Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have up close views of lions in their natural habitat? If you’ve answered yes, then you should definitely check out the Lion Park located in Johannesburg, South Africa. The park, which is located about 45 kilometers from the Johannesburg city center (approximately a one hour drive), is an attraction not to be missed when visiting South Africa.
Seeing an animal roaming freely in the wild is a totally unique experience that you will remember for the rest of your life. At the park, which is located on a beautiful stretch of land in Johannesburg, you will have the opportunity to learn about African animals. Not only will you get to see white lions roaming around the park, but you also will get to see other animals including giraffes, hyenas, ostriches, and zebras.
Experience the lions roaming in the park
The animals are kept in separate areas of the park, but are free to roam around in their designated area at their leisure.
As a tourist, you have two options of entering the area where the lions are located. The first option is to go on a self-drive through the park with your own vehicle. There are clear markers throughout the park that show you which way to drive. On the way through the park, you will get to see the lions strolling around different areas to the left or the right of your car. Before entering the park, you will be given instructions for staying safe by a park volunteer. The most important detail is to remember to always keep your car windows rolled up for your own safety. You are free, however, to take as many pictures of the lions through the car window.
If you don’t have your own rental car for your trip, don’t worry. The park also offers the option to go on a tour with a driver and tour guide. This is an excellent opportunity to ask the tour guide questions about the lions, and get to know these magnificent creatures in more detail.
Petting the lion cubs
After you’ve finished driving through the lion park area, which takes approximately one hour, you are free to explore the other areas of Lion Park. One of the most unique experiences for tourists is being able to see and pet baby lion cubs that are 8-10 weeks old. These cubs are kept in a separate open caged area of the park.
The lion cubs are used to human contact, and a volunteer teaches you how they like to be stroked. To pet the cubs, you have to be deliberate with your action and stroke them from their head to their tail. It’s very important you follow the volunteer’s instructions, because they are trained and experienced in working with the lion cubs. If you have limited time at Lion Park, this is definitely one opportunity you shouldn’t miss.
Say hello to the giraffes, ostriches, and zebras
Although the name of this park is Lion Park, don’t be fooled by the name. There are plenty of other animals strolling around their grazing fields. If you’re lucky, you can get up close and personal to giraffes, zebras, and ostriches as they wander around their grazing fields, which are fenced in for your protection.
When to visit the Lion Park
The opening hours of the park are from 0830 am – 2100 pm every day of the year. The cost for the trip ranges depending if you are going on a self-drive tour, or a guided tour. Self-drive (including lion cub interaction) costs 200 ZAR (approximately 15 USD) per person. Guided tours (including lion cub interaction) cost 300 ZAR (22.50 USD) per person. There are many additional add-on packages for Lion Park. You can access that information in the following link.
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