3 week holiday in SA almost all arranged. 10 nights in and around Cape Town and then on to Jo'Burg and flying on to Nelspruit.
How would you recommend we travel through Kruger and is it necessary to book well in advance (going mid-August)? Half planned to rent a car in Nelspruit and drive ourselves around. To stay in the lodges in Kruger do they need to be booked long before?
I recommend you try and book right away if you intend to stay inside the park. Winter is peak game viewing season over there so things tend to get pretty full if you leave it to chance. You can book directly on the SA National Parks site as well as check availability for the various camps. You can easily drive yourself through the reserve and then book additional game drives through the rest camps.
I completely agree with the above post and would only add that I would also recommend you book the rental car asap as well. There is not much to choose from in the Nelspruit area and if necessary a car can be delivered from Johannesburg in time for your arrival.
If you haven't already booked your spots in Kruger it may be to late, I have tried to book as far as 6 months ahead of time before and found very limited space, if any, in the camps at the southern end of the park. A rental car is essential for everywhere in South Africa so you should also book those as early as possible as many companies do sell out during that time of year well in advance. There are lots of things to do in the Kruger area besides the park and should be a great trip. I have visited several times and always had a great time. Last time we went we booked a week at a timeshare in Hazyview at a much cheaper rate than any of the lodges offered and did day trips throughout the area and into the park, there are several in Hazyview and its just a 10-15 minute drive to the park entrance from there.