Malalane was the first resting place on the road from the old Lourenço Marques (now Maputo) to Pretoria. In many ways it is still precisely that. The name means "guardians" after the first people who maintained the ford across the Crocodile River. The town is now a bustling agricultural and tourist centre.

In the early part of the 20th century, much of this area was the domain of the hunter. But with the formalisation of the borders of the Kruger National Park, hunting all but ceased and photography took over. To the south of the main road there remain a number of a private conservancies that tourists can visit as an alternative to the Kruger National Park.

Top attractions

A leopard resting on a tree near Malalane Gate, which offers entrance into the Kruger National Park. Photo courtesy of Arno Meintjes

  • Leopard Creek is home to the Sunshine Tour’s Alfred Dunhill Golf Championship and is one of the world’s most exclusive golf courses
  • Malelane Gate offers entrance to the Kruger National Park, just a couple of kilometres outside the town
  • The quaint little town of Hectorspruit was the site of Paul Kruger’s last speech before departing these shores for the Netherlands, where he died. The Transvaal Treasury (known colloquially as the Kruger Millions) are rumoured to be buried nearby
  • TSB Sugar Holdings (Transvaal Suiker Beperk) is one of the largest sugar producers in South Africa, with operations stretching from its HQ in Malalane right through Swaziland to Pongola in KwaZulu-Natal. Tours of the sugar refinery can be arranged

Did you know?

Malalane and Komatipoort should both technically have been in Swaziland but Abel Erasmus bought the area from a Swazi chieftain for 12 cases of gin.

For more information

Kruger Park South Information: +27 (0)13 790 1193

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