2. Pilanesberg National Park
This ecologically rich game reserve is brimming with bushland, bird life and the Big Five. It is situated on the remnants of an extinct volcano not far from Sun City and just 2 to 3 hours out of Johannesburg. It’s a popular self-drive safari getaway for local day-trippers and families who want a nature break from city life. 7,000 animals make their home here, including lion, leopard, rhino, elephant, buffalo, giraffe, hippo, zebra, jackal, hyena and antelope, plus over 350 bird species. There’s a range of accommodations from tented campsites and basic chalets to family-friendly resorts and five star luxury lodges. Arrange a sunrise hot air balloon excursion for a unique perspective over the stunning South African landscape.