Who We Are?

Our Mission

Our mission at Lawnwood is to educate our visitors about snakes in general, to bring understanding and promote the conservation of these commonly feared reptiles.

Most people are aware that we get both venomous and non-venomous snakes, but have little knowledge on telling them apart. It makes the subject mysterious and encourages fear. We aim to bring a better understanding when dealing with snakes!


Our core value is the conservation of snakes. We ensure this by educating our visitors about snakes common to the Garden Route and Southern Africa

  • Snakes must be respected and not feared
  • Everyone is responsible for conserving animals
Michael & Emily Caithness

Our story

In 2003, after many years of anticipation and growing a hobby, Michael Caithness along with the help of his beautiful wife Emily started the Lawnwood Snake Sanctuary. 

The sanctuary started off very small with most snakes housed in a dome and a few outdoor enclosures, but after years it has grown substantially .

In 2011 Michael gave up his 18 year career as a hydraulic technician to be at the park full time.

Today the park has 8 full time staff members sharing their knowledge and ensuring the pristine upkeep of all the resident animals on the 20 hectare forest sanctuary.