TBT: My South African Safari (Photo Tour)

South African Safari
Photo: Jonathan Tallman

TBT: My South African Safari (Photo Tour)

After nearly two months in quarantine, Time Hop decided to remind me today of a time when things were just a little bit more exciting.  In 2015, my husband and I took an amazing trip to South Africa.  During our time there, we visited Johannesburg and Cape Town.

It was an absolutely amazing experience.  But the most amazing part was a visit to Pilanesburg National Park and Game Reserve.  Amazingly, I never shared many of these photos on the blog before.  So I thought I’d share some to reminisce about that amazing travel experience and look forward to the chance to open up to the world again.  I’m not a professional photographer, but I hope you enjoy some of these very average photos!

One of my favorite shots was this giraffe grabbing a bite to eat as we drove by.

a giraffe eating leaves from a plant

One of the first animals we came across was this adolescent elephant hanging out alone in the trees and a pool of water.  Here you see it taking a quick drink of water as it watches us intently.

an elephant walking through the woods

The elephants were absolutely incredible to see up close and personal in their natural habitat.  At one point, there was a line of safari cars stopped.  We were in their territory, and so they control the roads.  As one safari car started to get through, the elephant charged the car.  At that point, our guide took us another route and let the elephants enjoy standing in the middle of the road.

an elephant walking in a field

an elephant walking on a road

a couple of elephants walking on a road

We were lucky to get the chance to see this beautiful black rhino at the watering hole.  The guide told us they are a lot rarer to see than the white rhino.  He was pretty far away, but I was still able to grab this shot.

a rhinoceros and zebra in a field

And at the same watering hole, we were able to see a white rhino peacefully taking in a mid-morning drink.  They truly are majestic and beautiful, and it was amazing to see them in their natural environment.

a rhino drinking water from a body of water

As we continued onwards, we came across an animal most quickly recognize: the Lion King favorite warthog.

a wild boar standing in the grass

Of course, it wouldn’t be a safari if you didn’t see zebras, impala, wildebeests, and kudu.


a gazelle with horns walking in the dirt


a wildebeest standing in a field


a horned animal with long horns


a group of zebras drinking water

As the sun started to set, we came across a hippopotamus lounging around in the brush.  It was so hard to see at first that we nearly drove right past it.

a hippo lying in the woods

As the sun started to set we thought our safari adventure was quickly coming to an end.  Soon we would start the drive back to the lodge.  But…nature had a pleasant surprise waiting for us.

a lake with grass and mountains in the background

Just after we started to head back to the lodge, we got word over the radio that the resident cheetahs were on the hunt.  We got there just in time to see a cheetah spring at full speed chasing a baby wildebeest and its mother.  In case you’re wondering, the wildebeest won the round and the cheetah gave up.  After watching years of documentaries on cheetahs, it was incredible to witness that first hand!  This is the cheetah right before it started chase.

a cheetahs in a field

Bottom Line

It’s nice to be able to reminisce on some incredible journeys during all of this down time.  It certainly reminds us how much fun travel can be (although it can be stressful too).  As we continue to be stuck inside, I’m glad I’ve had these moments to remember.

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