Best spots for a bush breakfast

2013-09-05 15:38
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You set out well before dawn, still groggy and a little grumpy, but nothing the first mug of coffee couldn't fix while watching a dazzle of zebra taking a morning drink at a waterhole. 

However, a few hours have passed and your tummy's starting to grumble. The sun is making a steady ascent and the animals are starting to suss out which shady spot will be best for an afternoon nap. 

Yup, the signs are all there - it's time for a bush brunch! And there's only one way to do it: cooked up on a gas skottel at a picturesque picnic spot, served up on enamel/plastic plates. 

Whether you're making something fancy like pancakes or just the usual bacon and eggs, we've rounded up a few of our favourite bush picnic spots. 

Which would you add? Tell us in the comment section below or send us your thoughts to 

Timbavati Picnic Spot, Kruger National Park

Surrounds: The picnic spot is slightly elevated and overlooks the usually dry Timbavati river. From this vantage point you are bound to have a few worthwhile sightings while wolfing down a well-deserved breakfast. A large baobab tree can be found close by.

Facilities: You can rent a skottel from the kiosk, there are picnic tables with thatched umbrellas. The kiosk also stocks cold beverages. 

Special features: Don't be surprised if a curious local comes to inspect your breakfast - Timbavati is home to a tame and rather cocky little bushbuck. He has no qualms about picking out of your plates, so keep a close watch on him! 

Confluence lookout point, Mapungubwe National Park

Surrounds: There could hardly be a more majestic setting for a picnic than at the very point where South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana meet in a clash of two rivers - the Great Limpopo and the Shashe. 

Facilities: A beautiful wooden boardwalk takes you to an elevated viewing point over the confluence, while you could sit here and enjoy a prepared meal, you'd have to head back to the shaded picnic spot at the beginning of the boardwalk if you're looking to do the proper skottelbraai thing. The picnic site has tables, taps, ablution and a tuck shop where you can rent a skottel and stock up on drinks. 

Special features: Apart from the amazing views, the area is also blessed with an abundance of incredible baobab trees.

Ikhutseng Picnic Site, Marakele National Park

Surrounds: Located almost 4km from the main gate and about 15km from Tlopi tented camp, Ikhutseng Picnic Site is a quaint little spot set in silver cluster leaf dominated woodland. It's quite rustic, which makes it a great spot to really immerse yourself in the nature while enjoying a meal.

Facilities: There is no option to rent gas cookers here, so be sure to bring your own... or prepare a picnic before going for a drive. There are, however, ablution facilities. 

Special features: As far as national parks go, Marakele is one of the most pristine, as most facilities are located in the adjacent town of Thabazimbi. The picnic site is a good reflection of this. 


Jack's picnic spot, Addo Elephant National Park

Surrounds: The picnic spot is located right in the middle of the park's botanical reserve, an area that has been cordoned off to protect plant species from the park's main attraction - the elephants. 

Facilities: There are braai facilities and you can rent a gas skottel. You will also find well-maintained ablution facilities. 

Special features: The picnic site is extremely tidy and well-looked after - the picnic benches are each shaded by snazzy wooden structures and fine gravel underfoot gives the area a uniform look. The area is also surrounded by lush vegetation and has been fenced off since the introduction of lion. 

Cape Vidal, iSimangaliso Wetland Park 

Surrounds: If your ultimate picnic spot would be a blend of bush and beach, Cape Vidal in iSimangaliso Wetland Park comes highly recommended. 

Facilities: The picnic spots have braai facilities, but if you're wanting to do a fry up, best bring your own skottel. There are also ablution facilities and an abundance of picnic benches. 

Special features: Picnic tables are huddled under a roof of lush coastal sub tropical dune forest, making it a particularly magical experience.

Read more on:    adventure  |  travel  |  travel south africa  |  bush

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