There are three main areas to explore: the Nossop River valley, along the South Africa/Botswana border, the wilderness trails on the Botswana side, and what was once the Mabuasehube Game Reserve, now incorporated into KTP at its most northeastern reaches. KTP’s very beautiful terrain comprises fossil river valleys dotted with dwarfed trees and bushes, grasslands and different coloured sand dunes. Wildlife is abundant, and the animals are attracted to waterholes along the otherwise dry riverbed such as antelope, including the ubiquitous springbok and gemsbok, hartebeest, and eland can be seen, as well as the famous black-maned Kalahari lion, jackal, brown hyena, and wild cats.Rich birding is always part of the experience. Over 170 species of birds have been recorded here.
At Mabuasehube, the terrain is a mixture of typical Kgalagadi tree and shrub savanna with patches of wide open grass savanna. This area of KTP comprises a series of exceptionally large pans, which are the principle focus of the reserve. Three of the largest pans lie along the main road; these are Bosobogolo, Mpayathutlwa and Mabuasehube. All of the major predators can be seen at Mabuasehube, including the Kalahari black-maned lion, cheetah, leopard, brown hyena, bat-eared fox, lynx, and silver fox. Small mammals, like the Cape fox, aardwolf and blackfooted cat can be seen at the pans in the evening.
Three major rivers - The Save, Runde and Mwenezi - cut their courses through the Park, forming pools and natural oases from which hundreds of species of birds, wildlife and fish gather to feed and drink. As its name implies, Gonarezhou is famous for its elephants, and many of the largest-tusked elephants in the region maybe found within the Park. Lion, leopard, cheetah (including the rare king cheetah), buffalo, giraffe, zebra and many species of large antelope are also present within the Park. The rare nyala and smaller suni are two of the highlights of the Park's smaller antelopes. In addition, hundreds of species of birds may be spotted in the Park. Unique species of aquatic wildlife such as the Zambezi Shark, Freshwater Goby, Black Bream and the unique turquoise killifish can be seen within the Park's rivers and pools.
By Road: Follow the main tarred road from the Chirediz turn-off to Mutare for 18 kilometres.Turn off to the south at the Chipinda Pools sign post. Follow the gravel road for approximately 34 kilometres to the entrance of the Park, about 59 kilometres from Chiredzi
Mabalauta (Mwenezi sub-region): - Turn east off the main Masvingo – Beitbrifge road at the Mwenezi Police Station turn-off, about 20 kilometres south of Rutenga. Proceed down the the dirt road about 3 kilometres and turn left at the entrance to the Police Station – the signboard indicates Mwenezi Ranch HQ and Chikombedzi. Follow this road for about 60 kilometres to Chikombedzi Business Centre. Do not turn off this road. The road you take follows the Mwenezi River southeast from the Mwenezi Police Station to Chikombedzi (the river will not be visible from the road). The only major intersection you will encounter is 20 kilometres from the Mwenezi Police Station and is signposted. Head straight through the intersection to Chikombedzi.
Turn right after entering Chikombedzi Business Centre at a 4-way intersection where a National Parks sign indicates the route to Gonarezhou, Mabalauta, Right. About 300 metres down the road another sign indicates the route – turn left. Follow this road around a small dam and DO NOT turn off it.
About 6 kilometrees further you will pass Zhou School and 3 kilometres later you will come to Gonarezhou Natioonal Park boundary. The route from there to the Warden’s Office, Mabalauta is clearly signposted. The total distance from the Masvingo – Beitbridge Road to Mabalauta is 105 kilometres.
Best time to Visit
Gonarezhou experiences mild, dry winters and warm, wet summers (temperatures in excess of 40 degrees Celcius can occasionally be expected). During the rainy season (November - April), access to certain parts of the Park is restricted and the visitor should consult with the Park's offices before undertaking game drives.