By Freya Coombes

THESE CLOSE-UP images show a lion waking from a deep sleep, enjoying the afternoon sun.

One image shows Samburu the lion stretching and enjoying the sun after waking from his afternoon nap.

African lions can grow to 82 inches long, with the addition of a 36 inch tail and can weigh up to 496 pounds.

Rolling around.

These images were captured by professional photographer Simon Needham (56) atGG Conservation in South Africa, using a Canon R5 camera.

ā€œSamburu the lion had just woken up from an afternoon nap and decided as we all do to have a lovely big stretch before looking for another spot to rest in,ā€ said Simon.

ā€œIt’s a little more unusual to see a lion in this kind of scenario and show them in a warmer, more lovable way.

Stoic lion.

ā€œI love being close to the lions, however I’m always cautious not to get into the danger zone.

ā€œAll my wildlife photography is done free of charge in support of worthy and hard working organizations.ā€

To view Simons work visit or his Instagram