Officially called Mbombela since 2009 but still referred to as Nelspruit, it is not unfair to say that most tourists visit the town on their way to Kruger National Park or Mozambique.
Sport in Mbombela/Nelspruit
Rugby Union and Football are among the most popular sports to watch in Nelspruit:
- The Mbombela Stadium was constructed in 2009 to host matches at the 2010 FIFA World Cup, when it hosted four games. Featuring 18 roof supports that resemble giraffes and the seats in the pattern of zebra stripes, the rugby side Pumas play their Currie Cup matches in the stadium with the Springboks occasionally playing international tests in Mbombela.
Getting to Mbombela/Nelspruit
Airport – Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport is located approximately 25 kilometres north east of Nelspruit, offering flights to Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg as well as internationally to Livingstone in Zambia and Vilankulos in Mozambique. Nelspruit Airport is the older airport, 6 kilometres from the city but doesn’t generally offer commercial flights.
Train – The Nelspruit railway station has regular trains west to Johannesburg via Middelburg, Witbank and Pretoria, and east to Komatipoort on the border with Mozambique.
Where to stay in Mbombela/Nelspruit
Food & Drink in Mbombela/Nelspruit
What to do in Mbombela/Nelspruit
- The proximity to the world famous Kruger National Park is perhaps the main reason for most tourist’s trip to Nelspruit, being just 40 kilometres away. Hundreds of wildlife roam the park, including lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffalos with the opportunity to get up close to such animals making it one of the world’s greatest national parks.
- The Lowveld National Botanical Garden is just out of town and is charming place to walk among flowers, trees and a number of bird species.
- Chimpanzee Eden is the only such sanctuary in South Africa, home to chimpanzees that have been displaced from their natural habitats in Africa. You can see and learn about the chimps in a semi-wild setting.