The Johannesburg Lions Park is situated about 45 minutes away from Johannesburg by car.
We visited one evening to pet and fondle the small cubs, which were absolutely adorable. However, we quickly realized that it was important to not forget that at the end of the day they are lion cubs. We were taught by the guide how to spot any aggression and what you could and could not do, making the experience that much more enjoyable.
The lion cubs can be a little rowdy and rough, but it is all part of the experience. You are only designated a set time inside the closure so make sure you take many photos and get the most out of it before your time is up. It was amazing to see how strong the lions are already, even just as cubs.
We were lucky to be visiting during a feeding time for the Lions and were taken into a completely fenced safari vehicle to view the lions at their ferocious best. It was an interesting sight to see how the lion had his own piece of the feed and the lionesses were left to claw and fight over the remaining meat. Keep in mind that the feeding may not be suitable for all ages to witness.
You also have the option to do a self mini game drive through the park where you can see zebra, giraffes and more and also drive into enclosures of fully grown wild lions and lionesses. We were told that these wild cats could get as close as 2 feet from the car, so ensure you keep the windows rolled up most of the way, and hands inside while clicking away.
Overall, the park is a great experience with the option of getting up close to baby lion cubs and giraffes, but we did find visiting Kruger National Park to obviously be a much more fulfilling experience as you could actually witness animals in the real wild. However, it would be a lovely day out for tourists wanting to see a bit of “Africa” that don’t have the time to go to the bush.
What has been your favorite close encounter with an animal during your adventures?