Monday, September 26, 2011

Tour South Africa: Johannesburg

Jozi in the house! We finally to get to my hometown, where I was born 'n raised. I've asked Hayley, who blogs over at everything in between. Thanks Hayley!

To recap, this is part of a series I'm hosting on South of the Sahara for anyone interested in where to visit, what to do, and what to eat in South Africa (you can also read about Cape Town and Durban). And do click on the images to see them better.

"Whatever you want to call it… is my home. I have been privileged to live in two other gorgeous cities in South Africa… but I am a Jozi girl, through and through… and a very proud one at that.

Joburg often gets a bad rap… mostly from other South Africans. But beneath the concrete city buildings, endless highways and its negative associations… lies a city that I love, a city that throbs with energy, and a city that is beautiful in its own right… you just need to take the time to discover it.

When Kirsten asked me to do this post… I thought… if I had two or three days in Joburg… what would I not want to miss out on?

A trip to Joburg, is not complete without a trip on The Gautrain. She is our newest and shiniest addition to our city. I have started with the Gautrain, as you can use her to get around most of the city {and if you have time take a trip to Pretoria, our capital city}. We are super proud of our Gautrain.

So here goes… some really cool things to do and see… in no particular order…

Shopping is a must in this city. The usual suspect always pops up… Sandton City and Nelson Mandela Square. It has everything you want, from designer shops right down to the bargain buys. The mall is usually on everyone’s list. But, my favourite, has to be Melrose Arch. A great place for dinner as well… and at Christmas time… it’s full of Christmas lights. I am cheating here, but I am going to include a mall that technically falls outside of Joburg, the Irene Village Mall. If you have a chance try and spend some time in Irene, you get to experience real country life right outside the city.

Then if you want to hit the markets these are a must… Rosebank Rooftop Market, Market on Main and the newly opened Neighbourhood Goods Market.

If eating good food is your thing… like it is mine. There are few iconic places to go…

High tea at the Westcliff Hotel is a must. Besides the food been beyond divine, is the view that is the real winner. You get to see Jozi at her finest. If you are in town during Spring…it’s even more spectacular, as the Jacarandas are in full bloom.

Experience an African menu at the fabulous Moyo’s at the Zoo.

And don’t forget to experience a Jozi sunset from one of the many rooftop decks around the city, with a cocktail in hand of course.

And then of course there is the sightseeing…

Head south of Joburg… a day at Gold Reef City… seriously too much fun, especially if you have kids. And a trip to the Apartheid Museum is an emotional trip back into our history. And then, organise yourself a tour through Soweto. This is so worthwhile… and you get to experience life in this vibrant township.

A trip to the Lion and Rhino Park is key. You get to experience our wildlife up close and personal, and its literally just down the road. And a trip to the Cradle of Mankind and Maropeng.

Experience a taste of Joburg suburbia, by spending an afternoon in Parkhurst. Walking the tree lined streets, where there are dozens of outdoor restaurants and pubs, and plenty of unique shops. And not to mention the many museums and art galleries scattered across the city.

Joburg is massive, and so varied. One minute you are in the heart of skyscrapers and the next, in the middle of the country. One minute you are walking the vibrant streets of a township and the next in aisles of Louis Vuitton.

There is so much to do… you just need to embrace it and enjoy the ride.

I love Jozi.

Hopefully you will visit one day.

Do you live in a beautiful part of South Africa? Do you want to share it with us? Email me at


Hayley said...

Thanks for the opportunity K!!!!

Sam said...

Great post! A wonderful collection of things to see and do in Jozi