1. South Africa
  2. North West
  3. Johannesburg
  4. Pilanesberg Nature Reserve

Johannesburg: Private Pilanesberg National Park Safari

Product ID: 36184
See wildlife in its natural environment on a 12-hour safari tour of Pilanesberg National Park. View animals from the “Big Five,” such as leopards, lions, and elephants. Take in views of the landscape formed by a 1,200 million year old volcano.
About this activity
Duration: 12 hours
Starting time 6:00 AM
Printed or mobile voucher accepted
Instant confirmation
Live tour guide
English, Afrikaans

Pickup included

Free cancellation up to 24 hours before activity starts

Select participants, date, and language:



  • Marvel at a 1200-million-year old extinct volcano
  • Look for the "Big Five" of Africa in the Pilanesberg Nature Reserve
  • See wild animals in their natural environment
  • Get up-close views of the syenite koppies and typical bushveld
  • Travel from Johannesburg in air-conditioned comfort
  • Enjoy a premium lunch at the famous Bakubung Lodge
Full description
Discover the “Big Five” of South Africa on a full-day safari tour of Pilanesberg National Park, just 2 hours from Johannesburg. Located in the Bonjanala region, adjacent to Sun City, Pilanesberg National Park is a 55,000-hectare game reserve, making it the 4th largest in South Africa.

Depart from Johannesburg (or Pretoria) at 06:00 for the journey to the northwest province. Upon arrival at the 1,200-million-year old extinct alkaline volcanic crater (one of only 3 in the world) discover the beauty of Pilanesberg reflected in the Mankwe Dam.

The area lies in a transition zone between the Kalahari Sandveld and the Lowveld. Due to this transition zone, an overlap of mammals, birds, and vegetation occurs. For instance, the red-eyed bulbul and black-eyed bulbul, which normally occur in separate areas, overlap. Marvel at the syenite koppies, thickly forested ravines, typical bushveld, rolling grasslands, and lightly wooded areas.

Today, the Game Reserve accommodates almost every mammal of southern Africa, including the “Big Five,” so called because they are the 5 most dangerous game animals in Africa. Home to over 360 species of bird, Pilanesberg is also an ornithologist’s delight.

Enjoy excellent game viewing opportunities in a malaria free climate. Plans are under way to create a heritage park that will link Pilanesberg and Madikwe to form another super-large “Big Five” game and nature park.  Lunch will be enjoyed at the famous Bakubung Lodge.

Depart Pilanesberg at approximately 16:00 for the return transfer to your accommodation in Johannesburg or Pretoria.
  • Transportation
  • Driver/guide
  • Entrance fees
  • Lunch
  • Liquid refreshments on board the vehicle

Prepare for the activity

Important information
Know before you go
• Please remember to bring your camera
• Children under 4 are welcome to join the tour free of charge
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 19 reviews

Review summary

  • Service
    4.9 / 5
  • Organization
    5 / 5
  • Value for money
    4.1 / 5
  • Safety
    4.7 / 5
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We had a fun and unique experience!

Our personal driver, Jason, picked us up at the hotel right on time. He was very friendly, knowledgeable, and a good driver. When we arrived at Pilanesberg, we had a great lunch with an amazing view. The 10:00 AM pick-up was nice because we did not feel too tired. The reason why I did not give this a full 5 stars is because we felt like our tour guide could have done a better job. At first, he stopped when we came upon the animals and would give a brief background. He stopped doing that after the second animal we saw. We were able to see a group of rhinos and a baby rhino but our driver barely allowed us to spend any time taking pictures. He was very adamant about seeing the lions. Overall, we did see lions, a leopard, rhinos, zebras, antelope, a kudu, and buffalo. I was hoping to see giraffes, monkeys, cheetahs, etc. but we spent a lot of time looking at the lions and searching for a leopard. We did come upon an elephant but only because we drove right past it as we were leaving.

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January 6, 2017

Overall, I would recommend this tour.

I expected a smaller vehicle. The vehicles are large: 20 people. Make sure you board early otherwise you might not get a seat you want. One game drive is probably too little. It is better to start early and have two game drives: morning and afternoon. Leaving Joburg at 10:00 is too late for a morning game drive. The lunch buffet is superb. Overall, this was a good experience.

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November 21, 2016

Fantastic Adventure

Jason was wonderful, and escorted me on an exciting excursion, picking me up at my hotel, traveling safely to and from Pilanesberg, explaining all sorts of interesting points along the way and taking me out to lunch at a beautiful spot overlooking a pond, that actually had a Hippo in it. Jason spotted it, as we walked around, making my hopes of getting some good photos a pleasant reality. The Safari was great too. I was able to get many photographs of elephants, giraffes, rhinos, hippos, cheetah, zebra, wildebeest, and many more. It was good to be able to make use of a weekend in Johannesburg, in such a wonderful way. Thank you Jason!

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April 11, 2016

Organized by

Deeprift Ventours

Product ID: 36184