PICS: Curious lioness takes on bakkie in the Karoo National Park

2016-08-23 11:30 - Selene Brophy
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Cape Town - How calm are you under pressure? Rudolph de Gerardier, photographer for Drive South Africa’s #TrekSouthAfrica project, took these stunning images of a curious lioness getting up close and personal with a bakkie during a game drive in the Karoo National Park.

According to De Gerardier, they found the three lions after a short ride out from their campsite in the Karoo National Park.

"We had been looking for these big cats - we could not have asked for better sightings. "The lions did not stay peaceful for long. After letting us watch them for a few minutes, one of the lionesses’ stood up."

De Gerardier says the lioness, known as Nati, suddenly walked towards one of their vehicles, "curious to see who dared to stay so close to her temporary lounge of grass".

But things really took on epic proportions when Nati decided to make her greeting more physical.

"She started to prod and nibble away at the bakkie’s headlights and bumper," says De Gerardier. 

"Nati quickly realised that the vehicle did not meet her culinary expectations, and decided to give it a break. She left our vehicle to feel another tourist’s 4x4 in the distance."

See De Gerardier' stunning images here: 

(Rudolph de Gerardier)

(Rudolph de Gerardier)

(Rudolph de Gerardier)

If you're wanting to have a extraodinary close encounter of your own, the upcoming FREE SANParks week as part of Heritage Month celebrated globally and in South Africa during the month of September will be the perfect opportunity.

 SANParks will be throwing open its gates to proudly South African visitors for no charge during the 11th annual SA National Parks Week, held from 12 to 16 September this year. 

The official opening will be kicked off at Addo Elephant National Park, but the free access will be valid in most of the 21 national parks. Some of the parks will be extending the week to include the weekend, up until 18 September. 

All of the parks managed by SANParks, excluding Namaqua National Park and Boulders Penguin Colony in Table Mountain National Park, will be participating in the initiative "to give the public an understanding of the role that SANParks plays as custodian of SA's natural heritage," SANParks says. 

The excluded Parks will apply normal entry tariffs, as they have been declared non-participants in the free access scheme, due to the seasonality of their product offering.

SEE: SANParks adds new day visitor pre-booking to online

It is important to note that gate quotas will be stricty enforced during this week, so make use of the SANparks online booking system to avoid disappointment. The free access to parks does not include free access to accommodation facilities and other tourist activities. 

Follow the #TrekSouthAfrica on Facebook and Instagram for all the latest images and video from their travels around South Africa.  

What to read next on Traveller24:

- #SAHeritage: Breaking down tourism barriers

SANParks FREE entry week dates announced 

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