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“A good place to spot game” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Pilanesberg National Park

Pilanesberg National Park
Book In Advance
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$161.98*
and up
Full-Day Pilanesburg Nature Reserve Tour
Ranked #1 of 16 things to do in Sun City
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
85 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“A good place to spot game”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 10, 2013

This is a small malaria free reserve. As its small there are more chances of seeing animals, downside is it can seem like a large safari park in England.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank SAJR88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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842 reviews from our community

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Nagpur, India
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Wonderful sightings”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 4, 2013

You could see the Big-five very easily here. Must-go for people who are short of time and cannot visit Kruger.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank Anki_151
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
66 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Hardly Surviving Reserve.”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 3, 2013

As per the information from one of our rangers, the park is barely surviving due to low budget in park maintenance and etc. To me, Sun City will not survive without Pilanesburg, and vice-versa.

We took the daily afternoon game drive with approx. 15 other people in 1 car. In the course of 2.5 hours, we saw 3 of the big 5 game (elephant, lion, rhinoceros). The ranger told us he hasn't seen any leopard for a long time. The game frequency was surprisingly low, as commented by other reviewers as well. I'm quite baffled by the number of game that appears before us in such a large expanse. Wondering where they could be? An average of 8 minutes before we could encounter one. The only highlight was when we saw a lion devouring on a dead Wildebeast. And this was a rare sight as well, as mentioned by the ranger.

We took the hot air balloon 2 days later. During winter, the morning 5am ride to the site in the middle of the park was freezing cold. The ranger provided blanket for us, but it was still too cold, as the wind kept blowing. The price per person was too expensive at R3750 (~US$363) for a 45-minute ride above the park. It includes a glass of champagne at the end of the ride, as well as buffet breakfast at Bakubung Lodge. As we reached the lodge at about 9.20am, we didn't have enough time to eat as the breakfast closed at 10.00am. The spread was also quite mediocre.

With that being said, the pilot (Tony) was respectable and wise, explaining to us in details about the hot air balloon, the park and game. And him giving us the signed certificate at the end of it was nice. The ride above the park was peaceful and quiet, the weather got better as we were up there. Too bad we didn't see enough game from above. Yes, even from above.

A good experience overall, but quite expensive I must say.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Wiliam S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hyderabad, India
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Bakubung”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 3, 2013

Nice place. safari tours, very few animals to watch. Bakubang is nice place, nice rooms and food is very good. It is quiet, pleasent. The hot air ballon ride was exceiting.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank Jaiprakash2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Paarl, South Africa
Level Contributor
43 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Disappointing game viewing”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 31, 2013

I have visited Pilansberg on a number of occasions as part of Sun City breakaway weekends, but have been disappointed by the game viewing every time. Game numbers appear to be very low and you can end up driving for extended periods without seeing anything.

If Pilansberg will be your only opportunity in South Africa to view game, by all means do it. If you are visiting the Sun City as part of an extended trip through South Africa, plan to do your game viewing elsewhere (Kruger National Park and the surrounding game reserves remain the best bet).

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Bolander_001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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