A bumper holiday is around the corner, creating the perfect excuse for a family breakaway. With the busyness of life often getting in the way of quality family time, the holidays from 24 March to 11 April give you two weeks of downtime and an opportunity to reconnect.
A change of scenery is not only good for the soul but also for family bonding, and there’s no better place than the bush. Here, in nature, far from your everyday routine, the meetings and traffic, extra-murals and homework can all be forgotten.
South Africa has a wealth of reserves to choose from, but too much choice can be confusing. So why not opt for the most famous of them all? The Kruger National Park? While it’s a premier wildlife destination all-year-round, those in the know say that game-viewing is best during the drier months, into which the two-week holiday falls.
To secure your spot at this popular time of year, booking early is important. You could also score some great early-bird specials, so there’s no need to break the bank. As you know, the Kruger is world-famous, and with tourists back in their numbers, this safari-loving group may be the reason you miss out if you leave things too late…
There are many good reasons to head to the bush for your family holiday. Here’s a snapshot:
A private haven
You can opt for private accommodation geared towards family stays and make your two weeks count, like Buckler’s Africa Lodge by BON Hotels on the banks of the Crocodile River. Yours will be one of just 16 rooms, and with the prime location of the lodge overlooking the river, game viewing is effortless. In this secluded corner of the reserve, the “bush is your oyster”, and quality family time comes standard. Sounds too exclusive and out of reach? Refer to our point about early bird bookings!
Recharge in nature
The Kruger offers a reset like no other with its vast bushveld vistas and a sense that time has stood still. You’ll have the freedom to choose how you spend your days while enjoying spending time as a family. This is the perfect opportunity to put phones on silent, ditch the iPads, exchange series for playing cards, and sit around a campfire, under the stars, with bush sounds as your backtrack.
A wealth of family activities
You could spend weeks in the Kruger and still not exhaust all your options. We’ve handpicked some top activities, but always inquire about age limits first, especially if you have tiny tots:
- Game drives – exciting and educational for the whole family, did you know that the 20 000km² Kruger reserve is home to as many as 148 species of mammals, including the Big Five, and more than 500 species of birds? Self-drive the family if you prefer to follow your own schedule or opt for a guided safari with the experts. Full-day excursions are also possible.
- Bush walks – one of the best ways to experience the Kruger is on foot with rangers. This exhilarating experience engages all five senses and brings everyone closer to nature. Without the noise of vehicles alerting the animals, some excellent sightings are possible.
- Safaris with a difference – take your game drive to a new level on a quad bike or horseback (best suited to teens). Follow a guide through the bush to the best viewing spots.
- Golf – yes, there is a nine-hole course in the Kruger – the Skukuza Golf Course – and as you can imagine, the scenery is quite spectacular. Meet up for a meal at the clubhouse with the family afterwards, or better still, send them off to enjoy an excursion.
- Sunset cruises – drift lazily down the Komati River with your favourite tipple in hand, and later, enjoy an onboard braai. The kids will be thrilled to spot hippo pods, crocodiles sunning themselves and many bird species.
- Tiger fishing – chase down Africa’s answer to the piranha in the Komati River, either from the riverbank or a boat on a tiger fishing safari. There are several operators to choose from and some allow children on board to share the experience.
“Visiting the Kruger for a family vacation around Easter time is ideal,” explains BON Hotels CEO Guy Stehlik. “The heat has subsided, but wildlife still congregates at the riverbanks and waterholes. Although the reserve is busy with local and international visitors, opting for a private game lodge gives you and your family a more tranquil experience. There’s also the added benefit of having your activities and excursions organised for you, so all you need to do is focus on relaxing.”
Who needs more convincing? Go ahead and book that well-deserved family bush break. Next Easter is a long way away…
About BON Hotels
Founded in 2013 by hotelier and businessman, Guy Stehlik and his management team with a collective 127 years in hospitality, BON Hotels is a South African based hotel company that manages, markets, administrates and owns hotels, lodges and resorts throughout Southern Africa, as well as West and East Africa –a fast-growing, exciting and leading African hotel group.
BON Hotels has been providing hotels, resorts and lodges with their renowned management, marketing and administration systems, their acclaimed blueprints and business plans to ensure their full potential in South Africa, DRC, Namibia, Uganda, Nigeria, Ghana and Ethiopia. While hotel, lodge or resort owners may indeed have a vision for their properties, the BON Group has the foresight and experience in operating under tricky African conditions, whilst managing expectations for the owner in terms of budgets, marketing and other planning that goes into the running of a hospitality business.
Driven by the ethos of “Good people. Good thinking. Good feeling”, BON Hotels believes in creating loyalty among their guests, suppliers, hotel owners and stakeholders, by bringing a relevant and owner-focused approach to every aspect of hotel administration, management and marketing.
Contact: Teresa Richardson
Tel: +27 83 326 0880