Wildlife Experiences at African Dawn Sanctuary

The African Dawn Sanctuary was once a cattle farm owned by the Hickman family. They opened up a small sanctuary on the land to accommodate a few wildlife species that had been brought to them in need of care. Through their love for animals, and their inability to turn animals away, the sanctuary started to grow until it became the African Dawn Sanctuary. Nestled in the breathtaking landscapes between Port Elizabeth and Jeffreys Bay, the African Dawn Sanctuary welcomes visitors to explore the reserve and meet their animals.

Visitors will find the African Dawn Sanctuary to be an unforgettable wildlife experience. There is a vast range of animals, wild and tame, and the rehabilitation centre and breeding program are very interesting and educational. Most of the animals at the sanctuary are indigenous to South Africa; however, a few foreign animals and birds have been taken in to provide local and international visitors with rare opportunities and intimate moments with animals they do not ordinarily have the chance to come in contact with.

The majority of the animals and the birds are hand reared, allowing visitors to be able to touch some of the animals that would not be approachable in their natural environment. Many animals have come to the sanctuary already tame or injured so severely that rehabilitation efforts to return them to the wild are impossible. These animals are then placed in suitable environments within the sanctuary to live the remainder of their lives in safety and in peace.

The sanctuary also has the biggest aviary in the Eastern Cape and bird lovers can look forward to seeing more than two hundred different bird species, including the black eagle and the Knysna Loerie. Rare and endangered species such as the cheetah (of which only approximately 1 200 remain in the wild), and other animals such as antelope, aardvark, tortoises, zebras, springbok and giraffe roam the reserve. Game drives are available, or visitors can discover this small piece of paradise in the coastal region of South Africa by hiking or mountain biking. Interactive activities with animals such as lynx kittens, wallabies and servals will make the time spent at the African Dawn Sanctuary very memorable.

The mission of the African Dawn Sanctuary is to assist all wildlife in need of medical treatment, rescue and those who have been orphaned. The establishment’s main goals are to rehabilitate animals, to create awareness and to educate the public regarding conservation. They also work closely with other conservation and rescue groups to join forces in the fight against the extinction and loss of wildlife. The African Dawn Sanctuary offers families and friends the chance to break away for a day, picnic and braai, and enjoy the beauty and tranquility of the African Dawn Sanctuary.