Our 2nd day started out with a buffet breakfast at the hotel which had american breakfast varieties and typical beverages and the food was pretty tasty too. We would be visiting the Rhino and Lion Nature Reserve, with a tour guide in a 2-to-go private group, the tour organised by the same people who gave us the City tour the day before. 30mins drive and we arrived at location, not before seeing some lionesses that were isolated from the main group of the reserve near the road. We were told that these lionesses are taken out in order for the lions to mate. All we see was them lying around, the male lion not in sight.
Later we drove on to the Rhino & Lion Reserve. Once past the gate and a while later, we started to see various types of animals roaming the fields.
This was somewhat different from a safari, whereby the animals were bought and bred within the nature reserve. The owners fed them, unlike in a safari where they had to hunt for their own food, only the fittest survives.
This was the first time we were seeing animals roaming around while we were driven around and it was really exciting. And these animals could be pretty close to the car.
After the flight of steps, we entered a metal cage like lifts that you typically see in a movie that featured mining. The lift descended slowly and the air grew colder. Once out of the elevator, we stepped into a dimly lit staleness of the wondercave, dominated by ancient hanging stalactites and protruding stalagmites.
It was not a really big cave. After some explanations on the naturally occurring formation and also some history about the pioneer miners and how they transported the harvested limestones out of the cave, and a little more walk around the cave, we were out. From there we continued with the drive around to see more animals.
The lions were getting hungry and were actually waiting close to the entrance of their enclosure. Upon checking the brochure, we saw that it was feeding day. They kinda knew that they were going to be fed and thus was waiting for room service. We were told that if we hadn’t left the enclosure before the lions camp there, we might not be able to leave as the gates to the enclosures were manned by humans and thus it would be too dangerous for the people to open the gates for us.
Next, we drove to the cheetah enclosure and also there is a separate enclosure for mating purpose. As we move along, we saw a cheetah just lying by the road.
I visited the white lion cubs and these lovable furballs were really irresistible. There was one which gave a nice deep growl though it was still that small.
Injured birds that are recuperating at the reserve.
Soon it was time to leave the animals and proceed to UNESCO Cradle of humankind, to learn more on the evolution of humankind. We had lunch at the cafe near the Sterkfontein Cave before going for the tour, which begins every hour.
Various information board giving information on the famous Mrs Ples, carbon dating and evolution of humans.
Replicas of Mrs Ples and Little foot, both found in the Sterkfontein Cave.
Lake within a cave. This lake ran deep and long. A diver was said to have gotten lost when diving and got up a wrong opening. In the end he died whilst trying to find his way out.
Statue of Dr Broom at the exit of the cave. The nose and hands are especially shiny as people believe that when you touch the nose you get luck and the hands you get knowledge. (or vice versa)
The cave tour marked the end of day of touring Joburg. The next day we would be travelling to Kruger NP for our first taste of safari.
We wanted to go elsewhere for food but wasn’t sure of the place. The guide recommended 2 places, Eastgate shopping Mall or Emperor’s palace. We thought shopping mall and the recept arranged for a private transfer via Benz about 15mins from the hotel. 400Rands return trip.
Shopped a little but was disappointed to see that most part of the mall was closed. It was only about 6pm, probably because there weren’t many shoppers? There weren’t alot of choices on food either, mostly the common fast food that was available elsewhere. We made a choice and had Wimpy’s for dinner.
Went back to the hotel for an early night, in preparations for an awesome safari day!