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Best Safari Parks & Game Reserves Near Johannesburg

Best Safari Parks & Game Reserves Near Johannesburg

If you’re looking for a place to escape the city, you’ll want to consider visiting one of South Africa’s safari parks and game reserves. These parks are home to some of the world’s most exotic animals, and plenty of activities are on offer. Here are five famous safari parks near Johannesburg that will make your trip unforgettable:

  • Pilanesberg Game Reserve
  • Marakele National Park
  • Madikwe Game Reserve
  • Dinokeng Game Reserve (also known as the Lamontville Private Game Reserve)
  • Rust De Winter Nature Reserve/Rust De Winter Wilderness Area – This area boasts spectacular mountainous scenery and has excellent game viewing opportunities. You’ll find yourself surrounded by beautiful natural beauty, including waterfalls, cliffs, craters, and more!

Pilanesberg Game Reserve

Pilanesberg National Park is a 2,000-square-kilometre reserve in the North West Province. It’s known for its high density of wildlife and its wide variety of species.

The park has a wide variety of animals, including lions, elephants, cheetahs, and leopards. The Pilanesberg Mountain Range provides a natural barrier between it and other parks like Kruger National Park to the southeast; visitors don’t have to worry about getting too close to other animals during their stay here!

Marakele National Park

Marakele National Park is located in the Limpopo province, just a short drive from Pretoria and Johannesburg. It boasts a wide range of wildlife, including giraffes, zebra and wildebeests.

The park has two campsites that can be booked online: one for tents or RVs and another for tents only. There are also two hotels near Marakele National Park; one is within walking distance from both campsites, while the other lies on top of an escarpment overlooking the plains below it.

Madikwe Game Reserve

Madikwe Game Reserve is a game reserve in South Africa. It is located in the northern part of the country, near Botswana and Zimbabwe. The reserve is home to many wildlife, including elephants, lions, and giraffes.

The park was established in 1992 and covered an area of 37 000 hectares (85 500 acres). It has two main camps: Camps 1 & 2, which are situated next to each other near the boundary between Kruger National Park (KNP) and the neighboring Mopani Wilderness Area (MA).

Dinokeng Game Reserve

Dinokeng Game Reserve is a large game reserve located near Pretoria. The reserve covers over 4,000 hectares and has diverse wildlife, including black rhinos, elephants, and buffalo.

The park offers accommodation options such as private chalets or self-catering huts that can be booked through their website.

Rust De Winter

Rust De Winter is a small game reserve northwest of South Africa. It has a variety of animals, including lions, leopards, and elephants.

The reserve is open to visitors every day between 9 am and 6 pm. If you want to see animals up close, this could be your best option, as they are often seen on their own or with their herds in these areas. The reserve also offers hiking trails that allow you to explore some of its natural beauty at your own pace!

Welgevonden Game Reserve

Welgevonden Game Reserve is one of the oldest safari parks in South Africa, established in 1959. It was named after its location on a plateau that rises from the floor of the Waterberg Mountains and provides excellent views of this region’s spectacular scenery. Welgevonden covers a total area of 27,000 hectares (30 miles), making it one of Africa’s largest game reserves.

Some of the animals on the reserve are protected by law, while others are endangered. These animals include elephants, rhinoceroses, lions, sable antelopes, and white-necked gazelles. Together, they form part of a large conservation project coordinated by the National Parks Board to ensure their survival for future generations.

Mapungubwe National Park and World Heritage Site

  • Mapungubwe National Park and World Heritage Site is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, one of the oldest national parks in South Africa, and home to some of the best game reserves in Africa.
  • The park’s name comes from “map,” meaning “the place where we used to gather together.” It was named after this gathering place by local people who lived there before European settlers arrived.

The park is located on the Witwatersrand plain near Katutura township in Gauteng province. In addition to Mopani Game Reserve, Maguga River Valley National Park (Wits University), and Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, it is part of the Greater Mapungubwe Zone Management Area (GMZMA).


There is much to do and see at these parks, from tracking animals in the bushveld, spotting animals up close with binoculars, or even hiking trails.


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