Thanda Tau – A surprising N3 fuel stop between JHB and Harrismith

Posted by Zaid January 5, 2017 5 Comments 1241 views

90 km North of Harrismith and 180km away from Johannesburg I pulled over at the Puma fuel station beside the N3 for some coffee.

N3 freeway Thanda Tau

I was surprised to see lions, their cubs, an OK express store, a Spur, coffee shop, bakery, restaurant, accommodation, art gallery and so much more in a serene environment.

Signpost Thanda Tau

This facility was opened in October 2016 and officiated in mid-December 2016. Hence why I hadn’t seen it before.

Official sign thanda tau

I chilled there for about an hour after getting cappuccino from the bakery and coffee shop.

Bakery Thanda Tau

Coffee shop Thanda Tau

They’ve got a cool restaurant, homemade delights and handicrafts.

Lions share restaurant Thanda Tau

I took a walk outside to the back of the restaurant.

Thanda Tau pond

And noticed a number of white lion.

Lions at Thanda Tau

And cubs.

Lion Cub 2

There’s also a rhino and cheetah which I only learnt of after I left.

Thanda Tau wildlife sign

A number of people have expressed concern about the wild life viewing. The response from the facility management was:

They haven’t mentioned if / where the animals are released to after rescue. I don’t believe that the animals should have a dependency on humans to feed, and give up their natural hunting skills. I hope the management takes action to rectify if these animals are being kept captive for long periods (i.e. release the wildlife) as the location alone with its other facilities are great enough for a stopover or getaway out of JHB:

Signage Thanda Tau

The chalets on-site:

Thanda Tau chalets

Their address: N3 Offramp 107, Roadside, Free State, South Africa

You can view the accommodation options and book on http://www.roomsforafrica.com/establishment.do?id=20320
Or contact the facility directly: Emailbookings@thandatau.co.za Webhttp://www.thandatau.co.za/
Post updated at 15:00 on 05/01/2016 to reflect concerns regarding the wild life viewing

There are 5 Comments

  1. Cheryl Bromwich
    - January 5, 2017
      -   Reply

    Checked this place out at the end of December and I am disgusted by how ignorant people are to support cub petting and blatant predator breeding. Please do your research before falling into the trap of thinking these animals will be returned/placed into the wild.

    Captured In Africa Foundation added 5 new photos.Like Page
    October 13, 2016 ·
    *** THE CONCENTRATION CAMP FOR LIONS ***

    Heartbreaking images of yet another lion farm in South Africa, situated on the N3 in the Freestate and part of new local developments.

    THANDA TAU LION FARM – will this be somewhere you visit? We won’t be.

    Questions we would like to raise to Thanda Tau Lion Farm;

    Q: Why are they breeding lions and other animals?
    Q: What is their purpose, will this facility be a lifelong home for the animals?
    Q: Does Thanda Tau trade and/or sell any of their animals?

    “A total of R12.032 billion from the Department of Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (DESTEA) will be channelled towards economic initiatives in the province. “These programmes will undoubtedly inject much more needed capital and create sustainable jobs for the people of the Free State,” said MEC Sam Mashinini. Among the programmes, the Thanda Tau Development on N3 Route in Phumelela worth R 80 million to be completed in July.”

    Quick details that we know of (supplied by an anonymous 3rd party source);

    Apparently-

    * Owner Hannes De Jager, owns 6 or 7 Engen garages.
    * Breeding lions, took over his cousins farm 5km down the sand road from the complex heading South.
    * Has Black Leopard already.
    * In the market currently to buy lion, caracal, Tiger, leopard, cheetah, serval, Rhino.
    * 2 American Pumas are being sponsored by Puma Petrol, Brent Oil.
    * Spent R300 million already.
    * Opening end Sept.
    * Spur and KFC plus other fast food outlets.
    * Pieter Domini is managing the project for De Jager.

    Images supplied by Captured In Africa Foundation

    Related articles:
    http://www.gov.za/…/budget-vote-tabled-mec-sam-mashinini-14…

    http://www.dumelangnews.co.za/…/destea-allocates-bulk-budge…

    Blood Lions WildiZe Foundation Democratic Alliance 50|50 Community Global March for Elephants and Rhinos Global March for Lions Kevin Richardson Traveller24 CNN CNN-News CBS News Sky News Great Plains Conservation Wildlife Conservation Network Wildlands Environmental Investigation Agency Oxpeckers Investigative Environmental Journalism Walking For Lions Africa Geographic eNCAnews Panthera Africa FOUR PAWS South Africa FOUR PAWS International FOUR PAWS UK World Animal Protection White Lion Protection Trust NBC News SA Tourism Update Online Love South Africa Tourism Business Council of South Africa WildAid CITES IUCN IUCN Red List of Threatened Species U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Department of Environmental Affairs. you need to do your research. Thank you.

    • - January 5, 2017
        -   Reply

      Thanks for sharing Cheryl. I’ve updated the article to reflect concerns on the wildlife

  2. - January 5, 2017
      -   Reply

    captive breeding for trophy hunters.
    Sad to see.

    And cheetahs are almost extinct.

  3. Rhys Scott-Dawkins
    - January 30, 2017
      -   Reply

    Yet another example of wildlife being exploited for profit! I drove past there last week on the way to JHB. It was probably 30+ degrees out and these poor animals were out in the blazing sun, lying against the fence. I also think it is shameful how these big name brands have supported this. It is proved time and time again that once these little cubs are finished being exploited and petted and prodded they end up in the canned lion hunting scene. Disgusting!

  4. Sandra
    - March 12, 2017
      -   Reply

    Why can’t these wild animals just be left alone in the wild, I can see already what’s going to happen to those little cubs once they’ve grown up, our beautiful country and our beautiful wildlife, all for the greed of money, animals have no voice and you’ll never stop hearing mine. God never sleeps

Write Your Comment

Recent Tweets

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.