How to travel to Balule Game Reserve
Getting Here – Balule Game Reserve is easily accessible by road and air. The reserve can be reached in about 6 hours by car from Johannesburg. Daily scheduled flights from Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban (three international airports) to airfields nearby. Road transfers can be provided Johannesburg and from local airports to the various lodges in Balule Game Reserve.
Getting to Balule Game Reserve by Road
- Follow the N4 towards Nelspruit.
- Take the Belfast off-ramp and drive through Belfast, Dullstroom, Lydenberg, and Origstad.
- Make your way over the Abel Erasmus Pass.
- Drive through the Strydom Tunnel and on to Hoedspruit.
- At Hoedspruit, turn left at the 4 way stop onto the R40 towards Phalaborwa.
- Approximately 17km further on, turn right into the Olifants West gate
- This is the entrance to the Balule Nature Reserve.
- A reserve entrance fee is payable at the gate.
Getting to Balule by Air
Reaching the Balule Nature Reserve is by far the easiest when you travel to Eastgate Airport, better known as Hoedspruit Airport, situated in the eastern reaches of the Limpopo Province. Connecting flights from either Cape Town International Airport or OR Tambo International (Johannesburg) to the Hoedspruit Airport are available daily.
O.R. Tambo International Airport (JNB) in Johannesburg is the arrival point for most visitors to Balule. Once there, a connecting flight to Eastgate Airport in Hoedspruit could be arranged. Most accommodations provide transport from there.
Hiring a car is an alternate option –this can be done in Johannesburg. Balule is located on the R40 between Hoedspruit and Phalaborwa, west of Kruger National Park. The 450km/279mi drive takes approximately six hours.
From the airport, you will be transferred to the reserve in your own private, air-conditioned vehicle. Although the reserve is only a short distance from the airport, it can take up to two hours to get to the different accommodation facilities within the reserve, as speed limits are enforced, especially on the gravel roads, to ensure your safety and the comfort of the animals.