Best overnight safaris from Johannesburg

2 day Pilanesberg safari

How to find the best overnight safaris from Johannesburg to suite your needs and budget.

We offer some of the best overnight safaris from Johannesburg! For safari, wildlife and nature lovers, the Pilanesberg National Park situated about 2 hours’ drive from Johannesburg has plenty of options for you to choose from. From luxury safaris to tented camping tours, South Africa Adventures can organise the ultimate overnight safari for you.

About the Pilanesberg

The Pilanesberg is the most popular overnight safari destination from Johannesburg. This is partly due to the proximity to the city as well as its abundance of wildlife. You can forget about the Lion King. This is the real thing!! The Pilanesberg is home to an incredible amount of animal, bird and plant species. And of course, the park includes the Big 5 (Lion, African Buffalo, Leopard, Rhino and the mighty Elephant).

But that’s not all. On the safari you will get up close and personal with some of the iconic animals of the African bush from zebra, wildebeest, giraffe, antelope like impala, kudu and springbok, warthog, hippo and the occasional Trump Supporter.

Flagship animals of the Pilanesberg

One of the main wildlife species that never fails to impress on a Pilanesberg safari is our favourite, the African elephant.  There are over 300 in the park!!! So, the chances of bumping into one of these suckers is good. Some of the best experiences are watching them swimming and cooling off in one of the dams. And of course, being surrounded by a family of 30 from the breeding herd on the safari.

And then of course there is everyone’s favourite- the African Lion. There is over 250 lions in the Pilanesberg split into various prides. Spending time observing these magnificent creatures is definitely a highlight of any safari.

Drop it like it’s hot

That is exactly what you are going to do. Drop spending time in Johannesburg for a full blown and memorable safari experience. A way better option if you ask us. After all we do offer some of the best overnight safaris from Johannesburg!

Don’t pet the kitty

Just because the wildlife here is not afraid of you doesn’t mean you can do whatever you want. There are strict rules and following the rules will ensure you make it out alive. Don’t get out of the truck unless the guide says it’s ok. Don’t stand up in the truck near animals. Keep quiet around them.

And whatever you do — don’t reach out and pet the big kitty. A hungry lion has no interest in a large vehicle, but once he notices that it’s full of individual snacks, that can quickly change. Doing something stupid will bring you plenty of unwanted attention!

You are on vacation!!!

You are in Africa. Time to chill out and take in the beauty of the African bush-Stress free!! South Africa Adventures handles all aspects of your tour. We handle the return transfers from Johannesburg, the accommodation, meals, safaris logistics and guides. You just need to be waiting for us at your hotel with your safari hat, sunscreen, clothing and a sense of humour.

An overnight safari-How we roll

Our guide will meet you at your hotel in the early morning. We will take the 2-hour drive through to the Pilanesberg. Be sure to bring a hut, sunscreen and camera. We are going to include a lot of safari game drives with our rangers. On all the tour options whether it is the luxury option or the basic tented camping option, we like to include early morning and late afternoon game drives.

These are the best times to see the animals. Midday can get very hot which brings about a ‘wildlife siesta’. The animals are not very active in the heat. A great time for us to chill around the pool with an ice-cold beer we say.

I say old chap, any idea which way north is?

Not only do we know where north is, but we also happen to know where to find the animals. Our safaris are led by one of our experienced rangers that specialises in the Pilanesberg. This means he will have a good understanding of animal behavior and the best areas to find your favourite wild animal.

He will also be able to impart of lot of knowledge and facts about the various animals you come across. So, no need to worry about north. There are bigger elephants to fry on this safari. We would love to say bigger fish but they are pretty scarce in the African bush. Book now for the best overnight safaris from Johannesburg!

What is the most important thing you need to know on an overnight safari to the Pilanesberg?

You would need to be able to solve Einstein’s Theory of Relativity in Greek before we allow you onto the game vehicle. Failing that, we may let you get away with knowing the following:

  • An early start is going to be the order of the day. This is the best time to view the animals especially the nocturnal species like lion, hyena, owls and jackals. Most of the game drives leave at 5:30am returning at 8:30am for breakfast.
  • Every game drive is different- Are you thinking of having a lay and skip the early morning safari? Well don’t!!! No two safaris are alike. There are way too many variables and scenarios in an uncontrollable environment. There is no way of determining what will be seen. Maybe you see that lion kill you missed the day before?
  • There is no guarantee you will see everything- this statement should go without saying. But we need to reiterate it. The Pilanesberg is massive. (over 55,000 hectares). And of course, wild animals don’t stick to our set of rules. They do and go as they please. It’s a matter of being at the right place at the right time. So, cry us a river, build a bridge and get over it.
  • Where you stay matters– make sure you decide on the right type of accommodation that suites your needs. If slogging in el naturale in a camping tent is not your thing, then maybe consider a more luxury type of safari. No matter what option you choose, the actual safari experience in the game vehicle with the ranger is pretty much the same.
  • Weather conditions-This is something we have zero control over. Sometimes it purs with rain. Sometimes it is a hot as hell. We just have to roll with the punches and make the best of the situation.

Are the rangers armed?

Yes, they are. It’s hard to drive a game vehicle without them. They have a left arm and and a right arm. Okay, please excuse our terrible attempt at dry humour. The only things our safari rangers are armed with is bad breath, colourful language and a feather duster.

Game drives in the Pilanesberg are very safe even when we encounter some of the Big 5 up close. The time we would take rifles is when we embark on a walking safari. That is a different kettle of elephants (we mean fish) altogether.

Tour options available

We have various tour options available for our overnight Pilanesberg safaris. They are based on what suites your needs.

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