Every now and then when you visit a country you happen upon a place that leaves you with lasting memories and warm fuzzies. The Jukani Wildlife Sanctuary was one such place for me.
We stopped off at Jukani on the way to Oudtshoorn, after our Addo Safari adventure we wanted to get a taste of more animals and really liked the sound of visiting a place that looks after the animals more than their bank accounts.
Jukani didn’t disappoint! Their sanctuary is home to big cats such as lions, cheetahs, tigers, leopard’s, jaguars, pumas, caracals, serval cats and other wildlife species such as zebra, wild dog, springbuck, zorilla (my favorite!), honey badgers, raccoons and various snake species (which I personally skipped for personal and obvious reasons!).
What truly sets it apart though is the fact that they focus on conservation education and specifically the plight of large predators in captivity, in South Africa and all over the world. Too often zoo’s, circuses and humans have these animals to show them off as attractions and unfortunately too often treated just as that, attractions, not living creatures with needs or rights.
That said, visiting Jukani is not just about viewing their amazing wild cats, it’s also an educational experience with their guides who take you on an incredible tour of the sanctuary and introduce you to all the sanctuary inhabitants, tell you their histories and give you a greater appreciation of the animals plight.
Did I mention that Jukani is also the home of the viral social media sensation Spirit the black leopard?
I didn’t manage to take any photos of this gorgeous creature but here are the videos that made him famous.
And a follow up of how he’s doing
Photos of our day