Top 10 things to do in Johannesburg
1. The one thing you cannot miss while in Johannesburg is a day tour of Soweto. This vibrant township has loads of history and is a cultural feast for anyone passing through. You can stop and enjoy a traditional lunch at a shebeen and even pass by Nelson Mandela’s house!
2. Examine South Africa’s political past at the Apartheid Museum, a trip back in time to a not altogether pleasant time, but fascinating nonetheless. It is a moving experience and extremely hard-hitting but it’s an inspiring testament to the triumph of the human spirit over adversity.
3. Explore the mining history of South Africa at Gold Reef City. Once you’ve taken in your fill of history, learning about the mining boom that lead to the mushrooming of Johannesburg from small settlement to thriving mining centre, you can test your metal at the thrilling Gold Reef City theme park.
4. For a relaxing day in the sun, head out to Emmarentia Dam and the Johannesburg Botanical Gardens. Take along a picnic lunch, wander through the gardens, laze in the shade of a tree or paddle quietly on the lake in a canoe.
5. If shopping is on your list of things to do, then there’s no better place to do it than at Sandton City. This world-class shopping venue offers a little something for everyone!
6.Drive a short while out of the city to the Lion Park, home to over 80 lions, including the rare white lion, as well as cheetah, wild dog, hyena, jackal, and a wide variety of antelope which roam freely in the antelope area.
7. The district of Newtown in Johannesburg is buzzing with things to see and do. On the outskirts of the CBD, you’ll find a range of museums and galleries to feast your eyes on. A colourful blend of local art and culture can be explored here.
8. The Carlton Centre is Johannesburg’s tallest building and is an integral part of the city’s unique skyline, along with the Hillbrow Tower and the Sentech Tower. For a small fee, you can ride the elevator up all 50 floors to the observation deck at the top.
9. A short drive form the city centre, you’ll find the Johannesburg Zoo. Established in 1904, the zoo is home to over 2000 animals and is spread out over a serene and leafy 54 hectare area.
10. Nature lovers can enjoy peaceful walks in the Melville Koppies Nature Reserve just outside the city centre. Also a National Heritage Site, the reserve has yielded evidence of inhabitants up to 250 000 years ago and has indigenous highveld flora, from grasses and flowers to trees.