LIONSROCK BIG CAT SANCTUARY – BETHLEHEM

Explore LIONSROCK Big Cat Sanctuary, a haven for over 100 rescued lions, tigers, and leopards. Situated just 18km outside Bethlehem, Free State.

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LIONSROCK Big Cat Sanctuary, a FOUR PAWS sanctuary, is a haven for over 100 big cats rescued from around the world, providing them with a protected, species-appropriate environment for life. Situated just 18km outside Bethlehem (Free State), LIONSROCK is easily accessible from Johannesburg, Bloemfontein, and Durban, offering a unique opportunity to witness these majestic animals up close. The sanctuary is committed to providing the best quality of life for its residents, ensuring they receive medical care when needed, and facilitating natural behavior through enrichment activities. LIONSROCK Big Cat Sanctuary is a lifeline for big cats that have been mistreated or kept in inadequate conditions, offering them a safe and secure forever home.

Touching and/or feeding of the animals is strictly prohibited. 

Choose from a range of immersive tours, including guided sanctuary tours, feeding experiences, enrichment activities, and exclusive behind-the-scenes insights, offering a unique opportunity to learn about these majestic animals and their stories.

Pre-booking is required for all tours. Please arrive 30 minutes before the start time of your tour.

 

SANCTUARY TOUR – DAILY

Times: 08:00, 09:30, 11:00, 12:30, 14:00, 15:30
Duration: 1.5 hours

After a quick check-in at reception and a pre-tour video briefing, embark on a guided 1-hour journey into the sanctuary. Encounter majestic Big Cats up close, including stops at the Special Care Unit and Leopard & Tiger enclosures. Keep an eye out for our free-roaming wildlife residents as you gain insight into the struggles and triumphs of these magnificent animals. At LIONSROCK, every resident’s desire to live is honored and celebrated.

Children of all ages are welcome (under adult supervision) for the Sanctuary Tour.

Highlights include:

🗸 Learn about the sanctuary’s residents and their stories.
🗸 Visit the Special Care Unit and Leopard & Tiger enclosures.

FEEDING TOUR – TUESDAYS

Times: 10:00
Duration: 2.5 hours

Begin your journey with a check-in at reception and a brief pre-tour video. Then, embark on a scenic drive through the sanctuary before immersing yourself in a unique dining experience. Watch in awe as our caretakers feed the Big Cats, offering you a bird’s eye view of the action. Explore the leopard and tiger enclosures to learn about their behavior, diets, and more. Immerse yourself in the stories of these magnificent animals before they found their forever home at LIONSROCK. Each day at LIONSROCK is unique, and this tour promises a memorable and moving experience.

Children from 3 years old are welcome (under adult supervision) for the Tour.

Highlights include:

🗸 Witness the exhilarating feeding sessions where dedicated caretakers provide nourishment to the majestic Big Cats, offering a rare bird’s eye view of the action.
🗸 Gain valuable insights into the behavior, diets, and remarkable stories of the Big Cats.

 

ENRICHMENT TOUR – WEDNESDAYS

Times: 14:00 (starts at 14:30)
Duration: 2 hours

Experience the Enrichment Tour at LIONSROCK Big Cat Sanctuary, where you’ll play an active role in enhancing the lives of our resident Big Cats. Following a warm welcome at reception and a pre-tour video, you’ll engage in crafting enrichment items for our Big Cats. Join the caretakers on an open vehicle as you distribute your creations and witness the joyous interactions between the Big Cats and their new toys. Immerse yourself in the experience, learn about the importance of enrichment, and create lasting memories while discovering the stories of the beloved Big Cats and the sanctuary’s mission.

Children from 3 years old are welcome (under adult supervision) for the Tour.

Highlights include:

🗸 Participate in creating enrichment items for the Big Cats, learning about their importance, and witnessing their joyful interactions with your creations.
🗸 Gain a deeper understanding of the Big Cats’ lives and the sanctuary’s mission as you engage with caretakers, learning about the importance of enrichment and conservation efforts.

