The Lion Park
, on the outskirts of suburban Johannesburg, is close to Lanseria Airport and the suburbs of Broadacres and North Riding.
Your entrance ticket gives you a one-time, 2 minute visit to the cubs, a walk through cages with a variety of animals, a drive through the predator camps, and a drive through the large, antelope camp.
The Lion Park is open until 9 0'clock at night, on most nights!
LION PARK OPENING TIMES :
Weekdays : 8.30am - 9.00pm
Saturdays/Sunday/Public Holidays :
8.30am - 9.00pm : 1st September-30th April
8.30am - 8.00pm : 1st May-31st August
LION PARK ENTRY FEE :
Self Drive : No entry after 17h00 (5.00pm)
Adult : R160.00
Adult : R200.00 (with lion cub interaction)
Child : R60.00 - R80.00
Child : R90.00 - R110.00 (with lion cub interaction)
Child under 4 : Free
Guided Night Drive : 18h30 (6.30pm)
Adult : R270.00
Adult : R300.00 (with lion cub interaction)
Child : R130.00
Child : R160.00 (with lion cub interaction)
Child under 4 : Free
LION PARK CONTACT :
Telephone : +27 87 150-0100 / + 27 11 691-9905
Mobile : +27 76 187-3883 / +27 82 382-4473
Send an E-Mail
GPS Co-ordinates (hddd.dddddd):
Lion Feeding Times : Monday to Saturday from 18h30, Sundays at 12 noon.
You go into the lion cub cage in groups of 8, and are given short rules on touching the cubs before being allowed only 2 minutes to touch and get photographs with the cubs.
With 2 guides in the cage with you, you feel quite safe to get close to the animals.
Although 2 minutes is not really enough time, you can get some good photos and play a little with the cubs.
They probably limit the time so that people don't get too comfortable and start testing the limits with the cubs.
If you go when it is not too busy, they are less likely to be as strict with the time limit, but we were the only ones going in the cage and they still kicked us out after probably 3 or 4 minutes.
It's a bit of a let down with a name like "Cub World", as you'd expect a lot more!
Although you're only allowed to spend 2 minutes with the lion cubs, it is an awesome experience!
You can walk through to various cages that have hyena, black leopard cubs, and meerkats that you can look at, but the cages are rather small and it feels a bit like a zoo.
But it is nice to see the animals up close.
There is a photographer who walks around taking photos of people, that are for sale later, for R30.
They are printed on a National Leographics frame and come out quite nicely.
The other really cool thing to do is to feed the giraffes.
For R30 you can buy a decent sized bag of giraffe food that lets you feed the 3 of them.
That long tongue feels like wet, coarse sandpaper!
You need to choose your time well, because if the giraffes have eaten, you get to take the bag of food home, and if they are hungry and eating, then there are typically a lot of people on the platform trying to get their photographs with the giraffe!
Between the 3 giraffes there are a lot of opportunities for feeding and since the giraffe makes the choice of whose hands to eat out of, you always have a chance.
Persistence and patience is key.
The giraffe is also very calm and so you are able to touch its neck and face, but expect to be slobbered on!
The giraffes are very gentle as they stoop down to get their next mouthful!
The other part of the ticket to the Lion Park is the entrance into the park, where they have antelope, wildebeest and zebra.
You drive through here, and as the land is flat with only grass, you can see things for miles.
But you will only see herbivores!
A nifty way of doing this section is to hire a Segway, and do the route standing up and on 2 wheels!
Getting instructions on how to stay upright on a two wheeler Segway!
A different section has been fenced off with 5 lion camps.
In each of the camps there are between 5 and 10 lions.
Both brown and white lions, young and old.
If you go on Sundays, you can fight for a good viewing spot to watch the lions eat, when they are fed at 12 noon (and I think on Wednesdays as well)
We went on a Monday at 11am, so it was hot, and all the lions were sleeping because they were still full from the feed on Sunday.
I didn't realize what a big impact it would have, but it was definitely not as much fun as the last time I was there when all the animals were walking around right next to the car.
After the lion camps, you go through the wild dog camp where you can see 4 or 5 wild dogs, who are laying down in the day anyway so can't expect anything different at any other time of the year.
Beautiful, individual markings on the handful of wild dogs.
There is also a cheetah camp with 2 cheetah.
They were pretty cool to see (the wild dog and cheetah camp seems fairly new but I'm not sure.)
There is a cheetah walk, which we didn't do, but where you get to walk with a cheetah through a portion of the herbivore camp.
The day we went was very hot, with little shade, which was our own fault, as we shouldn't have gone in the middle of the day! But it was fun.
Most of the people who work there are volunteers from foreign places.
I heard very few South African accents.
Most of the animals lie close to the road, so you can get really close to them, like this stunning cheetah.
Their curio shop is great and they have a restaurant for lunches.
The highlights were handling the lion cubs and feeding the giraffe!
I would recommend it for any tourist who is in Joburg because it is only 30 minutes away and a fun experience.
Sam Shead, Bakersfield, California.