Addo Elephant National Park,
Elephant Park is officially one of South Africa's twenty national parks
and is located close to Port Elizabeth. A section of the park was founded
back in 1931 in order to give sanctuary for the 11 remaining elephants
in the area.
As the park proved successful,
it was expanded and now is home to more than 450 elephants, 400 Cape buffalo,
over 48 endangered black rhino as well as a variety of antelope species.
Recently spotted hyena and
lion have been re-introduced into the area and the Addo Elephant Park is
also home to a unique species of flightless dung beetle by the name of
its expansion, the Addo Elephant Park grew to include the Woody Cape Nature
Reserve, extending from the mouth of the Sundays River towards Alexandria,
as well as a marine reserve which includes St. Croix Island and Bird Island.
This area is an important breeding habitat for penguins and gannets, as
well as a large variety of other marine life. Bird Island is now well known
as being the world's largest breeding colony of gannets, with around 120,000
of the birds living there. The island is also home to the second-largest
African penguin breeding colony.
The expansion of the park
also means that Addo Elephant Park has five of South Africa's seven major
vegetation biomes and it is also probably the only park in the world to
host what has been dubbed the "Big 7" (elephant, rhino, lion, buffalo,
leopard, whale and great white shark) living in their natural habitat.
The park has one main, and
four other, rest camps along with another four camps run by concessionaires.
The main entrance and two of the looped tourist roads in the park are tarred,
while the other roads are gravelled. There is also another access road
into Addo Elephant Park, running through the southern block of the park,
which feeds off the N2 highway near Colchester. This feeder road joins
up with the other tourists roads in the park.
Addo Elephant Park accommodation