 

EXCLUSIVE SANCTUARY TOUR – FRIDAYS

Times: 09:30 (starts at 10:00)
Duration: 3.5 hours

Delve into the daily operations of caring for over 100 big cats as you watch the caretakers feed these majestic animals. Gain insight into their work with a close-up aerial view from the bridge, a tour of the LIONSROCK Clinic, and an exclusive walk through the viewing tunnel. Explore Tiger Valley and witness firsthand the resilience and growth of the Big Cats. Conclude your morning with a light lunch and take home a small token gift as a memento of your unforgettable experience.

Children from 3 years old are welcome (under adult supervision) for the Tour.

Highlights include:

🗸 Witness the dedicated caretaker team in action as they feed the magnificent Big Cats, offering a rare glimpse into their daily care routine.
🗸 Gain exclusive access to behind-the-scenes areas such as the LIONSROCK Clinic and the viewing tunnel.

 

SANCTUARY WALKING TOUR – THURSDAYS & SUNDAYS

Times: 09:30 & 15:00 (Thurs)
Duration: 2 hours

After a warm welcome at reception and a brief pre-tour video, embark on a guided walk through the valley and forest. Delve into the stories of the majestic Big Cats, encountering them in a more intimate setting not seen on standard tours. Immerse yourself in the beauty of nature, from the smallest insects to the towering trees, and connect with the free-roaming animals that call LIONSROCK home. This tour invites you to not just observe, but to truly feel the magic of the sanctuary’s unique landscape.

Children from 3 years old are welcome (under adult supervision) for the Tour.

Highlights include:

🗸 Get up close and personal with majestic Big Cats in a serene and secluded setting, away from the standard tour routes.
🗸 Experience the tranquility of the valley and forest, surrounded by diverse wildlife and the natural beauty of LIONSROCK Big Cat Sanctuary.

 

TIGER VALLEY TOUR – MONDAYS, WEDNESDAYS & SUNDAYS

Times: 09:30 & 15:30
Duration: 2 hours

Explore the captivating Tiger Valley on a specialised tour designed for enthusiasts fascinated by these majestic Big Cats. Nestled in a tranquil corner of the sanctuary, Tiger Valley is home to Tigers from around the world, each with a unique and often harrowing backstory. Witness firsthand their remarkable transformation from circuses, train carriages, and even war-torn countries to their sanctuary home at LIONSROCK. Marvel at the efforts to recreate their natural habitats as you observe these magnificent creatures thriving in their forever home.

Children from 3 years old are welcome (under adult supervision) for the Tour.

Highlights include:

🗸 Delve into Tiger Valley, a secluded area of the sanctuary reserved for these majestic Big Cats, offering a unique perspective on their lives and remarkable stories.
🗸 Witness the great care taken to replicate the Tigers’ natural environments, providing them with a safe and stimulating space to live out their lives in peace.

HIKING TRAIL TO PLATFORM – SATURDAYS

Times: 09:30
Duration: 2 hours

After checking in at reception and a brief pre-tour video, embark on a guided hike through the scenic landscape. Follow the trail past the bustling dam, teeming with weavers, to discover a serene cove and natural cave. Marvel at the breathtaking views of the sanctuary from the platform, the perfect vantage point for capturing stunning photos. Conclude your journey with a magical stroll through the forest, immersing yourself in the beauty of nature before returning to the main visitor area.

Children from 3 years old are welcome (under adult supervision) for the Tour.

Highlights include:

🗸 Traverse a scenic route that winds past a lively dam, showcasing the vibrant life of weaver birds, and leads to a tranquil cove and a natural cave.
🗸 Reach the pinnacle of your hike at the platform, offering unparalleled panoramic views of LIONSROCK Big Cat Sanctuary.

 

HIKING TRAIL TO CAVE – SATURDAYS

Times: 14:00
Duration: 1 hour

After checking in at reception and watching a brief pre-tour video, set out on a short and customised hike through the picturesque landscape. Follow the trail past the vibrant dam bustling with weavers, leading you to a serene cove and natural cave sculpted by nature’s artistry. Immerse yourself in the beauty of the magical forest loop before returning to the main visitor area.

Children from 3 years old are welcome (under adult supervision) for the Tour.

Highlights include:

🗸 Traverse a short, customised trail past a vibrant dam teeming with weavers to reach a natural cave, offering stunning views and a glimpse of nature’s artistry.
🗸 Immerse yourself in the beauty of a magical forest loop, experiencing the tranquility and charm of the surroundings.

 

 

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