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“Fine for an afternoon trip but .... some reservations” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre

Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre
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$107.53*
and up
Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre Tour from Hazyview
Ranked #2 of 21 things to do in Hoedspruit
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) focuses on the conservation of rare, vulnerable or endangered animals. Cheetah Conservation is one of the core disciplines. HESC has established itself as one of the leading private research and breeding facilities for endangered species in the country. Governed by a progressive and modern management approach, it concerns itself with the breeding and maintenance of several endangered indigenous wildlife species in southern Africa. The centre places particular emphasis on the breeding and maintenance of cheetah in captivity. The excellent condition of these animals and the premises on which they are maintained, reflect the attention to detail, which is the hallmark of this facility. STANDARD TOUR The duration of each tour is 2 hours. Therefore it enables the visitor to have sufficient time to ask questions to the guide and do an in-depth tour of the centre. Please note that our first tour can include the cheetah run, however bookings are essential. Prior reservations are essential. Please refer to our rate sheet for more information on special packages and accommodation. DELI at CHEETAH Visitors may enjoy a selection of home baked cakes and a light meal under thatched cover overlooking the Centre's enclosures. Refreshments such as coffee, tea, soft drinks, wine and beer are but some of the offerings available to a thirsty palate. Groups can be catered for, but we advise bookings to guarantee efficient serving time. CURIO SHOP One of the most imported sources of funding at the HESC is the curio shop; stocked to the brim with locally made artefacts, wildlife literature, and children's toys, visitors will no doubt enjoy the experience of browsing through the colorful shelves. Many of the pieces for sale in the shop are made by local communities, renowned for their proficiency in beading and weaving. All proceeds from sales in our curio shop from your visit will go towards the care and up- keep of our hundreds of animals and birds.
Woodbridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
99 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Fine for an afternoon trip but .... some reservations”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 22, 2013

It is difficult to fault what is provided in terms of a tourist experience. You will see more preditors here than you are likely to find on a day out in Kruger ~ they are all lined up in large enclosures ~ snap away. The site is beautifully maintained and you view the various enclosures by driving past on an open safari vehicle until finally you get to drive within one of the bigger enclosures. The animals seem to be well looked after ~ their food is provided to a regular schedule ~ they have access to water and adequate shade..The enclosures are bigger and cleaner than you may have experienced to other wildlife parks. You therefore get plenty of nice pictures. There is an adequate snack bar and a tourist shop. So why my reservations ?

Unfortunately I found the visit a bit too clinical. For me it seemed to be more of a zoo than being an endangered species conservation programme. Information was lacking on how the animals get prepared for release into the wild. I had assumed this would be the ultimate objective for the centre. This may be the case but the visit prompted more questions than answers. We were not shown any areas which were large enough to allow predators to roam free and develop their hunting skills.The cheetah in particular learns stealth by hunting in long grass. Such grass was lacking in the enclosures we visited. Such skillls need to be acquired before a group of animals can sustain themselves in the wild. So I was left wondering ~ are these animals just being prepared for a life in captivity ? If that is the case this is just a tourist attraction rather than true practical conservation. I hope I am wrong.

Visited March 2012
Helpful?
4 Thank clivec186387
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Roodepoort
Level Contributor
102 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Wonderful experience!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 14, 2013

An amazing experience. The HESC is one of the best attractions I have ever visited in South Africa. The Centre is very well organised and it is clear that the best care and facilities are provided for the animals. We went on a game drive and saw the cheetahs, wilddogs etc. in their environment as well as endangered birds, vultures etc. Our guide was informative and friendly and clearly cared for the animals. The curio shop was excellent and featured more than the usual "african" curios.

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Ivanda V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tetbury, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Leopards View Game Lodge”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 4, 2013

I loved the quality of this game Lodge,it was great value for money,food was exceptional and staff so friendly.The views of the waterhole were spectacular attracting wildlife most of the time.This place is truly a gem and well worth staying whilst touring kruger park and surrounding areas.I would not hesitate to stay at this lodge again.Rhys Davies.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Carol R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Level Contributor
230 reviews
69 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“Love it!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 14, 2012

Wonderful conservation and rehabilitation centre! Absolutely worthwhile to support. Nice restaurant with friendly staff.

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Victoria201154
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hoedspruit
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Unsung Heros”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 4, 2012

A facility that does not get enough praise and recognition for their work! We should all be supporting their efforts! This is not just a tourist attraction - but a conservation facility for our most endangered species!

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank craigreubenspencer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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