South Africa National Parks (SANParks) has announced that self-drive excursions for day visitors will be permitted from Monday, 8 June 2020.
“We appreciate that after two months of confinement, the public is keen to engage with nature and the excitement as shown by enquiries from our loyal visitors is encouraging,” said SANParks CEO Fundisile Mketeni.
He said they will ensure that the opening of national parks for self-drive excursions is done under the strictest health protocols to safeguard their staff and guests.
The health protocols will include limiting face-to-face contact between staff and guests by encouraging online and telephonic day visit bookings.
They are also encouraging guests to make full payment of conservation fees prior to arrival where possible.
“The national lockdown regulations relating to movement between provinces must be observed within the parks,” said Mketeni.
“This means inter-provincial travel within parks that stretch between two provinces will not permitted. Guests therefore must exit into the province from which they entered the park.”
Most Kruger gates to open, but some parks remain closed
The majority of gates at Kruger National Park will be open with the exception of Pafuri and Numbi gates.
Gate quotas for Kruger have been revised to approximately one third of what they were prior to COVID-19.
Three time slots for arrival will be introduced with the understanding that booked day visitors must arrive at the gate within that time span.
Slot 1 is from 06:00 to 08:00, Slot 2 from 08:00 to 10:00 and Slot 3 from 10:00 onwards.
Hides and picnic spots at all parks remain closed. Braaing at picnic sites will also not be allowed during this period.
Ablutions will be open in camps, at gates and at some picnic spots.
A limited number of shops and petrol stations will open in some parks during the course of the week and will be operated in accordance with relevant Level 3 lockdown regulations.
He said Namaqua National Park as well as Boulders and Cape Point in Table Mountain National Park remain closed for the meantime.