Somizi can cook too! Image via Facebook: Somizi

Somizi gets his growl on: Watch ‘Idols SA’ judge’s close encounter with lion

‘My soul left my body’: Somizi’s relaxing vacation in the bush took a roaring turn after a close encounter with a lion.


Somizi can cook too! Image via Facebook: Somizi

Idols SA judge Somizi Mhlogo ditched the beach and headed to the bush for a relaxing vacation. The 49-year-old spent some time at the Leopard Hills Private Game Reserve in Hazyview, Mpumalanga. 

Somizi was excited to spot some of our big five but… he did have a close encounter with a lion. Taking to Instagram on Thursday 10 March, Somizi recorded the animal walking slowly past his game viewing vehicle. 

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Mpumalanga is one of the best places to spot some wildlife in Mzansi. With several game reserves, you are guaranteed to spot a leopard, lion, elephant, rhino, or buffalo. 

Somizi took a road trip to Mpumalanga on Wednesday 9 March and said the road was his “happiest most peaceful” place. 

“I think cause I was born on the road when my mom was on tour that’s why…” wrote Somizi. 

The talented choreographer stayed at the five-star Leopard Hills Private Game Reserve which borders the Kruger National Park. 



Whilst in Mpumalanga, Somizi went on a game drive and had a close encounter with a lion that strolled past his game viewing vehicle. 

Taking to Instagram, the media personality recalled it as the moment his “soul left his body for two seconds.”

The 49-year-old’s comment section was filled with hilarious comments with one tweep recalling something Somizi said about a lion…

“I thought you once said you’d rather walk in Kruger with wild animals than walk in JHB CBD?” wrote one fan.


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Somizi Mhlongo has returned to Idols SA as a judge after he was booted in 2021 following abuse claims by his estranged husband Mohale Motaung. 

In February, he told True Love that he “found it weird” when people asked him when he’d return to television. 

Online auditions for the popular talent show closed on Saturday 5 February.