Pafuri safaris, tours & holiday packages

Wilderness game viewing in Kruger's remote farnorth

The most remote corner of Kruger, Pafuri is noted for its high biodiversity, rare birds, lush fever-tree forests and the abandoned 16th-century stone-walled palace protected in Thulamela Heritage Site

Flanking the Luvuvhu River in the far north of the Kruger Park, the Pafuri region forms two broad areas. The first, running along the forested south bank of the river, is the Pafuri road circuit, a public road best reached from Punda Maria rest camp 50 kilometres to its south and punctuated by the Pafuri Picnic Site in the heart of the forest.

The area is particularly popular with South African birdwatchers, thanks to the presence of rarities such as Pel’s fishing-owl (sometimes seen from the bridge over the river), racket-tailed roller, white-crowned lapwing and triple-banded courser. It is also notable for high concentrations of elephant, buffalo and nyala antelope. Not to be missed is a guided tour to the Thulamela Heritage Site, which protects the substantial hilltop ruins of a Great Zimbabwe-style stone-walled royal village built in the 16th century.

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Philip Briggs says

My favourite part of the Kruger. The birdlife is sensational, and the Makuleke Contractual Park, for those who make it there, feels truly wild and remote from the main tourist circuit. And don't miss out on Thulamela Heritage Site, which is probably the closest thing in South Africa to the world-famous ruins at Great Zimbabwe.

More on Pafuri holidays

The 235-square-kilometre wedge of land bounded by the Luvuvhu to the south and Limpopo to the north is now known as the Makuleke Contractual Park.

It is named after the Makuleke people, who were forcibly evicted in 1969 when the apartheid government incorporated the area into the Kruger but regained ownership of it 30 years later. Instead of resettling, the Makuleke have developed the region for sustainable tourism: land and wildlife management are contracted to the national park authorities.

In addition, two sites have been leased to responsible private investors and developed as upmarket concession lodges, with unique access to several sites closed to the general public, including the lush forest at Crooks' Corner (the tripartite border with Zimbabwe and Mozambique) and the spectacular Lanner Gorge.

Pafuri Map

Pafuri's location on Google Maps

Frequently Asked Questions about Pafuri

What kinds of animals will I see on safari?

Whether you are in the Southern or East Africa you will generally be able to see the big five. The difference really comes in when considering antelope as they are based on your chosen location. go there.

What vaccinations should I get?

This is all dependant on the countries that you will be visitng and due to the status of certain vaccinations changing at times, please consult our experts before getting vaccines. go there.

Is it okay to drink the water?

In some parts of Southern Africa it is safe to drink the tap water, however it is highly recommended to stick to bottled water (mostly supplied) during your trip as even drinkable African water is completely different in taste and… go there.

Pafuri - Africa Wildlife Safaris

Reviews on our Pafuri safaris

This was my first safari. I didn’t expect to be so pampered. Everything was first class. We had everything provided for us before even asking. We had a dedicated team at our service. Megan was on call whenever we needed something and she…


from Nigeria

Tanya was an absolute delight to deal with. From the first phone call she was extremely polite, professional and very eager to facilitate my requests regarding our safari. Our 3 nights at the V & A Hotel were fabulous and Motswari Game…


from Australia

Perfectly tailor-made tours that take all your wishes and requests into consideration. All my expectations were beyond fulfilled.

Henrik Wetterstrand

from Sweden

Living afar and trusting in an organisation with whom you have no previous knowledge can lead to feeling of mistrust and wondering whether what we have paid for actually exists. A little more proactive communication would have eased those…

Tony Russell

I just wanted to thank Discover Africa and Karl Svendsen - the safari was great - we saw many more animals than expected including cheetah, leopard, many lions and even a three-day old elephant calf. Additionally, we had our own hippo…

Margaret Dean

Planning the trip was managed extremely well especially since travel was at a busy time of year and not much notice was given. All communication was by email, and was responded to promptly and efficiently. Different options were provided…

Suzanne McKeen

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