Ratel Pan Hide, Kruger National Park
Afrikaans name: Ratelpan Skuiling
View of the Timbavati River from Ratel Pan Hide in Kruger National Park
Regular visitors to the Satara region of Kruger National Park know that the area around Timbavati Picnic Site is great for game viewing and one can often see Hippo, Elephant, Lion, Giraffe, Burchell's Zebra, Bushbuck and more. That Ratel Pan Hide is located in this area. A "ratel" is a honey badger in Afrikaans.
In summer colourful weavers, bishops and other birds build their nests in the reeds offering good photo opportunies.
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The hide is a short distance to the north of the picnic site along the S39 gravel road. The hide overlooks the Timbavati River. Although this river doesn't flow all year round there are normally pools and stretches of water that attract game.
As with most hides the secret is often patience. If possible don't just pop in, see nothing around, and leave. Rather get comfortable, have a cool drink, and wait to see what comes down to the river. The best time of day to visit the hide is in the early morning as the hide faces west so the sun will be behind you.
Looking north from the hide