Craving an escape? SANParks to open accommodation from next week
South African National Parks (SANParks) will open accommodation in the majority of parks from August 14, 2020. Addo, Camdeboo, and Karoo National Parks will reopen its accommodation on August 17, 2020, and Mountain Zebra National Park on August 20, 2020.
Guided Overland Safari Vehicles (OSVs) will be permitted as soon as the regulations about their operations are gazetted.
This comes after the announcement made by Tourism Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane that leisure travel is allowed for intra-provincial travel. SANParks revealed in a statement that interprovincial visitors will be prohibited entry into the parks.
SANParks CEO Fundisile Mketeni said the organisation is in the process of ensuring that the opening of the national parks for accommodation is done under the strictest health protocols to safeguard both our staff and guests.
"Accommodation will not run at full capacity as we will employ a phased in approach to opening. Therefore our loyal guests can expect limited availability of accommodation in some parks at these beginning stages of our reopening, with a gradual increase in availability in the next few weeks," said Mketeni.
He said that SANParks has implemented additional visitor procedures in line with regulations and to further mitigate the risk of the spread of coronavirus.
"Overnight guests will be required to provide proof of residence (municipal account or similar legally accepted form of verification of primary residence) at the time of booking accommodation and again when checking in. No more than two people will be allowed per accommodation unit except for parents and children).
"Tour operators will be allowed to conduct guided tours in OSVs once regulations pertaining to their operations are gazetted. All OSV operators need to be registered with SANParks before they are permitted to enter the parks. Self-drive guests are still restricted to a 70% vehicle capacity as per the Department of Transport’s regulations and the quota system still applies for day visitors," said Mketeni.
He added that the opening of visitor activities and tourist attractions in the parks will be in keeping with restrictions and aligned with the opening dates set out.