The Kruger National Park and its surrounds are unique in offering visitors the opportunity to combine a love of the outdoors with a passion for golf.
Skukuza Golf Course
For many years one of Kruger's best-kept secrets, the Skukuza golf course was built in 1972 as a recreational facility for Kruger National Park staff. It is now available to general visitors for the first time.
The Skukuza Golf Course is a magnificent 9-hole (18-tee) course situated within the world-renowned on the outskirts of Skukuza restcamp. The rich wildlife sanctuary surrounding the golf course is home to the Big Five, a huge variety of birds and countless animals, which all conspire to provide the visitor with a harmonious close-to-nature golfing experience.
The course is a Par 72, and is 5,950m (6,450 yards) for men and 5,059m (5,480 yards) for women. Since the course is not fenced-in, uninvited spectators are a common sight, hippo, impala, warthog and baboons to mention but a few.
The course offers the pleasure of challenge and adventure. For example hole 2 (par 3) has water on the left and to the back of the green. The signature hole (number 9, par 3) of about 150m is played across Lake Panic. Whilst the Skukuza Golf Course has no sand bunkers, 'aerial bunkers' abound because of the many trees found on the course.
Tee-off times are available for visitors in the mornings between 07h00 and 11h00 from Sunday to Friday, although the course may be closed on Mondays- please check.
© Google Earth
- Advance booking is essential to avoid disappointment.
- An indemnity form must be completed prior to playing
- Standard golf dress code applies
- There are no caddies or golf carts but trolleys are available for hire
- Light refreshments and a full bar facility are open daily.
Skukuza offers a unique opportunity for golfing enthusiasts to play within one of the world's greatest conservation areas. The course is designed for all levels of golfers.
It goes down as one of the most unique 9-hole golf courses in the world.
Leopard Creek is home to the Sunshine Tour Championship and has featured on the European PGA Circuit. It ranks amongst the best of South Africa's courses. Its exclusivity is reflected in its green fee, and access is strictly limited (see our K2C Challenge for a sample itinerary including this course).
The 18 hole course was designed by Gary Player, who is a partner in the enterprise. It enjoys stunning views over the Kruger from its home on the banks of the majestic Crocodile River near Malelane, outside Nelspruit.
A map of Leopard Creek Golf Course, including details of the holes, can be found here.
- Golfers will enjoy the Pro shop, Halfway House and Golf Bar. You can find a course map and details of the holes here
- The estate offers 154 rooms which are a mixture of fairway-view chalets and luxury garden-view rooms (the latter are in the main hotel area). In addition there are five self-catering units (2 bedrooms each) and two Junior Suites
- Facilities include the IndulgeSenses luxury spa, floodlit tennis courts, squash courts, swimming pools, a gymnasium and a sauna
- There are four restaurants including the elegant Leadwood (a la carte), the adjacent Leadwood Lapa (barbeques), the Pool Bar (pizzas from the wood burning oven) and Golf Clubhouse.
Further north and with a fence on the boundary of the Central Kruger, the Hans Merensky Hotel and Spa is an estate enjoying the occasional non-human visitors from the Park. It features a Championship standard, 18 hole par 72 course, designed by Bob Grimsdell, which follows the Kruger boundary along the entire length of the property's eastern boundary. It encompasses a vast area of indigenous bush interspersed with tranquil pools and velvet greens and, for good reason, has been voted the best walking course in South Africa.
Resident crocodile and hippo add spice to the normal "hazards" of a good game of golf. Wild game including elephant, lion, giraffe and a wide variety of antelope and bird life are often seen on the golf course and its surrounds.
The former Sports and Social Club for workers at the nearby Phalaborwa Mine, Hans Merensky is now open to all comers.