Pilanesberg National Park Safari

Skyline at Pilanesberg National Park

In this blog post, I’m going to let the pictures and videos do the talking of our incredible 4-day safari in Pilanesberg National Park.

During our 4 days at The Ivory Tree Game Lodge, we went on six game drives. We managed to sight four of ‘the big five’ – the African Elephant, Cape Buffalo, Lion & Rhinoceros, but unfortunately, we were unable to spot the elusive leopard.

We had two game drives lasting three hours every day in an open-aired 4×4 – One in the morning at 5:30 AM and the other at 16:30 PM. Admittedly, getting a wake-up call at 4:45 AM wasn’t easy, but the buzz of possibly sighting the big 5 made it worth it.

Our game driver, Ikageng or (‘Ika’, as he preferred) was one of friendliest guys I’ve ever met and his knowledge of the animals in the park was second to none.

You could tell he loved his job, as on most safari drives we spent much longer than three hours out in the wild.

He also must have had 20/20 vision because his ability to spot animals at a distance was incredible. He made our experience and for that, I can’t thank him enough.

We also developed friendships with three other couples in our Jeep over the 4-days, which also added to our experience.

Group selfie in Pilanesberg National Park

Day 1:

It took the best part of three hours to get from Johannesburg to Pilanesberg National Park, and as soon as we arrived the heavens opened…which was fun for our first game drive!

Day 2:

I found getting up for our first early game drive a breeze, but that was only because I knew I could catch the beginning of the Fury vs Wilder 2 undercard. (Unfortunately, I missed the main event by about 30 minutes).

I might not have been able to watch the fight that morning, but we did get to see an elephant charging towards our 4×4, a pride of lionesses and several rhinos, as well as lots of other animals.

Looking back now we could quite easily have been killed by the elephant…

Day 3:

After seeing lionesses the day before, we were lucky enough to see two male lions on the morning game drive, as well as sighting elephants & giraffes in the afternoon.

We also went to the highest point in Pilansberg National Park, which gave us some remarkable views.

Day 4:

We got up for the early game drive before our transfer back to Johannesburg at 11:00 AM. Unfortunately, we couldn’t spot the leopard, but I don’t think sighting 4/5 was too bad for our first safari experience.

*Note* – We spotted the Cape Buffalo at Addo Elephant National Park. It is incredibly rare to sight this in Pilanesberg National Park, because the animal is most commonly found in the north, which is under conservation.

Our time in South Africa has now come to an end. Our next stop is India, where we’ll be staying for the next 10 days, visiting New Delhi, Jaipur and Agra – home of the Taj Mahal – one of the seven wonders of the world.

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