oscar Mthimkhulu, SANParks is on course to meet the deadlines which were set out at the beginning of the project. Mr. Mthimkhulu further gave an update on the roads damaged by the heavy rains and floods that took place in and around Kruger National Park in February and early March 2023. Most gravel roads that were damaged and temporarily closed have now re-opened although a few remain closed. The main road between Skukuza and Lower-Sabie is going to be a long-term project because of the extensive damage caused.

18 April 2023

Addo Elephant National Park: Eight new double family chalets to build within the next 12 month!

South African National Parks (SANParks) has announced that the construction of eight new double family chalets and accompanying infrastructure will soon commence in Addo Elephant National Park in South Africa's Eastern Cape. The new facilities will be located in Addo Main Rest Camp. According to SANParks, these types of units have been in high demand for many years. The construction site will be located closest to Cottages 44 to 51. Work is expected to start later this week and will be finished in about 12 month. We'll keep you posted!

South Africa: Seasonal rainfall & temperature outlook (April - August 2023)!

The South African Weather Service (SAWS) has released the Seasonal Climate Watch for the period April 2023 to August 2023. According to the seasonal outlook, the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is currently in a La Niña state, and forecasts indicate that it will likely return to a neutral state by autumn (March to May 2023). ENSO’s impact is limited for the coming seasons until the next summer season which may be impacted by an El Nino state if early predictions are correct.

The multi-model rainfall forecast indicates above-normal rainfall for the north-east of South Africa and below-normal rainfall for the south-west of the country during all predicted seasons. As most of the rainfall during winter is expected in the far south-west of South Africa, the below-normal rainfall conditions in those areas are expected to have a significant impact. Minimum and maximum temperatures in South Africa are expected to be mostly above-normal countrywide for the forecast period.

12 April 2023

Durban: Durban Funworld to cease operations!

Durban Funworld, a well-known beachfront amusement park on Durban's Golden Mile, is set to close after after 75 years in its current location. The park will shut down at the end of the trading day on 01 May 2023 permanently. Nic Steyn, Durban Funworld's owner, has cited the deterioration of the beachfront and difficulties in trying to find an operator to take over the amusement park among the reasons for the closure. The amusement rides, attractions and other assets would be put up for auction online from 20 April 2023. 

The eThekwini Municipality has confirmed that it has plans to revitalise the site and is working on a tendering process to attract developers to upgrade the Durban Funworld site in line with the zoning of the beachfront. We'll keep you posted!

TAZARA: Temporary suspension of passenger train services in Zambia! [update #2]

update (17 April 2023): Bridge no. 299 has been repaired, the line has been reopened and the passenger trains are back on track. Therefore, both the Mukuba and Kilimanjaro Passenger Trains will run as per normal train schedule, departing New Kapiri-Mposhi and Dar es Salaam on Tuesday at 16:00 and 13:50, respectively.

update (14 April 2023): TAZARA is expecting to resume passenger train operations in Zambia on 18 April 2023. We'll keep you posted!

The Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) has announced that passenger train operations in Zambia have been suspended until further notice. This is due to an accident involving a rescue crane, which dislocated bridge No. 299 in Mpika and made the main track impassable. The accident took place on 10 April 2023. Consequently, the section between Mpika and Sabwa is temporarily closed for repairs. 


TAZARA's passenger train operations in Tanzania are not affected by the accident. The Kilimanjaro Passenger Train will continue to run between Dar es Salaam and Mbeya only, based on the normal train schedules. We'll keep you posted!

The Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) is a bi-national railway, jointly owned by the Government of Tanzania and the Government of Zambia on an equal share-holding basis. The 1,860 km-rail runs from Tanzania and East Africa’s major seaport of Dar es Salaam into the heart of Zambia's Central Province, terminating at New Kapiri-Mposhi, where it is further linked by road and rail to Zambia's capital city, Lusaka (about 200 km), Zambia's mining nerve centre, the Copperbelt province (about 100 km) and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).    

11 April 2023

Angola: TAAG & GOL (Brazil) sign a codeshare agreement!

