The Lions of Addo

Driving into the the third biggest National Park in South Africa, there is always the anticipation  that something special will happen to begin a visit to the Addo Elephant Park in a fine fashion.

Approaching the Harvey loop, there is a flicker of movement near the road. Too light in colour to the Buffalo, it could possibly be buck……then the sudden surge in excitement when it becomes apparent that two of the nine Lion in Addo have been spotted.

With Addo Elephant Park a mere 120 km away from Jeffreys Bay, the town can truly claim to have the Big 7 on its doorstep.

The new entrance to the Southern section of the Park means visitors from Jeffreys Bay can travel on the N2 highway until Colchester and then drive a few more km to enter the newest section of South Africa’s third largest game park.

The Southern section is really awesome. With lush coastal valleys and grassland plains there has been a consistent movement of animals towards the southern part of the Park since it opened in 2009.

To keep an even balance in the Park, water access for mainly the elephant is restricted, meaning that the herd of over 500 animals have to move around the Park and do not stick in one area for too long.

When entering the Addo Elephant Park, one always hopes to experience Africa at its finest. Spotting Lion is high on all visitors’ agendas while glimpsing one of the elusive rhino is considered a bonus of note.

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The Southern section did not disappoint last weekend and four lion were spotted on the Harvey loop in the cold of an Eastern Cape winter’s morning.

A lot of posturing took place as the two dominant males imposed themselves on the other two younger lions. It was a show that made the whole trip to Addo worthwhile, and that all on the first morning of a 3 day visit.

The black mane lions were all in magnificent condition and are clearly well fed and healthy.

All the female lions are currently on birth control to prevent any increase in lion numbers at present, although the Park could sustain an increase of lion.

Visit the Addo Elephant Park website for more information and to make a booking. Over the next few weeks, jbaynews.com will be publishing more articles on Addo, the animals and the available accommodation in the Park.

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