We thoroughly enjoyed our overnight stay in Addo Elephant National Park. Our favorite part was the opportunity to self-drive through the park and observe the wildlife.
Not only did we see Elephants, but we enjoyed our chance encounters with some of the other wildlife in the park including: flightless dung beetles, black-headed heron, blue crane, rock monitor lizard, leopard tortoise, red-billed oxpeckers, secretary bird, ostriches, black-backed jackals, yellow mongooses, a scrub hare, warthogs, kudus, Burchells zebras, and even a water buffalo. Out of our sightings, one of our favorites was our spotting of a lioness and a spotted hyena interacting during our early morning drive.
We would definitely recommend an overnight stay in the park’s accommodations. This will allow you access to the game park earlier in the morning, to catch the sunrise and potentially some of the nocturnal animals, such as lions. It also provides a nice resting place between drives!
Things To Do & See
1) Self-Drive Game Park
Depending upon the animals that you are keen to view, take a couple of drives at varied times throughout the day. Be sure to take it slow and appreciate the little things. We were lucky to have chance encounters to view a lion and hyena on our morning drive, watch an elephant chase off some zebra in our mid-day drive, and watch a black-headed heron hunt its lunch.
2) Game Drive – Park Organized
The National Park offers organized game drives six times a day. We took the opportunity to do a sundowner drive on our arrival. If we were to ever return, we would bypass the organized drives and opt to self-drive instead.
Most of the accommodations within the park are self-catering and offer a braai (South African BBQ). Bring food along, if you plan to cook, as the food options are limited. We enjoyed two reasonably priced meals at the Addo Main Rest Camp Restaurant.
All though there are many lodges and guesthouses nearby Addo, we elected to stay in one of the parks accommodation offerings, the forest cabin lodges. We enjoyed the opportunity to enter the park early to start our morning self game drive (at 6am). It was also nice to have a resting place close, in order to take a break (or clean-up) between drives.