This past weekend I had the opportunity to visit the African Lion Safari thanks in part to Sharon at Dream Travel Magazine and CAA and their CAA rewards. Though I’d visited African Lion Safari for my first time last summer and loved it (read about my visit here), I was just as thrilled to visit again. There’s so much to do and see and learn that I wanted to share my Top 5 Experiences at African Lion Safari.
1. When many of us think of African Lion Safari we conjure up images of going on a real African safari right here in our Ontario backyard. Where riding in the safety of their safari bus or in your own vehicle, you can casually roll through various reserves where animals are seemingly wild and free. The 50 acres of natural landscape is home to the stunning Watuzi cattle and two prides of lions, one pride being a new addition this year of white lions. Many of us feverishly enjoy the antics of their baboon troop, where many young hung from ropes, chased one another or like the newest one clung to its mother’s breast and all watched over by their resident male, Doc, topping the scales at 110 pounds. Then, what I like to call ‘the grand savannah’, where the spirit of Africa comes alive as zebra, eland and wildebeest graze together along with the critically endangered addax and oryx. Here you’ll meet African Lion Safari’s newest member of the giraffe herd, Safari, the first giraffe born by artificial insemination in Canada and only the second in the world, enjoying her first summer as she mingles with ostrich and beautiful white rhinos.
2. African Lion Safari offers varying experiences on their safari bus through reserves, by boat on their African Queen boat cruise around islands filled with playful primates and brilliant birds and also by train on their Nature Boy, a miniature replica of a 1863 Huntington Steam engine. My favourite mode of transportation has always been the train, so it’s no surprise that I adore their little train ride around a 16 hectare nature reserve, set around a picturesque lake, teaming with wildlife that is native to Southern Ontario – from birds to reptiles – and other exotic animals like reindeer and Sicilian donkeys.
3. Another exciting event to be had at African Lion Safari is the Elephant Swim. Twice a day a group of their Asian elephants (of which they have the largest herd in North America) saunter trunk to tail, largest to smallest through the park around the recreational lake and all line up at the water’s edge and rush splashing into the water. And on such a sweltering day as it was I’m sure they loved the cool, refreshing dip. There is something truly magical in watching as these amazing creatures, averaging at 3 short tons, effortlessly swim through the water, fully emerging themselves than playfully spraying water out through their trunks. It’s as if time and circumstances are at a stand still and you are witness to pure joy of expression.
4. The African Lion Safari has a few different animal shows that are must see. One is the Birds of Prey flying demonstration where you’ll learn how various birds of prey hunt, fly and more interesting abilities. See the impressive swift moves of a falcon, the stateliness and agility of a bald eagle and the inaudible grace of an owl.
5. The Parrot Paradise show is another must to take in, full of colourful, clever and entertaining beautiful birds from around the world that show off their amazing skills and intelligence. From singing and talking parrots to crows that are clean freaks and ingenious macaws you’ll be sure to be amused and leave smiling and wiser!
This year African Lion Safari is celebrating their 45th year, and with what started with a few dozen lions has now grown to house over 1000 exotic birds and animals representing over 100 different species and is a leader in conservation work.
Looking for somewhere thrilling to visit this summer? Then GO WILD at African Lion Safari!
Have you been to African Lion Safari? If so, what was your favourite experience?
For more photos of my day Going Wild! visit Lady of the Zoos on Facebook