lion

• 28 comments •


Undeniably, the most exciting animals to see at Kruger National Park are the lions. Pretty much all the animals in Kruger can be seen in zoos around the world, but there's something incredibly thrilling about seeing a massive lion in the wild.

We went 3 days in a row without seeing any, and were starting to worry we wouldn't spot any at all. We were still grateful to see the other wildlife, but it was annoying to know that the lions were in the park, and that we hadn't seen them.

On the 4th morning, we left the gates of our base-camp at the crack of dawn. After about 10 minutes of driving we noticed an animal walking along the side of the road ahead of us. The shape, and the way it was walking, made it evident to both of us that our luck had turned. With the sun still lingering on the horizon, we captured a few disappointing photos but were in shock and awe of the beast that had strolled within inches of our vehicle.

The next day we headed off in the morning to leave the park. With the drive back to Johannesburg ahead of us, we knew we could hang around the park until noon, before we would need to leave for good.

Just before lunch we rounded a bend and found several cars stopped on the road. We approached and noticed that a group of lions were relaxing under trees.


As we watched, they walked across the road, between cars, sat affectionately with each other, nibbled on grass, and slept. These guys were significantly larger than our "friend" from the previous day. The behaviour of these cats was remarkably similar to that of the domestic variety; they couldn't have cared less that we were around.


We were so close that we could actually hear them "purring", but it was more of a deep rumbling noise. It might have been somewhat frightening if they weren't so lethargic.

This is our final post in our "Big Five" series - charging elephants, hidden leopards, unpredictable water buffalos, endangered rhinoceroses, and the majestic lion - we feel incredibly fortunate to have seen them all in their natural environment.

You Might Also Like

28 comments

  1. scaaaary - but amazing pics! my bf and i were just talking about taking a safari like that one day. your blog never ceases to inspire me. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. mina and alex..
    these are beautiful photos..i almost think i can feel the lions heavy breath on the first one !
    i love the pic of mina shooting that pic too! you two have chosen a wonderful way to live life!

    ReplyDelete
  3. okay, now THAT would be cool!

    ReplyDelete
  4. They are exquisite!!

    ReplyDelete
  5. OMg They are huge! Great pix guys!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Wow this is so beautiful!
    I can't believe you got so close!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Wow, awesome pics! I featured your elephant one in my Friday Fave post...posts later today! :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. those photos are EPIC. lions are gorgeous... fascinating... wow.

    ReplyDelete
  9. incredibly fortunate you are. just when I thought the animals couldn't get anymore intense, you find the lion. Interesting how lethargic they were. I guess thats the difference between "cats" and giants beasts like the rhino.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Arati28.5.10

    Just wow... salute to the King of the Jungle. Amazing pics....

    ReplyDelete
  11. Oh my Gosh!! How exciting and scary at the same time!! The B&W picture is STUNNING!!! Keep posting these beautiful pictures!! I continue to live vicariously through your travels :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. The second to last picture is brilliant and terrifying, for some reason.

    ReplyDelete
  13. WOAH! these are so crazy! that's awesome.

    ReplyDelete
  14. these pictures are incredible! i love living vicariously through you guys.

    ReplyDelete
  15. wow great experience, makes me really excited for my safari in 2 months!!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Amazing! It's always so cool how much big wild cats and much smaller domestic ones are so similar. It's so sweet to think about a huge lion purring and munching on grass :-)

    ReplyDelete
  17. Wow! Just read your bio! Can't wait to follow along...this is so cool!

    ReplyDelete
  18. I loved how the lions came right past the car. So majestic!

    ReplyDelete
  19. I loved all the posts and pictures from your safari. I've always wanted to go, and this just adds more fuel to the fire!

    Love the first picture (and the shot of Mina taking it, too).

    Thanks so much for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  20. ah! i miss home :)

    ReplyDelete
  21. Wow, great photos! Those are some scary too close for comfort type of images! Alas, I would love to go to Africa someday. Just need to convince the hubby.

    invasionista

    ReplyDelete
  22. OMG ! THIS IS NUTS! we definitely dont see that every day in california! so cool!

    ReplyDelete
  23. these photos are absolutely gorgeous! that first one takes my breath away.

    ReplyDelete
  24. oh my i love your blog!! these pictures are amazing! I cant believe you were that close to a Lion! my husband is obsessed and wants to go on a safari!!!
    thanks for sharing! xoxo
    www.andeelayne.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete

archives

Bloglovin

Follow

Flickr