South of The Kruger National Park, separated only by a fence and the Crocodile River, is Marloth Park – a unique conservation area that brims with wildlife and is thick with dense bush.
If you are travelling to Marloth Park from Johannesburg / Pretoria I would recommend going via the extremely scenic N4 Road the entire way until you reac Olifants Drive at which point you will turn north towards the Park. Toll roads dominate the N4 so be prepared to stop three times and bring enough cash with to cover these expenses. The drive time is approximately five hours.
Another road worthy of taking is the Panorama Route which is a bit of a detour in terms of time but takes you through some of the most spectacular terrain that South Africa has to offer – including stops at sites such as Pilgrims Rest, Graskop, Echo Caves, God’s Window, Bourke’s Luck Potholes and the Blyde River Canyon.
Marloth Park opened in 1972 and as previously mentioned is unique in nature as it is also a holiday town with many lodges and privately owned holiday houses. Residents, visitors and tourists are free to walk, cycle and drive through the dense scrub and dirt roads and freely encounter its wild inhabitant’s that include giraffe, wildebeest, kudu, zebra, impala, bushbuck, warthog, baboon, vervet monkeys, other small game that roam the grounds. Bird watchers are in for a treat too as the Park is rich in feathered friends.
Marloth impressively boasts four of the “Big Five” within its grounds – excluding only elephant. Lion, Rhinoceros and Buffalo are confined to “Lionspruit” – the parks private game reserve.
Driving through Marloth you will notice that gardens have all remained natural and bush-like with the exception of one or two grassy lawns that the Impala enjoy keeping trimmed. You might also find it helpful to know that within the Park are a small selection of shops, restaurants and even a petrol station.
In early mornings and evenings people enjoy going up to the lookout point which provides panoramic views of the Crocodile River and watching the animals come down for a drink of water and a splash. Watching the sun set over the river was one of our most treasured memories.
One of the great things about staying in Marloth is that it is only 15km away from the Kruger’s Crocodile Bridge Gate and many of the lodges within the park offer game drives and or day trips there. Waking up with the birds singing and eating breakfast whilst the animals are eating theirs is also something incredibly special.
To find out more about see Marloth Park attractions and view accommodation in Marloth Park to book a place to stay for your trip.
Photographs by and © Vaughan McShane.
Thank you to Around About Cars for taking us around on our #SAroadtrip. Follow the journey with this hashtag on Twitter.