The state-owned flag carrier of Angola, TAAG Angola Airlines, and Brazilian low-cost airline GOL Linhas Aéreas have signed a codeshare agreement. Under the new agreement, which becomes effective on 17 April 2023, TAAG will add its flight code to 13 domestic destinations in Brazil served by GOL from São Paulo/Guarulhos – Governor André Franco Montoro International Airport (GRU) in São Paulo, namely Rio de Janeiro (GIG & SDU), Belo Horizonte (CNF), Recife (REC), Porto Alegre (POA), Curitiba (CWB), Salvador (SSA), Brasília (BSB), Goiánia (GYN), Florianópolis (FLN), Fortaleza (FOR), Foz do Iguaçu (IGU) and Natal (NAT). TAAG will also have the option to connect passengers to regional geographies operated by GOL on an interline basis.
In return, GOL will place its flight code on TAAG's five weekly service between Quatro de Fevereiro International Airport (LAD) in Luanda and São Paulo, with the option of marketing other TAAG destinations including Lisbon (Portugal), Madrid (Spain), Johannesburg, Cape Town (South Africa), Windhoek (Namibia) and Maputo (Mozambique).
TAAG and GOL will progressively add more destinations to the codeshare agreement. 

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06 April 2023

Mpumalanga: Middelpunt Nature Reserve declared as South Africa’s 29th Ramsar site!

The Middelpunt Nature Reserve in Mpumalanga has been declared a Wetland of International Importance ("Ramsar Site") by the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, also known as the Ramsar Convention. This addition brings the number of South Africa's Ramsar Sites to 29. The Middelpunt Nature Reserve is located along the headwaters of Lakenvleispruit, a stream in the Olifants River basin, approximately 14 kilometres from the town of Dullstroom.
The Nature Reserve is situated in one of South Africa's highest rainfall regions known as the Mpumalanga Drakensburg Strategic Water Source Area (SWSA), which consists primarily of a permanent freshwater valley bottom wetland, supported by lateral seeps and artesian springs. It is home to one of the rarest and most threatened water birds in Africa, the White-winged Flufftail, as well as to a number of other endangered and endemic species, including the Blue Crane, Secretary Bird, African Grass Owl, and Denham's Bustard. The Middelpunt Nature Reserve is one of just two in South Africa where the rare peat borrowing crab is found.

The Convention on Wetlands/Ramsar Convention is an intergovernmental treaty that embodies the commitments of its member countries to maintain the ecological character of their Wetlands of International Importance and to plan for the "wise use", or sustainable use, of all of the wetlands in their territories.

Easter 2023: Kruger National Park enforces daily gate quotas!

South African National Parks (SANParks) has announced that daily quotas will once again apply at the entrance gates of Kruger National Park during the Easter long weekend as an increased number of visitors is expected. Three time slots have been introduced, of which day visitos can choose from. Visitors are urged to make pre-bookings for their visits prior to their arrival. The times slots below will apply:

  • Time slot 1: 06.00 to 08:00
  • Time slot 2: 08:00 to 10:00
  • Time slot 3: 10:00 onwards

There are still gravel roads that are closed in the South of Kruger National Park due to flooding. Repairs are underway on the main road between Skukuza and Lower Sabie which was extensively damaged and remain closed. Visitors are urged not to remove signs indicating that a road is closed as that will pose a danger to other motorists.

04 April 2023

Eswatini: Extension of border operating hours for the 2023 Easter period!

The Ministry of Home Affairs of the Kingdom of eSwatini has announced that three of the country's border posts with South Africa will operate extended hours during the Easter 2023 period. The Mahamba Border Post will operate from 07:00 until midnight on 06 April 2023, the Matsamo Border Post (South Africa: Jeppe’s Reef) will operate from 07:00 until 22:00 on 06 April and 07 April 2023 and the Mananga Border Post from 07:00 to 20:00 between the 06 April and 08 April 2023. All other border posts will operate normally.

  • Mahamba : 07:00 - 00.00 on 06 April 2023
  • Matsamo/Jeppe’s Reef : 07:00 – 22:00 on 06 April & 07 April 2023
  • Mananga : 07:00 – 20:00 between 06 April - 08 April 2023

  • Bulembu/ Josefdal: 08:00 – 16:00
  • Gege/ Bothashoop: 08:00 – 16:00
  • Lavumiso/ Golela: 07:00 – 22:00
  • Lomahasha/Namaacha: 07:00 – 00:00
  • Lundzi/Waverley: 08:00 – 16:00
  • Mhlumeni/Goba: 06:00 – 00:00
  • Ngwenya/Oshoek: 24 Hours
  • Nsalitshe /Onverwacht: 08:00 – 18:00
  • Sandlane/ Nerston: 08:00 – 18:00
  • Sicunusa/Houdkop: 08:00 – 18:00